One season after revamping the defense, the New York Giants decided to add some firepower to their offense via free agency and the NFL draft.
Two big playmakers are now in the fold for a team with an offense that was already among the best in the league. It remains to be seen if this influx of talent can all coexist or if more fists are going to go flying through locker room walls.
On paper, though, this looks more like a fantasy football team of talent than an actual NFL roster, a testament to general manager Jerry Reese’s solid drafting and free agency pickups the last few years.
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Wide receiver Brandon Marshall, six times a Pro Bowl selection, was the big name added to the offense. Signed across the hall from the New York Jets, Marshall is a possession wide receiver who not only becomes an instant threat in the red zone but also will draw attention away from fellow wideout Odell Beckham Jr.
The addition of first-round pick Evan Engram, a tight end out of Ole Miss, adds another component to the passing game. On Wednesday, Giants wide receiver coach Adam Henry said of Engram that “I have been pleasantly surprised about him.”
Given the offseason additions, this is an awful lot of talent at quarterback Eli Manning’s disposal.
“Right, but you know there is only one ball though,” Henry said. “Sometimes you are going to have your day and sometimes you are not. When you are called upon you do not have to be great all the time but just have to be great when you are needed.”
The addition of Marshall is certainly intriguing.
While he is physically as gifted as any wide receiver in the NFL, he is also an enigma. Recently, one of his former teammates on the Jets, defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, said that their current locker room is better than last offseason, saying he can name “15 reasons” why; an obvious dig at Marshall who wears No. 15 on his jersey.
Marshall though has come in with a good attitude, the coaching staff said. And there was no denying that two years ago on a 10-6 Jets team, there was nary a peep about the wide receiver being a problem child.
In fact, there are 15 reasons why the Jets had a good season as Marshall enjoyed one of the best receiving seasons in franchise history.
In this offense alongside Beckham and second-year wide receiver Sterling Shepard, not to mention the draft pick Engram, he will have to share the ball. Henry noted that Marshall made it clear early on that he wants to come in and be part of the offense.
“Just the size and just the experience of making plays. The thing is he goes out there and blocks. He does the dirty work and he is not scared to do that,” Henry said. “It’s just him finding a role and he knows he embraces whatever we ask him to do. He’s been good about it.”