Hankins had an excellent 2016 and is a unique piece that fits the Giants’ brutal run-stuffing line perfectly. Alongside Damon Harrison, there might not be a more formidable set of pile pushers in football. But what is his value outside of New York?
“I think we all want him back,” Jonathan Casillas told NJ.com of Hankins. “But at the end of the day, if you feel like you need to be compensated for what he’s been doing, he deserves that. We all deserve that. It’s a business. I don’t know exactly where we’re at with him. But I vouch for him. I want him to come back. I think with him, (defensive tackle Damon Harrison), (defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul) and (defensive end Olivier Vernon), it’s going to make my job a lot easier.”
The Giants have Paul Perkins, Orleans Darkwa and cheap jerseys and Shaun Draughn on the roster along with passing-down specialist Shane Vereen. Peterson isn’t a natural fit for a New York offense that uses plenty of shotgun and employed three-receiver sets on more than 90 percent of their plays last season.
McAdoo could shift his attack to accommodate any player he wants, but a better fit might be the Lions. Detroit could use an early down thumper and general manager Bob Quinn didn’t exactly dismiss the idea of kicking the tires on Peterson.
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“We’re happy to get a long-term deal with Jason,” general manager Jerry Reese said. “Not only is he one of our best players, he is one of our leaders.”
The Giants roll into next season with legitimate concerns about the career arc of Eli Manning, their starting quarterback who sharply regressed last season. New York’s chances in the NFC East hinge sharply on the play of their defense.
All-Pro strong safety Landon Collins showed Defensive Player of the Year form in a three-play sequence during the third quarter. After a forearm shiver stopped Aaron Ripkowski cold in front of the first-down marker, Collins stonewalled the powerful fullback on back-to-back short-yardage carries. Giants general manager Jerry Reese deserves NFL Executive of the Year consideration after refashioning an outstanding defense with Collins as the centerpiece.
That said, Reese has his work cut out for him on the other side of the ball. The Giants were held under 20 points for the sixth consecutive game, the longest such stretch of Eli Manning’s career. Manning came out firing in the first quarter, but was done in by shaky receiver play and the offensive line’s inability to open holes in the running game. As promising as rookie tailback Paul Perkins was in December, he was purely a shotgun specialist versus nickel defenses. The ground attack lacked a sustaining element all season long, which left a slumping Manning in poor passing situations. If Eli is going to recapture 2015 form, Reese must fix the blocking and add a power back.
“But what we need to do to make sure that we’re in this position to be one of the 32 teams playing next year is just executing the little, small, minute details because we got a good team.”
Jennings is right to put the onus on New York’s offense to bounce back after falling short in the postseason, and he’s the right mouthpiece for the self-assessment. After all, the Giants’ running game was among the worst in the league and cheap nfl jerseys and often held back a unit that was destined to be explosive with Odell Beckham, Sterling Shepard and Cruz manning the flanks.
But for the Jets, this has to be another disappointing check in Richardson’s folder. He already has been suspended for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy (one game, 2016) and its policy on substances of abuse (four games, 2015). Richardson also was benched last season in November. His comments seem harmless and funny, though a team waiting for Richardson to turn the corner might think otherwise.
One could see how Marshall’s grandfatherly act could wear thin — Odell Beckham might find out the hard way — but it seems like the Jets want nothing more than for Richardson to fall in line and start performing up to his capabilities. When healthy, the Jets have one of the top three defensive lines in football, though Richardson went from 11.5 sacks in his first two years to 6.5 in the last two. A renaissance both off and on the field could earn him a lucrative deal from a team looking to utilize his versatility and interior pass-rushing skills once his fifth-year option term is up.