New York Giants 2019 Season preview

By Josh Edwards


The Giants finished 2018 in last place in the NFC East for the second straight season, with a 5-11 record (an improvement on the previous season’s 3-13). Therefore, reasons for optimism were almost exclusively centred on rookie sensation Saquon Barkley. The second pick out of Penn State, and AP offensive rookie of the year, finished with over 1300 rushing yards and 11 TDs, averaging a whopping five yards per carry. However, in a frustrating and uncanny echo of their 2015 campaign, the Giants lost eight games by seven points or fewer.


Last year new GM Dave Gettleman and Head Coach Pat Shurmur had an aggressive approach to rebuilding. In 2018 60% of the roster turned over before the season began. So far in 2019 we have seen plenty of the same, including some headline grabbing moves.

Surprisingly, Odell Beckham Jr was traded to Cleveland, in a move which had New Yorkers screaming down sports radio call in lines for nights on end. Landon Collins was let go without a new contract offer and signed with divisional rivals Washington. Olivier Vernon, the Giants only true pass-rusher, was also traded to the Browns for Kevin Zeitler, who, to be fair to Gettleman, will probably improve the offensive line.

Also on the incoming side is veteran slot receiver Golden Tate. They replaced Landon Collins like-for-like in Jabrill Peppers. However, the biggest talking point of the draft was taking Duke QB Daniel Jones 6th overall. A move which was considered by most analysts a serious reach with other QBs available



Barkley is this team’s superstar and in his second season all eyes will be on him, as he is likely one of the best ball carriers in the NFL already. Eli Manning has been named the starting QB again. However, if we’ve learnt anything since Gettleman took over it’s not to rely on what has been promised.

At receiver a lot of stock is being placed in Sterling Shepard. A fourth year WR who had his best statistical year in 2018 and has provided steady production with zero OBJ style antics. The addition of Golden Tate, who played on the Eagles and Lions last season, gives Manning another solid option. However, the receiving group is unremarkable, which points towards Barkley becoming even more of an offensive focal point.


The Giants finished 2018 27th in the league in yards per completion allowed (11.2) and overall pass defense grade (68.8, per PFF). It is not an understatement to say they will need a marked improvement this year. The team focused on remodelling their secondary in the draft, acquiring DeAndre Baker, Julian Love and Corey Ballentine. The development of this group will be worth keeping an eye on.

The team will also be desperate to generate any kind of pass rush after finishing second last in sacks last season with a measly 30. Trading away Vernon was a surprising move and it remains to be seen which players can take a step up and make the difference.

the verdict

In what feels like a complete rebuild, the Giants will look to Barkley to provide enough entertainment to keep the Big Blue faithful interested and hopeful for the future. There is the added intrigue of if and when Jones is given a chance to genuinely compete for the starting job. Otherwise, few will consider the Giants of much note in 2019. It would be a shock if the team competes for a playoff spot. In fact, the first overall pick is as, if not more, likely.


Josh edwards

nfc east & college football analyst

josh is an nfc east specialist and long suffering redskins fan based in london. check out his articles HERE and FOLLOW HIM @JOSHWA_1990 ON TWITTER for some wry cynicism


Photo Credit: USA Today