He may not stretch the field quite like his teammate Darius Slayton. He’ll never be the big-bodied red-zone threat that the G-Men hope Evan Engram can be. However, when New York Giants wide receiver Golden Tate gets the football in his hands, there are very few pass-catchers who are more lethal in space than the former Notre Dame product. In fact, over the past decade, there hasn’t been a single one.
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Golden Tate is Lethal in the Open Field
According to Pro Football Focus, since the 2010 season, Tate leads all wide receivers in forced missed tackles, and it’s not even close. Tate’s 183 forced missed tackles over that span outpaces the next name on the list by a whopping 75.
Before you go saying “well Antonio Brown,” who ranks second on the list shown above, “missed all of last season,” DeeBo Samuel led all wideouts in forced missed tackles in 2019 with 23. So unless AB would have somehow more than tripled Samuel’s output, it’s safe to say that Tate is in his rightful place, atop the ranks of the most lethal wideouts in the NFL with the football in their hands.
Lastly, if you’re not a numbers guy, maybe this clip posted below will jog your memory of the menace Tate can be in the open field.
Tate is Vastly Underrated, Underappreciated
Golden Tate constantly fails to get the respect he is owed. Despite having three separate 90+ reception, 1,000+ receiving yard campaigns under his belt, the Giants were mocked for handing the former 2nd-round pick a $23 million contract last offseason.
Tate was suspended for the first four games of his G-Men career for performance-enhancing substances, which the wideout claims were due to a prescribed fertility drug. However, from that point on, Tate showed why general manager Dave Gettleman was so willing to dole out big money to a 30+ year-old wideout.
Tate topped 80 receiving yards in all but one game from Week 6 through Week 10. He would go on to score six touchdowns over his 11-game 2019 campaign with Big Blue. Those six touchdowns would rank as Tate’s second-highest season output over his 10-year career, despite his limited amount of game time.
Yet, even with production on his side, Tate is still doubted amongst the masses. ESPN, for instance, recently pegged wide receiver as the biggest remaining roster need for the Giants, enlisting Tate as one of the main culprits as to why.
Golden Tate will be 32 in September and has been inefficient the past two seasons, with below-average DVOA rates. An expensive contract might make him a cut candidate after the 2020 season.
Could the Giants move on from an aging Golden Tate during the 2021 offseason? Certainly so. Especially with big-name wideouts such as JuJu Smith-Schuster potentially hitting the market. However, as of right now, it’s clear that New York’s offense is better with Tate on the football field and with the football in his hands.