New York Giants 2012 NFL Draft Profile: South Carolina WR Alshon Jeffery

By Jeff Shull

In every single draft under New York Giants general manager Jerry Reese, he’s addressed the passing game in the first round. Three times with a defensive back, once with a receiver, and once with a pass rusher. So it is fairly clear Reese understands what the NFL has become over the past decade, and by improving all areas of the passing game he gives his team an opportunity to win championships.

This is why the latest editions of the Giants 2012 NFL Draft profiles series have and will continue to be wide receivers for the foreseeable future. Today we will examine South Carolina wide receiver Alshon Jeffery.

The Giants have to find a replacement for Mario Manningham, and that person very well could be on the roster. However, if the Giants like Jeffery, or he slips to them in the second round (which he could given his weight and attitude concerns), I wouldn’t be shocked if he ended up on the Giants.

Victor Cruz played all over the place for the Giants, but he was very effective as a slot receiver. If the Giants can find someone to contribute and draw attention on the outside, it would continue to free up the middle for Cruz.

Jeffery had a bit of a disappointing 2011 season. He ballooned to 230 lbs and his production cut in half. He went from a scintillating 88 catch, 1,517 yard 2010 season to just a 49 catch, 762 yard season in 2011.

Concerns about his weight and attitude have dipped him from a top 15 pick to a borderline first round, likely second round pick. Even when he showed up at the combine weighing in at 216 pounds, many questioned whether he would stay at that weight to keep his speed consistent.

Speed he showed off in 2010, as well as his pro day where he ran a 4.48 40. I believe people are making too much of this. The one thing the Giants, and any other team, must be sure about is his attitude.

He clearly struggled in 2011 while the team tried to find their starting quarterback.

All of that said, Jeffery is a physical specimen, standing at 6’4” and weighing 213 at his Pro Day. In my opinion he’s shown dedication and work ethic to get his weight down in order to be a productive wide out at the next level.

He still has incredible leaping ability, great hands and good strength to break tackles and make big plays. He ended his career with a bang, dominating Nebraska corner Alfonzo Dennard who is also a first round prospect. Jeffery caught four passes for 148 yards against the Cornhuskers.

As long as he keeps his weight to where he can maintain his speed, he should be a dominant wide receiver in the NFL.

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