In recent weeks, much has been made about both Henry Hynoski and John Conner and what the future holds for them with the New York Giants. Not only is it highly unlikely that the team will carry two fullbacks, but what their roles will be has not yet been entirely defined. And although much speculation has centered around their differences in athletic ability, whoever wins the starting job will likely be the player who best adapts to Ben McAdoo's offensive system.
The one thing that now appears certain is that it will not be a traditional fullback role. Rather, as running backs coach Craig Johnson recently confirmed, the role will likely be much closer to what the Packers did with John Kuhn in Green Bay.
"I know we’re not going to have the traditional fullback like what we had a year ago, but I think it’s always a nice thing to have a place for a fullback in your offensive game plan," Johnson told Inside Football. "They have done a good job. We’re going to ask them to probably be a little bit more multidimensional, be able to catch the ball out of the backfield, maybe even be able to run the ball at times, and also be able to be a lead blocker."
While certain traditional elements will remain in place, adjustments are certainly going to be made and whoever wins the starting job will be expected to contribute in other areas. That, of course, would seem to bend things in Hynoski's favor, as he's a bit more multidimensional in his contributions than Conner has been throughout his career.
Still, offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo has praised both men for keeping up this offseason, and seemed to imply it's an even race at this point.
“Henry and John have both done a nice job. We mix, we’re in and out of personnel groups and those types of things at this point. You like to use the fullback. The way I was raised, a fullback’s a big part of the things you do. Henry and John have both done a nice job so far," McAdoo said.
In his career, Conner has carried the ball 21 times for 88 yards (4.0 ypc) and two touchdowns. He also has 10 receptions for 22 yards (4.0 average), including a career-high six receptions with the Giants a year ago. Hynoski, meanwhile, has carried the ball five times for 20 yards (4.0 ypc), but has seen much more action as a receiver out of the backfield, having hauled in 23 receptions for 133 yards (5.0 average) and one touchdown.
All in all, the fullback battle is shaping up to be one of the most interesting in training camp.
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