A third New York Giant has opted out of the upcoming 2020 campaign. This time, it’s the young and still-unproven Sam Beal.
After both left tackle Nate Solder and wide receiver Da’Mari Scott decided not to take part in the 2020 season, a third New York Giant is following along.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, cornerback Sam Beal has chosen to opt-out of a season slated to be overwhelmed by the lingering COVID-19 pandemic.
Giants’ CB Sam Beal officially opted out of the 2020 season, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 5, 2020
This was supposed to be Beal’s third season in the league. The Giants selected him in the third round of the 2018 supplemental draft, but injuries have plagued much of his pro-level tenure thus far.
Citing shoulder and hamstring issues, Beal has played in just six out of a possible 32 career games. Each of those six appearances came during his 2019 sophomore campaign, a span in which he recorded 26 combined tackles and a pass breakup.
So what does the Giants cornerback unit look like now?
Well, with Beal not playing and DeAndre Baker on the commissioner’s exempt list amid his armed robbery and aggravated assault charges, the position group is most certainly thin.
The Giants will likely bring at least one guy in via free agency, but at the moment, Julian Love, Grant Haley, Corey Ballentine, and rookies Darnay Holmes and Chris Williamson will compete to be the starting corner opposite James Bradberry.
In my mind, and I’ve said this a number of times before, Love should be the favorite to win the job. His versatility and intelligence are needed for this secondary to improve in 2020, and despite the fact that he was more of a safety last year, the former Notre Dame standout should be able to learn and succeed within this spot in a timely manner.
So then who performs at slot corner?
That role will likely go to either Haley or Ballentine, who both notched starts at that position last year. You have no idea what you’re truly going to see out of the pair of aforementioned rookies, especially after a weird and unusual offseason.
But regardless of who starts where, the main goal will be for this defensive backfield to significantly develop. Last year, the Giants finished 28th in the league with an average of 264.1 passing yards allowed per game.