Let's open the Big Blue View mailbag and see what questions are on your mind this week.
Ed says: OK, William. You asked for it, so here is the 'it's all sunshine and roses at the safety position' answer. Landon Collins is going to be a star. At the least he is going to make the Green Bay Packers look silly for making Damarious Randall the first safety taken in the draft, 30th overall. The Giants have always loved the skill set Cooper Taylor has, and he played well in the 2014 preseason. Nat Berhe is a class act and seems like a guy who will be a quality pro. Mykkele Thompson has the speed and ball skills to be a quality free safety. Bennett Jackson could be better at safety than he was at corner.
See, eveything is wonderful. Feel better?
Ed says: Probably not. It isn't something the Giants usually do. I hope you aren't thinking that a guy like this could be a starter for the Giants this fall. That's not realistic with OTAs and mandatory mini-camp already in the rearview mirror. It would be pretty much a redshirt year. Remember, if you pick the player you lose the corresponding draft choice in the upcoming draft, so you better be sure. This just isn't the Giants' style.
@bigblueview does it seem like Bobby Hart is underrated? He played an important position at the highest level, but he's way under the radar.— Kevin Donohue (@KevinPDonohue) June 26, 2015
Ed says: Thanks for the question, Kevin. How is he underrated? He was a seventh-round pick drafted as a developmental offensive lineman, not as a guy who was expected to play this year. He is also a 20-year-old kid who needs to do a lot of work in the weight room and with a trainer to develop an NFL body. I'm not sure what you were expecting, but seventh-round picks aren't selected with the idea they will end up starting as rookies. They are drafted because they have the potential to help down the road.
Ed says: Why can't they all stay? We don't know what the salary cap will be a year from now, but there is an expectation that it will be going up again. Let's see what the cap is before we try to figure this out. Let's see what kind of money each guy is asking for. This is one of those deals where we just don't have all the information we need to figure this one out.
Ed says: I don't know that it damages the passing attack at all. Eighty-five percent of what Cruz used to be is still an effective NFL wide receiver, though not a star one. It would probably still make him a better receiver than Preston Parker or Dwayne Harris. Eighty-five percent of the 86 catches he made in 2012 is 73 receptions. The Giants would sign up for that. Cruz had 73 catches in 14 games in 2013. Eight-five percent of that is 63 catches. The Giants would probably take that, too. What potential replacement for Cruz is going to give the Giants that much?
You also have to consider this. Cruz has been option No. 1 in the Giants' passing attack since 2011. As long as Beckham is on the field, that is never going to be the case again. Rueben Randle caught more than 70 passes last year and Larry Donnell more than 60. Shane Vereen should catch 40-50 passes. Even if he is every bit the player he used to be, there might not be as many passes coming Cruz's way.
Ed says: Thanks for the question, Matt. This would be a good problem for the Giants to have. I will say Flowers will have to play incredibly well to be better than Beatty was a year ago, because Beatty was pretty darn good. Let's say that Flowers plays well enough that the Giants like what they see. I honestly don't know what the Giants would do, but my educated guess would be that Flowers would stay on the left and Beatty would go to the right. The Giants see Flowers as the long-term left tackle and if he is doing OK they might just leave him there instead of force him to make an adjustment.
If Flowers struggles? He could go to the right side. Depending on who is playing right tackle and how well that person is performing, Flowers could even go to the bench.
It is an interesting thing to think about, and I've been mulling it for a while. I really think it's one of those things that can't be answered until the time comes and we see what the situation is.
Rich Furlin asks (via e-mail): We all suffered through the Giants growing pains as they installed a new offense last year. As they install a new defense this year, will the learning curve be similar or are defenses easier to adjust?
Ed says: I don't know if the learning curve is the same on offense and defense. It would seem more difficult on offense because not only do you have to learn all the plays, options, etc., you have to master the timing. There will be growing pains. Remember that it took the Giants a while when Steve Spagnuolo was defensive coordinator the first time. The players have to learn what Spags wants, Spags has to learn what his guys do best. It doesn't happen overnight. Remember, the first two games under Spagnuolo in 2007 were awful. Things worked out OK, though.