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Wilson more Barber clone than Jacobs replacement

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Recent posts by Eric Edholm

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Posted April 27, 2012 @ 12:32 a.m. ET
By Eric Edholm

Let’s get this out of the way first: New Giants RB David Wilson, the final pick of the Thursday’s first round, is not a replacement for Brandon Jacobs.

First, there are few players who fit the Jacobs mold — large man who likes to dance in the hole — and in a way, Wilson is really his opposite. He’s quick, decisive, can break tackles (with elusiveness rather than power) and sees holes before they open. That is the anti-Jacobs, if I ever saw him.

Really, Wilson has a little Tiki Barber in him, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Wilson is about the same size, can catch the ball and has a likeable personality. Barber, Barber and Barber. But here’s one more comparison that will need work: Wilson is a fumbler.

Nine fumbles in 499 college touches is not going to cut it for a Tom Coughlin-coached team, so they’ll work on his hand placement (like they did with Barber) and curb the problem.

In the meantime, Wilson could be used on kickoffs — where he might be best right away — to push Da’Rel Scott and a few players and work his way into the RB rotation. Ahmad Bradshaw can be the lead back, with D.J. Ware and Scott all competing for reps.

Barber started five games and totaled 810 yards (511 rushing, 299 receiving) and four TDs as a rookie. The results might be similar on offense for Wilson as a rookie, so be forewarned, Giants fans. This is a talented player with some burst, but he has a few things to work on before he breaks out.

But that’s just the way the Giants like it. Their top four draft picks barely played as rookies last year. Didn’t seem to hurt them too much.

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