Giants’ Golladay on benching: I should be playing
5: 13 PM ET
Jordan RaananESPN Staff Writer
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — New York Giants wide receiver Kenny Golladay didn’t exactly like coach Brian Daboll’s decision to play him for just two snaps in Sunday’s 19-16 win over the Carolina Panthers. I don’t agree with it. Or like it,” Golladay said Wednesday, as he spoke to the media for first time since the game. “But I can only control the things I can control, which are to show up to work every day. “
Golladay, the Giants’ prized free agent acquisition in 2021, did not see this coming. He stated that everyone in the organization had been telling him that Golladay is a pro and does things right.
It makes it all a bit confusing for Golladay.
” I should be playing regardless,” said he. “That’s a fact. “
Golladay, 28, was supposed to be the Giants’ No. When he was signed by the previous regime, he was the Giants’ No. 1 receiver. He inked a four-year, $72 million deal and is getting paid $18 million this season. But Golladay didn’t score any touchdowns in his first year with the team due to injury. He was kept out of the game this spring by a procedure. The signs were on the wall this season when, despite being on the field all summer, Golladay looked weakened by a string of injuries. He surprisingly was one of the few veterans to play in the preseason finale, and he caught two passes for 22 yards in 42 snaps (most among Giants wide receivers) in the season-opening win over the Tennessee Titans.
Daboll said he told Golladay midway through last week that he was going with David Sills V over him against the Panthers. Sills went into the contest with two career catches for 17 yards. He is making $825,000 this season.
Golladay has 222 receptions for 3,611 yards and 21 career touchdowns. He led all receivers in 2019 with 11 receiving scores. It’s not unreasonable to believe that he has lost a step. Golladay has two touchdown receptions and less than 900 yards receiving in the two-plus seasons since.
The veteran receiver was asked why he wanted a change of scenery after being left in the game for most of Sunday.
” We’ll see how it goes. Golladay stated that it was going to be interesting to see how it turns out. “I came here to play. They’re probably also paying me to play, I’m sure. They want to see more and get whatever they want. I do what I can, as long as I get in each day. It seems unlikely that Golladay will be able to move at this stage, due to the lack of production and his contract. He is still owed $11.6 million in base salary for the remainder of this season and another $4.5 million next year. It’s not an issue to keep him around for the moment. ESPN spoke with Daboll and other Giants players to say that he has handled the situation like a pro.
” It is what it is. It’s a business,” Golladay stated. “I’m not here for friendship with coaches. They are just co-workers to my mind. “
Daboll is consistent in stating that wide receiver position is open competition. Richie James leads the Giants with 10 catches and 110 yards receiving.
James, an offseason acquisition, was believed to be on the roster bubble. Sills was able to make it onto the team.
Daboll used the same line regarding competition from the beginning. When Golladay was the only veteran to play in the final preseason game, he took a similar position. It was also his reasoning behind last year’s first-round pick, Kadarius Toney, playing only seven snaps in the opener and Golladay barely getting on the field against the Panthers.
” It’s a constant competition at receiver. It’s been my mantra since when? I’m not being a jerk. I’ve said it since middle camp. Daboll stated this on Sunday. “It hasn’t changed. It will be a constant competition. “
He said Monday that it would be a continual competition. This is not necessarily what will happen next week. Everyone understands what we’re trying to do as an organisation in terms of improving, competing for spots and working as hard as possible. “
Daboll doesn’t play favorites based upon salary or draft status. This has caught the attention his team.
” Although it’s rare, Coach has always said that he doesn’t care if you were drafted in the first, second, or third rounds. He’s about what he talks about,” veteran wide receiver Sterling Shepard said.
Shepard has played the most snaps (102) of any Giants wide receiver so far this season. He is coming off an Achilles injury that he sustained last season. Sills is second with 91.
If Golladay is given a role in this season’s team, it will have to be earned and not based on his past achievements. This new regime isn’t tied to Golladay, who was the Lions’ third-round pick in 2017.
Golladay expressed optimism about Wednesday’s practice. He stated that he believes his role will be slightly different this week.
The Giants (2-0) could need him more on Monday night against the Dallas Cowboys. Toney was unable to participate in Wednesday’s practice due to a hamstring injury which continues to linger.
The author of 5 books, 3 of which are New York Times bestsellers. I’ve been published in more than 100 newspapers and magazines and am a frequent commentator on NPR.