Grant Haley came into the league in 2018 as an undrafted free agent from Penn State for the New York Giants. After a lengthy competition in the summer, he landed on their practice squad at the end of the preseason.
Appearing in 10 games that year, Pro Football Focus ranked Haley the fourth-best rookie cornerback in the NFL for 2018. The next year was a year to forget for him.
Haley, like all of New York’s cornerbacks, struggled on the outside and in the slot. Though he allowed a lower passer rating than 2018, he allowed an 82.1 completion percentage. 18.2 points higher than the previous season. Questions were asked about whether then defensive coordinator James Bettcher misplaced Haley, by putting him primarily in the slot.
2020 is a new summer for Grant Haley. This could be his last shot for the Giants. Joe Judge has shown that he does not let anyone off easy and makes players run laps for their mistakes.
With a new defense and some new talent in the secondary, some question whether his last chance is now.
Is Grant Haley Running out of Chances in New York?
How Can He Land on the 53-Man Roster?
Other than James Bradberry, there is a lot of puppies still growing into big dogs in the Giants’ secondary. Grant Haley is the second oldest cornerback, believe it or not.
Sam Beal has opted-out and Deandre Baker has yet to come off the commissioner’s exempt list and join the Giants. Though impressive through training camp, rookie Darnay Holmes still has a lot to learn in the NFL. He will likely not start for the Giants right away vs the Pittsburgh Steelers. Some are hinting at Julian Love starting at free safety right away to give Xavier McKinney some growing time. Corey Ballentine could come into play but there is an opportunity for Grant Haley.
With the experience he has and the tackling ability, he could possibly mount to impress this coaching staff and be the number two cornerback Week 1. His coverage ability will have to be worked on but tackling and growth are key for this Giants team.
Why He May Not Make the 53-Man Roster
With pros to a player, come cons. Haley’s is his height and covering ability. A lot of times Haley will come out as an undersized cornerback against big receivers. Take the touchdown he gave up to Adam Thielen for example. Also, take the touchdown he gave up to wide receiver David Sills V in camp today in one-on-one drills.
Tackling is one thing for a cornerback, but if you cannot cover well and you are undersized you will not survive. You can debate whether Haley should have played on the outside or in the slot, but the stats in those situations were not very good.
He gave up an 82.1 completion percentage last season. Though in many stats he improved, he also regressed like many of the 2018 rookies. If Haley’s coverage does not get better, the Giants may have to find another spot on the field for him like a tackling safety or an undersized linebacker. If Patrick Graham and Joe Judge feel their defense is set and unless he breaks out all of a sudden, Haley could be a goner at the end of the summer.
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