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90-man roster: Is there a role for TE Jerell Adams?

New arrivals cloud second-year player’s future

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at New York Giants
Jerell Adams
Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

A year ago Jerell Adams looked as though he might be the future at the tight end spot for the New York Giants, a player they felt fortunate to land in the sixth round of the 2016 NFL Draft. What does Adams’ future look like now? Let’s take a look as we continue our player-by-player profiles of the 90-man roster the Giants will bring to training camp.

2016 Season in Review

Adams caught 16 passes in 21 targets while appearing in 13 games. He played sparingly during the first half of the season, but took over as the team’s No. 2 tight end mid-way through the season and played double-digit snaps in his final eight games. The Giants have been seeking an all-around tight end for a number of years, and Adams flashed the potential to develop into one.

2017 Outlook

On a couple of occasions we have discussed how the additions of first-round pick Evan Engram and free agent Rhett Ellison leave last season’s starting tight end, Will Tye, fighting for a job. Well, Adams is in the same boat. If last year’s starter is going to struggle to earn snaps, what of his backup?

The Giants could keep four tight ends — maybe even five if Matt LaCosse can stay healthy. It is possible, though, that Adams, Tye and LaCosse could be competing for one spot.

Adams was considered a good blocking tight end in college, and his Pro Football Focus blocking grades last season were better than Tye’s:

  • Run blocking: Adams 46,7, Tye 33.7
  • Pass blocking: Adams 65.8, Tye 57.8

So, if blocking is going to be the primary requirement for a third tight end — we don’t know for sure that will be the case — Adams might have a chance to unseat Tye. Perhaps the Giants see a higher ceiling for Adams than Tye — again, we don’t know. Keep in mind that Adams does also have practice squad eligibility as he has only one year of NFL experience.

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