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NFC East Preview

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NEW YORK

GIANTS

 

QB –Yes, Eli Manning had a fantastic run to close out the 2007 campaign with the Lombardi Trophy hoisted upon his shoulders. But let’s not get carried away here …    The Giants will remain a run-first team and Manning simply throws too many interceptions to be your #1 QB. You can expect a slightly larger amount of TD’s than picks and an inconsistent accumulation of yardage. Losing Jeremy Shockey will have both its advantages and disadvantages. The distraction caused by the outspoken Shockey will not be missed, but having a Pro Bowl-caliber athlete lining up outside tackle proved to be very rewarding at times.

 

Backup QB – Someone please tell me how David Carr can still collect an NFL paycheck.

Carolina suffered through his play last year, as the former #1 overall pick finished the season with a paltry 58.3 QB rating. Manning better stay healthy or watch out Giants fans.

 

RB – Second-year starter Brandon Jacobs’ 2008 will be a contract year. Missing five games last year due to multiple injuries, you can expect to him to miss time again this year due to his hard-nosed running style. He actually had twice as many rushing TD’s (nine) in ’06 as he hoarded Tiki Barber’s goal-line carries, than last year (four) as a full-time starter. He should be really close to double-digits for ‘08. Consider him great value with an early–mid 3rd round pick (ADP = 3.09).

 

Backup RB – With Jacobs missing significant time last year, Derrick Ward filled in nicely and should beat out Ahmad Bradshaw (possible suspension from NFL) as the primary backup RB. He should only be considered as a late-round pickup to handcuff Jacobs.

 

WR – Currently hampered by a bad ankle (unrelated to last year’s injury), Plaxico Burress can be flat-out dominant, even at less than 100%. At 6-foot-5, you know he will be Manning’s 1st option towards the goal line. He’ll be a low end #1 WR that you should be able to get with your early 3rd round selection.

 

WR – Amani Toomer looks to remain as the starter opposite Burress, but will turn 34 this year and Steve Smith is ready to take over.   

 

Backup WR – Steve Smith has the most fantasy value here, especially if either starter goes down. The rookie, Mario Manningham, will be mostly watching and learning this year.

 

TE – With Shockey out (broken leg) for the end of the 2007 season, Kevin Boss’ competent play enabled management to pull the trigger on the trade with

New Orleans. Do not expect for Boss to be involved in the offense anywhere near the amount of his predecessor, as he will be nothing more than a #2 TE.

 

K – Lawrence Tynes was signed to a contract extension this offseason. He finished off the year at a decent FG percentage, going 23-of-27. If you need a BYE week fill-in, you may want to consider him, but he’s not considered draft worthy.

 

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