5 Things to Watch: Giants Training Camp

With the New York Giants set to open training camp at the end of July, here are five things to watch before Big Blue settles in at the Timex Performance Center.

1. Eyes Wide Open

With his top two playmakers Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks at camp, quarterback Eli Manning should have plenty of weapons at his disposal to create havoc for the rest of the NFC East. While both Nicks and Cruz were no-shows throughout most of minicamp, it will take some time for both playmakers to get in sync with the offense and in peak conditioning. Look for the Giants top two wideouts to fill up the stat sheet in what could be a contract year for both players.

2. Depth at defensive line

With Jason Pierre Paul undergoing back surgery, Big Blue's collection of pass-rushers will be asked to rise to the occasion in his absence. Prized free agent signing Cullen Jenkins along with defensive tackles Mike Patterson and Shaun Rogers could see increased playing time and the Giants will rely heavily on their defensive line to return to Super Bowl form.

3. Secondary a primary concern

The Giants defensive backfield was downright awful at times in 2012 rounding out the year as the NFL second-worst unit. With the additions of cornerbacks Aaron Ross, Antonio Dennard in free agency along with signing former Pittsburgh Steelers safety Ryan Mundy and re-signing Stevie Brown, Big Blue is hoping to plug the holes in its leaky secondary. If New York's pass-rush can regain its swagger, that can certainly take the burden of its beleaguered group of defensive backs.

4. Thunder and lightning

The dynamic duo of running backs Andre Brown and David Wilson have the opportunity to surpass the production of one-time Giants Ron Dayne and Tiki Barber. The perfect blend of speed and power, both Brown and Wilson are capable of carrying the workload and wearing down opposing defenses with contrasting styles of play. Behind a revamped offensive line, New York's tailbacks could have a big year ahead of them.

5. Eli's security blanket

With the departure of Martellus Bennett during free agency, competition is wide open at the tight end spot for Big Blue. Bear Pascoe looks to be the front runner heading into training camp, but Brandon Myers and Adrien Robinson could be hot on his heels. While New York's stud wide receivers will garner the attention and fanfare, the unheralded tight end job will be instrumental in sparking both the passing and running game.

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