What can the Giants expect from last year’s sixth-round pick?
Jerell Adams, the Giants’ sixth-round draft pick from last year, is a guy whom they’re hoping takes a big step forward in his development.
Adams showed enough raw talent and flashes of ability to offer coaches hope that he’s ready for the next step. This young man has long arms, a great wing span and good open-field speed to be a solid contributor on the offense, though with the addition of Rhett Ellison and Evan Engram, it remains to be seen about how much of an opportunity each week he’ll get outside of maybe special teams.
As a blocker, we thought Adams was capable of matching up with most any defensive end in the league with the athleticism, long arms and balance required to stay with these great edge players. Where he really needs to take the biggest jump from last year to this is in playing angles and positioning, and refining techniques, and reading defenses is another challenge.
How is he as a receiver?
The knocks on Adams coming out of college is that he’s not overly athletic, runs too upright and lacks the soft hands you want in a receiving tight end.
As a rookie, he finished with 16 receptions for 122 yards (7.6 average) one touchdown and one fumble. He is a long-strider, but barely managed to separate from the defender.
He sometimes body-catches the ball rather than extends his arms. And on a couple of balls that were thrown low but which looked to be catchable, we didn’t see enough bend.
What about as a blocker?
All we have to go on as far as this year is his work against a blocking sled since OTAs and the spring minicamp are non-contact.
Going back to our notes on him last year and reconciling those with what we saw during the spring drills, Adams, to our eyes, needs to do a better job on getting lower into his initial strike and then rolling his hips underneath him to create the base necessary to drive his man back.
Barring a major upset, Adams should be on the 53-man roster, though again, it remains to be seen just how much he’ll actually contribute with Engram and Ellison ahead of him.
What we’d like to see most from Adams this summer is him thinking less and just going on autopilot. When he looks certain of himself, he plays so much faster–really the same could be said of any rookie. We think the talent is there; it’s all a matter of sanding off the rough edges.