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New York Giants: Five Players on the Rise After Preseason Week 2

Yahoo Contributor Network

COMMENTARY | The New York Giants are 1-1 this preseason, but records are meaningless this time of year.

What coach Tom Coughlin is more concerned about is finding the best 53 players on the roster. Thus, players on the roster bubble or those looking for a starting role have two more games to win jobs. Through the first two exhibition games, some Giants have already made a strong case for a starting job or roster spot.

Here's a look at five players whose employment prospects are looking up:

RB Michael Cox -- Cox has shown tremendous versatility through two games. He led the Giants in rushing with 33 yards on nine carries against the Pittsburgh Steelers and pulled in two passes for 48 yards and returned a kickoff 36 yards against the Indianapolis Colts. Cox started the preseason as a depth running back behind Da'Rel Scott and Ryan Torain, but he's been the best of the group by far. Keeping Cox, the team's seventh-round pick, off the 53-man roster is going to be very difficult.

LB Dan Connor -- At the start of training camp, Mark Herzlich was working with the first-team defense and appeared to have the inside track on the starting middle linebacker position. Now Connor is making a strong case for the gig. He started against Indy and recorded three unassisted tackles, giving him six takedowns through two preseason games. However, Herzlich led the second unit in the second half and is by no means out of this heated competition. Keep an eye on both players in the next game.

DE Justin Trattou -- Trattou, who signed as an undrafted free agent in 2011 and spent last season on injured reserve, is seeking an expanded role on this year's squad. The New Jersey native has been extremely active with a sack in each of the team's first two preseason games. Trattou's biggest problem is the team's depth at his position, but the Giants may have to find a way to keep him around.

DE Adewale Ojomo -- For the second year in a row, Ojomo has made his presence felt in the preseason. The athletic end, who led the team with four sacks and 10 tackles last summer, has 3.5 sacks and eight tackles through two games this time around. Ojomo made the final cut last year, but he appeared in only one regular-season game. There's a chance he'll make the team again, if he keeps making plays, and possibly save his biggest contributions for special teams.

S Tyler Sash -- Sash was all over the field against the Steelers with a sack, fumble recovery and four tackles. He didn't have the same impact against the Colts, but the sixth-round pick from 2011 received a good share of playing time with Antrel Rolle (ankle sprain) and Cooper Taylor (hamstring) out of the lineup. Sash is no lock to make the team, but his solid play, injuries at the safety position, and the looming four-game suspension of Will Hill have boosted his stock in a big way.

Keep in mind, cuts will be made after each of the next two preseason games, as teams around the National Football League must trim rosters to 53 players by the end of August.

Adam Martini is a freelance sports writer with more than 15 years of experience covering amateur and professional sports for several print and online media outlets. He tracked the New York Giants for Yahoo! Contributor Network during the team's Super Bowl run in 2011-12. Adam can be found on Twitter @Pegcitysports.


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