When it comes to which Giants wide receiver is quicker, Darius Slayton or Jalin Hyatt, there may have been a little bias in Slayton’s answer.
“It has to be me. Love him, great kid, but it has to be me,” Slayton told reporters on Wednesday after the team’s second OTA practice open to the media.
General manager Joe Schoen has spent an ample amount of resources this offseason addressing the team’s wide receiver group, with Hyatt being the youngest addition to that group when they drafted the Tennessee product in April. Hyatt came to New York with a reputation as a deep threat, though he’s been trying to make a point of mentioning his other skills as well.
But for Slayton, one of the main things he’s noticed about the young receiver has been what you’d imagine it would be.
“I hate to say speed, but he’s fast. Like I said, he can play,” Slayton said. “You can see the talent. Not just his speed. He has a little viral video of him telling the coach he can route run and stuff. I think he does route run well. He catches the ball well. I think just all the way around he’s a very talented player.”
The kind words coming from Slayton should mean something to Hyatt, since Slayton has been the Giants’ leading receiver in three of the last four years and is looking to continue that success in 2023. Slayton had a team-leading 724 receiving yards on 46 receptions last season, in which he rose to the occasion as the Giants watched receiver after receiver go down with injuries.
This season, Schoen has gone to great lengths to keep that from becoming an issue again, re-signing Slayton and Isiah Hodgens while adding tight end Darren Waller, Parris Campbell and former Jets receivers Jeff Smith and Jamison Crowder in free agency. Then, of course, there is the aforementioned speedster, Hyatt.
While quarterback Daniel Jones danced around a question last week about the speed of the crop of receivers he’ll have to work with this season, he acknowledged there is certainly some speed among them.
“We’ve got a lot of guys who have played a lot of football, have really good experience in this league, making a lot of plays, who can do different things. Yeah, speed is certainly part of that, and we’re learning what everyone’s good at or what they feel comfortable doing and trying to set guys up to do those things and put us all in a position to be successful,” Jones said.
The added speed to the group, which includes Campbell and Smith who the Giants also added via free agency, is an aspect that Slayton is excited about next season. Slayton said that he tends to”lean to other speed guys” and likened the group to “Ferraris”
“I think definitely this spring it’s been a conscious effort to push the ball down the field,” Slayton said. “We have all these guys, like having a bunch of Ferraris, keep them in the garage; take them out to the track. I think that’s kind of been the mindset and maybe why you see a little more of the ball going down the field.”
He added, “They don’t know where it’s coming from.”
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