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Examining the TE Situation

Before we delve into examining the Giants tight ends, lets get one thing straight. The Giants don’t utilize their TE’s very well. When they had a top tier TE in Jeremy Shockey, they didn’t utilize him right. Under current offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride, the tight end is not utilized like a typical tight end. They are block first tight ends. Catch a few balls and that’s it. But, I digress. Before we look at the 2012 free agents, lets examine the current TE’s on the Giants roster. I will not be looking at potential draft picks. That’s for another time, another place.

Jake Ballard: If you were to tell any Giants fans before the season that TE Jake Ballard would be the solution this season, they would have all told you your nuts. However, the former practice squad member was the answer, though. Ballard, who had the tough task of replacing TE Kevin Boss, who took the money and left for Oakland, caught 38 balls for 604 yards and 4 touchdowns. However, Ballard missed two regular season games with a partial PCL tear and then tore his ACL in the super bowl, which means he’ll at least start the season on the PUP list (meaning he must miss the first 6 games, maybe more), and might not ever see the field in 2012. He’s not a shoe in like he would have been just two weeks ago.

Travis Beckum: Before the first Packers game, Beckum had no niche in the offense. He was trying to find it, but couldn’t. He scored the one long touchdown agains the Packers and then caught 9 balls in the post-season. He was starting to come on. Giants QB Eli Manning was starting to trust Beckum. All was going well, right? YES! Sadly for Beckum, he too, tore his ACL in the Super Bowl. He’ll start out on the PUP list as well. But like Ballard, he might not step on a field in 2012, either.

Bear Pascoe: The only healthy tight end on the current roster is more of a “joker” tight end, as Giants GM Jerry Reese called him. Pascoe can be a FB, an “H” back or a TE. He can play many positions on the field, making him verstile. Is he a starter? I don’t think so. Pascoe’s is a RFA (restricted free agent) meaning the Giants can match any offer for Pascoe’s by another team. He’ll likely be back next season.

Christian Hopkins: Who? You ask. Exactly. Hopkins was on the Giants practice squad this past season, but the Giants like him a lot. He’s 6-5 and weighs in at 255. The Giants love his work ethic and think he’s a great blocker. Don’t forget folks, TE Jake Ballard was on the practice squad last season and was in the same position Hopkins is in now. Not saying Hopkins will be the answer, but he could come in like Ballard, who was on the practice squad and make an impact.

Ryan Purvis: The Giants recently signed Purvis to a future/reserve contract, like they did with Hopkins. Purvis was a member of the Buccaneers last season, but never saw the field. Purvis is from Boston College, which might be why he has his foot in the door with the Giants. He has 5 catches for 38 yards in his career in the NFL.  Purvis can catch, he caught 58 balls in college. Purvis will try and compete for a roster spot.

Looking at 2012 Free Agents (ASSUMING THEY DON’T RE-SIGN)

You can forget the Giants going out and signing a top flight TE like Fred Davis or Jermichael Finley, as both will be staying put. A second-tier tight end, though? Maybe. I was asked about Jeremy Shockey – I don’t see it happening. The Giants won’t go after an overrated, overpaid former hinderance to Eli Manning. It isn’t happening.

John Carlson: Many wanted the Giants to trade for the 28 year old who was a member of the Seahawks last year. The Giants didn’t want to give up DE Osi Umenyiora in the deal and it was a good thing they didn’t. They suspected he had something wrong with his shoulder – and he did – Carlson ended up missing all of last season due to shoulder surgery. If the Seahawks decide not to resign Carlson, he might come cheap. Since he missed last season he’ll likely have to sign a short-term deal to re-establish his value. That’s where the Giants could swoop in. If they doctors think he’s medically cleared, then why not? He can catch the ball. He’s not a tremendous blocker, but he’s good enough to fit in the Giants system.

Scott Chandler: The former Giants tight end had a solid season with the Bills catching 6 touchdown passes. The Giants tried to retain Chandler but he elected to go to Buffalo. If the Bills don’t resign him, the Giants could be poised to try and resign Chandler.

Joel Dreessen: The Texans tight end played a decent amount this season with Owen Daniels in and out of the lineup recovering from previous injuries. Dreessen had 6 touchdown receptions this season and could very well be a guy the Giants look at as a stop-gap guy. Dreessen is a solid blocker, which is something the Giants will likely covet.

Alex Smith: Here’s one not many know of. Smith played for the Browns last season but was placed on injuried reserve. Smith caught 14 passes and was known more as a blocking tight end. He could be a guy the Giants look at because of his big frame (6-4, 260) and his willingness to block.

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8 Responses to “Examining the TE Situation”

  1. Ralph says:

    When you are on the PUP you can get taken off of it anytime inside those first six weeks. You don’t have to sit out all six. They also have the three week rule too. They have three weeks from when he starts practicing to active him. So if he starts practicing in week two they have until wek five to put him on the 53 man roster. If he isn’t activated in those three weeks he is IRed. But that really dosent matter, neither Beckum or Ballard will see the field unless they are crazy fast healers. My vote is for chandler, seems the healthiest and most reliable, very similar to ballard. Big, lumberimg guy that can make though catches. With chandler, pascoe, and Hopkins, that isn’t much worse the Beckum, Ballard, and pascoe. Hopefully JR gets another gem with Hopkins.

    • JW says:

      Ralph: The rule states if they are not activated before the start of the season, they must sit out the first six weeks. After then, they have a three week window to be activated. If they are not activated they must either be released or put on IR.

  2. Jason C. says:

    I think it’s about time they stopped pussyfooting around the tight end situation, and make a legit move to bring in Fred Davis. What makes you so sure the Redskins will retain him? They are always more intrigued with what’s out there than what they already have on roster. I can see them trying to make a move toward another player, especially with all the talk about them going after Peyton Manning, Randy Moss, and T.O., as well as all of our grandmothers and the cat from the Pepe Le Pew cartoons. As long as Snyder is around, you can’t be too sure of anything.

  3. Big Daddy says:

    Part of the problem with Shockey is that he ran the wrong routes many times, he frustrated Eli a lot. He would not workout with the Giants in the off season under their system. So he bulked up and made himself closer to an offensive lineman. I remember one season his arms were HUGE, his biceps were gigantic which is great unless you want to catch a football.

    By doing that he lost a lot of his quickness off the LOS and cutting ability. He got very lazy about sinking his hips and getting separation too.

    So I think it was more that he made himself into what he was. Although I hate Gilbride I don’t think it was his fault about Shockey and using him as a receiver more.

    Plus he was always banged up or injured because of his pseudo heroics trying to be Mark Bavaro and carry defenders on every play. He would try to bull his way into the end zone or for more yardage even though he already made the first down. That just gets you injured, you only do that on a do or die play were the game is on the line. His ego made him think he was invincible and that destroyed his body.

    His less than distinguished career after he left the Giants proves my point.

    Everybody loved Shockey because he gave 100% on every play the first few years as a Giant, reality is another story, his ego was his downfall.

    • Ralph says:

      The unfortunate thing about shockey was that he came at the wrong time. When he came with fassel and co. everyone loved him and let him get away with his antics. When cooughlin came he didn’t let that stuff fly. Plus Eli was too young of a QB and tiki wasn’t a good leader so never got controlled. I think if shockey came along now, Eli wouldn’t let him get away with the stuff he did. Look at what happen when he went to the saints, he didn’t do anything to disrupt the team and he won a Super Bowl. Actully caught a big TD in the Super Bowl. In my opinion just bad trimming for shockey to come to NY.

  4. JW says:

    Big Daddy: Davis has not resigned with the Redskins as of this post. The Skins are planning on Franchise Tagging him if they can’t reach an agreement, though.

    • Big Daddy says:

      I read that he did when I was researching free agent TEs. You just cannot trust the information on the internet these days. They will probably tag him if they don’t sign him.

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