FIVE CORE PLAYERS WHO WILL SHAPE THE NEXT DECADE

The NY Giants are a storied franchise. They have the title of having the greatest defensive player of all time Lawrence Taylor. The franchise has had 29 players inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame; second only to Chicago (30). Could any these five players move the Giants into the number spot?

                                                        Andrew Thomas

Daniel Jones not being in this spot may shock many, but I opted for the 100% sure thing. Andrew Thomas is a premiere left tackle that will anchor the Giant’s offensive line for the next decade. He’ll be in the All-Pro conversation each year. He will soon receive a record-setting deal at the left tackle position to lock up the blindside protection for the foreseeable future.

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Dexter Lawrence

Sorry Daniel, wait your turn. Dexter Lawrence is in the #2 spot. This could be a 1A 1B situation with Andrew Thomas. Dexter Lawrence is similarly the anchor of the Giants D-Line as AT is to the O-Line, and they both will be for a long time. Unlike Thomas, he’s already received his extension, and Giants fans should be ecstatic. He opted to forgo holding out for a record-breaking contract and took a deal making him the 3rd highest-paid DT in the league. “Sexy Dexy” will be a staple of the Giants franchise from now on, and I’m so glad he’s locked down for the long term.

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                                                            Daniel Jones

Ok, now you can breathe. Yes, Daniel Jones is the Giant’s franchise quarterback. Yes, he will be their franchise quarterback as we advance and could solidify himself in the top 10 conversations this year! But there is a possibility he regresses as well. The Giants extended him to a four-year deal but gave themselves an easy out after year two in case things went south. Because of the contract structure and he’s yet to solidify himself in pro-bowl / all-pro status, it’s no guarantee he’ll still be a Giant at the end of the decade. I’m very excited about the future of Daniel Jones as the Giant’s quarterback, but Andrew Thomas and Sexy Dexy are the surest things you’ll find in this league and the first two spots.

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Kayvon Thibodeaux

Kayvon is next on this list, despite being far from a sure thing. His selection as the #5 overall pick and his big personality has made him an instant star. He still has four years left on his deal, including the 5th year option. He showed flashes of greatness in his rookie year with long stretches of quiet play. It’ll be exciting to see if he can take the next step in year two and prove that he’ll be a force off the edge for the next decade. The tandem of Kayvon and Azeez has explosive potential that could make the difference to be legitimate contenders for years to come.

Adam Hunger
Deonte Banks

I know it’s tough to rank a guy who hasn’t touched an NFL field yet at five, but there’s a reason. I thought about putting Xavier McKinney in this position, but for Wink Martindale’s defense, it’s press-man cornerbacks who make the difference. Deonte Banks comes in as CB #2, but with Adoree Jackson unlikely to be extended will find himself transitioning to the top spot soon. This is a pure projection (and optimism) that the Giants have found their homegrown #1 cornerback to lockdown opposing receivers for the next decade. But don’t forget about Eli Apple or Deandre Baker, so let’s keep expectations low so I don’t get my hopes up again.

Honorable Mentions:

Xavier McKinney has yet to be extended but may be the best overall player in the secondary currently. I’m curious to know how much Schoen values the safety position in Wink’s system and is hesitant to put him on the list until he is locked down past this year.

Evan Neal: Opposite Andrew Thomas, the development of Evan Neal will be crucial to the Giant’s success in the future. The #7 overall selection had a rough rookie year. Andrew Thomas had similar struggles his rookie year too. If he can adjust at RT, the Thomas-Neal duo will compete as the best tackle tandem in the league.