A day after the New York Giants lost cornerback DeAndre Baker to the NFL’s Commissioner Exempt List, the team counteracted that move by adding a new face to their defensive back’s room.
The Giants were awarded cornerback Shakial Taylor off waivers on Tuesday. The 6-foot 181-pound defender had been released by the Denver Broncos on Monday.
Taylor appeared in five games in 2019 as a member of the Indianapolis Colts after entering the league as an undrafted free agent out of the University of Kansas. On the season, Taylor accounted for seven tackles and one pass defended. However, he failed to stick around Indy for the entirety of his rookie campaign, as the Colts cut ties with the corner on November 25 of last year. He was claimed off waivers the following day by the Broncos, yet didn’t appear in a single game during his Denver career.
In New York, Taylor will join the likes of Sam Beal, Corey Ballentine and Montre Hartage amongst others battling for playing time opposite big-ticket free-agent addition, James Bradberry.
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Taylor’s Size & Speed Intrigues
Taylor lacks the production and notoriety as a prospect to get Giants fans buzzing about his insertion into the team’s secondary. With that said, his athletic traits make for a highly-intriguing project for Big Blue to mold.
A former JUCO standout at Mesa Community College, Taylor transferred to Kansas for the 2017 college football season. He would go on to become a key cog in the Jayhawk’s secondary for the next two seasons. Over his 21-game career at Kansas, Taylor compiled 55 tackles, three interceptions, one defensive touchdown, eight passes defended and a forced fumble.
While putting forth solid statistics during his time in college, it’s his testing numbers that will turn heads amongst Giants fans.
Taylor stole the show at Kansas 2019 Pro Day, finishing towards the top of nearly every notable testing drill. Per KU Football, Taylor finished with the 2nd-highest recorded vertical jump at 37 inches, while also posting a blazing 4.39 40-yard dash, the fastest time amongst all athletes at the event.
However, by Taylor’s standards, that scorching forty was a tad underwhelming. “During training I ran a 4.35 and a 4.31, so it was like, ‘Ah, I wish it was a little lower,’” Taylor said, according to 247 Sports.
Taylor added that he feels that he’s “under the radar” and that he doesn’t receive “a lot of publicity and stuff.” That sentiment certainly still reigns true to this day. However, his traits will give him a fighting chance to lock down a roster spot for a CB-needy Giants team, as well as putting his name on the map.