The New York Giants Should Take A Chance On The Next Shane Vereen
Despite having the 8th ranked offense in the NFL in 2015, the New York Giants are in need of playmakers to complement Odell Beckham Jr.. Victor Cruz can’t be trusted until he actually makes it back on the field and besides OBJ, Ben McAdoo could use another dynamic talent on offense.
At times last season, the Giants offense was most effective when OBJ was a threat downfield and Shane Vereen exploited a mismatch in coverage. The hybrid RB out of the backfield has become extremely effective against less speedy linebackers.
Arizona State’s D.J. Foster could be the next dynamic threat in the NFL along the lines of Vereen, Dexter McCluster and Dion Lewis. Foster played running back for three years before transitioning to wide receiver his senior year at ASU.
During his 2014 season at running back, Foster put up the most impressive stats of his career. He rushed for 1,081 yards and nine scores on the ground, plus 62 receptions for 688 yards and three TDs through the air.
Foster then started at wide receiver for his senior year, but was still utilized in the running game. He got less receptions as a WR than he did as an RB his junior year. He was underutilized, but he made the most of his touches. He only touched the ball 114 times, which was a career-low, but he managed 7.6 yards-per-touch.
Foster ended his career at ASU as the only active player in the country with 2,000 career rushing and receiving yards. He was just the fifth player in FBS to do so.
Whether he lines up as a slot receiver or out of the backfield, Foster’s best quality is his elusiveness. CBS’s Rob Rang described Foster as, “a fluid runner with impressive lateral agility, balance and stop-start quickness to avoid would-be tacklers and squirt through gaps.”
All Foster needs is a coaching staff that can utilize his athleticism. Think of the impact that Dion Lewis had with the Patriots prior to his season-ending injury. He had 36 catches at 10.8 yards per clip, plus an average of 4.8 yards-per-carry. Pro Football Focus developed the elusive rating for players of this ilk and Lewis owned the category.
Foster could be the same type player and a steal in the draft. Walter Football has him being taken anywhere from the third to the fifth round. (Lewis was a fifth-rounder). The Giants could use another playmaker who confuses opposing defenses like Vereen.