The Giants have high expectations for a big, bounce-back season, which means they'll head to training camp this summer with plenty of optimism. Camp begins on July 25 when the full team reports, though rookies, quarterbacks, and injured players will come in a few days earlier, on July 22.
Here is Part 1 of what to look forward to when Giants training camp begins, which will be followed by Part 2 on Friday...
A healthy and motivated Odell Beckham, Jr.
There are a lot of variables here, mostly related to his contract, but rest assured that Beckham will be in camp at some point, probably sooner than later. And if the spring is any indication, when he does start practicing we will all see the same, old Beckham. He looked very, very healthy during the spring -- just as fast and athletic as ever. There is no indication that a broken ankle and the subsequent surgery cost him even a half a step.
And you can bet he'll be motivated, too. He'll want to silence any doubters, and reclaim his place as perhaps the best receiver in football. And since there's no indication he'll be getting a contract extension any time soon, he'll be playing for that, too.
Eli Manning's revival
The new Giants regime is right -- Manning showed no signs of a physical decline last season. He wasn't good, but a lot of that had to do with the terrible cast around him. But physically and mentally there's no reason to believe that he can't still thrive at 37 years old. And now he's got a rebuilt offensive line in front of him, a healthy Beckham, and a legitimate two-way running back in Saquon Barkley.
This is a bit reminiscent of 2014, when Tom Coughlin hired Ben McAdoo as offensive coordinator and Manning had to change systems for the first time in his career. The result was one of his finest seasons, with a jump in numbers across the board (Yes, the debut of Beckham helped) and an offense in the Top 10. The Giants did go 6-10, but the defense was atrocious. Manning, though, had a huge bounce-back season -- and there's reason to believe that will happen again.
The talent and promise of Saquon Barkley
It's hard to think of a Giants rookie who has entered the NFL with more hype and immediate expectations than the Penn State running back. Beckham's expectations certainly weren't this high in 2014. And while Manning was hyped in 2004, everyone knew he'd need some time.
Barkley is expected to come in and revive the Giants' running game and boost the overall offense now. He's expected to do for the Giants what Ezekiel Elliott did as a rookie in Dallas.
Can he? All the early returns are spectacular. He has incredible speed, dazzling moves, is terrific as a receiver, and his teammates and coaches seem to love his work ethic and personality. He has "star" written all over him … so far.