We have reached the top 10 players in our rankings of the New York Giants’ 90-man roster. Let’s discuss each of these players, all of whom should be critical to the success or failure of the 2022 Giants.
No. 10, Azeez Ojulari — You can argue if you want that this might be too high for Ojulari. I am looking at the 20-11 list, though, and I don’t see anyone who had a better 2021 season or is more important to the 2022 Giants and — perhaps more importantly — is more important to the team’s future.
Ojulari is overshadowed because of the drafting of Kayvon Thibodeaux, but he had an excellent rookie season and should continue to get better. Does that mean his sack total, 8.0 as a rookie, will go up? Maybe not, but his overall impact could.
No. 9, Blake Martinez — It is impossible to measure exactly how much the Giants missed Martinez after his Week 3 torn ACL in 2021, but there is no doubt they missed him. He is the brains of the defense in the middle of the field, and the player the Giants counted on to make plays in the middle of the defensive front seven.
No. 8, Adoree’ Jackson — I am leery of Jackson’s ability to handle No. 1 cornerback duties on a good defense. The Giants, though, are asking him to be a No. 1 cornerback on a defense they hope will be good. For better or worse, Jackson is important to this team. Really important.
No. 7, Evan Neal — The Giants have tried for roughly a decade now to fix their offensive line. Neal, in combination with Andrew Thomas, represents their best hope in a long time. If he is what most people think he is, Joe Schoen has taken a huge step toward accomplishing what Jerry Reese and Dave Gettleman could not.
No. 6, Kayvon Thibodeaux — Schoen took Thibodeaux, a talented prospect who divided NFL evaluators because of his various off-field passions and a sometimes questioned motor. There is no doubt that Thibodeaux possesses the ability to be the best pass rusher the Giants have had since Jason Pierre-Paul in his early years. For Schoen and the Giants, there is a lot riding on whether or not he becomes just that.
No. 5, Andrew Thomas — Whether or not you believe Thomas should have been the pick at No. 4 in 2020 isn’t really relevant to his importance to the Giants. He is a quality, ascending left tackle and his ranking here shows both how good a player I think he is becoming and how important he is to the Giants’ future.
No. 4, Xavier McKinney — Logan Ryan, James Bradberry and Jabrill Peppers are gone. This is now McKinney’s secondary. After a rookie season derailed by a foot injury, McKinney showed last season that he is a rising star. By year’s end, it won’t surprise me at all if McKinney is considered the Giants’ best defensive player.
No. 3, Leonard Williams — Williams IS currently the Giants’ best defensive player. He is an impactful player, maybe better than his sack/tackle numbers sometimes show.
No. 2, Saquon Barkley — Soooo many questions about Barkley. Still, though, there is no other player on the roster who has shown the ability to impact a football game the way Barkley can when he is at his absolute best.
Can he still reach that level? Is he still a superstar? Can he stay healthy? How hard is he going to make the Giants’ long-term decision on whether or not to keep him long-term?
No. 1, Daniel Jones — Does this mean I see Jones as the best player on the roster? No. It means I see him as the most important. Determining once and for all if the Giants are going forward with Jones at quarterback beyond his rookie deal is this season’s biggest priority.
Fans are absolutely split on the question of whether or not Jones will show GM Joe Schoen and head coach Brian Daboll enough to go forward with him as their long-term quarterback.
Click on the ‘Profile’ link next to each player’s name to read their 90-man roster profiles, if you have not done so already. Or, should you just need a refresher.
Giants roster rankings
91. Jabari Ellis, DT [Profile]
90. Josh Rivas, OG [Profile]
89. Ryder Anderson, Edge [Profile]
88. Zyon Gilbert, CB [Profile]
87. Chris Hinton, DT [Profile]
86. Darren Evans, CB [Profile]
85. Tomon Fox, Edge [Profile]
84. Andre Miller, TE [Profile]
83. Trenton Thompson, S [Profile]
82. Yusuf Corker, S [Profile]
81. Austin Allen, TE [Profile]
80. Jeremiah Hall, TE [Profile]
79. Jashaun Corbin, RB [Profile]
78. Roy Mbaeteka, OT [Profile]
77. Sandro Platzgummer, RB [Profile]
76. Nick Gates, OL [Profile]
75. Matt Peart, OT [Profile]
74. Devery Hamilton, OL [Profile]
73. Alex Bachman, WR [Profile]
72. Travis Toivonen, WR [Profile]
71. Justin Hilliard, LB [Profile]
70. Keenan Doss, WR [Profile]
69. Austin Proehl, WR [Profile]
68. Niko Lalos, Edge [Profile]
67. Oshane Ximines, Edge
66. Khalil Dorsey, CB [Profile]
65. David Moa, DT [Profile]
64. Robert Foster, WR [Profile]
63. Rodarius Williams, CB
62. Chris Myarick, TE [Profile]
61. Antonio Williams, RB
60. David Sills, WR [Profile]
59. Jalyn Holmes, DE [Profile]
58. Henry Black, S [Profile]
57. Michael Jacquet, CB [Profile]
56. Marcus McKethan, G [Profile]
55. Carter Coughlin, LB [Profile]
54. Jarren Williams, S
53. Maurice Canady, CB [Profile]
52. Korey Cunningham, OT [Profile]
51. Jamil Douglas, OL [Profile]
50. Collin Johnson, WR [Profile]
49. Darius Slayton, WR [Profile]
48. Davis Webb, QB [Profile]
47. Max Garcia, OL [Profile]
46. Ben Bredeson, OL [Profile]
45. Cam Brown, LB [Profile]
44. Ricky Seals-Jones, TE [Profile]
43. Jordan Akins, TE [Profile]
42. Matt Gono, OT [Profile]
41. Gary Brightwell, RB [Profile]
40. Elerson Smith, Edge [Profile]
39. Jamie Gillan, P [Profile]
38. Casey Kreiter, LS [Profile]
37. Darrian Beavers, ILB [Profile]
36. D.J. Davidson, DT [Profile]
35. Dane Belton, S [Profile]
34. Micah McFadden, ILB [Profile]
33. C.J. Board, WR [Profile]
32. Richie James, WR [Profile]
31. Jihad Ward, Edge [Profile]
30. Justin Ellis, DL [Profile]
29. Joshua Ezeudu, OL [Profile]
28. Quincy Roche, Edge [Profile]
27. Cor’Dale Flott, CB [Profile]
26. Matt Breida, RB [Profile]
25. Tae Crowder, LB [Profile]
24. Darnay Holmes, CB [Profile]
23. Tyrod Taylor, QB [Profile]
22. Daniel Bellinger, TE [Profile]
21. Shane Lemieux, G [Profile]
20. Jon Feliciano, C [Profile]
19. Mark Glowinski, G [Profile]
18. Julian Love, DB [Profile]
17. Wan’Dale Robinson, WR [Profile]
16. Aaron Robinson, CB [Profile]
15. Graham Gano, PK [Profile]
14. Sterling Shepard, WR [Profile]
13. Kenny Golladay, WR [Profile]
12. Dexter Lawrence, DT [Profile]
11. Kadarius Toney, WR [Profile]
10. Azeez Ojulari, Edge [Profile]
9. Blake Martinez, ILB [Profile]
8. Adoree’ Jackson, CB [Profile]
7. Evan Neal, RT [Profile]
6. Kayvon Thibodeaux, Edge [Profile]
5. Andrew Thomas, LT [Profile]
4. Xavier McKinney, S [Profile]
3. Leonard Williams, DL [Profile]
2. Saquon Barkley, RB [Profile]
1. Daniel Jones, QB [Profile]