The NFL is a transient league, with players coming and going constantly. Where have some of the former New York Giants of the former who are continuing their NFL careers? Let’s check the 90-man rosters across the league and find out.
OT Bobby Hart
QB Davis Webb
The Giants booted Hart out of East Rutherford at the end of the 2017 season, Dave Gettleman’s first real act as GM. He ended up starting 45 games for the Cincinnati Bengals the last three seasons, and wasn’t completely terrible.
Remember when some thought Webb was the Giants’ quarterback of the future? Well, the 2017 third-round pick still has not played an NFL regular-season snap. At least Kyle Lauletta got in a game.
DT John Jenkins
OL D.J. Fluker
Of all of the Giants I have covered over the years, Logan Ryan might be the only one who loves to talk more than Fluker — and Fluker might be more entertaining. In retrospect, letting Fluker go and signing Patrick Omameh to a three-year, $15 million deal was a huge mistakes.
Jenkins was an afterthought for the Giants in 2018, playing just 57 snaps in seven games. He has played more than 700 total snaps the last two seasons for the Dolphins and Bears.
New England Patriots
S Adrian Colbert
TE Matt LaCosse
From the time he started practicing with the Giants as an undrafted free agent, you could see that LaCosse had NFL talent. Problem was, he couldn’t stay healthy long enough to display it. The Giants waited 2½ years before moving on. LaCosse was a useful player in Denver in 2018 and New England in 2019 before opting out last season.
Colbert is a good special teams player and adequate backup safety.
New York Jets
CB Corey Ballentine
I root for Ballentine to be successful. He has been through a lot with the draft day shooting that killed his friend, and he handled it with class. He seems like a good young man. He is also a really good kickoff returner, as he showed by averaging 26.2 yards per return with the Jets last season. It’s not his fault the Giants’ alleged blockers couldn’t clear any lanes for him the first half of last season. Interestingly, the Jets did not use him at all on defense after picking him up on waivers from the Giants.
PK Chris Boswell
WR Cody White
Boswell was a camp body for the Giants in 2015, when Josh Brown was entrenched as the placekicker. He has since become one of the league’s best kickers.
White was briefly a Giant during training camp last summer.
TE Eric Tomlinson
WR Binjimen Victor
G Kevin Zeitler
Zeitler was let go by the Giants in a salary cap move. Will they pay for that on the field? Tomlinson has had a couple of stints with the Giants, and I still don’t understand how Levine Toilolo is a better option. Victor spent last season on the practice squad.
WR Odell Beckham Jr.
QB Kyle Lauletta
Hmm ... Beckham or Lauletta? Which one should I be writing about.
Beckham, of course, is coming back from a torn ACL. I know that talking about him in any manner riles up some segments of the fan base, and that there are Giants fans still stung that the team moved on from him. I get it, and I fully understand how good Beckham was as a Giant.
Thing is, Beckham hasn’t been the unstoppable force (unless he was stopping himself) he once was for a long time. All of his numbers — receptions per game, yards receiving per game, yards per catch, yards per target, catch percentage — have all steadily declined. Before his injury last season, he was on pace to catch a career-low 53 passes for just 729 yards. Pedestrian numbers.
Will Beckham ever again be the player he was during his first three seasons with the Giants? I have my doubts.
DT Freedom Akinmoladun
CB Eli Apple
QB Eric Dungey
Yes, being a first-round pick will continue to get you chances in the NFL. How else to explain Eli Apple still being in the league? He played in just two games for New Orleans last season, and gets another opportunity with the Bengals.
Remember when Pat Shurmur tried to make Eric Dungey into a tight end? He’s in Cincinnati as a quarterback.
CB Janoris Jenkins
LB Tuzar Skipper
‘Jackrabbit’ is still a good player, even though he will turn 33 this season. Skipper had a six-game cup of coffee with the Giants in 2019.
C’mon, Chris Ballard! Nobody?
LB Tae Davis
Davis was a Giant for the 2018 season and part of 2019. Remember when the Giants had the bright idea to get rid of B.J. Goodson and make Davis, a former undrafted free agent, a starting inside linebacker? Davis started one game, got benched, then cut a few weeks later.
PK Aldrick Rosas
You knew Rosas would get another chance in the NFL after the Giants cut him following his involvement in a hit-and-run accident last June. Rosas made 8 of 11 field goal attempts (72.7 percent) in six games with the Jaguars last season.
Kansas City Chiefs
CB DeAndre Baker
OL Mike Remmers
Baker is getting a chance to resurrect his career after his New York debacle. Remmers remains a decent journeyman right tackle.
Las Vegas Raiders
DT Johnathan Hankins
OL Patrick Omameh
Are some of you still mad at the Giants for not re-signing Hankins after the 2017 season? The Omameh signing was one of Dave Gettleman’s most regrettable moves. At least he had the good sense to admit it quickly and move on.
Los Angeles Chargers
LB Kyler Fackrell
DT Linval Joseph
Now, I know some of you are still made that the Giants let Joseph leave in 2014. He’s been a better player since leaving New York than he was for the Giants, which is probably an indictment of the coaching he received at the time. Fackrell had a productive season for the Giants in 2020, but he was really a stop-gap.
OT Cam Fleming
PK Brandon McManus
McManus is another of the young placekickers who have gotten away from the Giants over the years. If Nate Solder had not returned, Fleming would have been a good option for the Giants as a swing tackle.
Washington Football Team
S Landon Collins
OL Ereck Flowers
LB David Mayo
Collins has never been worth the six-year, $84 million Washington paid him, and might not be on the 53-man roster this September. Ereck Flowers was never a good fit for New York. He just didn’t like it, and it was obvious his teammates didn’t like him. Mayo is a journeyman.
OT Eric Smith
S Darian Thompson
There was a time Darian Thompson looked like he might have a good run as the Giants’ free safety. Ultimately, though, he got bitten by the “Jerry Reese drafted him in the third round” curse.
If you remember the three-sack game Eric Smith played for the Giants against the Jets in 2019, you probably wish you hadn’t. Smith made then-coach Pat Shurmur and offensive line coach Hal Hunter look bad by admitting to me post-game that he had not practiced at left tackle, where he was asked to play, all season.
S Andrew Adams
The Giants saw him as an expendable backup after he was with them for two seasons. He spent three seasons in Tampa Bay, and is trying to keep his career afloat in Philly.
Green Bay Packers
Really? Golden Tate still needs a home.
DL Mario Edwards Jr.
The Giants acquired Edwards via waivers from the Raiders in 2018, didn’t give him much of an opportunity, and he moved on after the season.
LB Ryan Connelly
DT Dalvin Tomlinson
Hey, at least being mad that Tomlinson is in Minnesota might take some of the sting out of Connelly also being there. Remember how upset many fans were when the Giants waived Connelly last season? He played one defensive snap for the Vikings, and the Giants did just fine without him. Well, fine except for when Devante Downs had to play.
C Evan Brown
PK Randy Bullock
CB Corn Elder
DE Romeo Okwara
WR Damion Ratley
WR Kalif Raymond
There are too many guys here to talk about all of them. But, hey, cutting Romeo Okwara to make space for a washed-up Connor Barwin was a great move. Let’s just leave it there.
New Orleans Saints
CB Grant Haley
Haley is a good guy who plays hard and is a willing run defender. He just never covered well with the Giants, which is sort of an important thing for a slot cornerback. He spent last season on the Saints’ practice squad, appearing in one game.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
TE Jerell Adams
CB Ross Cockrell
DE Jason Pierre-Paul
S Curtis Riley
I have said this before, but I fully supported the decision to trade Pierre-Paul before the 2018 season. I thought his contract was bloated and he was on borrowed time as a productive player. I’m shocked that JPP is still a dominant player. He’s certainly not a normal guy.
S Sean Chandler
PK Joey Slye
Carolina plucked Chandler, who played for Panthers coach Matt Rhule at Temple, off the Giants’ practice squad last season. He never appeared in a game and ended up on Carolina’s practice squad.
Slye was with the Giants for two short stints totaling less than two weeks during the 2019 offseason. He has made only 79.4 percent of his field goal in two seasons with Carolina.
DL Chris Slayton
CB Chris Williamson
Two late-round picks by the Giants who are trying to make it in Atlanta. Slayton was a seventh-round pick in 2019, and Williamson a seventh-round pick last season. Slayton was on the Falcons’ practice squad a season ago. Williams signed a reserve/futures contract.
LS Tyler Ott
Bet you didn’t remember that Ott, a Harvard graduate, snapped in the 2015 season finale for the Giants when Zak DeOssie was injured. That foot in the NFL door eventually led him to Seattle, and he has been the Seahawks’ snapper for the past four seasons. Ott made the Pro Bowl last season.
Los Angeles Rams
CB Donte Deayon
I have to admit this — Deayon is one of my favorite NFL players I have ever spoken to. He’s always smiling, always happy. At a ridiculously tiny for an NFL defensive back 159 pounds, he has managed to stick in the league for four seasons. I’m rooting for his to make it five.
OLB Markus Golden
OLB Devon Kennard
QB Colt McCoy
G Justin Pugh
The Giants made a mistake by letting Kennard go and giving the money they should have paid the 2015 fifth-round pick to Kareem Martin before the 2018 season. I understood the schematic reasons for moving on from Colt McCoy, but I do wonder if that will end up being a mistake.
San Francisco 49ers
WR Bennie Fowler
RB Wayne Gallman
PK Robbie Gould
LS Taybor Pepper
Gallman had an excellent season for the Giants in 2020 when they finally turned to him as their primary back. Yet, the Giants did not hesitate to replace him with Devontae Booker. Will the Giants be proven right? Or, will Gallman and San Francisco coach Kyle Shanahan make the Giants look bad for moving on from the 2017 fourth-round pick?
Fowler spent parts of 2018 and 2019 with the Giants. It’s hard not to appreciate his professionalism. Gould was the Giants’ placekicker in 2016, a layover for him after 11 years in Chicago. He has been with the 49ers since 2018.
Pepper, like Ott, is a long snapper who used the Giants as a springboard. He was with the team through training camp in 2019 before being cut.
[NOTE: As careful as I was, I wouldn’t be shocked if I missed a player or two around the league. Drop a name in the comments if you know of one I didn’t catch].