New York Giants: Rookies Make Transition to Second Year

Michael SamuelSenior Analyst IJune 21, 2008

The Giants' success last year was largely contributed to by rookies. As these rookies now become second-year players some of them could see increased roles in the locker room and on the field.

Aaron Ross showed his toughness as well as his cover skills last year. Ross could one day be an elite CB in this league. Along with Corey Webster, they could be what the Giants wanted with Will Peterson and William James (the former Will Allen).

Ross will help to try and shut down wideouts like TO, Santana Moss and whoever the Eagles' elite WR is. I look for Ross to take a higher role in team leadership, especially on the defensive side of the field.

Steve Smith, the Giants second-round pick in 2007, showed that he is an absolute gamer. He will be the receiver who on third-and-seven will get you eight.

Smith will be the third WR behind the disgruntled Burress and Toomer. He had four of his five catches for first downs in the Super Bowl. Look for Smith in a full season to catch around 50 balls for the season.

Ahmad Bradshaw has talent, despite his off-the-field problems. Just turn on the tape, and you'll see he has all of tools to be a successful RB in this league. He averaged over five YPC in the season and postseason. He will be a regular in the backfield along with Brandon Jacobs. Look for his numbers to be around 150 carries, 700 yards and five touchdowns.

Kevin Boss is a physical monster at 6-foot-7 and over 260 pounds. He will see a lot more playing time this year, because he showed he can stretch the field even if Shockey is playing. I look to see him catch 30 balls and maybe score four touchdowns.

The bottom line is that you win championships though building your team through the draft. Jerry Reese, under the tutelage of Ernie Accorsi, became one of the best talent evaluators at the college level. These players showed signs that they could be starters for the next 10 years, but they must improve.

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