The New York Football Giants were well on their way to repeating as Super Bowl champions last season when the infamous second “shot heard round the world” grounded their most potent weapon and derailed the team’s chances.
Plaxico Burress was the player that opposing defenses had no defense for: a six-foot-six receiver that could outmaneuver and outjump just about every defensive back in the NFL.
His legal troubles and his very public dismissal from the Giants have been well documented. So has the huge chasm in the Giants’ offense created by his departure. The media has the Giants dead and buried behind the Eagles in almost every preseason prognostication.
Not to worry. GM Jerry Reese and his very astute scouting team may have solved the issue. In last month’s NFL Draft, Reese chose three very different receivers in an effort to soothe the worried masses: Hakeem Nicks of North Carolina, Travis Beckum of Wisconsin and Ramses Barden of Cal Poly.
Of those three, Barden is the player that most physically resembles Burress. He is also 6’6” and in highlight reels of his college career, Barden looks eerily similar to Plaxico.
Since Burress’ absence was the primary reason for the team’s post-season failure last season, I felt Giant fans might want to know a little more about the player who will most likely replace him….
Five Questions for Ramses Barden
1. You realize that there is a lot of pressure on the Giants’ receivers this year. How much do you know about the team’s recent history and the current initiative to replace both Plaxico Burress and Amani Toomer?
2. What was your reaction when the Giants drafted you? Were you surprised, or were you kind of expecting it?
3. In highlight reels and at mini camp, you play a lot like Plaxico. Was he a player you tried to emulate?
4. You’re 6’6”, 230 lbs. That’s a basketball body. Have you ever played basketball? And if so, how has that helped you in your football career?
5. What are your expectations as a member of the New York Giants? Have coaches expressed their expectations of you yet?