Sterling Shepard is anticipated to be an immediate success with the New York Giants. After accumulating collegiate statistics like 3,482 yards and 26 touchdowns in four years at Oklahoma, there’s no denying Shepard has talent. His reputation has grown throughout offseason, and his skills are already comparable to those of veteran slot receiver Victor Cruz.
But we have to keep in mind that his professional success isn’t necessarily guaranteed just because of decent college achievements.
Thankfully Giants’ quarterback Eli Manning is the type of quarterback who can develop his rookie receiving talent into a powerhouse receiving core – take Odell Beckham Jr. for example.
“Shepard, obviously, we’re going to have him right there in the mix at receiver,” said Manning.
So far, it’s unknown if Cruz will reassume his position in the slot which will make Shepard Manning’s secondary look option in 2016. He’ll also be expected to offset Beckham Jr. across the field.
“I don’t want to spoil the surprise, but he’s going to be a special player,” Beckham said on Shepard. “I kind of want to keep him on the down-low for right now, so that way he just jumps out the first couple of games, has some big plays, touchdowns, and all of that. But he’s developing, still learning and is starting to pick up his speed, his learning speed.
The pressure is on.
The Giants have made their intentions of progressing to postseason football very clear. They bolstered their pitiful defense in the offseason, and the offense is stacked thanks to the draft.
“We want to be explosive, and score a lot of points, and run a lot of plays,” Manning said. “You want to take advantage of every year, every year you feel like you have an opportunity to do something special and make the playoffs, and so you don’t want to waste seasons, you don’t want waste games, you don’t want to waste anything.”