In a list of the top 50 potential breakout players for 2014 [Insider only] ESPN has listed two members of the New York Giants -- cornerback Walter Thurmond and wide receiver Rueben Randle. Let's look at what ESPN said about each player, add a few thoughts and toss in a couple of other potential Giants breakout candidates.
Walter Thurmond (No. 29 on ESPN's list)
Here is what Mike Sando of ESPN wrote about Thurmond:
Thurmond has already made a name for himself on the Giants, partly due to some of his brash comments. He'll get a chance to back up the talk after leaving a situational role in Seattle for a starting spot on the Giants. Thurmond has only one regular-season interception, in part because injuries limited him severely in his first three seasons.
Valentine's View: Thurmond has impressed teammates with his knowledge, study habits and work ethic. He can play in the slot or slide outside if need be. He should be a huge difference-maker for the Giants this season.
Rueben Randle (No. 49 on ESPN's list)
Here is what Sano said about Randle:
Randle has 60 receptions for 909 yards and nine touchdowns combined during his first two seasons. That sounds like a realistic projection for him in 2014.
Valentine's View: Randle better catch at least that many passes this season. Other than Victor Cruz it doesn't look like another Giants wide receiver or tight end is going to approach that number.
Offensively, I would guess you might have to put Jerrel Jernigan in this category. You might put Larry Donnell or Adrien Robinson here as well.
Defensively, the name that leaps to mind is Damontre Moore. I am surprised he isn't on Sando's list. Defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins should probably also be on the list.