Voters in the 2020 Football Outsider Awards were barely impressed by the New York Giants' 6-10 record and near playoff berth in an otherwise lowly NFC East.
Most of the award winners don't come as any surprise to those who followed the league on the whole, but the good news--if you want to consider it as such--is that the Giants weren't completely shut out on receiving votes.
Defensive coordinator Patrick Graham, who put together a defense that finished 12th in average yards per game allowed, earned 1% of the votes for the 2020 Bill Arnsparger Award for Coordinator of the Year (offense or defense) but was no match for Buffalo offensive coordinator Brian Daboll (37.9%), who edged out runner up Eric Bieniemy of the Chiefs.
Giants rookie left tackle Andrew Thomas received some consideration for the 2020 Keep Chopping Wood Award, which recognizes the player who hurt his team most on or off the field last season.
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Thomas drew 6% of the votes--a bit unfair given that not only was he a rookie, but he went through two offensive line coaches and dealt with an ankle ailment for which he had surgery after the season.
But he was no match, for now, former Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz, the runaway winner with 52.4% of the votes who was traded to the Colts last week.
Voters also showed a little bit of love to kicker Graham Gano, who earned 4.2% of the votes for the Most Deserving Special Teams Player left off the Pro Bowl roster.
But the "good news" (assuming you see this as the glass being half full) is that the Giants did have one award winner who won a category won last year by Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
The winner? Tight end Evan Engram, who, in picking up 43.6% of the votes, was the hands-down winner for the Least Deserving Pick for the Pro Bowl (not including injury replacements).
Evan Engram's election is an excellent example of the effects of evaluating players on the extent of their exploits rather than examining their efficiency. His 63 catches for 654 yards were both third in the NFC amongst tight ends and his best since his rookie year in 2017. However, he averaged a career-low 10.4 yards per catch and scored only one touchdown, and also fumbled for the first time as a professional. As such, he was next to last at his position in both receiving DYAR and DVOA. Enough, already.
Take heart, Giants fans. Head coach Joe Judge isn't resting on his laurels and is determined to put a much-improved product on the field next year.
It will be interesting to see if what the, along with general manager Dave Gettleman, come up with in terms of personnel tweaks and if those tweaks earn members of the organization more consideration in the annual voting process.
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