Now that the main portion of the roster-building season has concluded with the 2023 NFL Draft, let’s see where the New York Giants roster currently stands. Let’s go position-by-position and see how things have changed, what competitions might be in store, and what areas might still need to be addressed.
Undrafted free agents are not included in the charts as those signings are unofficial, though a few names might be mentioned in the positional discussions. We will see which UDFAs are actually on the roster when rookie mini-camp opens on Friday, May 5. Also, please don’t obsess over who is where on the very unofficial depth charts below. I simply made sure the names were included. Where they end up is anybody’s guess.
Giants 2023 Depth Chart — Offense
|WR||Jalin Hyatt||Isaiah Hodgins|
|WR||Darius Slayton||Sterling Shepard|
|WR||Wan'Dale Robinson||Parris Campbell|
|RT||Evan Neal||Tyre Phillips|
|RG||Mark Glowinski||Marcus McKethan||Tyre Phillips, Ben Bredeson|
|C||John Michael Schmitz||Ben Bredeson||Sean Harlow|
|LG||Justin Pugh||Ben Bredeson||Tyre Phillips, Marcus McKethan|
|LT||Andrew Thomas||Justin Pugh||Joshua Miles|
|RB||Saquon Barkley||Matt Breida||Jashaun Corbin, Deon Jackson|
|TE||Daniel Bellinger||Lawrence Cager|
|QB||Daniel Jones||Tommy Devito|
Quarterback — With Daniel Jones and Tyrod Taylor the Giants are set, barring injury, with the quarterbacks who will be on the 53-man roster. Tommy DeVito, formerly of Illinois, will reportedly be at rookie mini-camp so that Joe Schoen, Mike Kafka, Mike Groh and and other staffer don’t have to do the throwing. I think, though, that the Giants will be on the hunt — perhaps right up until Week 1 — for the right quarterback to stash on the practice squad.
Running back — The drafting of Eric Gray does not immediately threaten Saquon Barkley. Gray is a fifth-round pick who will compete for a backup role. Gray likely doesn’t threaten Matt Breida’s roster spot, either. Gray, Gary Brightwell and 2022 practice squad running back Jashaun Corbin will likely be in competition for two spots. Brightwell and Corbin have kickoff return experience, and Gray has done both kickoff and punt return (although only a limited four collegiate kickoff returns).
Tight end — The Michael Mayer to the Giants at No. 25 in the draft rumors did not come to pass. The Giants have Darren Waller and Daniel Bellinger at the top end of their tight end depth chart. In a deep tight end class, it was thought that perhaps the Giants would add to the position in the middle or later portions of the draft, but after trading away assets to move up for Deonte Banks and Jalin Hyatt, that did not happen.
The Giants have holdovers Lawrence Cager and Chris Myarick, free-agent signee Tommy Sweeney and 2022 practice squad player Dre Miller competing for spots at the back end of the roster and the practice squad. Unless there are injuries I don’t expect adding players here to be a priority.
Wide receiver — There is, undeniably, more depth and talent at this position than there was a season ago. The competition for roster spots, and playing time, should be fierce.
Roster locks: Isaiah Hodgins, Jalin Hyatt, Darius Slayton, Parris Campbell
Unless one of these guys gets hurt, I don’t see how they are not on the season-opening 53-man roster.
It depends on their health: Wan’Dale Robinson, Sterling Shepard
If Robinson is far enough along in his recovery from a torn ACL, count him as the fifth roster lock. I honestly don’t know if Shepard makes the roster even if he is healthy enough to compete during training camp, but the Giants are absolutely justified in giving him a chance. Maybe he starts the season on PUP and contributes at some point during the season. We’ll see.
Competing for spots: Collin Johnson, Jamison Crowder, Jaydon Mickens, Kalil Pimpleton, Makai Polk, David Sills, Jeff Smith.
A clear difference in the talent level at wide receiver is that Sills was a starter at the beginning of the 2022 season. In 2023, he will be scratching to at least make the practice squad.
Offensive line — The Giants are not going to simply gift second-round pick John Michael Schmitz the starting center spot, but it will be surprising if Schmitz isn’t snapping the ball to Jones in Week 1. The most likely starting lineup is as follows:
LT — Andrew Thomas; LG — Ben Bredeson; C — John Michael Schmitz; RG — Mark Glowinski; RT — Evan Neal
Thomas is one of the best in the game, Bredeson played well last season when he was healthy and Glowinski is an unspectacular but adequate veteran guard. On paper, the quality of this group comes down to Schmitz and the development of Neal at right tackle.
Now, let’s look at players competing for backup roles.
Interior offensive line (guard/center): Joshua Ezeudu, Devery Hamilton, J.C. Hassenauer, Marcus McKethan, Jack Anderson, Wyatt Davis, Solomon Kindley, Shane Lemieux
Ezeudu without doubt should be on the roster. The 2023 third-round pick split time with Bredeson for a while in 2022 and likely has a shot to steal the left guard job this season. Could McKethan be a possible long-term replacement for Glowinski? The coaching staff love Lemieux. if he can stay healthy he probably sticks, even if it’s just on the practice squad. Hassanauer is the only true center.
Offensive tackle: Korey Cunningham, Matt Peart, Tyre Phillips
Phillips did a solid job filling in when Neal was injured last season, Cunningham is your basic journeyman depth player and Peart remains a mystery and has never really gotten a full chance. Ezeudu and Hamilton also have tackle flex.
There are still questions, but I can’t help but feel the Giants are in far better shape — both in terms of upside and depth — on the offensive line than they were when Schoen took over as GM.
Giants 2023 Depth Chart — Defense
|NT||Dexter Lawrence||Rakeem Nunez-Roches||Jordon Riley|
|DT||A'Shawn Robinson||D.J. Davidson|
|Rush||Kayvon Thibodeaux||Boogie Basham|
|DE||Jihad Ward||Boogie Basham|
|MLB||Bobby Okereke||Carter Coughlin|
|WILL||Micah McFadden||Isaiah Simmons||Cam Brown|
|LCB||Adoree' Jackson||Tre Hawkins III||Nick McCloud|
|RCB||Deonte Banks||Tre Hawkins III|
|Slot CB||Cor'Dale Flott||Darnay Holmes|
|SS||Jason Pinnock||Dane Belton||Bobby McCain|
|FS||Xavier McKinney||Gervarrius Owens|
Defensive line — Schoen was clear that he wanted to improve the depth and the run-stopping ability at this position. He has done what he could to make that happen.
Starters: Dexter Lawrence, Leonard Williams
The questions here revolve around Lawrence. In he recovered from last season’s neck injury, and what — if anything — will the Giants do about his $32 million salary cap hit?
Reserves: Rakeem Nuñez-Roches, Ryder Anderson, Vernon Butler, D.J. Davidson, A’Shawn Robinson, Jordon Riley
Veterans Nuñez-Roches and Robinson are massive upgrades over the depth players the Giants had a season ago. Riley and Davidson could compete for a spot as a run-stuffing depth player who could occasional allow Lawrence to rest.
Edge defender — There was a school of thought that the Giants might add a depth player in the draft, but that did not happen. It would not surprise me if the Giants look to add a veteran edge defender in free agency, perhaps even circling back to Oshane Ximines. He did a good job for the Giants in limited snaps a season ago.
Starters: Kayvon Thibodeaux, Azeez Ojulari
Reserves: Jihad Ward, Tomon Fox, Elerson Smith
Off-ball linebacker — The Giants were underwhelming and desperate at this position in 2022. They churned through players all season, and even used safeties Landon Collins and Tony Jefferson as linebackers in passing situations.
The signing of Bobby Okereke changes the equation. It might have been nice to add a player in the draft, but the return of Darrian Beavers from injury and a full year for veteran Jarrad Davis might help the second inside linebacker spot.
Starters: Bobby Okereke, either Jarrad Davis or Darrian Beavers
Reserves: Micah McFadden, Cam Brown, Carter Coughlin
Cornerback — In his final season as defensive coordinator with the Baltimore Ravens, Wink Martindale watched his team go through so many injuries at cornerback he said he felt the team was shopping for replacements via Door Dash. He went through that again with the Giants last season.
The Giants set out to change that this offseason, especially since Martindale’s aggressive defense requires cornerbacks who can be trusted 1-on-1 in man coverage.
Outside starters — Adoree’ Jackson, Deonte Banks
If Jackson can stay healthy (no punt returning, please!) and Banks justifies the decision to trade up one spot to ensure getting him in Round 1, this will be a pair of man-coverage cornerbacks worth getting excited about.
Slot options — Darnay Holmes, Aaron Robinson, Zyon Gilbert, Cor’Dale Flott
It seems like the Giants have been trying to replace Darnay Holmes ever since they drafted him in the fourth round in 2020. Aaron Robinson was drafted initially to compete with Homes and ended up outside. If he can stay healthy this year, perhaps he becomes a primary slot option as well as a backup on the outside. Flott, drafted in the third round a year ago, is also an option both inside and outside. The Giants also like Gilbert, a UDFA who spent most of last year on the practice squad.
Other reserves — Amani Oruwariye, Nick McCloud, Rodarius Williams, Tre Hawkins III, Leonard Johnson
Signed in free agency, Oruwariye played a lot of snaps with the Detroit Lions. McCloud did a nice job for the Giants when pressed into action last season. Hawkins is an intriguing sixth-round pick. Williams might be an odd man out.
Safety — The Giants swapped Bobby McCain for Julian Love in free agency. Consider that perhaps a slight downgrade if you will, but that is the situation.
Starters: Xavier McKinney, Bobby McCain (at least for now)
Reserves: Dane Belton, Jason Pinnock, Gervarrius Owens, Trenton Thompson
Pinnock seemed to rise in stature as the 2022 season unfolded. Belton, a fourth-round pick in 2022, seemed to become a forgotten man. Could one of those two players supplant McCain? Can Owens become a special teams demon?