One reason why the Giants spent a first-round pick on Odell Beckham is his 4.4 speed. The Giants look forward to utilizing that speed this year, and perhaps the most prominent way they will do so is by making the rookie a decoy to help out his teammates.
"Odell Beckham was drafted to give the Giants the field-stretching threat that Hakeem Nicks did not provide last year, and the team believes he can outrun defensive backs and help open things up for Ben McAdoo's offense near the line of scrimmage," ESPN New York's Dan Graziano wrote Saturday.
"Of course, assuming they're right, Beckham can provide a big-play threat in his own right down the field. But their hope is that he has the speed to beat press coverage and stretch out defenses in a way that allows their offense to operate with a variety of quick-hitting options."
The Giants' new offense is predicated on quick timing routes, much like what San Diego run last year, which led to a rebirth for Philip Rivers. I think the same thing can occur with Eli Manning this year. With Beckham, Victor Cruz , Rueben Randle , and Jerrel Jernigan , he has a nice group of talented if largely unproven receivers. Running back Rashad Jennings is a fine pass-catcher as well.
Beckham should be drafted in the later rounds, and he'll likely go through the ups and downs most rookies do. But I believe Graziano is on to something here. The Giants are not going to be a down-the-field offense; they are going to let their receivers do a lot of the work after the catch. That's where Cruz thrives. With Beckham's speed moving defensive attention away from the line of scrimmage, I think a player such as Cruz will really benefit over the middle. He could be a steal as a WR2.