NY Giants grades for 2023 rookies during the preseason

The first-year Big Blue playmakers were fantastic during the preseason

New York Giants rookie cornerback Deonte Banks participates in drills on the first day of mandatory
New York Giants rookie cornerback Deonte Banks participates in drills on the first day of mandatory / Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com /
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NY Giants DT Jordon Riley: A-

Riley’s mission was evident this summer: make the roster. The 6-5, 325-pounder is not your prototypical rookie, which may have helped him in camp and the preseason. The Oregon product is 25 years old, the same age as Sexy Dexy, who is embarking on his fifth NFL season. Riley has played a ton of football, including six college seasons, which gave him a leg up on some of the other Giant rookies.

He impressed the coaches early in camp, which led them to give him reps with the first-string defense in the Carolina game, and boy, did he deliver.

Riley has carved out a nice role as a defensive lineman reserve, and displayed the ability to play a bigger role if called upon.

NY Giants DB Gervarrius Owens: B+

Owens entered camp entrenched in the depth chart battle at safety. The rookie had a chance to jump as high as the No. 2 spot, a starting spot. Safeties Jason Pinnock and Dane Belton had the two best summers (outside of Hawkins) on Big Blue’s defense, pushing Owens down the depth chart.

Owens, who is dealing with a hamstring injury, currently sits fourth or fifth on Big Blue’s safety depth chart, depending on how the Giants view veteran Bobby McCain, who surprisingly made the 53-man roster.

Seventh-round picks are no guarantees to make NFL rosters, but Owens did. He posted the third-highest coverage grade on the Giants this preseason, according to PFF, allowing just one catch for eight yards on four targets. Owens also showed the ability to blitz off the edge this summer, which could be quite valuable. 

Wink likes to rotate in defensive players, so we could see some of Owens on the field for the Giants this fall. He could prove to be another late-round steal for Schoen and Co.

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