It’s a football-less Sunday in May, just a day away from the first New York Giants OTA of 2018. Here are a few “things I think” as we crawl slowly toward the 2018 NFL season.
- I know some people have gotten all worked up about the Eli Manning memorabilia case, which he settled this week. Maybe I’m under-playing that whole thing, but I’ve never cared about it. In my view, it’s settled. It’s over. It was never worth getting all riled up about, anyway. Moving on.
- We mentioned on Saturday that Odell Beckham Jr. would be attending the Giants voluntary OTAs. That news broke Friday and many outlets breathlessly wrote about it as quickly as possible. This is another thing I couldn’t get all worked up about — maybe I just have Beckham fatigue. I mentioned it Saturday mostly because I felt it was necessary. Beckham showed up for voluntary workouts and the voluntary mini-camp. Armed with that knowledge, I’m not even sure why it’s a story that he will be in attendance at Monday’s OTA. At least for me, it’s what I expected.
- Something I mentioned on the ‘Locked on Giants’ podcast this week that I believe bears repeating. It will be interesting to see who ends up with the “No. 2” designation this fall in the Davis Webb-Kyle Lauletta competition. Whoever wins, some fans will immediately anoint that person as the successor to Manning. Not the case. Whatever happens, that won’t be settled for several years. If, in fact, one of them actually is the heir apparent.
- When I look at the Giants’ 90-man roster I have no idea who is going to emerge as the punt returner. Hunter Sharp? Kalif Raymond? Travis Rudolph? Not a clue. One thing I’m not sure of, though, is why there is an assumption by some that Cody Latimer can do that job. Maybe the Giants give him a shot, and maybe he does end up in that role. Thing is, he has never returned a punt as a college or NFL player. He has a reputation as a good gunner and some experience returning kickoffs. No one, though, should assume that he can be a punt returner.
- I’m really interested to see if the Giants make Ereck Flowers available to the media during Monday’s OTA, one of the few that will be open to the prying eyes of pesky reporters like yours truly. I know that Flowers hates to speak to the media, and isn’t exactly entertaining when he does. In my view, though, it would do him some good to clear the air, explain why he stayed away from the team until last week and turn the page publicly toward competing for the right tackle job.
- I’m still a dinosaur who does almost all of his work from a laptop, but the world is moving more and more toward mobile devices. With that in mind, Giants.com has launched a revamped website and mobile app. Take a few minutes and check ‘em out. Just be sure to come on back here.
- There is still a lot of talk out there about Dez Bryant and the Giants. Jackrabbit continues to bang the Bryant drum, as do some in the fan base. Bryant, too, seems to be waiting ... and waiting ... and waiting for the Giants. I continue to be in the “hard pass” category on Bryant. I would, though, like to see the Giants make a run at Eric Decker. The 31-year-old caught 54 passes for the Tennessee Titans a season ago. He’s a possession guy and, at 6-foot-3, 206, could probably play the ‘X’ receiver opposite Odell Beckham Jr. and Sterling Shepard. At the least, he would provide low-cost, veteran competition for Cody Latimer and Roger Lewis Jr.
- It’s a sad truth in the NFL that highly-paid or highly-drafted players get more opportunities undrafted free agents or those selected in later rounds. Which brings me to Andrew Adams and Darian Thompson. Adams, of course, began his career as an undrafted free agent. Thompson was a 2016 third-round pick. Adams played pretty well in 2016 after Thompson was injured. No surprise, though, that in 2017 Thompson played and Adams watched. The problem was that Thompson didn’t play well and yet the Giants never turned to Adams. In my view, a classic case of trying to justify the draft pick at the expense of a player you have less invested in. In a straight-up competition, I don’t know if Adams could or would beat out Thompson for the free safety spot. With a new regime in place, I just hope to see the Giants allow Thompson vs. Adams to be a real competition.
- I asked Dan Pizzuta to put together a handful of bold predictions for the Giants in 2018, and I’m absolutely fascinated by the 1,782.5 yards from scrimmage over/under number that Dan came up with for Saquon Barkley. It’s perfect, at least in terms of framing a discussion. I keep thinking that 1,500 scrimmage yards from Barkley is probably what the Giants are hoping for, with the rarefied air of 2,000 being the dream scenario. Which means Dan’s number fits perfectly.
- I don’t know about you guys, but I am really looking forward to our ‘Summer School’ series this year, which will be put together by Chris and Dan. With new schemes on offense and defense there will be a lot to explore.
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