Last season, the New York football Giants went 6-10, but they lost many close games and could have easily won 11 games. Not surprisingly, they had several players who had good seasons and kept them in all of those games, with four players making the Pro Bowl. This season, the Giants have been able to finish, and they are currently 10-5 and in the playoffs for the first time since 2011. And once again, they have four Pro Bowlers. But they could have had more.
Odell Beckham Jr., Landon Collins, Janoris Jenkins, and Dwayne Harris will represent the Giants in Orlando, unless of course they make the Super Bowl. But before we get too ahead of ourselves, let’s focus on what we know.
Jim O’Connor- USA Today Sports
In only 42 games, Odell Beckham Jr. has established himself as one of the greatest wide receivers of all-time. He became the fastest person to reach 200 receptions and 3,000 yards in a career, doing both in just 30 games. He also reached 3,500 receiving yards in only 35 games, another record. Finally, he became the first player to have 70 catches and 1,000 receiving yards in each of his first three seasons.
This season, he has 96 catches for 1,323 yards and 10 touchdowns. Of course, his emotions have gotten him just as much negative coverage as his outstanding play has gotten him good coverage. But he’s one of the two best wide receivers in football right now, so if he wants to whack a kicking net, propose to a kicking net, and get angry after a loss, he can. In his third season, he is heading to his third Pro Bowl and his first postseason.
In his second season, Landon Collins has become one of the best safeties in the NFL. When asked about his teammate’s strong play, Beckham (an LSU alumnus) said, “As much as I hate to say it, he went to Alabama. He’s been prepared since he’s been in college.” The NFC Defensive Player of the Month in November, Collins can make a case for the Defensive Player of the Year if he keeps this level of play up. He has 96 tackles, three sacks, 13 passes deflected, one fumble recovery, and five interceptions, including one pick-six. At one point, he had a pick in four straight games. All of that led to him being named a Pro Bowler for the first time.
In March, the Giants signed cornerback Janoris Jenkins to a five-year, $62.5 million contract. So far, he has been worth every cent. For my money, he’s been the best cornerback in football this year, and he was recognized by being named a Pro Bowler for the first time. Not only did he return a blocked field goal for a touchdown in the Giants’ Week 2 win over the New Orleans Saints, but he has held some of the best quarterbacks and wide receivers in the game in check. He intercepted Aaron Rodgers twice, held AJ Green to four catches for 23 yards, and mocked Terrelle Pryor on Twitter after holding him to one 14-yard catch.
His best performances may have come against the Dallas Cowboys. Matching up with Dez Bryant, the Jackrabbit only allowed him to catch two passes for 18 yards combined in two Giant victories over their rivals. In the second game at MetLife Stadium, Jenkins actually intercepted a pass intended for Bryant and forced a fumble on his only catch to seal the 10-7 victory. Jenkins has 43 tackles, one sack, 17 passes deflected, three interceptions, and one forced fumble. He did miss the Giants’ second game against the Philadelphia Eagles after injuring his back the game before, but he should be good to go for the playoffs, if not for Week 17.
Dwayne Harris does so much for the Giants. He is a return specialist who plays both sides of the ball on special teams, and he will occasionally line up to catch passes from Eli Manning. Good at making smart plays that don’t show up in the box score, Harris has one catch for the season- a 13-yard touchdown in the 27-13 win over the Cleveland Browns. But he also has 23 punt returns for 124 yards and 22 kick returns for 533 yards, an average of 24.2 yards per return. And that is despite the fact that Victor Cruz and Sterling Shepard have taken routes away from him and Beckham has taken returns away from him. This former Cowboy is deserving of his first Pro Bowl selection.
Notable snubs from the Giants include Jason Pierre-Paul, who likely would’ve made the roster had he not had surgery to repair a sports hernia on December 7, Olivier Vernon, who has 8.5 sacks, Damon “Snacks” Harrison, who, like Vernon and Jenkins has been worth the money he was paid and has become a fan favorite, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, who has deflected 19 passes after getting demoted to second cornerback, and Brad Wing, who was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week in Week 14 and again in Week 15.
Oh well. There is still the possibility of them making it as replacements for injured players, guys who decide not to play, and players on the two Super Bowl teams. That is, of course, unless the Giants make the Super Bowl…