Breaking Down All the New Faces on the 2014 New York Giants
A somewhat unfamiliar New York Giants team is taking the field this summer.
Names that you've likely never heard are being thrown around, as reports from OTA workouts and now mandatory minicamp are flying in from all directions. Before training camp opens next month, it's important that you learn them all.
It's my job to put a face to all those names.
This article will introduce each of the Giants' new faces, which include free agents acquired from other teams, rookie draft selections, undrafted free agents, former practice squad members and, finally, waiver claims.
Click through this slideshow to meet each new Giant and bookmark this page as a reference for the rest of the summer.
*All roster information courtesy of Giants.com.
**All statistical information courtesy of Pro-Football-Reference.com, unless noted or linked otherwise.
FREE AGENTS (23)
The busiest time of the NFL offseason begins when free agency opens up in March. The Giants were particularly avid shoppers this spring, signing 23 new free agents by my count. In this first section you will meet the Giants' largest contingent of new faces, many of whom will play significant roles in 2014.
DE Robert Ayers
After losing longtime Giant defensive end and defensive captain Justin Tuck to free agency, New York did its best to replace him by signing former Denver Broncos DE Robert Ayers to a two-year, $4 million deal.
Originally the 18th overall selection in the 2009 NFL draft, Ayers has collected just 12 sacks through five seasons. The 5.5 sacks he registered last season, however, was a career-high figure, and at 275 pounds, Ayers is solid against the run.
Ayers is a player who could be on the upswing after a slow start to his career. He will likely compete with Mathias Kiwanuka for reps on the strong side of the defensive formation.
LB Spencer Adkins
Former sixth-round pick (2009) of the Atlanta Falcons Spencer Adkins will try to jump-start his NFL career with the Giants this summer.
As a linebacker with the Falcons from 2009-2011, Adkins played in 24 games (with one start) but recorded just 10 tackles during that time. The Baltimore Ravens gave Adkins a chance to make their squad last summer, but he was released during training camp. The Giants gave him one last shot by signing him to a reserve/futures contract at the end of the 2013 season.
Although he has not played a down in either of the past two seasons, Adkins is a thick 5'11", 236 pounds, and he ran a 4.43 40-yard dash coming out of college. He is also a product of the University of Miami, which has churned out dozens of successful pro defenders.
CB Zack Bowman
One of the less-celebrated additions to the Giants' secondary is cornerback Zack Bowman, formerly of the Chicago Bears.
Chicago selected Bowman in the fifth round of the 2008 NFL draft, and, through six seasons with the Bears, he recorded 10 interceptions. Bowman also scored three defensive touchdowns during his Bears tenure—one interception return, two fumble returns.
Bowman might fit best as a reserve cornerback with the Giants, as that's the role he most often played in Chicago. The 29-year-old, who was signed to just a one-year, $795,000 contract, has played in 73 career games, starting 23 of them.
OT Charles Brown
With last year's starting left tackle Will Beatty still sidelined, former New Orleans Saint Charles Brown will play a large part in the offensive line's regeneration this summer.
A second-round pick in 2010, Brown started a career-high 14 games at left tackle with the Saints last season, although New Orleans head coach Sean Payton didn't always like what he saw out of the 6'5", 300-pounder. Brown was relieved of his starting duties late in the 2013 season.
With the Giants, Brown will be a valuable backup to Beatty on the blind side. He could also be used as an extra in-line blocker in some run-heavy sets. If Beatty suffers a major setback in his recovery, the Giants can field Brown at left tackle with a similar degree of confidence.
TE Kellen Davis
The Giants did not re-sign versatile blocking tight end Bear Pascoe this offseason; instead, they replaced him with Kellen Davis, who last played with the Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks.
It is not believed that Davis is the solution to New York's need for a viable pass-catching tight end, although he does have 12 career receiving touchdowns to his name. Davis, a fifth-round pick of the Bears in 2008, was mostly criticized for his work as a pass-catcher in Chicago. In Seattle, he caught only three passes.
The 28-year-old has played six NFL seasons, missing just one game throughout his entire career to date. Although he was signed to just a one-year, $795,000 contract, Davis will probably make the team for his ability as an in-line blocker alone. If he catches the ball, too, that's a plus.
DT Everett Dawkins
A former seventh-round selection (2013) of the Minnesota Vikings, defensive tackle Everett Dawkins will at least temporarily call New York home after a successful tryout at Giants minicamp.
Although Dawkins did not make the Vikings' roster in 2013, he was picked up by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and later the Dallas Cowboys. He saw time in just one regular season game: a 49-17, November loss to the New Orleans Saints when he was a Cowboy.
Coming out of Florida State, Dawkins' production was not stellar. However, some saw in him potential to crack a team's defensive line rotation as a 3-technique. The Giants saw enough to hand him a 90-man roster spot once belonging to undrafted free agent Eathyn Manumaleuna.
S Quintin Demps
One new face with the potential to make an impact in multiple facets of the game is safety Quintin Demps, who doubles as a kick returner.
After Demps was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth round of the 2008 NFL draft, he went on to spend three seasons with the Houston Texans, followed by a single season with the Kansas City Chiefs. Demps did not record his first career start until he reached the Midwest, where, as a member of the Chiefs' defensive backfield, he recorded a career-high four interceptions.
Demps has returned two kicks for touchdowns in his six NFL seasons, making him a threat to score on special teams. The Giants should consider him for return-specialist duties, especially if he is not a major contributor on defense.
TE Daniel Fells
An under-the-radar candidate for New York's pass-catching tight end duties is Daniel Fells, who was signed to a reserve/future contract at the end of the 2013 season.
The 30-year-old tight end began his NFL career with the St. Louis Rams in 2008 and spent his first three seasons as a professional with that program. Fells then spent one solid season with the Denver Broncos before fizzling out in 2012 as a member of the New England Patriots.
Fells' career stat line reads like this: 92 receptions, 1,086 yards and eight touchdowns. Not prolific numbers, but certainly enough experience to warrant a fair shot at the job.
WR Travis Harvey
Sitting at the bottom of New York's wide receiver pecking order is Travis Harvey.
Harvey has no NFL experience outside of the time he spent in Tennessee Titans camp last summer. He played his college ball at Florida A&M, where he recorded less than 1,000 receiving yards in two seasons against FCS competition.
He will need to display something amazing this summer to amount to anything more than a camp body.
KR/PR/WR Trindon Holliday
A man as small as Trindon Holliday should not be able to survive in the NFL.
Yet this 5'5", 166-pound return specialist proves otherwise. Although he's listed as a wide receiver, Holliday's easiest path to the 53-man roster will be through returning kicks and punts for touchdowns. In just three years as a pro, Holliday has done that four times during the regular season and twice during the postseason.
The one caveat—other than his size—when it comes to Holliday is his ball security. He has 11 career fumbles, and there's little head coach Tom Coughlin hates more than a loose rock on the carpet.
RB Rashad Jennings
Can the legs of Rashad Jennings carry the Giants ground game?
New York is betting $10 million over the next four years that they will.
Jennings is a 231-pound power back with just enough burst to break the long run. With the Giants, he will be featured more heavily than he was with either the Jacksonville Jaguars (2009-2012) or Oakland Raiders (2013). Because of his time spent mostly as a reserve, Jennings has unusually low milage—387 career carries—for a 29-year-old running back.
If this former seventh-round selection can help reestablish the power running game in New York, the Giants will feature a much more balanced offense than they have in years past.
OL John Jerry
Joining Will Beatty and Mario Manningham as those unable to participate in early offseason workouts is John Jerry.
If his being named in the Ted Wells report—which investigated last season's Miami Dolphins Bullygate scandal—was not damaging enough, a knee procedure has now set Jerry back even further. The Giants expect him to be ready by the start of training camp, per Jordan Raanan of NJ.com.
When healthy, Jerry can be a versatile "next man up" type. His ability to play both guard and tackle is valuable now that the Giants are without utility lineman Kevin Boothe.
OT Troy Kropog
The Giants lacked depth along the offensive front last season, and that led to the signing of Troy Kropog to a reserve/future contract at season's end.
Kropog isn't a solution as a starter, as he has never started a game in his five-year career. He is, however, familiar with the NFL landscape from his time with the Tennessee Titans (2009-2012), Minnesota Vikings (2012) and Washington Redskins (2013). Kropog played in just seven games with all three of those teams combined.
In order to make the Giants' final roster, Kropog will need to prove that he can be relied upon in a pinch. They won't bring him along just to ride the bench.
OT DeMarcus Love
On the last day of minicamp, offensive tackle DeMarcus Love stole the roster spot of Steven Baker, a former member of the Giants' practice squad.
Love was drafted in the sixth round of the 2011 NFL draft by the Minnesota Vikings, although he never played a professional down in a purple uniform. The Vikes released him after he was suspended for a PED violation in 2013. From there, Love bounced between the Jacksonville Jaguars' practice squad and active roster, until he was released earlier this month.
The 6'4", 315-pound ex-Arkansas Razorback has been in pro football purgatory for quite some time. This summer, with the Giants, the 26-year-old will likely make or break his career.
LB Terrell Manning
The newest of all the new faces is Terrell Manning, who was signed just this week.
The 24-year-old linebacker's last name is already legendary amid the Giants facilities, but not for anything he did as a member of the Green Bay Packers in 2012 or the San Diego Chargers in 2013. The former fifth-round pick out of North Carolina State has played in only six career games and has yet to record his first NFL tackle.
The signing of Manning was likely a short-term reaction to the Jon Beason injury, so hold off on buying that No. 63 jersey.
WR Mario Manningham
It's the return of Mario Manningham!
Well, not quite yet. The former Super Bowl hero is still nursing a knee injury and probably won't be ready until training camp starts up in over a month.
Expect a watered-down version of the Manningham you last remember as a New York Giant; he is now four years removed from his most productive season as a professional, and that bothersome knee hasn't done him any favors since he departed the West Coast and rejoined the Giants.
LB Jameel McClain
Former Baltimore Raven Jameel McClain may be the summer's most valuable addition, as he is the one currently filling in for the injured Jon Beason at middle linebacker.
Even though Beason is targeting a Week 1 return, McClain should play a significant role in the Giants defense. New York signed him to a two-year, $4.5 million contract this offseason, projecting him as a strong-side replacement for the departed Keith Rivers. He has just enough versatility to serve as a fill-in for Beason, which is all New York is currently asking of him.
McClain is not an ideal every-down linebacker, so the Giants should hope for the healthy return of Beason. The key to maximizing McClain's effectiveness is to put him in a position where he can run downhill to make the play, which is most easily accomplished from the strong side.
K Brandon McManus
The Giants signed kicker Brandon McManus to a reserve/future contract in case something calamitous developed during the rush to re-sign Josh Brown.
New York ended up having no trouble inking Brown, who hit 23 of 26 field goal attempts in 2013, to a two-year, $2.6 million deal. McManus will help keep Brown's leg warm in training camp.
WR Preston Parker
Preston Parker is a fringe receiver, a camp body for now, but also someone who could warrant 53-man consideration in the wake of a key injury.
In 2010, Parker made the Tampa Bay Buccaneers roster as an undrafted free agent with a shadowy past. The next season he eclipsed 500 receiving yards and caught three touchdown passes, as his role expanded to include kick and punt returns (he also fumbled eight times). Then, in 2012, he was released after just two games.
Parker failed to make the New Orleans Saints squad last season, and now he will try to get back on his feet with the Giants. He was brought in on a reserve/future contract at the end of the 2013 season.
CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie
The Giants' signature catch of free agency came when they reeled in cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.
It was not a cheap signing either. Rodgers-Cromartie, who has already spent time with the Arizona Cardinals, Philadelphia Eagles and Denver Broncos, agreed to the terms of a five-year, $35 million ($39 million max) contract in order to take his talents to New York. With the Giants, he is expected to shadow the opposition's best receiver.
DRC is one of pro football's most talented cover men. Now, paired up with fourth-year cornerback Prince Amukamara, Rodgers-Cromartie could make the Giants' defense one of the toughest in the league to pass against.
G Geoff Schwartz
The main objective of New York's 2014 offseason was to bolster its offensive line, and it did so in a large way by signing 6'6", 340-pound guard Geoff Schwartz.
The behemoth blocker will hold together the Giants' offensive line nicely. Schwartz will not be an easy target for tricky, interior pass-rushers, nor will he be a slouch as a run-blocker. The Giants, who aim to revitalize their power running game, should send backs rushing behind Schwartz often.
A large part of what makes an O-line successful is good chemistry between its five members, but it also helps to have as many outstanding individuals as possible. In Schwartz, the Giants landed a premier left guard.
CB Walter Thurmond III
If his claim to be the NFL's best slot corner is true, then the Giants should be very excited about Walter Thurmond III and the secondary the team will field in 2014.
There is little statistical evidence to back up Thurmond's claim. It took until last season, his fourth as a pro (all with the Seattle Seahawks), for Thurmond to intercept his first NFL pass, although he did return it 29 yards for a touchdown. Injuries and a suspension have hampered much of this splendid athlete's career, as Thurmond has appeared in just 34 of a possible 64 career regular season games.
While there is no shortage of confidence on Thurmond's end, the Giants offered a conservative, one-year, $3 million deal ($3.5 million max), forcing the 26-year-old corner to prove his value before they dole out anything excessive.
C J.D. Walton
For the first 36 games of his NFL career, J.D. Walton was a reliable starting center for the Denver Broncos.
Then, the former third-round selection (2010) broke his ankle, an injury that required more than one surgery to correct. Walton has not played a game since he underwent the procedures.
Walton is only 27 years old, and now that he's healthy, he can be an effective starter for the 2014 season, allowing the Giants to bring along second-round draft pick Weston Richburg at a more leisurely pace. Signed to a two-year, $5 million contract this offseason, Walton is not the long-term solution at center, but he will make a viable stopgap for the time being.
DRAFT PICKS (7)
The biggest offseason event of the year is the NFL draft. Through seven rounds of selections, the NFL's future stars are divvied up between the league's 32 teams. The Giants picked up seven new faces via the draft this past spring.
WR Odell Beckham Jr.
The Giants used their most valuable piece of ammunition—a first-round draft pick—on LSU wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.
The 5'11" pass-catcher was one of the finest route-runners in this year's draft class, and his athleticism will allow him to become a veritable No. 1 outside receiving threat in years to come. Beckham will work alongside more experienced receivers in Victor Cruz and Rueben Randle in 2014, although he is sure to stand out as a rookie.
Beckham will immediately boost a New York passing game that struggled mightily a season ago. Expect him to easily top ex-Giant Hakeem Nicks' touchdown total from 2013: 0.
C Weston Richburg
Need and value aligned perfectly for the Giants in Round 2, as they spent the selection on Colorado State center Weston Richburg.
In Richburg, the Giants landed the best center in this year's draft while also plugging a major hole in their offensive line. Even if the 2014 season starts out with J.D. Walton as the primary snapper, it won't take long for a center of Richburg's caliber to win that job.
If this pick turns out the way New York planned, Richburg will hold down the Giants' center position for many years to come. He could even make a few Pro Bowls in the process.
DT Jay Bromley
An unexpected third-round selection of Syracuse defensive tackle Jay Bromley had some accusing the Giants brass of reaching.
Bromley will have to prove himself valuable of the third-round selection. That is hardly a daunting task, however, compared to the rough upbringing the 6'3", 310-pounder had to overcome in order to even make it to the NFL. Bromley is a native of New York City and is proud to now be playing for his hometown.
Always fully stocked with high-quality talent along the defensive front, the Giants will find some way to inject Bromley into the mix as a rookie.
RB Andre Williams
It's easy to get excited about a pick like running back Andre Williams, especially when he was a Heisman Trophy finalist and still available in the fourth round of the draft.
The Giants scooped Williams up eagerly, as some within the organization had third-, second- and even first-round grades for the Boston College product who led the nation in rushing in 2013 with 2,177 yards. He is a straightforward power back who weighs 230 pounds and has little wiggle in his ways as a runner.
Williams can afford to improve on the finer aspects of his game, such as pass-catching and blocking. The Giants know what they're getting from him as a ball-carrier.
S Nat Berhe
The first of New York's two fifth-round selections, San Diego State product Nat Berhe, possesses an intriguing meld of football ability.
Although he is listed simply as a safety on the Giants' roster, Berhe played a hybrid position in college called "Aztec," which is a cross between safety and linebacker. At 6'0", 194 pounds, he does not have ideal size to play safety in the NFL. Still, the Giants hope he will attack the field with a similar tenacity.
Berhe might not make much of an impact as a rookie outside of special teams. He is a unique talent who will need his progress as a defender closely monitored.
LB Devon Kennard
Later in the fifth-round, the Giants selected USC linebacker Devon Kennard, who thus far projects to play a role in the 2014 defense.
That role is undefined, however. Kennard has received some early first-team reps both in the middle and on the strong side of the Giants' formation. Often described as versatile, Kennard is a player who can be plugged in and play effectively in multiple positions.
The Giants don't often rely upon rookies, but linebacker is one position unit that is somewhat of an exception to that rule. Kennard's impact will extend beyond special teams.
CB Bennett Jackson
New York's final pick of the 2014 NFL draft was sixth-round cornerback Bennett Jackson, who was selected 187th overall out of Notre Dame.
No team has enough cornerbacks, and that's likely why the Giants chose to attack this position with their last selection. There is quite a bit of talent ahead of Jackson, so making the team will take precedence over making an impact.
Jackson will only make the team through outstanding play as a special teamer.
UNDRAFTED FREE AGENTS (11)
Not everyone who plays in the NFL was drafted. Plenty of players—Pro Bowlers even—entered the league as undrafted free agents. The chances of making the team are slim as an UDFA, but that won't stop these next 11 players from giving it their all.
LB Justin Anderson
The Giants signed Senior Bowl participant Justin Anderson to compete for a roster spot at linebacker this summer.
In his final two seasons at Louisiana-Lafayette, Anderson led his team in tackles, averaging over 10 tackles per game as a senior. The 232-pound tackling machine will now try to make the leap to the next level.
Anderson is unlikely to be as productive as a pro, although he could make the team were he to prove himself to be a sound tackler and reliable special teamer.
S C.J. Barnett
An Ohio State product, safety C.J. Barnett has big school credibility but not the corresponding talent.
Barnett's game is described as "slow" by this scouting report. That's bad news for a player attempting to make the transition from college to the faster, more unforgiving NFL. Barnett probably does not have the athleticism to recover from the many rookie mistakes he's sure to make.
The Giants are deep in the defensive backfield, making it that much harder for a player like Barnett to make the roster without a rash of injuries to other players competing at the same position.
DE Emmanuel Dieke
Emmanuel Dieke became a full-time starter at Georgia Tech, although he was never exceptionally productive, recording just five sacks in 49 games.
The 257-pound Dieke's primary advantage is length, but he could afford to bulk up and fill out his 6'6" frame. He had an impressive enough pro day for the Giants to take a chance on him as a pass-rusher.
In order for Dieke to make New York's roster, he'll have to show that he's a more dynamic playmaker than he was at Georgia Tech.
LB Dan Fox
Some people can be simply described as football players. Dan Fox is one of them.
A former Golden Domer, Fox was one of Notre Dame's most reliable defenders for the past three seasons. He improved steadily during that time due to his gritty instincts and unparalleled focus. Last season, he fell just shy of 100 tackles.
Questionable athleticism will limit Fox on defense, but he possesses the rare football gene that allows some players to thrive on special teams.
S Thomas Gordan
A Michigan product, the 6'0", 214-pound Thomas Gordan has the ideal mixture of size and experience for an undrafted free agent safety to overcome the odds and make the team.
The former Wolverine was productive as a four-year letterman with 220 tackles and six interceptions. He's also a pretty impressive athlete with a 41-inch vertical leap, recorded at his pro day. All these factors considered, it's pretty amazing that Gordon was not drafted.
The competition is stiff in the defensive backfield, but Gordon is a player worth fitting into the depth chart.
TE Xavier Grimble
New York's most celebrated undrafted free agent is tight end Xavier Grimble. Some of that has to do with Grimble's ability, but most of it has to do with New York's desperate need for a starting tight end.
Although Grimble is not the ideal starter, he idolizes one. The USC product will wear No. 89 this summer after watching highlights of Mark Bavaro, arguably the greatest tight end in Giants history. This respect for the past has quickly made Grimble a fan favorite.
Bavaro was an All-Pro in 1986 and 1987, and Grimble's college coach believes his former tight end has that kind of upside in the NFL. But the 6'4", 257-pound prospect should focus on making the team first.
DB Kyle Sebetic
Defensive back Kyle Sebetic was a late signing out of the University of Dayton, an FCS program.
The Sebetic signing was made to fill the void left by the release of safety Will Hill, although the former Flyer has no chance to be anywhere near as effective as Hill was.
He is described by Big Blue Interactive as a "tweener," with subpar speed for a corner and subpar size for a safety. The Giants list him as 6'0" and 165 pounds.
Something does not add up.
DT Kelcy Quarles
The UDFA with the best shot to make the 53-man roster is defensive tackle Kelcy Quarles.
Quarles played at South Carolina, next to 2014 No. 1 overall pick Jadaveon Clowney, which actually hurt the the defensive tackle's draft stock significantly. Although Quarles' production was indicative of a typical mid-round selection, some believe that playing next to such a dominant superstar skewed his output in a fashion not proportional to his ability.
With the Giants, Quarles not only has a chance to make the roster; he may even contribute. The competition at defensive tackle is wide open, and the 294-pounder can prove that the Clowney criticism was unfounded by consistently making plays in the backfield.
DE Jordan Stanton
A former standout at one of the top FCS programs, James Madison, defensive end Jordan Stanton will now try his hand at the NFL.
Stanton has the size to stick at 6'4", 280 pounds. It will be interesting to see the speed at which Stanton can perform at that playing weight. If he is quick enough to be a disruptive end, Stanton could end up sneaking onto the roster. However, if he is forced to play tackle—which he has experience playing—Stanton will be one of the first defenders cut.
Keep an eye on Stanton, as the Giants always seem to feature an under-the-radar D-end who explodes onto the scene during the preseason. Stanton could be New York's 2014 version of such a character.
WR Corey Washington
Quarterbacks like to look for a big target, and Newberry College (D-II) product Corey Washington is the Giants' tallest receiver on the 90-man roster at 6'4".
It's a significant jump Washington has to make, from a super small school atmosphere to the big lights of the NFL. He will start near the bottom of the Giants depth chart at wide receiver and have to work his way up rung by rung on the pass-catching ladder.
Pro Player Insiders covered the University of Washington's pro day and projected him as a receiver who would make an NFL roster.
DT Kerry Wynn
Working out on the strong side of the defensive formation will be former Richmond Spider Kerry Wynn.
Wynn was listed as a defensive tackle on his NFL.com scouting report but is now listed as a defensive end on the Giants' roster. Although he has the versatility to go between the two positions, he lacks the talent to thrive at either. He will likely be buried on the depth chart at left defensive end.
In the end, Wynn may excel in certain aspects of the game. Still, it will not be enough to warrant a roster spot. Even if he holds the edge well against the run, Wynn will not develop into New York's next great sack-master.
FORMER PRACTICE SQUAD (5)
Some players aren't quite ready enough to make the active roster, so the coaching staff keeps them around as practice squad members in hopes that one day they will. Next up on this list are five players who spent time on the Giants practice squad last season and were promising enough to be asked back in 2014.
DE Kendrick Adams
A former undrafted free agent, defensive end Kendrick Adams first landed with the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2012. He did not make that team, landing later on the practice squads of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Detroit Lions in that same season.
The former LSU Tiger is a tall, lanky defensive end at 6'5" and 250 pounds. Adams has elite speed for a defensive end—he ran 4.66-second 40-yard dash in 2012—but his frame is better suited for a rush linebacker.
RB Kendall Gaskins
The largest running back on New York's roster is 6'1", 240-pound Kendall Gaskins, who was signed to a reserve/future contract last December.
Gaskins was originally an undrafted free agent with the Buffalo Bills in 2013, but he was cut at the end of training camp. He was signed to the Giants practice squad late in the 2013 season.
What makes the former Richmond Spider valuable is his willingness to play both fullback and running back. With New York's fullback position yet to be defined, the versatile Gaskins could unexpectedly snag a roster spot.
WR Marcus Harris
Marcus Harris bounced on and off the Giants' practice squad multiple times last season.
Before that, though, Harris was an Arena Football League star. The productive Murray State receiver caught 94 passes with the Iowa Barnstormers in 2013 and took them for 1,223 yards and 19 touchdowns.
With the Giants, Harris will have a tough time matching the production he experienced at either Murray State or with the Barnstormers. The thin, 6'1", 187-pound receiver failed to replicate those numbers in both Detroit and Tennessee; perhaps his chance in New York will yield the closest results.
CB Travis Howard
Former Ohio State Buckeye Travis Howard is a 200-pound cornerback who will make the flashy plays but struggle to make the routine ones.
The scouting report for Howard touted his willingness to go for the big hit, ability to attack the ball in the air and even eagerness to defend the run. On the other hand, the draft profile noted his lack of fluidity in coverage, a big liability for someone trying to develop into an NFL-caliber corner.
By being a fearless and efficient tackler, Howard boosts his chances to make the Giants roster as a special-teamer. He failed to make the Houston Texans roster as an undrafted free agent in 2013.
CB Ross Weaver
After spending the last month of the 2013 season on the Giants' practice squad, cornerback Ross Weaver was signed to a reserve/future contract.
Weaver was a solid starter with the Michigan State Spartans in the previous decade, but he has yet to prove himself as such at the professional level. In the past four years, Weaver has called himself a Miami Dolphin, Seattle Seahawk, Dallas Cowboy, Detroit Lion and even a Jacksonville Shark (Arena Football League).
For now, Weaver calls himself a New York Giant.
WAIVER CLAIMS (2)
When a player is waived from a team, the NFL's remaining 31 franchises each have the opportunity to place a claim for that player before he becomes a free agent. Twice this offseason, the Giants have snagged another team's trash.
Will either player become a treasure in New York?
OT Rogers Gaines
To gauge Rogers Gaines' importance to the team this summer, one could point to the departure of former 4,000-yard passer Josh Freeman, whose release was ordered to make room for the ex-Chicago Bear.
A 6'6", 329-pound offensive tackle, Gaines entered the league as an undrafted free agent with the Baltimore Ravens. He did not make the team there, instead landing on the Chicago Bears practice squad.
Gaines is not likely to make the Giants final cut but claiming him was consistent with the team's focus to add massive offensive linemen.
OL Jamaal Johnson-Webb
Closing out this list is Jamaal Johnson-Webb, a 6'6", 306-pound offensive lineman claimed back in mid-May.
Johnson-Webb broke into the league as an undrafted free agent with the Arizona Cardinals last year, but his 2013 season was a mere tour of NFL practice squads. He spent time in Chicago, Minnesota and Buffalo, whose practice squad New York ultimately stole him from.
A successful summer for Johnson-Webb would result in him making the Giants' practice squad.
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