We have no real idea what the New York Giants' revamped offense will look like in 2014, and we will simply have to wait to find out what Giants' coach Tom Coughlin means when he says it will feature "some of old, tremendous amount of new." Let's read between the lines of what Coughlin said Wednesday at the NFL owner's meetings, and what the Giants have done in free agency, and see what we might be able to learn.
Here are '10 things I think I think' about the Giants' new offense. Yes, we're borrowing once again from SI's Peter King.
1. It will still feature a power running game. New offensive guard Geoff Schwartz is a 340-pound road-grading run-blocker. New running back Rashad Jennings is a 230-pound between-the-tackles power runner. John Jerry is a 335-pound (or maybe 350-pound) behemoth. "Offensively, we need to get back to Giant football - big human beings moving guys in the NFC East," Coughlin said Wednesday. Draft hint -- Do not discount an offensive lineman being taken at No. 12 or multiple offensive linemen being selected by the Giants throughout the draft.
2. The starting tight end isn't on the current roster. Most people have pretty assumed that up until now, and Coughlin saying "We have to make something happen there" pretty much confirms they won't enter the season counting on Adrien Robinson. Does that mean they select North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron if he is available? Maybe. Considering Coughlin's emphasis on power, though, perhaps the tight end target in the draft ends up being Troy Niklas, the intriguing 270-pound Notre Dame prospect who is more of a traditional tight end than Ebron.
3. Coughlin still wants balance. The Giants have always tried to maintain an equilibrium between the run and the pass, and Coughlin wants to see that continue. "Balance has always put Eli at his very best," he said.
4. Coughlin is counting on David Wilson. The coach sounds very much like he anticipates the team's 2012 first-round pick to be available in 2014 following neck surgery. If he is available, best guess is Wilson will be used in a limited role designed to use his speed while Jennings and perhaps Peyton Hillis do the bulk of the work.
5. The screen is alive. Coughlin spoke specifically on Wednesday about Jennings' ability in the screen game. If the Giants are going to use Wilson as somewhat of a specialist it would make sense that screens and quick throws to get him in space would be part of that plan.
6. The change will be good for Eli Manning. Coughlin talked about how the challenge of learning a new offense will "fire up Eli." He also spoke about how much responsibility will be on Manning's shoulders with the new terminology, especially at the line of scrimmage. My belief is learning a new system and truly being challenged by offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo is the best thing that could happen to Manning at this point in his career.
7. What's up with the two fullbacks? This is not something Coughlin addressed on Wednesday, but it is a good question. Will John Conner and Henry Hynoski truly be competing for one roster spot during the preseason, or will the Giants find a way to use both? The Green Bay Packers, where McAdoo spent the last decade, popularized the 'bone' formation, with blocking backs on both sides of a tailback lined up directly behind the quarterback. It will be interesting to see how this pans out.
8. What's up with Ryan Nassib? I have thought all along that the Giants really want Nassib, drafted in the fourth round last year, to step forward and claim the No. 2 job next season -- allowing them to keep only two quarterbacks on the 53-man roster. Coughlin Wednesday indicated the Giants might have to keep three, however, and I'm with Pat Traina on this one. Traina suggested on Twitter (@Patricia_Traina) that perhaps that means the Giants weren't happy with Nassib's development a season ago, and I'm inclined to read it the same way.
9. The Giants are counting on Rueben Randle. Coughlin pointedly said Wednesday that Randle has "got to continue to be a better pro." Translation? He needs to show up and give his best effort every day, and perhaps he hasn't done that his first two seasons.
10. Coughlin will be dragged away kicking and screaming. This one has nothing to do with the offense and everything to do with the Giants' future. Coughlin's remarks make it obvious that he still loves to coach, and that walking away is not on his mind. "What am I going to do? My wife's already told me, ‘You're not hanging around here!'"