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Eisen's Mailbag: Michael Cox status

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How hard is it for an undrafted rookie free agent like Victor Cruz did in 2010 to make an NFL football team?** -Adrian

Dear Adrian:
Now, about those receivers…Manning's top target is expected to be Victor Cruz, as he was the previous three seasons. The other starter could be Rueben Randle, who is entering his third season. Jerrell Jernigan is entering his fourth season and Manning threw to Mario Manningham from 2008-11. The high-profile newcomer is first-round draft choice Odell Beckham Jr. Manning has been working with him for years, because they attended the same high school and Beckham has been to the Manning Passing Academy. I think chemistry with the receivers is a non-issue.

Whatever happened to Michael Cox and is he still in the running backs competition?
-Joseph

Dear Joseph:
Nothing happened to Michael Cox. He is on the roster and participated in the team's offseason program and every spring practice. So yes, he is part of the running backs competition. But it's a big group vying for jobs, including Rashad Jennings, David Wilson (assuming he is medically cleared), Andre Williams and Peyton Hillis.

Which existing players from last year's team look to have the hardest time staying on the Giants & which free agents look capable of unseating a veteran?
-Chip

Dear Chip:
I don't want to predict the loss of a job for anyone. But look at the previous question. If Jennings, Wilson and Williams are all healthy, it's hard to see how Hillis and Cox can both make the final roster. Last season, Cox contributed as a kickoff returner, but that might not be possible this season with the addition of Quintin Demps, Trindon Holliday and Odell Beckham Jr. The Giants beefed up the offensive line, so James Brewer faces tough competition. In reality, very few players are 100 percent secure. For example, Josh Brown seems a lock to kick again. But special teams coordinator Tom Quinn made a point of saying last week that rookie Brandon McManus is competing for the job. There's going to be a roster surprise somewhere. It's too early to predict where.
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