Happy Saturday, Big Blue View!
This week's slate of games doesn't have the number of season-defining games as Week 5, but that doesn't mean that there aren't good games on.
Four Games To Watch
1) Indiana at Penn St. (Noon, ESPN) - For Giants fans, there are two reasons to watch this game. The Penn St. defensive ends, Anthony Zettel and Carl Nassib. Zettel is a big, strong defensive end who tackles trees in his spare time. He also has an explosive first step to go with impressive strength, positional versatility, and a backup in mixed martial arts. Carl Nassib is younger -- but by no means little -- brother of Giants' backup quarterback Ryan Nassib. Carl has the size and length the Giants love in their defenders, and is one of the leading sackers in college football with 8.0 in his first five games.
2) Georgia Tech at 6 Clemson (3:30 p.m., ESPN2 or ABC) - After Clemson's upset victory over Notre Dame last week, the Tigers have been vaulted into the discussion for the College Football Playoffs. They are sitting just outside, but if they keep winning, the selection committee could be hard pressed to keep them out. The Clemson defense will have their work cut out for them defending Georgia Tech's giant-killer of a triple option offense.
3) Miami at 12 Florida State (8 p.m., ABC) - The FSU Seminoles are trying to scratch and claw their way back into the college football playoff picture, while Miami is battling to reclaim lost prestige. Both programs offer a number of talented prospects, including Brad Kaaya (QB, So) and Deon Bush (FS) of Miami and Jalen Ramsey (CB) of Florida State.
4) 23 California at 5 Utah (10 p.m., ESPN) - If you're willing to stay up for it, one of the last games to air on Saturday could be the best as the last two unbeaten teams in the Pac-12 throw down. Cal boasts Jared Goff, who is already being called the best quarterback in the 2016 draft. On the other hand, Utah has a very stout defense and running back Devontae Booker, a quick, compact, and powerful runner with soft hands (Not to prejudice anyone, but he reminds me of Tiki Barber).
Six Players To Watch
Vadal Alexander (OL, LSU) - The Giants have their right guard of the present in Geoff Schwartz, and rookie Bobby Hart showed promise in his first preseason. So the line of succession at the right guard spot is set, right? Well, the best laid plans of Giants and men tend to go astray. If the Giants want to continue pouring resources into their offensive line,Vadal Alexander could be a name to watch. Alexander has natural strength and surprising movement skills, and has started games at both left guard and right tackle, so he has a number of traits the Giants love in their linemen. Also coming from LSU's pro-style offense, he has grown up in NFL blocking schemes, something linemen from spread offenses struggle with.
Tyler Boyd (WR, PITT) - Last week I brought up two receivers the Giants could look at, and this week I'm going to bring up another. Boyd has some serious off-field concerns, but he also has some serious talent. Coming into the 2015 season Boyd was regarded as the best receiver in the country after being the first receiver in ACC history to record 1,000 yards in each of his freshmen and sophomore seasons, and is still in the conversation. He is a long, lanky receiver at 6-2, 200 pounds, but he is a natural hands catcher who runs precise routes and has impressive body control. If he can move past his off field issues, Boyd is going to be hard for any potentially receiver-needy team to ignore.
Jake Butt (TE, Michigan) - This is a name I've brought up a couple times. The Giants currently have no true tight ends on their roster. Larry Donnell has the size, but he lacks the physicality to his game that a truly complete tight end needs, or the athletic traits to be a true "hybrid" tight end like Jimmy Graham. Jerome Cunningham, Will Tye, and Dominique Jones are H-Backs. Butt has the size and frame to be a complete tight end. His blocking is still developing, but he shows willingness to block at the second level and should improve in Jim Harbaugh's pro-style offense. Butt is more than athletic enough to threaten the seams and attacks the ball as a receiver. He has the potential to be a difference maker.
Shaq Lawson (DE, Clemson) - The Clemson defensive end is just a tad short by the Giants' standards, but he is a rare "complete" defensive end. He has the tremendous strength and power to control offensive linemen, while also having the explosive quickness to be a dangerous pass rusher. The 6-foot-3, 275-pound defensive end has 20 tackles, 8.5 tackles for a loss, and 2.5 sacks on the season
Leonard Floyd (OLB, Georgia) - Before 2012, Jerry Reese had never selected a running back in the first round. Before 2013, the Giants hadn't selected an offensive lineman in the first in forever. Floyd is quickly becoming the type of linebacker the Giants could find themselves selecting if he's there. Long (6-4) and remarkably athletic, Leonard Floyd made his mark as one of the SEC's premier pass rushers in 2014, but he is expanding his game to be a stout run defender and a reliable coverage man as well in 2015. He doesn't quite have the frame to get up to 250+ pounds, but at 235-240 he shows remarkable flexibility and closing burst.
Deon Bush (FS, Miami) - Deon Bush is the kind of DB the Giants seem to like, solid size, versatility, and punches above his weight class. Bush is athletic, rangy, and instinctive, showing the range and ball skills to be a dangerous center-fielder while also having no issues sticking his nose in the trash in run support and blitzing the quarterback.