Giants running back Wayne Gallman

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Position Battles To Watch At Giants Training Camp

July 24, 2018 - 7:15 am
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By WFAN.com

The Giants report to training camp Wednesday, as they turn the page on their disastrous 2017 campaign.

Though many of the starting positions are essentially solidified, there are some jobs left up for grabs.

Here's a look at some of the most compelling position battles that will be on display at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center.

Starting Center: Brett Jones Vs. Jon Halapio

Jones started 13 games for the Giants last season following an injury to Weston Richburg, who has since signed with the San Francisco 49ers. Though Jones appears to be the early front-runner, Halapio will make things interesting.

Halapio received the majority of the starting reps during minicamp, but Giants coaches have made clear that nothing has been decided.

“They’re just in there competing," coach Pat Shurmur said in early June. "I wouldn’t overevaluate who is getting the first-team reps, but I think if you’re talking about Pio (Jon Halapio) specifically, he has really sort of opened his eyes that he has a chance to play,”

The Giants are looking to roll out a much-improved offensive line, highlighted by the additions of veteran left tackle Nate Solder and rookie guard Will Hernandez.

MORE: Florio: Giants Will Be Exciting Team To Watch

Free Safety: Darian Thompson Vs. Andrew Adams

The Giants' secondary is largely set, with Landon Collins starting at strong safety, and Janoris Jenkins and Eli Apple at cornerback.

Free safety remains up for grabs, as Darian Thompson and Andrew Adams, both of whom have seen time in the startling lineup, will vie for the job.

Thompson had 75 tackles last season, enough for third most on the team. But in 16 games as a starter, he only grabbed one interception.

Adams, on the other hand, started 13 games in 2016, registering 46 tackles and one interception.

Though there will certainly be competition in training camp, Adams said Giants' team success is the overal goal. 

“He raises his game, I raise my game, which, that ultimately helps the Giants’ organization. That’s the main goal,” Adams told NJ Advance Media. “The goal is to get that fifth (Lombardi) trophy in the case. That’s all we’re both looking to do. We’re just looking to help the organization, any way that we can.”

Backup Running Back: Wayne Gallman Vs. Jonathan Stewart

Saquon Barkley is unquestionably the Giants' starting running back. The second overall pick in this year’s draft has been the subject of most of the offseason hype, though he can’t be on the field for every snap.

Gallman and Stewart will compete for the backup role, though the two running backs will likely be used in different capacities.

Gallman, who averaged 4.3 yards per carry last season, is the favorite for the No. 2 job. The shifty running back is still very young (23) and an explosive play threat.

Stewart figures to be used in short yardage and goal-line situations. The 31-year-old veteran has produced consistently throughout his career, and the Giants hope to utilize his experience behind a revamped offensive line.

MORE: McAdoo Doesn't Regret Eli Manning Decision

Third Wide Receiver: Cody Latimer Vs. Roger Lewis

Odell Beckham Jr. and Sterling Shepard are the obvious Nos. 1 and 2 in the Giants receiving corps.

Past the top two guys, the Giants have a large crop of receivers who will compete for the third spot.

Latimer appears to be the front-runner, as the former Bronco saw reps with the first-team offense in minicamp.

Latimer’s primary competition will likely be Roger Lewis, who received increased reps last season due to various injuries at the position. Lewis finished with 36 receptions for 416 yards and two touchdowns in 2017.

Hunter Sharp, Kalif Raymond and Travis Rudolph will also look to make names for themselves in training camp.

Outside Linebacker: Kareem Martin Vs. Lorenzo Carter

Martin started the majority of the snaps at left outside linebacker in minicamp, with Olivier Vernon on the right.

Martin is familiar with new defensive coordinator James Bettcher’s 3-4 defense, having come over with the coach from the Arizona Cardinals.

As training camp gets underway, there is a chance that Carter, whom the Giants selected in the third round of this year’s draft, can spring himself up the depth chart if he impresses the coaching staff.

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