Matt Williamson of ESPN has broken down the 5 most interesting NFC training camp battles. The Giants wide receiver battle is number two. Here is what Williamson has to say:
As it sits today, Domenik Hixon and Steve Smith probably would start the season. Smith is a possession guy who would do his best work as a slot receiver and a third option. The Giants at present lack a true No. 1 wideout, but first-round pick Hakeem Nicks probably has the best chance to approach that status. As with all these battles, the preseason will be of great importance, but Nicks should get the benefit of the doubt because of his upside. None of these guys is Plaxico Burress, but Hixon’s deep speed would complement Nicks’ strength and possession skills while allowing Smith to work out of the slot. Mario Manningham could factor in as well.
Williamson is right. There is no true Number 1 on this team. However, there are guys very capable of producing. Steve Smith was the teams leading receiver a year ago. Domenik Hixon has a ton of talent. Is it a big question mark? Yeah. A huge one.
The Giants success will hinge on the success of the wide receivers. But, if Smith gets his 80 catches, if Hixon can effectively become the deep receiver, if Mario Manningham can break out, if Sinorice Moss finds the light, if Hakeem Nicks can contribute, they will be fine. It’s a lot of ifs. But, it’s not like there is no talent. Fans have to be patient. The Giants have a good enough defense and running game to be fine.