Giants Player Profile | Austin Mack, WR
Receiver Austin Mack was a highly sought after 4-star recruit from Fort Wayne, Indiana, who played his high school football at Bishop Luers High School.
He scored a total of 49 career touchdowns, with 2,672 career receiving yards off 167 catches for 24 touchdowns in high school, and dominated the Indiana State Playoffs with 41 receptions for 805 yards in 2015.
He was a top 12 receiving prospect in his recruiting class. But much like his time at Ohio State, he dealt with injuries in high school too. Mack only played three games in his freshman season. He suffered a foot injury in his junior season that required surgery, and he missed three games with an undisclosed injury in his senior year.
He spent the majority of his time at Ohio State nicked up with various injuries. He finished his Buckeyes’ career with 79 catches in 45 career games (28 starts) and 1,050 yards and six touchdowns. It’s not exactly world-beating, and it was one reason why he wasn’t selected in the draft.
Mack never had more than 30 catches, 400 yards, or three touchdowns in any given season as a Buckeye. Another reason why is because Austin Mack didn’t do too well at the combine; he ran a 4.59 40 yard dash and jumped a dismal 31.5 inches in the vertical, which is in the 9th percentile and 117” in the broad jump, which is in the 27th percentile.
His testing numbers were lackluster, and his production was hindered because of injuries at Ohio State, these are the reasons why the Giants were able to land him in undrafted free agency.
Mack has good size; he’s 6’1, 205 pounds with a long, lean frame (33⅝” arm-length is in the 91st percentile, and big 10” hands are in the 86th percentile for wide receivers).
Another aspect of Mack that must have been appetizing for the Giants was his academic achievements. Mack was president of Redefining Athletic Standards, a student organization he founded with another group of students to discuss campus issues and create events to help them be defined by more than sports. He showed leadership and excelled in the classroom, as well.
The Giants didn’t have a glaring need at wide receiver entering the 2020 draft, but many felt it was necessary to add a receiver given the current state of the position.
Golden Tate is getting long in the tooth, although he was still very effective in 2019.
Sterling Shepard’s head injuries carry concern and leave an uncertainty if he does get injured in 2020.
Darius Slayton is a stud waiting to breakout, and Corey Coleman is still an unknown, given his recent injury history. Coleman’s pedigree carries weight, but the 2020 NFL Draft was full of wide receiver talent.
I will argue the Giants handled the draft well because they replenished important positions while landing a player like Mack in undrafted free agency.
Mack must stay healthy, but his route running, catch-in-traffic ability, and his body control are all intriguing aspects to his well-rounded game. He’s not a burner, but he’s very nuanced as a route runner and
I think he can replace Cody Latimer’s role and offer a lot of upside from that position, especially after he develops under Giants’ wide receiver coach Tyke Tolbert.
Mack, along with Binjamin Victor and Derrick Dillion have a chance to make the active roster, but if I’m betting on one, it’s Mack. His skill set translates well to what the Giants want to do with their receivers.
I’m glad that the team was able to find a player like Mack in undrafted free agency since they decided to not select one in the 2020 NFL Draft.
For Year 1, I expect to see Mack if the Giants see one of their top three receivers injured. I think Corey Coleman can earn the number four wide receiver role, but Mack could be that fifth receiver with a chance to earn snaps as a boundary receiver.
I don't feel the Giants will want to risk having Mack pass through waivers to the practice squad since he was highly pursued in undrafted free agency, so I expect him to earn a roster spot.