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Darius Slayton Will Be Intriguing Option for New York Giants Offense

Darius Slayton could be in for a big 2021 season with defensive attention given to him likely to take a step back from 2020.
Darius Slayton

Darius Slayton garnered lots of attention last year from opposing defenses. Lacking a true number one wide receiver, the New York Giants offense in 2020 was abysmal. Slayton paid the price of having top cornerbacks cover him, from Darius Slay to Denzel Ward. Over the off-season, the Giants revamped their offense in hopes of jumpstarting the entire operation. With the attention taken off of Slayton, he now has the opportunity to shine in 2021.

Darius Slayton is an Exciting Option for the New York Giants Offense

A Completely Revamped Offense

The Giants went into this off-season with one mindset: find Daniel Jones weapons. That’s not to say they did not have weapons in Sterling Shepard and Slayton, but they needed more.

In free agency, big-ticket free agent Kenny Golladay came over from Detroit and former first-round pick John Ross inked a deal with New York. Veteran tight end Kyle Rudolph also signed with the Giants, and should become a huge help in the red zone for one of the league’s worst red zone offenses.

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After trading back with the Chicago Bears in the first round, the Giants selected Kadarius Toney with the 20th-overall pick. Toney can do it all- in the slot, out wide, even as a running back. Toney’s presence should help open up the playbook and create opportunities for players like Slayton.

Where Slayton Fits in this Offense

With the signing of Golladay, Sterling Shepard will now revert back to the slot for most of his snaps. With that being said, Slayton will likely be the other outside receiver opposite of Golladay.

88% of Slayton’s snaps in 2020 came on the outside and he only had 19 opportunities on deep targets. With Golladay’s presence alone, Slayton will receive a healthy amount of opportunities to make plays down the field.

In his rookie year, Slayton led the team in receiving touchdowns with eight and 23 deep targets. His 740 receiving yards that year led the team, leading fans to believe the former fifth-round pick could have an even better sophomore campaign. However, that was not the case since Slayton received wide receiver one treatment, which he did not excel at. He basically replicated his rookie year stats, hauling in 50 catches for 751 yards and three scores. Not bad, but not the statistics that you want your number one wide receiver putting up.

While Slayton is viewed as an outside receiver due to his size and speed, he can be utilized from the slot, playing 101 snaps last year from there. He likely will not see many slot reps due to Sterling Shepard and Kadarius Toney owning that area, but this offense has to be creative in order to put points on the board, and Slayton can move around all over the offense if needed.

Slayton Benefits the Most

With the Kenny Golladay signing, Darius Slayton benefits the most. With the attention focused on Golladay, along with the middle of the field’s attention to Saquon Barkley, it leaves the field open for other players to make plays, especially the third year receiver out of Auburn.

Slayton has been putting together a good training camp so far. He had five drops last season, but looks flawless in camp, catching everything that comes his way, going up against the likes of James Bradberry and Adoree’ Jackson in practice. If this offense is going to go far this year, Darius Slayton will be a key contributor.

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