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New York Giants post-draft depth chart: What does the roster look like right now?

A quick analysis of how the rookies might fit in among their new teammates.

Steven Ryan-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL Draft is behind us. With several new faces joining the team, the New York Giants look like a very different squad to that of one week ago. While draft stock and round selection have defined these players for the past few months, from now on, it's about what they do on the field. Whether you're a first-round cornerback or a free-agent wide receiver, you have to prove yourself in practice before you can be trusted on the field. We take a look at how the recent additions might fit into the depth chart ahead of the rookie mini-camp that will be held later this week.

Blue: Undisputed starter

Green: Holds position

Yellow: Competing for playing time

Orange: Competing for roster spot

This is an unofficial depth chart, my interpretation of what each position looks like right now.



I think this is the year that Ryan Nassib really pushes Eli Manning for playing time. I'll take "Things Alex only types with a sarcastic tone" for $200.

Running back

This group is a beautiful mess. The Giants added a potent fifth-round pick and a free agent to the already muddled backfield. Hopefully, it pushes them all into heavy competition, with an iron sharpens iron, steel sharpens steel mentality. I think Rashad Jennings is still the clear cut No. 1 guy right now, and that Shane Vereen will remain as a gadget/change of pace back, but the post-draft buzz is that Paul Perkins will push for playing time sooner rather than later.


If Nikita Whitlock still wants to play it, the job is probably his, but given his production on the other side of the ball last year, a permanent switch to defensive tackle isn't out of the question. In that case, Will Johnson will either get the job, or the team may opt to roll without a fullback and use the roster spot in a different area. Though it is important to note that Whitlock worked exclusively with the offense in OTAs to date.

Wide receiver

Odell Beckham still reigns supreme. Dwayne Harris is a lock to make the roster, but a starting spot will depend on the health of Victor Cruz and ithe play of ncoming second-round rookie Sterling Shepard. Myles White and Geremy Davis will compete at the back-end of the roster, with the remaining names likely on the team as camp-fodder with hopes of landing on the practice squad come September.

Tight end

This is an interesting one, because none of these guys really stand out as a presumptive starter. There are four guys, and any one of them could be in the lineup on opening day. Will Tye impressed mightily as a rookie, but had a handful of underwhelming games. There's Larry Donnell, who only lost the job based on injury, though his playing style is best described as "Human Jenga." Jerome Cunningham may surprise people with a year of experience in McAdoo's scheme. Matt LaCosse also impressed in limited time last season. And then we have Jerell Adams, a sixth-round pick with excellent blocking skills and nifty hands. I honestly don't know. Ask me again in August.

Offensive line

Everything left of center isn't going to change. Ereck Flowers, Justin Pugh, and Weston Richburg are the nucleus of the line, with heavy draft capital invested in all three. The main questions revolve around Bobby Hart, Marshall Newhouse and John Jerry. In theory, Hart could challenge for the right tackle spot, though in the end, he's probably best suited to guard. Keep an eye on that though, because it's not unreasonable to consider that there may be more advantages to keeping Jerry and Hart in the lineup, as Newhouse is probably the worst pass protector of the three. For now, Jerry is penciled in as the starter at right guard, but don't stress it, because erasers are primed and ready.


Defensive end

It's nice to see this position so solid. Even after losing Damontre Moore and Robert Ayers over the last year, it's definitely an area that has significantly improved. Of course, record-breaking defensive contracts will do that, but someone hand to land Olivier Vernon, and I'm glad it was the Giants. As for backups, Owa Odighizuwa and Kerry Wynn will provide a strong rotation if they can stay healthy. Wynn was one of the best run defenders in the league last year, and Odighizuwa should thrive after a rough rookie season.

Defensive tackle

The Giants may have the heaviest starting pair of DTs in the NFL. Damon Harrison and Jonathan Hankins will have a Hoover Dam-like presence in the middle of that line, with smaller players like Jay Bromley and Nikita Whitlock likely seeing playing time as situational pass-rushers. Louis Nix III is a wild-card, and a risk the Giants can take given that they have two established stars ahead of him.


There are five linebackers with a green designation here, and given that the team often only has two on the field at any given time, I'm happy that the cream will rise to the top. Devon Kennard is undoubtedly the best of the bunch, but he's had injury issues. Jasper Brinkley was really good in the middle last year, despite being signed in Week 1. Lastly, J.T. Thomas, B.J. Goodson and Keenan Robinson all look like they will play well in some capacity next season.


When I wrote up Eli Apple's prospect profile last month, I made it clear that if the Giants wanted him to take him with the 10th overall pick, it wouldn't impact Janoris Jenkins' playing time. I fully expect Apple to be the team's third corner, with Jenkins as an established starter who covers the slot in nickel formations. It's not a revolutionary idea. Many teams across the league slide a starting corner or safety into the slot for those situations. At backup, don't be surprised to see Bennett Jackson revert to corner here, because it's probably his best chance at making the roster.


Landon Collins is the starting strong safety, and basically, everyone else will compete for playing time alongside him. I'm not saying Collins is the best player of this bunch, but he started every game in a single season, and that's more than you can say for anyone else here. Nat Berhe probably gets first crack as the free safety, but the two Thompsons, Mykkele and Darian, will have an equal shot. I think Cooper Taylor goes back to being a strong safety, and probably the first man in for any three-safety sets, but his reliability holds him back from making any real threat to Collins as a starter.

Special teams


Josh Brown is good, and he just signed a new two-year contract.


This year's seventh-round pick was traded to the Pittsburgh Steelers for Brad Wing. He's their guy.

Long snapper

Zak DeOssie is still going, but missed time for the first time in his career in 2015. Heading into his 10th season, he's no spring chicken, and his actual snaps are often sub-standard but he gets downfield quickly and remains a special teams stalwart. Tyler Ott would have to do a lot to unseat him.

Kick/Punt returner

This is why Harris gets the big bucks. He's useful as a receiver, but his work in the return game is where he really shines. Vereen is a capable backup, and with limited touches as a running back coming his way in camp, Rainey will try to make the most out of his special teams chances.