Do the New York Giants have a capable backup for quarterback Eli Manning. Ryan Nassib enters his third NFL season, but that question is impossible to answer since we have never seen Nassib take a meaningful snap. Let's look at Nassib as we continue our player-by-player profiles of the 90-man roster the Giants will bring to training camp.
2014 Season in Review
Three the first five passes of his NFL career, completing four during mop-up duty in a 27-0 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Nassib appeared in four games, playing a total of 19 snaps. He completed 44-of-74 preseason passes (59.5 percent) with five touchdowns and no interceptions. Basically, once the regular season began he wore a baseball cap and caddied for Eli Manning.
2015 Season Outlook
A while back, we asked about your confidence level if Nassib actually had to play real, meaningful snaps for the Giants in 2015. The results showed that 50 percent (1,337) of 2,655) voters believed the Giants would be OK if Nassib had to play a game or two. Beyond that? A whole lot less faith.
The 2015 outlook for Nassib is probably much like the last two seasons. Significant preseason snaps but only mop-up duty during real games. Unless ironman Eli Manning gets hurt, which is really unthinkable. Manning has started 167 straight regular-season games.Good or bad, Eli is always there and he has to get credit for that.
Quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan, who is returning to the Giants this season, is working with Nassib for the first time.
"He is a guy who is a very hard worker. He is a grinder and he is a gym rat and is someone who is very conscientious. He came from a similar type system in college, so he didn't really have to unlearn, if you will, as much. I am very impressed with his work ethic, his competitiveness and how intelligent he is," Sullivan said. "He has been really trying to focus on the little things that can get his release a little faster. He is very conscientious about that, "Hey, I can just keep the ball a little bit higher." He understands the reasoning and timing behind things in terms of not wanting to be too slow with his feet or having an elongated release and just a very bright and competitive player. In the meeting room, he is someone that Eli relies upon. I got the sense early on that those two guys really respect each other and you look at a guy like Ryan and I am excited to see how he is going to perform in these games in the preseason, and he is just a really competitive kid."
Occasionally, there are suggestion the Giants try to trade Nassib for draft picks. Those are understandable, the problem is that to my knowledge a market for the former Syracuse quarterback doesn't exist. How does a quarterback prove he can play if he never gets to play? And, why would a team surrender a draft pick or picks for a player who is basically a complete unknown?
The curse of being the backup to Eli Manning is that you get to practice, contribute in the meeting room and hold a clipboard on Sunday. Not much else. That, likely, is Nassib's fate again in 2015. If he actually does get to play meaningful snaps? Your guess is as good as mine when it comes to assessing what will happen.