New York Giants: Five players on defense who could surprise in camp

Pat Shurmur, New York Giants. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Pat Shurmur, New York Giants. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images) /
3 of 5
New York Giants
Julian Love, Notre Dame Fighting Irish. New York Giants. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

No. 4 – Julian Love, cornerback

Julian Love was an absolute steal for the New York Giants in the fourth round (108 overall) in this year’s draft. Many services had him graded as a second-round talent. His fall could have been partially due to the head injury he suffered in the National Semifinal game against Clemson in January.

At Notre Dame, he was an outstanding cornerback, playing in all 38 games over his three seasons, starting 34. He made 176 career tackles and picked off five passes. Additionally, Love broke the Irish school record with 39 pass breakups.

His instincts, as well as his ability to play the ball, are impeccable. He doesn’t lose his man very often, but if he does, Love has enough speed to recover and get back in the play to break up the pass. Additionally, he can thrive playing in both man and zone coverages, which will be important in defensive coordinator James Bettcher’s multiple schemes.

Love doesn’t have ideal size at 5-11 ish, 195 pounds. Taller faster NFL receivers may give him trouble at first, however, he’s overcome his lack of size in the past. Another issue that may hurt Love is that he doesn’t play physical and has a tendency to get handsy. Again, he has the tools to overcome those deficiencies as well.

He has the talent to be a starter by the end of the season. If not, at the very least, Love can be the New York Giants top slot/nickel option.