The consensus for as long as I can remember has been that the quarterback is the most important player on the team, much less the offense. The Giants may test that theory in 2018. 

They have one of the best receivers in the game, Odell Beckham returning from an injury. Their tight end, Evan Engram, just had one of the most productive seasons ever for a rookie. They drafted Saquon Barkley with the No. 2 overall pick. They have all the weapons surrounding Eli Manning. But will he be Eli Manning again?

Over the past two seasons Manning has averaged 6.4 Y/A and been below average by nearly every statistical measurement. he was benched for Geno Smith at one point, which was absurd. But it feels a little too much like they're trying to make it up to him now by building the offense around him fro one more run.

I'm hedging a bit on how much Manning matters. I don't think he bounces back to 2015 levels and I have no interest in drafting him in Fantasy. But I also don't think he'll be bad enough to hamper the value of Beckham, Engram or Barkley. It's rare when an offense has a top-10 running back, wide receiver and tight end but their quarterback isn't a Fantasy starter. That's exactly what I expect from the Giants this year.

*Rankings expressed below are in terms of expected Fantasy points. This is a part of our actual Fantasy Football rankings but not a direct correlation to my rankings. Things like injury risk, upside, etc. factor into rankings but they're not being talked about here. This is simply an expectation as the team is currently constructed.






Odell Beckham





Saquon Barkley





Evan Engram





Sterling Shepard





Breaking down the touches

The Giants hired an offensive coordinator as their head coach and then he hired a veteran offensive coordinator himself. I went back and forth with whether to use Shurmur's history or Shula's, ultimately settling on Shurmur due to the fact that he's expected to call most of the Giants plays

Shurmur has shown over his career an ability to mold his playcalling to his talent and situation. Last year he had a dominant defense and ran the ball almost as often as he threw it. I would expect the game scripts to be far less favorable in his first year in New York, so I'm expecting something close to his three-year average of 579 pass attempts and 441 rush attempts. Shurmur has used both running backs and tight ends in the passing game heavily, which should be great for Barkley and Engram.

Giants touches
Saquon Barkley 60% 271 13% 74 51 9
Jonathan Stewart 30% 135 3% 17 14 2
Odell Beckham 0% 0 29% 164 99 10
Sterling Shepard 0% 0 18% 102 67 5
Cody Latimer 0% 0 10% 57 33 2
Evan Engram 0% 0 17% 96 59 5

Of note: 

  • Engram is one of the most fascinating tight ends in the league. His talent is undeniable and he just had one of the most productive seasons ever for a rookie tight end. But he did not always make the most of his targets and his catch rate was uninspiring. If he takes the leap to a top-four tight end it wouldn't be a big surprise but he could be fourth in the pecking order on the Giants if he struggles.
  • There was concern about Beckham's contract situation early in the offseason but those have been quelled for now by his appearance at voluntary minicamp. Until this flares up again I'm fine with ignoring it. 

The Leftovers

If Barkley suffers a significant injury Stewart will share the load with Wayne Gallman. And I think I speak for everyone when I say we'd be more interested in Gallman. He averaged 4.3 YPC as a rookie and hauled in 34 passes in 13 games. Still, it's hard to draft a handcuff that needs an injury just to be in a committee.

Latimer doesn not have a firm grip on the No. 3 receiver spot. If the Giants don't add a veteran I would expect his main competition will come from Roger Lewis. Lewis was uninspiring in his second year despite an increase in targets and the No. 3 receiver in this offense won't matter unless Beckham gets hurt again.