Heading into the final year of his rookie contract with the NY Giants, runningback Wayne Gallman’s roster spot is far from secure.
The NY Giants had high hopes for Wayne Gallman when he was selected in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL draft. After a fantastic college career at Clemson, most figured that Gallman would at worst be a very productive member of a runningback-by-committee.
In 2017, that was the case, as Gallman rushed for 476 yards on a 4.3 average while also chipping in 34 receptions for 193 yards. Unfortunately for Gallman, the NY Giants having an awful season in 2017 led to a regime change and a top-five draft pick.
From there, we all know what happened as Dave Gettleman took over and made one of the more controversial draft selections in recent memory. With Saquon Barkley now the face of the franchise, Gallman took a back seat in 2018 and the ‘back has not been able to find his footing as a change of pace backup tailback.
Receiving just 51 carries in 15 games in 2018, Gallman was only able to muster up a 3.5 yards-per-carry average while being a non-factor in the receiving game. Barkley went on to have one of the more memorable rookie campaigns of all-time and as such was on the field almost 100% of the time.
Clearly not comfortable being a backup after being the star runningback on every team he’d ever played for prior, Gallman began to fall out of favor with the new coaching staff due to his lack of results.
2019 wasn’t pretty either, as Gallman racked up just 212 total yards over 10 games and two starts. The worst part of it all for the former Clemson star was that when Saquon went down with a high-ankle sprain, he suffered a concussion and was not able to take advantage of what seemed like would be a long stretch of him finally being the Big Blue bellcow.
After he got healthy and the season went on, Gallman fell further and further out of favor with the coaching staff. So much so, that at the end of the season he was healthy scratched multiple times. Although Pat Shurmur is no longer the head coach, that’s not a terrific sign for him going forward.
It’s entirely possible that Joe Judge and Jason Garrett have a much different evaluation of Gallman than the prior coaching staff did, but it sure seems like he’ll be fighting for his roster spot in 2020 during the last year of his rookie contract.
There’s a very good chance that the NY Giants attempt to address the backup runningback position for the future, which will likely involve a late-round draft pick investment. If that happens, Gallman will be hanging on for dear life. It’ll be even worse for him if the team invests money in the position in free agency.
While most Giants fans have soured on him, Gallman would surely latch on with another team quickly should he be released. It’ll be interesting to see if the coaching staff hangs onto him all the way through training camp and the preseason, or moves on from him sooner in an effort to turn the roster over.
The fourth-year player carries just a $735K cap number against a $104K dead cap hit should he be released. It’ll be tough to find a player of his caliber in free agency for that type of contract, even with how cheap runningbacks sign for these days.
Chance he’s cut: 50%
Potential cap savings: $631K