The New York Giants will need for these 10 players to perform at a high level if they plan on having a great season.
More than any other sport, football is the ultimate team game. It takes players from the offense, defense, and special teams to come together and play at a high level in order to win.
The entire organization must fire on all cylinders in order for New York to return to the postseason. In particular, the Giants will need these 10 players to step up and undergo solid campaigns.
1. Daniel Jones
Daniel Jones is obviously No. 1 on this list, considering no position is as important as quarterback. With the retirement of Eli Manning, Jones enters his first full season as the face of the franchise.
Jones showed tremendous promise during his rookie campaign. Nonetheless, he’ll need to cut down on his turnovers in order for the Giants to avoid a fourth straight season with double-digit losses.
2. Saquon Barkley
Not only is Saquon Barkley the best player within the organization, but he’s arguably the most complete running back in the league. He’s a threat to score from anywhere on the field.
A high ankle sprain limited his production last season. But if he can remain healthy, he’ll stand a chance to rack up over 2,000 all-purpose yards and become an MVP candidate.
3. Nate Solder
To say Nate Solder has struggled in his first two seasons with Big Blue would be an understatement. In the first three weeks of the 2020 campaign, the Giants will face elite edge rushers such as T.J. Watt, Khalil Mack, and Nick Bosa, so he’ll certainly need to bring his ‘A’ game.
Considering the Giants chose offensive tackle Andrew Thomas in this year’s first round, it’s currently unclear if Solder will remain at left tackle or switch to the right side. But regardless, he’ll need to improve in keeping Jones upright.
4. James Bradberry
James Bradberry was a huge free-agent acquisition. The Giants were in dire need of a No. 1 cornerback after allowing 264.1 passing yards per game last season.
The addition of Bradberry is even more important to the team’s success in light of the uncertainty surrounding DeAndre Baker’s armed robbery charges. The Giants will need the former Carolina Panther to prove he’s one of the top corners in the conference.
5. Darius Slayton
It’s debatable whether the Giants employ enough playmakers at the wide receiver position. Even former Giant Amani Toomer questioned the unit.
Darius Slayton showed during his rookie campaign that he’s the team’s most dynamic player at the position, having ultimately led Big Blue with eight touchdown receptions. With Jason Garrett now the offensive coordinator, expect Slayton to be used even more on down-field throws.
6. Markus Golden
It appears Big Blue will have Markus Golden, the team’s best pass rusher from a year ago, back on the squad. Unless, of course, another team signs him to a contract by July 22.
Golden led the team with 10 sacks last season, and New York will need for him to undergo another double-digit sack performance in 2020. Last year, the Giants finished 22nd in the league with 36 total sacks.
7. Leonard Williams
As expected, general manager Dave Gettleman gave Leonard Williams the franchise tag. In eight games with the Giants last season, Williams recorded 26 combined tackles with .5 sacks.
Now that he’ll be with the Giants at the start of camp, Gettleman hopes that Williams will be a disruptive force and justify the pair of draft picks the organization gave up to acquire him.
8. Xavier McKinney
The free safety spot has been a liability for the Giants for the last several seasons. Fortunately, they acquired arguably the best safety in the draft — Xavier McKinney — during this year’s second round (No. 36 overall).
If McKinney can play up to expectations, the Giants will finally possess someone who can cover opposing tight ends and become a playmaker in the secondary.
9. Andrew Thomas
The Giants believe they took the best offensive tackle in the draft — Georgia’s Andrew Thomas — with the No. 4 overall pick. As stated previously with Solder, we’re not entirely sure which tackle position Thomas will play.
If he’s able to adapt to the speed of the NFL, Thomas will ultimately help open lanes for Barkley and keep Jones upright.
10. Evan Engram
Due to his size and speed, Evan Engram is a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses. He’s too fast for linebackers and too big for safeties. Nevertheless, the injury-related concerns are an issue, as he’s yet to play a full 16-game season.
Garrett loves getting tight ends involved, and if Engram can stay on the field, the Giants offense will be better than most expected.