Reese: Wilson can be 'lead dog'

January, 3, 2013
1/03/13
7:23
PM ET
David Wilson may go from the doghouse to being the "lead dog" next season.

General manager Jerry Reese and head coach Tom Coughlin discussed the state of the Giants heading into the offseason on WFAN on Thursday, and the GM believes Wilson has what it takes to start next year.

[+] EnlargeDavid Wilson
Brad Penner/USA TODAY SportsDavid Wilson came on strong at the end of his rookie season.
"I don’t think there’s any question that he can be that," Reese said, when asked if Wilson can be a lead back. "It’s a two- and three-back league nowadays, but do I think he can be a lead dog? I do think that."

"Because he’s not a little guy, and he has incredible balance," Reese continued. "You see guys have some big hits on him and he stays up -- he’s not an easy guy to take down. So he’s much stronger than you might think just from how he looks on the field. But he’s a sleek, well-chiseled athlete. I do believe he can be the lead back."

Perhaps that is why Ahmad Bradshaw was so uncertain about his status next year. Bradshaw is coming off a 1,000-yard season, and is under contract for the next two seasons at $3.75 and $4 million in base salary. But he Giants may ask some of their veterans to restructure their deals, including him.

Wilson rushed for 358 yards and four touchdowns in his rookie year, with 247 yards and three touchdowns coming in the final four games.

Coughlin said he still believes the Giants are best served by a two- and even possibly a three-back rotation. Andre Brown, who will be a restricted free agent, was a part of that rotation before he broke his leg.

In the Giants' 42-7 win over the Eagles in the season finale, Bradshaw rushed for 107 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries, and Wilson ran for 75 yards on 15 carries while catching a touchdown as well. Coughlin will take that kind of one-two punch any day.

"Oh, he can be a 15-carry guy," Coughlin said of Wilson. "I think you’d be surprised how strong this guy is. He has outstanding legs. He wants it, he wants to be a player, he wants to do well, he loves to play and I think he had outstanding endurance. I’ve seen him. I mean (heck), he runs all day long. I like that part of it."

"It takes more than one," the coach added, of needing multiple backs. "Sometimes it takes three. Back in ’07, we had three of them."

Tell us what you think is best for the Giants' running game next season below.
Ohm Youngmisuk has covered the Giants, Jets and the NFL since 2006. Prior to that, he covered the Nets, Knicks and the NBA for nearly a decade. He joined ESPNNewYork.com after working at the New York Daily News for almost 12 years and is a graduate of Michigan State University.
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