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New York Giants 2022 Training Camp Roster Preview: WR Richie James

Can receiver Richie James parlay his special teams experience as a returner to earn a roster spot?

The New York Giants wide receiver situation is interesting.

The Giants currently have 13 receivers on their training camp roster, a group that comes in all shapes, sizes, and skillset. Presumably, the top four roster spots will be filled by Kenny Golladay, Kadarius Toney, draft pick Wan'Dale Robinson, and, once healthy, Sterling Shepard.

That leaves about nine other receivers to compete for maybe two additional spots on the 53-man roster. And as is always the case with the bottom of the roster at any position, being able to contribute on special teams will be a huge help to one's cause.

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Enter Richie James. James, 5-foot-9 and 185 pounds was originally a seventh-round draft pick by the 49ers in 2018 out of Middle Tennessee State. In his first NFL season, James contributed 23 kickoff returns, one for a touchdown, for 580 yards, earning All-NFC honors from the Pro Football Writers of America and a spot on ESPN's All-Rookie Team.

James, who lined up quite often with the Giants' first-team offense in the slot this spring, appeared in 40 games with ten starts for the 49ers. He missed the 2021 season with a knee injury, but he has been a productive return specialist for the 49ers, logging 51 punt returns for 373 yards (7.3 average) and 47 kickoff returns for 1,081 yards and one touchdown (23.0 yards/return).

His best season as a receiver was in 2020 when he had a career-high 23 catches for 394 yards. James has 38 receptions for 689 yards and three touchdowns in three seasons.

Jun 7, 2022; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Richie James (80) participates in a drill during minicamp at MetLife Stadium.
Aug 22, 2021; Inglewood, California, USA; San Francisco 49ers receiver Richie James (13) carries the ball against the Los Angeles Chargers in the second half at SoFi Stadium.
Jun 7, 2022; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Richie James (80) participates in a drill during minicamp at MetLife Stadium.

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