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Is New York Giants' defensive line better with Danny Shelton?

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New England Patriots v Tennessee Titans
Hanen Musa
Modified 30 Mar 2021

The New York Giants have surprised the NFL world with back-to-back star signings during the NFL Free Agency. The team that went 6-10 last year has the potential to slide into the playoffs this season.

The Giants targeted two of their most significant, most obvious holes, getting a No. 1 wide receiver Kenny Golladay and No. 2 cornerback Adoree Jackson. The franchise has signed one other likely starter in defensive tackle Danny Shelton in the most recent solid move.

Shelton visited with the Giants and signed a few hours later; it's safe to say they had a good meeting.

The Giants and Shelton agreed to a one-year contract.

NFL Free Agency: Did the New York Giants' defensive line get better by signing Danny Shelton?

The 6-foot-2, 345-pounder has a chance to compete for the starting defensive tackle job departed by Dalvin Tomlinson and elevate the New York Giants' run-defense.

In the 2015 NFL draft, the Cleveland Browns selected Shelton in the first round and No. 12 overall. The 28-year-old is yet another first-round pedigree player along the Giants' defensive line; along with Shelton, the Giants now have three former first-round picks, Dexter Lawrence and Leonard Williams.

Shelton could potentially be a beast in the middle of New York's defensive line, taking over the run-stopping role that has become vacant since Tomlinson departed for the Minnesota Vikings.


In addition to his monstrous size and first-round pedigree, Shelton also brings his veteran leadership as a Super Bowl champion with the New England Patriots in 2019.

The six-year pro had his best season with the Patriots in 2019; Shelton produced 61 combined tackles (30 solo) and had three sacks with one forced fumble.

Off the height of his career, the defensive tackle signed a two-year, $8 million deal with the Detroit Lions.

Unfortunately, injuries limited Shelton to 12 games, and he was released earlier this month.

That's why the relatively good player is available in the second week of free agency, and the New York Giants were able to sign him to just a one-year contract.

Shelton suffered a tricep injury in the Detroit Lions' season finale.


Despite the injury, the move has had low consequences. Shelton has the ability to become a solid presence along the defensive line.

The bare minimum that Shelton brings to the table is the chance to provide quality depth and competition for a starting job.

He has produced 119 total tackles the past three seasons, four sacks and five tackles for loss.

In Shelton's favor, Giants head coach Joe Judge is familiar with Shelton from their two seasons together, while in New England, the franchise likely already has a role in mind for him.

Published 30 Mar 2021, 12:17 IST
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