Sterling Shepard is the Real Deal: ELi Manning has the tools
by Tom Peticca (@peticca95)
With solid defensive players like A’Shawn Robinson and Reggie Ragland available for the Giants the pick in the second round lots of fans, myself included, expected the Giants to draft defense. However with the 40th overall pick Jerry Reese and Ben McAdoo decided to take Sterling Shepard, a wide receiver from Oklahoma.
Some people are calling this pick a steal. The 5’10” receiver put up over 3000 yards and caught 26 touchdowns in his four years as a Sooner. While his size is probably the main reason he slipped to the second round, Shepard played very well at Oklahoma improving each season, which is what you would like to see from a draft pick.
Shepard is coming into a Giants receiving core that is very questionable after Odell Beckham. Victor Cruz is a question mark after missing the last year and a half due to injury, but there is promise. Dwayne Harris and Myles White stepped in when they had to last season but are not reliable receivers to be starters. Shepard has an opportunity to step in and be a difference maker right away for this Giants team.
While small in stature, Shepard plays much bigger than he is. In his time at Oklahoma he played both inside and outside receiver. Coach Ben McAdoo will probably use him in a similar style where he moves Shepard in and out. This helps open up the Giants receiving core and will help Victor Cruz’s transition back onto the field.
It has been said that Shepard has an incredible love for the game, which he got from his father who was also a wide receiver at Oklahoma and played for the Cowboys and Redskins. He is hard worker that can hopefully solidify a unit that has been very reliant on one player for the past two years.
The Giants now have three very quick, shifty receivers that defenses have to worry about and Eli Manning gets to play with. Overall, this pick gives Shepard the potential to really strive and make a difference in New York at the NFL level.