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90-Man Roster: Is A Bigger Role In Store For WR Tavarres King?

His play-making ability showed at end of last season

New York Giants v Washington Redskins
Tavarres King with a 44-yard catch against the Redskins last season.
Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

It isn’t difficult to make a case that the New York Giants, while struggling on offense a season ago, left one of their play-making bullets chambered for most of the season. That would be wide receiver Tavarres King, who probably should have seen the field far more often than he did in 2016.

King caught only two regular-season passes and played only 76 offensive snaps. He didn’t really become a weapon for the offense until Week 17, the regular-season finale, when he hauled in a 44-yard pass that helped the Giants to a 19-10 victory over the Washington Redskins.

King then caught three passes for 73 yards, including a 41-yard touchdown, in the Giants’ playoff loss to the Green Bay Packers.

“Of course you feel like you can contribute and be an integral part of things, but that was the way the cookie crumbled and I just took the hand that I was dealt and fought the way that I fought and things worked out in the end,” King said.

The Giants stuck with a diminished Victor Cruz as one of their three primary wide receivers all season. Roger Lewis Jr. was the primary backup, catching seven passes and doing a solid job filling the role of gunner on punt coverage.

You wonder if, in retrospect, the Giants wish they had taken more advantage of King’s ability to open up the field by being a downfield threat.

2017 Season Outlook

The Giants replaced Cruz with Brandon Marshall. They added tight end Evan Engram. They hope to have pass-catching back Shane Vereen healthy. Lewis is still part of the roster, and Darius Powe, a practice squad player a year, appears to have improved.

Yet, after watching the Giants this spring you come away with the idea that they know King can help them more than they allowed him to a year ago.

“I think that I can be a big piece of the offense. I think that I can be somebody that steps in and makes plays when my number’s called,” King said. “That’s what it’s about. Like I said last year during training camp I’m all for the team. Whatever this team needs me to do is what I’m gonna do.

“I think that I definitely have a place in this offense and this unit.”

Even with all the new pieces the Giants have on offense, King’s place seems destined to be a bigger one this time around.

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