The New York Giants desperately needed help at the defensive EDGE position, and that was before they traded away Olivier Vernon. Early in the 2018 season, while Vernon was still recovering from a freak ankle injury suffered in practice during the preseason, the Giants fielded one of the very worst pass rushes in the NFL.
With Vernon now gone for good, the Giants are hoping for Lorenzo Carter to develop and unleash his formidable athletic ability and that Markus Golden will be able to fully recover from his torn ACL and show that his 2016 production wasn’t a fluke.
But even if both of those work out in the Giants’ favor, they still need more pass rushers and more depth aat the defensive EDGE position. The Giants passed up elite EDGE prospects at the top of the draft, but after a four-hour wait on Day 2 they selected Oshane Ximines out of Old Dominion.
Let’s take a closer look at the Queens native and see what the first player ever drafted out of ODU can bring to the Giants’ defense.
- Shows very good hand usage. Consistently uses his hands to keep blockers from locking in.
- Has a variety of pass rush moves.
- Good pop for a modestly sized EDGE.
- Experience rushing from a two or three-point stance.
- Rushed from the interior or as stand-up interior blitzer on nickel downs.
- Sets a firm edge in the run game.
- High motor player who gives maximum effort on every play.
- Multiple time team captain and reportedly a high-character young man.
- First step isn’t sudden and shows some wasted motion.
- Shows some lower-body stiffness that limits him as a speed rusher.
- Has a strong tendency to lose track of the football on play-action and option plays.
- Doesn’t have great length, and his size limits him in certain situations.
- Frame appears close to maxed out.
Numbers of note
(Per Sports Info Solutions Rookie Handbook)
- Ximines started 48 of 49 games for Old Dominion. The lone game he didn’t start was Senior Day in 2016.
- Ximines’ broken tackle rate dropped from 10.4 percent in 2016 to 4.8 percent by 2018, while his tackle share and pressure share rose each year.
- Rushed on 91.9 percent of his snaps, and played 78.6 percent of his snaps in a 3-point stance.
- Had a pressure rate of 14.4 percent in 2018, with 11.5 sacks, 18 QB hits, 8 knockdowns, 31 hurries, and 46 pressures.
What They’re Saying
A steady producer across four seasons at Old Dominion, Ximines racked up 51 tackles for loss, 32.5 sacks and 11 forced fumbles for his career. His variety of pass rush moves and counters served him well in college to make consistent plays behind the line of scrimmage. While he’s likely to be a situational rusher at the next level, his appeal on every down is diminished by modest functional athleticism and play strength which presents some restrictions. Ximines should provide value in sub packages in a 3-4 defense with the upside to develop into a bigger role with improvement.
- Joe Marino (The Draft Network - Scouting Report)
Does He Fit The Giants?
Ximines (or X-Man, as Pat Shurmur called him), should be a solid fit as a rotational piece in James Bettcher’s multiple defense. He has the versatility to rush as a defensive end or as a linebacker, from both inside and outside alignments, depending on down, distance, and subpackage.
Ximines is an average athlete, but compensates for it with good, active hands and a variety of pass rush moves to keep blockers from being able to lock in on his chest plate and gain leverage. His first step could probably be best described as “okay” at the moment — it isn’t bad, but it also isn’t a strength. He shows some wasted motion off the snap, particularly out of a three-point stance. He will be a more effective rusher at the NFL level if he is able to generate more explosive power and push off without losing energy along the way.
As a 6-foot-3, 253-pound EDGE rusher, Ximines would typically expected to be a speed rusher, but between his first step and some lower body (hips and ankle) stiffness, he is forced to be more of a power rusher. Ximines has built his game around that, favoring both a straight bull-rush and a long-arm move to take advantage of his upper body strength and natural leverage. He does have an effective arm-over move as a speed counter for when tackles are expecting his power moves.
All told, Ximines is a high-floor player who should be a good locker room presence and slot in fairly early as a rotational piece and a regular feature in third down packages. His athletic limitations might keep him from being a high-ceiling player, but even a steady contributor is still useful.