It’s been a bad news, bad news kind of season for the New York Giants. They got more of the same Monday when Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule told reporters that the Panthers were optimistic they would have Pro Bowl cornerback Stehpon Gilmore for this week’s game against the Giants.
Rhule said, “Hoping he plays on Sunday. That’s been the plan all along.’’
Getting Gilmore healthy could be a huge boost for the Panthers’ defense. Gilmore should be expected to fill the role vacated by fellow South Carolina alum Jaycee Horn, who had his season ended by a foot injury after a great start to his career.
In fact, Gilmore was my go-to comparison for Horn coming out of college, and not just because they both went to the University of South Carolina. Gilmore is an exceptionally physical press-man corner who has been one of the NFL’s best cover corners since entering the league. He combines great athleticism and technique with the size to match up against just about any receiver.
The Giants got a bit of good news with the report that star running back Christian McCaffrey would miss the game after being placed on the injured reserve. However, adding Gilmore to the defense with the best pass rush win rate in the NFL has to be a concern for the Giants.
The Panthers acquired Gilmore in a mid-season trade with the New England Patriots, sending a 2023 sixth-round pick to the Patriots.