This past week, New York Giants running back David Wilson underwent successful neck surgery as a result of spinal stenosis injury, which he suffered all the way back in Week 5 against the Philadelphia Eagles. The injury, eventually, landed him on season-ending injured reserve (IR).
While he is expected to be back with the team at some point in 2014, nothing is certain for Wilson playing in the NFL again as the injury he suffered has been a career-ending kind of injury to players in the past — Michael Irvin of the Dallas Cowboys and Chris Samuels of the Washington Redskins also suffered it and had their careers end as a result and Wilson's could as well since the injury narrows the spine and one more severe hit to the head/neck area could cause paralysis to Wilson.
With that said, the Giants may need a backup plan for their running back situation since they only have Michael Cox on the roster as the only non-injured back and he didn't do enough to impress to the point where he can be the starter, so it would make sense for Jerry Reese to look into other options just incase Wilson can't fully go for 2014. And, as it shakes out, they may have an option as Dave Hutchinson of the Newark-Star Ledger pointed out; one that newly-hired offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo knows very well since he coached him on the Green Bay Packers: James Starks.
"Giants general manager Jerry Reese has said he'll put together a “contingency plan” just in case Wilson is slow to recover and Packers free agent running back James Starks could be that guy. Obviously, Starks knows new offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo’s system. But more importantly, he’s just 27 years old, has low-mileage and won’t break the bank. With the Packers committed to rookie Eddie Lacy, Starks is likely looking for a change of scenery."
This past week, we at Giants 101 looked at some of the pending free agent players from the Packers who could draw the interest of the Giants and Starks name came up on the list for the exact reasoning mentioned: Wilson's injury. The Giants could always decide to start over and look to the draft and take another running back in the later rounds, but if they decide to look at free agency and don't want to spend the money it may cost for players like Darren McFadden or Maurice Jones-Drew, then Starks would be an option to consider.
In 2013, Starks as the second running back playing behind rookie sensation Eddie Lacy had 89 carries for 493 yards and three touchdowns plus 10 catches for 89 yards and a touchdown. His best numbers were back in 2011 when he had 133 carries for 571 yards and a touchdown to go with 29 receptions for 216 yards.
Once Super Bowl XLVIII concludes in three weeks and the offseason gets going, the Giants will have a much better vision as to who will be back and what players will be on the move and with Andre Brown and Peyton Hillis both free agents this offseason, if they both choose to pursue other options this spring, then the talks between the Giants and Starks could pick up with potential influence from McAdoo.
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