Giants Writer Says Recent Draft Pick’s Roster Spot Could Be ‘in Jeopardy’

Giants writer says Gary Brightwell's roster spot could be in jeopardy.

Getty New York Giants running back Gary Brightwell Jr. could be facing a make-or-break training camp in 2024.

After allowing Saquon Barkley to walk in free agency, the New York Giants have retooled their running back room around Devin Singletary.

NYG general manager Joe Schoen also drafted a ball carrier for the second straight offseason while signing an intriguing rookie in Dante “Turbo” Miller. That creates an interesting training camp competition behind Singletary at the position, and 2021 sixth rounder Gary Brightwell Jr. could be the odd man out with a lackluster preseason.

“Drafted in the sixth round in 2021 under former head coach Joe Judge, Gary Brightwell has had limited opportunities, with just 42 rushing attempts for 173 yards and one touchdown,” Empire Sports Media founder and Giants writer Alexander Wilson stated while listing Brightwell as a player that he believes is “in danger of losing” his roster spot.

“Although he has contributed on special teams, the addition of Eric Gray and Tyrone Tracy to the roster puts his position in jeopardy,” Wilson continued. Adding: “Brightwell will need a standout performance this summer to secure his spot.”

Giants’ Gary Brightwell Will Likely Compete With Eric Gray & Turbo Miller for Final RB Spot

Looking at the RB depth chart on May 19, one would assume that Singletary and Tracy are virtual locks to make the team — barring injury. Behind them, things open up.

Gray and Brightwell are the incumbents with Miller entering the scene as a newcomer. And don’t forget 2023 reserve Jashaun Corbin, who appeared in six games for Big Blue last season.

If four running backs were to make the final 53-man roster in 2024, two of those four will likely stick with the organization.

However, if only three RBs make the team, it’ll make things even tougher for someone like Brightwell. As a recent draft pick of Schoen and head coach Brian Daboll, Gray should have the upper hand heading into summer activities.

Based on his speed and potential, Miller also profiles as a player to watch. So, where does Brightwell fit in?

The Arizona product must find a way to make himself useful — and special teams impact could be the answer. Brightwell has appeared in 590 special teams snaps for the G-Men since 2021. He’s also returned 26 kickoffs for an average of 21.3 yards per return.

Diving deeper, Pro Football Focus has credited Brightwell with snaps on four ST units — kick return, kick return coverage, punt return and punt return coverage. He earned a career-worst special teams grade of 33.7 in 2023 but fared better his first two years (58.4 and 69.1).

Brightwell also recorded six solo tackles and five assists on special teams according to PFF, but he’s been charged with seven missed tackles and three penalties.

Gary Brightwell Must Impress New Regime to Remain With Giants

Wilson alluded to it, but the biggest strike against Brightwell is that Schoen and Daboll did not draft him. Outside of star players like Andrew Thomas and Dexter Lawrence, very few Dave Gettleman picks have remained a part of this new Giants organization.

There’s quarterback Daniel Jones and wide receiver Darius Slayton, of course, but the other remaining Gettleman draft picks are all in a similar position as Brightwell in 2024. Their backs are pressed firmly against the wall in training camp.

Those former prospects include linebacker/special teamer Carter Coughlin, defensive back Darnay Holmes, defensive back Aaron Robinson and edge rusher Azeez Ojulari. Which is a very small minority of this 90-man roster at the end of the day.

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