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New York Giants’ midseason review: Safeties have room for improvement

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Collins, Thompson have yet to reach standard Giants hoped for

NFL: Detroit Lions at New York Giants
Landon Collins greets Giants fans before a game this season.
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

As we continue our position-by-position reviews of the New York Giants, let’s complete our look at the defense by focusing on the safety spot.

Landon Collins is a star. In 2016, Collins had a breakout season that put him in the discussion for Defensive Player of the Year. Collins had 125 tackles, four sacks and five interceptions. Oh, and how many guys can do this?

Collins has been good in 2017, but not as good as he was in 2016. He is second to B.J. Goodson in tackles with 41, has an interception, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and four passes defensed. He doesn’t have a sack, but he is still a force rushing the passer.

Pro Football Focus has Collins graded as the league’s 15th-best safety thus far. He was PFF’s second-ranked safety a season ago. To be fair, Collins has played the last couple of games with an ankle injury.

Darian Thompson was expected to join Collins in providing the Giants with a dynamic pair of play-making safeties. After missing 14 games with a foot injury last season, though, Thompson struggled through the early part of the season. His tackling was especially shaky, allowing several running plays to turn into long gains. Thompson, though, has been better the past couple of weeks.

Andrew Adams has played only 54 defensive snaps and Nat Berhe only 33. Not really enough to make a judgment on either player.

Overall grade: “Kwillie.” My guess is that by the end of the season this could easily be a “Kudos,” but for right now the safety play hasn’t been what the Giants had hoped for.