Out of the wide receivers who are still available, who could the New York Giants sign ahead of the 2020 season?
Entering his second year in the pros, New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones surely possesses a decent but, at times, questionable receiving corps. Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton are in their early years and are beneficial complements to one another, but need to stay out of the medical tent (eight combined missed games last year). Golden Tate brings that veteran presence to the group, but disappears in some games.
A few somewhat reliable possession receivers are existent within the unit along with an up-and-coming downfield threat in Slayton. Nonetheless, Jones is missing a very crucial weapon, and that’s someone who can provide height down near the goal line.
The three tallest receivers on the roster are Binjimen Victor (6-foot-4), David Sills (6-foot-3), and Cody Core (6-foot-3). Who knows if Victor will make the team after going undrafted? Sills, on the other hand, spent much time on the practice squad last year, so his future is unclear. And lastly, Core is more of a special teams weapon.
With that said, the Giants could still look to free agency to add another receiver to the bunch, and the following three names may certainly be in consideration.
Demaryius Thomas has bounced around in recent years, but he’s familiar with the East Rutherford area via his latest stint. The veteran wideout played 11 games with the New York Jets last year, notching a start in 10 of those matchups. During that span, he racked up 36 receptions for 433 yards and one score.
He’s not getting any younger at 32 years of age. Nonetheless, the Giants wouldn’t need to use him for much.
At 6-foot-3, 225 pounds, Thomas would be one of the biggest guys in the position group and could prove to be a decent option down near the goal line. He could also assist the Giants in spreading the field by becoming one more potential target in certain circumstances.
Not to mention, Thomas would additionally be somewhat of a mentor to the younger receivers in Shepard, Slayton, along with the undrafted rookies should some of them make the team.
The 5-time Pro Bowler possesses some familiarity with head coach Joe Judge as well. Demaryius spent some time with the Patriots in 2019 when Judge was still New England’s special teams coordinator.
Former Arizona Cardinals and Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Jaron Brown is still available and could be a cheap, decent signing for the Giants. He would be one of the taller options at 6-foot-3 and, like Thomas, wouldn’t need to be used too often within the gameplan.
Brown has carried a knack for the end zone in the past. While with the Seahawks in 2018, he notched five touchdowns while catching 14 total balls for 166 yards. The year prior, while with the Cardinals, Brown caught a career-high 31 receptions for 477 yards and four scores.
He originally went undrafted out of Clemson and has proven his success in different circumstances in this league. Evaluating Brown wouldn’t be the worst idea when it comes to Big Blue adding another receiver for both field-spreading and goal-line purposes.
I know, I know, Tavon Austin is nowhere near a tall option at 5-foot-8. Nonetheless, he has pure familiarity with Giants offensive coordinator Jason Garrett, who was his head coach in Dallas from 2018-19. Thus, Austin knows Garrett’s playbook and could easily become accustomed to the gameplans.
Austin hasn’t impressed much in the passing game since the 2016 campaign — one of his final years with the Rams. During that season, he recorded career-highs in both receptions (58) and yards (509) and notched three touchdown catches. Since that year, he’s caught a combined 34 balls for 364 yards and three touchdowns.
To be honest, he’s probably the last guy on this list who I’d want the Giants to sign, but you have to admit connections mean something in this league. Austin’s prior relationship with Garrett along with his offensive playbook could lead to the 30-year-old potentially signing a cheap deal to come to East Rutherford.