Turns out Evan Engram isn’t the only Giants pass-catcher who could be on the move ahead of the November 2nd NFL trade deadline. According to SI.com’s Albert Breer, wide receiver Darius Slayton has also emerged as a potential trade candidate:
Pass catchers are always at a premium, and there are a few names out there along those lines. Dolphins WR DeVante Parker, Giants WR Darius Slayton and TE Evan Engram, and Cardinals WR Andy Isabella have been discussed. The Saints and Lions are among the teams I’ve heard are looking for help at receiver.
Is Slayton the Odd Man Out?
Trade speculation has engulfed numerous Giants receivers over the past few months thanks to the team’s slew of additions at the position. Slot maven Sterling Shepard was a hot name prior to the season due to the selection of Kadarius Toney but has since emerged as Daniel Jones’ favorite target, averaging seven receptions and 74.6 receiving yards per game. While injuries continue to plague the Oklahoma product, chances are he’ll stick around East Rutherford on his $8,475,000 base salary in 2022. This, despite the fact that the Giants have a potential out from under his contract at the conclusion of this season.
Proceeding under the idea that Shep stays put, that likely leaves Slayton — who is under contract through 2023 — on the outside looking in. Currently playing on a bargain four-year, $2,753,988 deal, Slayton has grossly outplayed his rookie contract. Having topped 700 receiving yards and 15.0 yards per reception in each of his first two years in the league, Slayton is one of football’s more underrated deep threats. Still just 24 years old, chances are there would be more than a handful of suitors willing to financially bet on the speedster’s upside as a No. 2/3 wideout — just not likely the Giants.
With Shepard, Toney and Kenny Golladay shaping up to be Big Blue’s top-three wideouts for the foreseeable future, the idea that Slayton could soon be catching balls in different digs is certainly plausible.
A fifth-round pick out of Auburn, Slayton has appeared in 34 regular-season games (25 starts). His most well-rounded campaign came back in 2019 when the then-rookie posted 740 receiving yards on 48 receptions. His eight touchdowns that season tied Tennessee Titans star A.J. Brown for the NFL lead among first-year pass-catchers. Slayton followed up his promising rookie showing by posting a career-high 751 receiving yards in 2020. The Georgia native is the Giants’ reigning back-to-back leader in receiving yards and has amassed 1,681 yards over his two-and-a-half years in East Rutherford.
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Shepard ‘Super Confident’ Heading into MNF
Slayton stepped up to the plate in Shepard’s absence last week, producing 63 receiving yards on a season-high five receptions in New York’s Week 7 victory over the Carolina Panthers.
Now, with a week’s rest under his belt, it looks as if the two wideouts could be taking the field together come Monday night vs. the Kansas City Chiefs.
Shepard logged a limited practice on Thursday and according to Giants.com’s Michael Eisen, “barring a setback, will be in the lineup against the two-time defending AFC champion Chiefs.”
“I’m super confident,” Shepard told reporters following practice. “I don’t really know the status of those guys, so I can’t answer for them, but I can answer for myself. I’ve been feeling great lately. I’m hoping like I said, it’s a go — I’m feeling a lot better, just listening to the trainers. Doing whatever they’re telling me to do.”