The New York Giants have been applauded by many for their under the radar, low-risk high-reward free agency moves thus far this season. However, on Wednesday night they let one of their own get away, within their own division at that.
According to NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo, Cody Latimer, the wideout and specials teams contributor who had spent that past two seasons with Big Blue, has agreed to terms on a deal with the Washington Redskins.
Giants Lose a Valuable Role Player in Latimer
Latimer joined the Giants ahead of the 2018 season as an intriguing free agency signing. At the time, Latimer was a 25-year old former second-round pick of the Denver Broncos who never quite materialized into the type of player the team had hoped he would during his time in Colorado.
While Latimer failed to truly breakout with New York, he developed into a reliable role player and return specialist. Latimer typically served as the Giants’ number-three wide receiver over the past two seasons, and with the team hampered by injuries in 2019, he was asked to man a bigger role.
Latimer started 10 games at wideout this past year, hauling in 24 receptions for 300 receiving yards and two touchdowns. Yet, it is in the return game were Latimer will be truly missed.
In 2019, Latimer took over as the team’s main kickoff return man, and showed impressively well. The former Indiana Hoosier returned 24 kickoffs for 570 return yards and an average of 23.8 yards per return, the eighth-highest average in all of football this past season.
All Eyes on Corey Coleman
With Latimer taking his talents to DC, the recent re-signing of Corey Coleman becomes all the more crucial for the Giants’ 2020 outlook.
In many ways, Latimer served in numerous roles that Coleman would have likely manned had he not torn his ACL heading into last season. Coleman had both the WR3 gig and kickoff return job likely locked down prior to injury.
Coleman will have a great chance to reprise his role as the team’s lead kickoff return specialist. In 2018, the former first-round draft pick shined on special teams, returning 24 kickoffs for 617 return yards, an impressive average of 25.7 yards per return which ranked sixth in football that year.
Coleman will also likely be given the opportunity to prove he can finally put it all together as a wideout. The Giants’ top three receivers appear to be locked-in at the moment, with Golden Tate, Sterling Shepard, and 2019 breakout star Darius Slayton expected to lead the way in three-receiver sets.
However, as of now, excluding the names mentioned above, Coleman will have to duke it out with the likes of Reggie White Jr., Cody Core, David Sills V, Da’Mari Scott, and Alex Bachman for the WR4 role in New York, a position that Coleman’s talents should likely be able to lock down.
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