Tue. Nov 24th, 2020

Is the New York Giants’ punting competition real?

2 min read
Is the New York Giants’ punting competition real?


The New York Giants keep adding players to their roster at every twist and turn. Last week, they were awarded former Oakland Raiders punter Johnny Townsend off waivers.

It is the second time this year the Giants have brought in a punter to compete — or push — the incumbent, Riley Dixon. Earlier this year, they signed Ryan Anderson, a Rutgers product who was released last week after Townsend was brought on board.

When you have a high pick on the wire, it makes sense to use it. Last year, they scooped up guard Jamon Brown in mid-season after the Rams released him. It just so happened they needed help along the offensive line. Brown came in and the Giants’ were suddenly more of a complete offense, splitting their final eight games.

The Giants are using their sixth-overall waiver status to snare players they may find useful. Then again, by doing that, they immediately find themselves with a position battle on their hands. That’s usually a good thing.

From Ryan Dunleavy of NJ.com:

It turns out the Patriots also put in a waivers claim for Townsend, according to a source with knowledge of the situation. The Giants have a higher waiver priority based on last season’s records.

The Giants now have a punting competition with Townsend and returning starter Riley Dixon. It’s a different approach than they are taking at kicker, where Pro Bowler Aldrick Rosas is the only option on the 90-man roster.

Townsend, 24, averaged 38.3 net yards with 17 dropped inside the 20-yard line on 70 punts last season for the Raiders. Dixon’s numbers were better all-around, including a net average of 41.8 yards and 20 inside the 20-yard line on 71 punts.

Not sure why the Giants would want Townsend other than to exercise their waiver position. Dixon appears to be the better option, plus he’s Rosas’ holder and why would you want to upset the FG/PAT operation that has gone so well?

Still, it could be to simply push Dixon, who is in the final year of his contract. Keep in mind, Townsend was punting in the AFC West. The NFC East will bring more difficult challenges.

Is the Giants' punting competition real?

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