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“Breakout Player” Profile-WR Hakeem Nicks

I just want to make a clarification real quick: I’m doing a series of potential Breakout Candidates for the New York Giants in the 2010 NFL Season. I’m not, yet making any judgements on who I think will break out. I’ll do that later.

Right now I”m just profiling and opening up some discussions about players that I think will make a substantiablly bigger impact on the New York Giants this year than they did last year.

Hakeem Nicks, the 1st round pick of the New York Giants in the 2009 N.F.L. Draft had a solid rookie campaign.

The much maligned WR corps of the New York Giants was expected to derail the NY Giants post-season aspirations, little did we know that the WR were the only unit last year that would be exciting to watch.

A big reason for the WR production was the young Hakeem Nicks.

Nicks, is known to have huge hands, but he has also shown to have quick hands.

[pro-player width=’530′ height=’253′ type=’video’]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YIZzfmmhzEg[/pro-player]

Nicks has also made some great catches.

Like this one in college.

[pro-player width=’530′ height=’253′ type=’video’]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2ikDsi-DJA[/pro-player]

Or a few of these in a Giants uniform

[pro-player width=’530′ height=’253′ type=’video’]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1PEf4BFub4[/pro-player]

But what makes Hakeem Nicks so likeable for Giants fans is that he is very fun to watch AFTER he catches the ball.

Hakeem Nicks was a very productive college player who had 2,840 yards receiving in his college career and 21 touchdowns.

He had 1222 yards receiving and 12 touchdowns in his final year of college.

Nicks had a chance of being a high first round pick because of his production, but he ran a 4.63 40 at the combine and then gained 14 pounds between the combine and the pro day which had people begin to question his dedication to football.

Nicks has HUGE hands, I wrote this a few times last year, but I think (if memory serves correctly) he had bigger hands than any linemen drafted in the first two rounds except like three, which is impressive for a guy who is shorter than 6’8 OL. I know that the Giants had to order him extra Big gloves becuase they didn’t have sizes that fit his hands.

Nicks dispelled any questions about his dedication to football last year when he worked hard and fought his way into the starting rotation regularly by week 12. Nicks had six starts on the season and played in 14 games (missed two and a half becuase of injuries)

In those 14 games Nicks caught 47 balls for 790 yards for a 16.8 yards per catch average and 6 touchdowns.

These were the best numbers by a long shot of any recent Giants rookie wide receiver.

More impressive than his overall numbers were his Y.A.C numbers.

According to profootballfocus.com

Hakeem Nicks lead ALL Players with a 9.0 yards after catch per receptoin average. That’s right, Hakeem Nicks averaged an extra 9 yards per catch per everytime he caught the ball. Nicks closest competition for this honor was Patrick Crayton who averaged 7.5 yards per catch.

Nicks was also thrown at 71 times and caught 47 passes which equals a 66.2 completion percentage when thrown out…

this is a higher percentage than Larry Fitzgerald, Vincent Jackson, Donald Driver, Greg Jennings, and it’s only .2 less than Andre Johnson.

The impressive stat about that is the Giants don’t run a west coast offense and other than Vincent Jackson the rest of the players run a lot of short routes which result in higher completion rates.

What was also impressive about Nicks was his streak of four games in a row with at least one touchdown reception.

Now, Hakeem Nicks seems poised to have a big time year this year with the continued development of Eli Manning, and hopefully a better run game and a better defense which lets the Giants have a little more balance (I’m assuming the defense will be better becuase it literally can not get much worse).

Hakeem Nicks is not the fastest WR out there, he’s not the tallest Wide Receiver out there, he is probably not the best route runner (yet), or the strongest wide receiver.

But he’s a gamer.

He’s not afraid to go over the middle and he’s hard to take down once he catches the pass. I”ll take that guy on my team anyday.

Hakeem Nicks is also a willing run blocker, he’s one of only 33 Wide Receives who have a positive run blocking score from profootballfocus.com where as DeSean Jackson on the other hand was the 9th WORST blocking WR in the game (according to profootballfocus.com, which is the only site I personally know that does a cumlative score for run blocking).

Will Hakeem Nicks be better than DeSean Jackson some day as an all around player?

I think he definitely could be. This much is for certain I think Hakeem Nicks will make at least one pro-bowl apperance in his career and it could happen much sooner than later.
Hakeem Nicks Breakout player candidate #2 (and again this is not a ranking, just a # assigned to the number of players I’m writing up)

Check out the previous profiles

RB Andre Brown.

What do you guys think about Hakeem Nicks prospects for the upcoming season?


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10 Responses to ““Breakout Player” Profile-WR Hakeem Nicks”

  1. Dave says:

    hard not to like this kid. i’m with you, big things are in store for him

  2. andrew i says:

    i like the pick… def a breakout player for 2010.

  3. nycsportzfan says:

    i’d argue, he already broke out, and this yr, will just be a better yr… I think it’ll be hard to keep this kid under 1000yds and 8scores per season(barring no injury).. I’d go as far as to say, theres virtually no chance he isn’t a heck of a football player for us, for yr’s 2 come..(barring injury)

  4. Jesse Cassel says:

    Love this I think Hakeem is going to be great, hes so explosive great hands and outstanding run after the catch. He also has great concentration which he showed in the arizona game. I think hes a star for years to come and hes going to be a guy that eventaully demands to be double covered.

  5. andrew ilnicki says:

    “Hakeem Nicks is not the fastest WR out there” ….

    but he is damn fast!!!

  6. Jeremy says:

    Him and Manningham on the outside with Smith in the slot is a potent passing attack. Sprinkle in some Boss and I salivate thinking of the possible explosive plays ahead.

    • Manningham is overrated hes wiley and drops balls, he is inconsistent yea he makes those sick nasty plays but he drops em too just watch the tape these are straight facts, yes hes a good receiver a starter HELL NO! I would rather put my money on hixon who barely did anything last year

      • Jeremy says:

        Hixon would excel on the outside but I’m sure either he or Hagan will be cut.

        I was expecting hixon and plaxi to dominate for a while, sadly that was not to be.

        But I trust Manningham will improve in his third year. I’m basing this on the huge jump he made from his 1st to 2nd year. Plus those throws by Eli while not completely deplorable, could have been better.

        PS: Go Eli get that completion percentage above 65%.

      • Jesse Cassel says:

        I agree with Jeremy, everyone forgets that basicly that was manninghams rookie year. He only played one snap the entire 2008 season. last year with everything said and done drops and bobbles alike he still was basicly a rookie who had an 810 yard season which I’ll take anyday. Give him another year of training and chemistry with Eli hes poised to be a good number 3, alot better then hixon could be. I like Hixon as a return guy and 4th reciever with the talent we have at reciever on this team. The Giants could have the best recieving core in football this year, who would have thought that this time last season?

  7. Steve B. says:

    When I first saw Hakeem Nicks, one word stood out.

    Playmaker

    Thats just what he is, always making plays, and he was one of the funnest players to watch last year.

    Think he is gonna have a great year, cause he did have a toe injury all last year

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