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How Will Giants Secondary Be Without Will Hill and Jayron Hosley?

Posted on June 16th, 2014 at 9:06 pm by NFL-Giants

This post comes from Justin Becker of FantasyFootballOverdose.com. You can follow him on Twitter @NFLRankings or the Fantasy Football Overdose Google+ Page, and for more 2014 Fantasy Football Projections visit Fantasy Football Overdose.

The New York Giants prepared for situations like this. Thanks to a solid showing during the early stages of the 2014 NFL free agency period, New York figures to be able to withstand some key losses in their secondary.

The biggest is easily safety Will Hill, who was slapped with yet another suspension this off-season and quickly cut thereafter by Big Blue. The G-Men simply grew tired of Hill’s lack of dedication and discipline.

Some may count the cutting of Hill (who signed with an arena football team) as a bit of a knee-jerk reaction, but with his third suspension in as many years in the NFL, a decision had to be made.

While it may have been the right call from a character perspective, the Giants still dropped an elite safety in an area of their team that struggled at times a year ago. In other words, at least on the surface, the Giants needed Hill pretty badly in 2013 just to come off as serviceable at times. Losing him altogether would at the very least put them at risk of regressing when it comes to their pass defense.

Again, that’s just on paper. The Giants did still make some solid moves on the defensive side of the football in free agency, and appear to have the depth in place to make up for the loss of Hill. Stevie Brown is fully expected to man the free safety spot, with Antrel Rolle cemented in at the strong safety spot.

On paper, those are two very talented safeties that individually shouldn’t hurt the Giants. If New York’s pass rush can pick back up to a respectable level (just 34 sacks a year ago), their new safety duo should be plenty good enough to consistently get the job done.

It’s not like going to Stevie Brown is a bad thing. It’s true that he’ll need to prove himself as he comes off a torn ACL that robbed him of the entire 2013 season, but he was an elite ball hawk safety in 2012, picking off eight passes and doing a solid job as a last resort protector with 76 total tackles.

Hill offered a little more balance and stability, as well as youth, but Brown is nothing to shrug off. Provided he can return to full health and that 2012 form, the Giants should be quite solid at the free safety spot still.

Strong safety with Rolle would be the mild concern, as he hasn’t always been the most consistent performer. With that said, he’s coming off a very productive 2013 season and overall has lived up to the hype since signing a big deal back in 2010. In fact, with Rolle entering a contract season at 31 years old, he’ll have every reason to be on top of his game.

With the G-Men apparently surviving the release of Will Hill with a solid safety duo, their only other real question in the secondary is with cornerback Jayron Hosley.

Like Hill, Hosley was served a suspension to start the 2014 season and could be on the roster bubble. He’s slated to sit out the first four games of the 2014 NFL season and despite solid talent, doesn’t appear to really be relied on for big production this year.

In other words, it may not really matter what happens to him. The Giants could elect to give him another shot and slide him into the rotation when he’s active for their fifth game of 2014, but even if they don’t, it looks like they made the right moves to equip them with enough depth to withstand an ineffective or completely absent Hosley.

New York already had a solid corner on the rise with Prince Amukamara, but didn’t leave their secondary to chance this season, as they paid top dollar for former Denver Broncos cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, while also snagging Walter Thurmond III and retaining solid depth corner, Trumaine McBride.

The signing of DRC was massive, vaulting him up to New York’s #1 corner slot, with Amukamara likely starting on the opposite side. That puts Thurmond, a guy the Giants deem as “special”, who was somewhat hidden in Seattle behind would-be superior talents in Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner.

Thurmond appears to have the physicality and tools to even start ahead of Amukamara if need be, but would truly be an elite presence as a nickel corner. With these three corners locking up the top three spots, a still solid McBride gets pushed to the fourth spot, leaving the disappointing Hosley to battle with Zackary Bowman for the fifth spot.

Hosley is still talented enough to return and put pressure on McBride for the fourth spot, but is clearly no longer being depended on. Not only had he been an arguable disappointment through his first two seasons, but his suspension obviously casts doubt on how much the G-Men can trust him going forward, as well.

The Giants appear to have covered their bases quite well in every way when it comes to their secondary. The funny part is they worked hard to address this area during the off-season and now it’s the least of their worries. Instead, they’ll have to hope they can ignite their pass-rush, as well as get better against the run. If they can’t do one or both, their new, impressive secondary may struggle, regardless of how well it is constructed.

Traveling for college football games

Posted on October 16th, 2013 at 6:08 am by NFL-Giants

I don’t know how much fun watching the Giants will be, but since I happen to be in Tallahassee there will be some good FSU games coming up. Normally I’d say that the problem with college football is that too many games are non-competitive – the last one I saw was FSU vs. Maryland. The Terps were down 21 zip at the half, which is when I left. I think it was 63 zip by the end. Anyhow, the Giants aren’t always competitive either and they are on the receiving end so let’s talk about watching college football, shall we?

Grab your fan paraphernalia, maybe some LSU luggage, and hit the road. I know in Tallahassee, tailgaters arrive Thursday night – you need to be a booster to park on campus I think. Friday night is the downtown get down – free music and a street party atmosphere. They sell food and clothes (mostly for women). Before the Maryland game they had some famous country music guy. At least they said he was famous.

Then you have the game on Saturday and I suppose a victory party follows on Saturday night. Then you go home and watch the New York football Giants play like turds I guess.

So anyway, what are your experiences traveling for football games? I know I met some brothers in Hawaii who go somewhere warm every year to watch the Super Bowl. Of course that year in Hawaii, one brother left the bar we were watching the game in at halftime. Seems he had a date with a working girl. Couldn’t schedule that for after the Super Bowl. That Super Bowl I watched in Hawaii seems like a lifetime ago – the Giants won that Superbowl. Now the best thing we can win is an early draft pick.

Two articles on the Giants run defense: almost there or not even close?

Posted on September 18th, 2013 at 10:26 pm by NFL-Giants

In this article, Will Beatty says the Giants offensive line is to blame for the running game’s miserable production through the first two games of 2013. But there’s hope. As Eli manning puts it: “It’s not like everybody is just messing up and we’re getting out-physicaled,” Manning said. “We are very close. We’ve just got to get it where everybody on every play is doing their job correctly and doing it at a high level and we’ll get that corrected.”

Nice guy, not throwing his underperforming linemen under the bus. But this article suggests Manning might be a fibber. It certainly appears from the breakdown that Giants linemen are getting physically whooped.

Giants injury situation heading into 2013 regular season opener vs. Dallas

Posted on September 3rd, 2013 at 12:13 am by NFL-Giants

The Giants open up against the Cowboys, who look better than expected so far. A number of Giants are ailing:

RB Andre Brown (leg), OC David Baas (knee), OT David Diehl (thumb), TE Adrien Robinson (foot), and DT Markus Kuhn (PUP – knee) did not practice. No estimate on when Brown and Robinson will be back, but it sounds like a few weeks the way Coughlin says it’s serious (Brown) or unpredictable (Robinson).

WR Victor Cruz (heel) and CB Jayron Hosley (ankle) returned to practice. DE Jason Pierre-Paul (back), DE Damontre Moore (shoulder), S Antrel Rolle (ankle), and FB Henry Hynoski (knee) all practiced. Cruz expects to play on Sunday vs. Dallas. Pierre-Paul and Hynoski said they were unsure.

NFL continued tradition: ridiculously bad officiating

Posted on August 30th, 2013 at 4:58 pm by NFL-Giants

Unbelievably bad officiating int he Giants loss to the patriots in the last game of the preseason, where the bad calls actually led to enough patriots points for the win. If it weren’t the preseason there’s be puke in my mouth. We start with the call on Corey Webster, a dude who is looking back for the ball as he makes a play in the endzone to knock away a pass. Pass interference = 4 more points for the pats. Oh and the official had a horrible angle and could only have guessed what happened anyway.

But then the Patriots CB, a dude not looking back for the ball, is allowed to run through the receiver with no call. That PI – IF it had been called correctly – would have set up a game winning try.

Jets beat Giants which is bad but could be worse

Posted on August 25th, 2013 at 5:51 pm by NFL-Giants

So the Jets beat the Giants in preseason ball. The\ Jets weren’t going to do much this season anyway, and Sanchez is not a franchise QB, but he was probably going to be their starter. Anyhow, Sanchez was hurt playing in garbage time and their backup Geno Smith looks like a rookie who needs a few more years on the sideline because he has no business being on the field (though you can see some potential there). Ryan put Sanchez in because he wanted to win, but you don’t have to be an NFL head coach to know that your starting QB behind your 4th string offensive line is a bad idea.

The Giants were hurt by injuries as well – Stevie Brown was probably starting the season at safety, but it looks like his non-contact knee injury will keep him out for a while.

Eli Manning looked rushed in the pocket, and he didn’t seem to move around in the pocket to buy extra time the way we’ve seen him do in the past.

Eli Manning: the women’s choice

Posted on August 19th, 2013 at 2:32 am by NFL-Giants

Instead of talking about how bad the Giants looked against the Colts and how Andrew Luck was clearly the best player on the field, let’s smile a little.

Women for Eli Manning from Alison Haislip

Do you think the players got a good deal?

Posted on July 22nd, 2013 at 12:39 am by NFL-Giants

This article claims that the players got a raw deal when they renegotiated the CBA with the NFL owners. I agree, but not for the biggest reason the article offers – increased revenue in Green Bay. You’re looking at a bigger stadium and a 100,000 strong wait list for season tickets, not to mention a recent Super Bowl.

This quote is better evidence if you ask me: “The salary cap isn’t even supposed to increase in 2014 when the NFL will receive an influx of new television money — $3.1 billion annually from broadcast revenue, up from $1.9 billion.”

Giants 2012 draft assessment

Posted on May 9th, 2013 at 2:58 am by NFL-Giants

Everyone is busy evaluating and grading the 2013 drafts even while they say it’s impossible to know anything before the new millionaires take an NFL snap. So while everyone is knowingly wasting their time with the 2013 draft, I thought I’d review the Giants 2012 draft.

NFL.com gave the Giants an A in the days immediately after the draft. All these great players are entering their second years in the league. Poised for greatness. Time to bet on Giants games right? Well, let’s see if the Giants really had an excellent 2012 draft.

1 – David Wilson, RB, Virginia Tech (5-10, 206)
2 – Rueben Randle, WR, Louisiana State (6-3, 210)
3 – Jayron Hosley, CB, Virginia Tech (5-10, 178)
4 – Adrien Robinson, TE, Cincinnati (6-4, 264)
4 – Brandon Mosley, OT, Auburn (6-6, 314)
6 – Matt McCants, OT, Alabama-Birmingham (6-6, 308)
7 – Markus Kuhn, DT, North Carolina State (6-5, 299)

David Wilson seems to have been a good pick. A little fumbilitis kept him off the field for some of 2012 but he was dynamic on kickoff returns (26.9 average per return) and some of his most exciting returns were called back due to penalties. He only had 71 carries, but averaged 5 yards per carry. If he stops fumbling – and his ball handling seems better, this guy is a keeper. Certainly fun to watch.

Rueben Randle seems to have been a decent pick. His stats in 2012 were OK – 19 catches for 298 yards and three touchdowns. He needs to run better routes, but if that comes with experience his size makes him a tough receiver for your average corner to cover.

Jayron Hosley is still a question mark. He played in 12 games with six starts, but missed four games with hamstring, shoulder, and quadriceps injuries. He also got dinged up in the preseason so can he stay healthy?

Adrien Robinson is still a question mark. He was active for two games in 2012 and never had a catch.

Brandon Mosley sat out 2012 with an ankle injury. We still don’t know if he can play NFL ball.

Matt McCants was a practice squad player in 2012. A project, he may not be ready for the big show just yet.

Markus Kuhn was a good pick. When a seventh rounder is an active part of your defensive tackle rotation his first year in the NFL, that’s nice. He played 10 games before tearing an ACL so hopefully he comes back strong. Good against the run. Still inexperienced so could improve a lot.

So basically, the Giants have two picks that were obviously good ones: Wilson and Kuhn. Kuhn is gold in the 7th round. A first round running back should be good so no extra points there. Randle was probably a good pick, but your second rounder should be good too so no extra points. All the other picks are still unknowns at this point. I give the Giants a B for 2012. What’s your grade for the Giants 2012 draft?

Justin Pugh’s agent, Andy Ross

Posted on May 6th, 2013 at 10:35 pm by NFL-Giants

Interesting article here about agent Andy Ross and draft day. They talk about Justin Pugh, one of Ross’ clients and how the draft went down from Ross’ perspective. They start with some background and then how he told Pugh to be ready for the first round and to be ready to drop.

“Ross has established a track record for pushing players into the first round — starting with Brown, continuing with Hood, and most recently this April again along the offensive line with Pugh.”

So they make it sound like the Giants chose Pugh because his agent did something special. What exactly did he do? Well, nothing during the draft:

“He’s barely on the edge of his couch, scanning from notes to cell phone to Tweetdeck to Excel. “OK, Giants, c’mon!” he yells, realizing that looking over all the data in front of him isn’t going to change a damn thing about the next 10 minutes.”

But before the draft he does PR and sends Pugh to get in shape at CES Performance and Trigger Point Therapy.

One interesting comment is that the Giants told Ross, they were looking at Pugh as a possibility at #19. I wonder why they mention that to the agent. And I like the following quote from Pugh: “Throughout the whole process, Andy said ‘Trust me and we’ll get you into that first round.’ I saw what he did with Duane Brown and Ziggy Hood, and it’s happened again with me. I couldn’t be happier with my selection of Octagon. I was set up perfectly.”