Ryan Connelly Claimed By Minnesota; Giants Awarded Three Off Waivers
If the Giants were planning to slip inside linebacker Ryan Connelly, their fifth-round draft pick last year, through waivers, the plan backfired.
Connelly, the surprise transaction among the Giants' roster moves Saturday, was claimed the Vikings off waivers according to the daily NFL transaction wire. Connelly appeared in four games as a rookie with three starts and recorded two interceptions, two passes defended, and one sack before tearing his ACL.
Connelly, who missed a week of practice earlier in camp for an undisclosed reason, had appeared to fall behind on the depth chart with the addition of Blake Martinez and the increased workload earned by Devante Downs.
When he was waived, it was thought that perhaps the Giants might bring him back if they followed through with the expected plan to place David Mayo on injured reserve. However, that won't be the case as now the Eden Prairie native returns home to Minnesota to continue his NFL career.
The Giants were also awarded three players off waivers, according to the transaction report. They include offensive tackle Jackson Barton and defensive back Adrian Colbert, both of whom were in camp with the Chiefs, and receiver Damion Ratley, who was in camp with Cleveland.
Barton was a seventh-round draft pick by the Colts last year. He spent most of his rookie season on the practice squad before being signed by the Chiefs in November.
Colbert, 6'2", 205 pounds, was a seventh-round draft pick by the 49ers in 2017. He played two seasons with San Francisco before making stops with Seattle and Miami, the latter stop seeing him cross paths with Giants defensive coordinator Patrick Graham when he was with the Dolphins last year.
Colbert, who also has special teams experience as a gunner, has appeared in 27 games over his career with 17 starts. He has recorded eight passes defended, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovered, and 80 total tackles.
Ratley, 6'2", 200 pounds, was drafted by the Browns in the sixth round of the 2018 draft. He appeared in 26 games for Cleveland with six starts and has caught 25 out of 44 pass targets for 344 yards and one touchdown.
Ratley brings some size to the Giants' receiver room, joining Darius Slayton and C.J. Board, both listed at 6'1", as the only other receivers on the roster at the moment who stands over six feet.
The Giants are expected to move Mayo and safety Xavier McKinney to the injured reserve list. They will have to make one more roster move to accommodate the extra player they were awarded off waivers.