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Giants’ 90-man roster: Is Evan Engram in for a bigger role on the offense?

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Evan Engram has had some of his most productive NFL games without OBJ in the lineup. So what might we expect from Engram now that Beckham is no longer on the team?

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants TODAY NETWOR

Although tight end Evan Engram’s career has been on the rise, the upcoming year is going to be a huge one for him.

Engram, who enters his third year with the New York Giants, has shown thus far that when Odell Beckham Jr. isn’t on the field, he is capable of putting up some impressive numbers.

Engram has 257 yards on 23 receptions (11.2 average) with two touchdowns scored with Beckham on the field. Without him, Engram has 842 yards on 67 receptions (12.6 yards per carry) and six touchdowns.

Why such a big difference? Part of the reason has to do with Engram taking up some of what Beckham did in the offense when the receiver missed time due to injury.

The basics

Height: 6-foot-3
Weight: 240
Age: 24
Position: Tight end
Experience: 3

2018 season in review

Engram finished last season with 19 fewer receptions, 145 fewer yards, and three fewer touchdowns than he did as a rookie mainly because he missed five games with various injuries. But when he was in the lineup, Engram showed a steady upward trend.

In the first ten weeks of the season, Engram’s best receiving yardage total was 67 yards, that in Week 2 against the Cowboys.

In the final four weeks of the season, he posted 320 of his 577 receiving yards once he shook off any lingering effects of his injuries.

“I think as he realized what he was being asked to do, he started to play a little more calm and a little more relaxed, especially at the back end of the season, which in turn allowed him to play some of his best ball,” said tight ends coach Lunda Wells of Engram’s strong finish.

Perhaps the most significant step forward Engram took was in cutting down on his dropped balls. Per Pro Football Focus, Engram only dropped three passes last year versus the 11 drops he had as a rookie.

2019 outlook

With Beckham gone, it will be interesting to see if the coaches decide to split Engram out wide more than 57 snaps he played at that spot last year.

But before the coaches cross that bridge, the biggest thing with Engram will be getting him on the field for his first 16-game season as a pro.

In addition to that, Wells said that Engram needs to play a little less uptight than he has in the past.

“Just letting the game come to him, playing a little more calm, more relaxed,” Wells said when asked what Engram needs to be able to show this year.

“And like always, you kind of always want to be climbing during the season and then at the back end of the season playing your best football in December. So, that’s kind of the trend we are trying to do: Build on December and get better throughout the season.”

And did we mention the importance of staying healthy?