Training Camp is mere weeks away, and it has gotten me thinking about the role that some of the rookies will be playing this year. Back in April, the Giants selected 11 new players that will have a chance to compete to make the team. But some of these rookies will have a chance to have a much larger role on the team, with some even getting the chance to start.
So, which of the Giants 11 draft selections will get a chance to see their name in the starting lineup?
I’m not going to talk much about the Giants 1st round picks because Kayvon Thibodeaux and Evan Neal are basically shoe-ins to start (and if they don’t that coulddddd be a problem). The Giants 2nd round pick, receiver Wan’Dale Robinson out of Kentucky, will likely get the start due to injury at the wide receiver position. Sterling Shepard likely won’t be ready at the start of the season, and Darius Slayton has fallen down the depth chart, so he will likely be the number 3 receiver behind Kenny Golladay and Kadarius Toney. The Giants 3rd round picks will also have a real chance to compete for a starting spot. Joshua Ezeudu out of UNC will battle it out with Shane Lemieux for a chance to start at Left Guard and Cordale Flott out of LSU will most likely compete for a starting spot at nickel corner with Darnay Holmes. The Giants 4th round pick, Tight End Daniel Bellinger out of San Diego State, may have turned the most heads in OTA’s. He’ll compete with Ricky Seals-Jones and Jordin Akins, and based off reports, he may have the best chance at winning that job. The other 2 draft picks that have a chance to start are Linebackers Micah McFadden out of Indiana and Darian Beavers out of Cincinnati (the Giants 5th and 6th round selections). Behind Blake Martinez, the Giants have Tae Crowder likely starting next to him, who is perfectly serviceable, but also can easily be replaced if one of these linebackers shows out in camp.
If you’re keeping count at home, that’s 8 out of the Giants 11 rookie draft picks who have a chance at starting, so what does that mean?
It could mean good things. If even 3 or 4 of these rookies turn out to be solid contributors for the Giants that could be huge for both the present and future of the team, let alone if 8 of them do it. It could also be not so good because we could end up playing a bunch of rookies that make a bunch of rookie mistakes. This could lead to some losses and the Giants fan base becoming increasingly frustrated which could lead to turmoil. Let’s just hope Brian Daboll and this coaching staff can avoid the latter.
Hopefully the Giants can look back on this draft class as a significant aspect of their long awaited turnaround.