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NFL New York Giants

5 Dark Horse Candidates To Make The New York Giants’ 53-Man Roster

5 Dark Horse Candidates To Make Giants 53-Man Roster

Jerry Reese Giants
The Star-Ledger-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants made a number of moves in the offseason to shore up a team that struggled in 2013. Plenty of players brought in will become immediate contributors, while others will have to fight for a spot on the roster. Some of the names to make the final roster may surprise you. Here are five dark horse players who will make the Giants 53-man roster.

5. LB Dan Fox

Dan Fox Giants
Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

5. LB Dan Fox

Dan Fox Giants
Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

With Jon Beason going down with an injury, the door opened for players lower on the depth chart. One player is UDFA Fox, who has experience playing multiple linebacker spots at Notre Dame. His versatility would be useful as the Giants look to find a combo of players that perform until their original trio of Beason, Jameel McClain and Jacquian Williams is back. Fox will see some snaps on defense, but will become a household name on special teams.

4. DT Kelcy Quarles

Kelcy Quarles South Carolina
Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

4. DT Kelcy Quarles

Kelcy Quarles South Carolina1
Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

How Quarles became an UDFA is hard to answer. He had a productive season at South Carolina next to No. 1 overall pick Jadeveon Clowney, and the pressure will be even less with the Giants. Quarles will be able to learn from seasoned veterans Cullen Jenkins and Mike Patterson, making an impact at the end of the season. It will take more than one person to replace the production of Linval Joseph, and Quarles should be a part of that group.

3. CB Charles James

Charles James Giants
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

3. CB Charles James

Charles James Giants
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

The numbers game is against James right now, but his talent is unquestionable. He has been a standout performer during spring practices, recording multiple INTs. Jayron Hosley’s suspension gives James a better shot, but he looks to be sixth on the depth chart currently. James could build a stronger case if he gets into the punt returner mix and performs on special teams. If he continues performing it’ll be hard for the Giants to ignore.

2. WR Julian Talley

Julian Talley Giants
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

2. WR Julian Talley

Julian Talley Giants
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants drafted a WR in the first round in Odell Beckham Jr., but Talley still has a good chance of making the roster. This will be third straight training camp he participates in with the Giants, so he is familiar with the organization. His chances truly hinge on the health of Mario Manningham, whose knee injury does not seem to be healing as hoped. If he is unable to participate, expect Talley to be the next man up.

1. TE Xavier Grimble

Xavier Grimble Giants
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

1. TE Xavier Grimble

Xavier Grimble Giants
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants' TE competition is wide open. Adrien Robinson and Kellen Davis figure to see the playing time early on, but the UDFA out of USC has a good shot at making the roster. There is little keeping Grimble from making the team if he performs in training camp. He is the youngest TE on the roster, and has some upside if given time to be worked with. It is about time the Giants put some resources into a young TE and Grimble should be the guy.

Kenneth Teape is a New York Giants writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @teapester725, “Like” on Facebook, or join his Google network