The New York Giants have not been a team to fear since 2016, although even then a hapless offense lessened the fear factor. However, fearing an offense, and drafting offensive players aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive.
When one thinks about fantasy football and the New York Giants, usually only one name comes to mind – Saquon Barkley, the only undisputed first round pick that should be spent on a Big Blue player. The rest will probably go between rounds four and thirteen. We are going to go position by position, and flesh out the expectations to set for the 2020 New York Giants.
ESPN only has three Giants receivers ranked in the top 70. So it’s safe to say, all depth guys will probably not be drafted. There are only four names worth noting in the Giants receiving core.
Shepard has been hard to figure out his entire career. He’s listed as number one on the depth chart, but is unlikely to finish with WR1 numbers. In 2019 “Shep” only played in 10 games amounting 57 rec for 576 yards and three touchdowns on 83 targets. Two concussions held him out of six games.
During Shepard’s four years in the league, he’s only accumulated two complete seasons. He also has yet to break the 1,000 yard mark. In 2018, amidst a full 16 game slot, he compiled 66 rec for 872 yards and four touchdowns.
Jason Garret plans to implement a run heavy scheme, and that will cut into Shepard’s production. In terms of fantasy production, Shepard is a flex option at best, and there is a lot more consistent talent to be taken before him. Time Skew has Sterling Shepard ranked as WR 48 overall, and that should be a strong indication on where to draft him.
Despite being ranked 6 spots lower by ESPN, Slayton has been getting drafted a few rounds earlier. The fifth round pick in 2019 played in 14 games with nine starts. Over that span he was targeted 84 times, racking up 48 receptions for 740 yards, and eight touchdowns. However, Slayton boasts a strong 15.4 yard per reception. His big play ability is getting him drafted between rounds seven and eight. Slayton has WR2 upside, but with the Giant’s impending run heavy scheme, his usage is still up for debate. There is no denying the chemistry with Slayton and Daniel Jones, but he will still be fighting for targets with the other receivers. I would look for him in the 7th round, but make sure you fill out your WR1 and WR2 before taking him. Our own Time Skew rankings are more optimistic on Slayton’s sophomore showing. They have him ranked at WR 34.
Golden Tate III
Golden Tate had some wild highlights in 2019, but his production was substantially lower than during his Lion’s tenure. He did miss the first four games with a PED suspension, but that is an anomaly in his career. On the short season, he recorded 49 receptions, 676 yards, and six touchdowns. Tate has been shockingly consistent in receptions since 2014.
If he can stay healthy, he will shine in the flex position for PPR format leagues. That shouldn’t be too tall of an order. He has been relatively healthy his entire career, but the New York Giants don’t seem to have the best luck in the injury department.
Time Skew has Golden Tate ranked as WR58. and this matches my opinion on the veteran pass catcher. I wouldn’t spend too early of a pick on Tate, but if he is there in 9th or 10th round, you should pull the trigger.
Coleman’s once promising career has taken a few unsuspected turns. After being drafter 15th overall in 2016 by the Cleveland Browns, he never really developed. he ended up on The Giants roster. He only had five catches for 71 yards, but he fleshed out a pretty solid punt/kickoff return roll. Some leagues value that, but the typical league doesn’t. Since he tore his ACL last year, it will be hard to tell how he will bounce back. I wouldn’t spend a draft pick on Coleman, but he is worth keeping on the watch list. He may surprise some people this year.
This group will either be dangerous or an absolute mess this year. Just like most of the Giants pass catching options, it will all shake out based on the schemes Garret and Judge put forth.
If New York Giant’s fans know one thing, its the half tapped potential of Evan Engram.
His fantasy stock in 2020 takes a huge hit from injuries, but when he is on the field he is a menace to defenses. Engram runs a 4.40 40 yard dash, and that speed diminish when the pads go on.
Jason Garret loves to use tight ends on vertical routes, and that plays right into Engram’s strengths. Simply put, he is a match up nightmare. He’s too fast for line backers, and he’s too physical for a lot of safeties.
So in theory, if the box is stacked to slow down Barkley, that leaves Engram one on one with a safety. That is a glaring mismatch, and Engram is going to feast.
His injury history is going to decimate his draft stock this year, so you will not need to spend a high pick on him. I can see Engram going as early as the eighth round, but I would hope to get him in the ninth. Time Skew ranks Engram as TE 14, which is low if he stays healthy. You heard it here first, the breakout season we have been waiting for is here!
Smith is definitely not a guy to target, unless you’re playing in a very deep league. If Engram is healthy, Smith won’t be on the field unless the Giants are in 12 personnel. Even then, there are other tight ends on the roster that will be available as strong blockers. Smith has very natural hands, with very few drops over the season.
Importantly, Smith developed some great chemistry with Daniel Jones towards the end of the season. He is very good at finding soft spots in the zone, and uses his natural catching ability to secure the ball.
Do you draft him at the beginning of the year? No. But Smith could be a mid-season waiver wire steal if Engram goes down.
The New York Giants receiving corps doesn’t inspire too much confidence in 2020 fantasy football. Health and the ability to provide consistent snaps in the offense are concerns, but the potential is undeniable. For nearly all of these players above, the boom or bust potential is evident and could very easily make or break your fantasy team in 2020.
Stay tuned for Giants quarterback and running back fantasy breakdowns and as always, keep yourself keyed into Time Skew for all your fantasy questions.