Fifth-year wide receiver Cody Latimer is one of the many reasons fans should be excited about the Giants offense in 2018.
One of Dave Gettleman’s offseason acquisitions that has been paying dividends since OTAs and all the way up to training camp is fifth-year wide receiver Cody Latimer, the veteran who the New York Giants signed back in March.
Latimer spent his first four seasons in the league with the Denver Broncos and was a member of their Super Bowl 50 championship team.
In his four years with the Broncos, he caught 35 passes for 445 yards and three touchdowns in the 45 games he participated. He was also a solid kick returner, averaging 24.4 yards per return.
In 2017, he enjoyed his finest season in the NFL, catching 19 passes for 287 yards and two touchdowns while playing with a quarterback carousel of Trevor Siemian, Brock Osweiler and Paxton Lynch.
Cody Latimer stretching before practice pic.twitter.com/ZLYOueyZjA
— Jason Leach (@JasonKLeach) July 27, 2018
Now he gets to play with a future Hall of Fame quarterback in Eli Manning and is poised to have a breakout season. Latimer is familiar with the Manning family having played his first two seasons in the league with Eli’s older brother, Peyton Manning.
Before Saturday’s practice asked Latimer what are some of the similarities between Eli and Peyton in the huddle.
“They’re Hall of Fame quarterbacks and they’re in control. They’re the leader when you’re in the huddle you’re going to listen to them. When you’re in the huddle with them you have to be on your peas and cues and that’s the thing I love playing with both of them because they keep everyone focused. You have to know what you have to do or you can’t be in the huddle. So it’s been an amazing journey playing being able to play with Eli and Peyton and learn how to be a pro by watching them. I watch Peyton and how long he worked and stayed after practice and it carried over when I came here with Eli and I watched him. Eli is just amazing, he’s quiet and his funny and when he’s on the field he’s a beast.”
Eli and Latimer seemed to have chemistry right from the start in OTAs as Latimer played with the first-team offense and looked sharp. He ran quick and precise routes and was able to come away with catches even when being contested by a defender.
This continued in Saturday’s practice where the two connected on a slant pattern during 11-on-11 drills.
— Jason Leach (@JasonKLeach) July 28, 2018
You can bet that Eli probably called Peyton to tell him what a welcomed addition Latimer is to the Giants.
While playing with Eli brings similarities to playing with Peyton, Latimer was reunited with a familiar face when he signed with Big Blue as the Giants hired his receivers coach from the Broncos Tyke Tolbert who the Giants hired in January. Tolbert was the Broncos wide receivers coach from 2011-2017, so he’s worked with Latimer his entire career.
I asked Latimer what it’s like to be reunited with his wide receiver coach Tyke Tolbert who he played for in Denver.
“It’s great, it’s like I pretty much never left. I’ve been with him my whole career and he followed me here so it’s great.”
The 6-foot-2, 217-pound Latimer brings physicality to the Giants receiving corps which will be a great compliment to go along with the 5-foot-11, 200-pound Odell Beckham Jr and the 5-foot-10, 203-pound Sterling Shepard.
His size and strength will provide advantages when he’s running across the field and in the red zone.
With Latimer, OBJ, Shepard, tight end Evan Engram and rookie phenom Saquon Barkley all employed, the Giants are poised to have one of the most explosive and dynamic offenses in the league. The Giants will move all of their skill position players all over the field, which will keep defenses off balance.
“I’m very excited about it, it’s still a new offense for us but we got it down during OTAs and the offseason. Now we’re back in training camp trying to critique and try to make it as close to perfect as we can. Once we get that down sky’s the limit it’s going to be an amazing year!”
The last thing I asked Latimer was how good was it to see the man that brought him to the New York Giants Dave Gettleman on Friday. Friday was the first time Gettleman was at the Giants facility since being diagnosed with lymphoma in June.
“It was great my first impression of him was amazing. When I first came here to visit he played with my son and interacted with my family so much, I mean I just love the guy, he’s amazing. He’s always in the locker room; always around, he loves his players. I love that about him, he’s very funny and exciting and always upbeat. He’s a great guy and it was great to see him and best of all he’s doing great and will continue to do great. He’s always here supporting us and we’re supporting him 1000 percent.”
Not only will Gettleman do great, but his team will do great and one of the reasons is because of Latimer.
Expect 25-year-old Cody Latimer to enjoy the best year of his career and for the New York Giants to contend for a playoff berth.