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5 Positional Battles to Watch During New York Giants’ OTAs

5 Positional Battles to Watch During New York's OTAs

New York Giants, OTAs
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants are underway with their organized team activities. During OTAs, head coach Tom Coughlin and his staff will have an opportunity to examine their roster and set a depth chart to use at the start of mini camp. This period will be key for New York after its roster went through a significant overhaul during the offseason. Here are five positional battles to watch for during OTAs.

5. Fullback

Henry Hynoski vs. John Conner
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

5. Fullback

Henry Hynoski vs. John Conner
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants have two talented fullbacks on their roster in Henry Hynoski and John Conner. Conner was signed after Hynoski fractured his shoulder in Week 3 of last season, an injury that caused him to miss the rest of the year. Conner did well in his place and impressed with his run-blocking ability. Hynoski will have to prove that he is fully recovered from his injury during OTAs.

Projected Winner: Hynoski

4. Weakside Linebacker

Spencer Paysinger, Jacquian Williams, New York Giants
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

4. Weakside Linebacker

Spencer Paysinger, Jacquian Williams, New York Giants
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants are set at middle and strongside linebacker after retaining Jon Beason and adding Jameel McClain during the offseason. Spencer Paysinger and Jacquian Williams will compete for the starting weakside linebacker spot. Paysinger is stronger against the run, but Williams is much better in coverage. The Giants will likely rotate the two players to take advantage of their strengths.

Projected Winner: Paysinger

3. Backup Running Back

Peyton Hillis, Andre Williams, David Wilson, New York Giants
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

3. Backup Running Back

Peyton Hillis, Andre Williams, David Wilson, New York Giants
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants signed Rashad Jennings to be their starting running back. What remains to be decided is who will be Jennings' backup. Former first-round pick David Wilson, rookie Andre Williams and veteran Peyton Hillis will all be in the mix for the backup role. Each back brings a different style of play to the position, so the decision will likely come down to the type of player the Giants want at second-string.

Projected Winner: Wilson

2. Left Defensive End

Mathias Kiwanuka, Robert Ayers, Damontre Moore, New York Giants
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

2. Left Defensive End

Mathias Kiwanuka, Robert Ayers, Damontre Moore, New York Giants
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The loss of Justin Tuck leaves New York in need of a new starter at defensive end opposite Jason Pierre-Paul. Mathias Kiwanuka, Damontre Moore and Robert Ayers will compete for the open spot. Kiwanuka has experience in defensive coordinator Perry Fewell's system, but Moore and Ayers will challenge him throughout OTAs and training camp.

Projected Winner: Ayers

1. Center

J.D. Walton, Weston Richburg, New York Giants
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

1. Center

J.D. Walton, Weston Richburg, New York Giants
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

After signing J.D. Walton to a multi-year deal in free agency, the Giants added Weston Richburg in the second-round of the draft. Walton has been plagued by injuries throughout his career, so it is smart to have depth at the position. Even if Walton is healthy, Richburg could earn the starting spot over the veteran. The competition will likely come down to Richburg's ability to learn the Giants' offensive system.

Projected Winner: Richburg

Kevin Major is a Miami Heat writer for Rantsports.com. Follow him on Twitter @KevinMajor_Rant, “Like” him on Facebook and add him to your network on Google