The New York Giants sent Kadarius Toney to the Kansas City Chiefs in a shocking blockbuster deal. The Chiefs acquired Toney from the Giants for their third-round compensatory and sixth-round pick. The Giants’ first-round draft pick for 2021 played in just 12 of 24 games, 420 yards, and 41 receptions for a total of no touchdowns.
In his 4th game as a rookie in 2021, Toney gained 189 yards on ten receptions (and another seven on one rushing attempt) after accumulating 78 yards on six receptions the game before. At that point, he became a potential league-winning pick in Fantasy Football. Following that in Week 4, Toney would play in just five more games as a rookie, never surpassing 40 yards receiving or reaching the end zone. Before suffering a hamstring injury in his second season with the Giants, Toney played in just one game.
Brian Daboll, the Giants’ head coach, said Toney allegedly tweaked his second hamstring while recovering from his first hamstring injury this season. Toney tweeted something that would indicate he is no longer struggling with an ailment, but then he removed it. Jordan Dajani, an NFL writer for CBSSports, has more on Toney’s deleted Tweets.
Effects on the Chiefs
Given his skill set, Toney might be able to contribute to the Chief’s offense right away if he is, in fact, close to doing so from a health perspective. Douglas Clawson of CBS Sports claims that the Chiefs can employ Toney in motion to integrate him into the offense right away.
According to Clawson, their motion player is responsible for 21% of the Chiefs’ motion touches this season, which ranks seventh in the NFL. In the red zone, the Chiefs score on nine out of every fifteen plays when a player in motion gets a touch, as opposed to nine out of every thirty-two spaces when they don’t. When the motion player was touched this year, the Chiefs received the most touches, yards, and touchdowns.
The motion player for the Chiefs has scored ten touchdowns so far this season, whereas the motion player for the next-closest team has only scored three. Additionally, the Chiefs’ offense performs better using motion (67%, the second-highest rate in the NFL). Motion players or other players have combined to score 22 touchdowns this season. The Dolphins, with 13 touchdowns, are the club that scored the second most points in this scenario.
In Clawson’s estimation, Toney finished third in the FBS in scrimmage yards (220) during his final collegiate campaign at Florida in 2020. He had 25 touches for 220 yards and three touchdowns.
For a more thorough examination of the Chiefs’ presnap motion strategy, including its effectiveness, read Clawson’s complete research notes at the URL provided above.
Toney joins a Chiefs broad receiver group that is crowded on the depth chart but has played unevenly this year. JuJu Smith-Schuster, a free agent acquisition, has improved over his previous two games after furthering his chemistry with Patrick Mahomes. Still, the Chiefs have had trouble finding consistency from any other receiver on this team behind him. Mecole Hardman and Marquez Valdes-Scantling, both signed free agents, have occasionally produced for the Chiefs, but neither player has created consistent offense. Skyy Moore, a rookie selected in the second round, has primarily played on special teams due to his difficulty fitting in with the crime.
If Toney is fully healthy, his ability to work in space after the catch, and to be successful with presnap motion, need to get him on the field earlier than anticipated. As eye candy in the backfield to draw the defense’s attention in the wrong place, the Chiefs might benefit from employing him first as a decoy before bringing him onto the field. Toney, a former quarterback himself, was given a trick play by the Giants earlier this year in which he was supposed to toss the ball before he grabbed it and chose to run with it instead. In my opinion, Reid might call up a comparable service at some point.
The Giants’ wide receivers were still running improper routes early in the season, according to the coaches and players (including Sterling Shepard). Generating a pick on the defender, the Giants were called for an offensive pass interference play, and that’s what they said after the game. Even when he was healthy, when David Sills and Toney Sills ran their routes down the field at the same depth, Toney never played a full complement of snaps in the Brian Daboll offense. In his brief 2022 season sample, he ran virtually entirely drag routes on camera. Around the team, there was talk that Toney could not enter the field.
Effects on the Giants
This trade should not affect the Giants’ performance in 2022 fantasy football. The Giant’s offense is comparable to the Chiefs’ in terms of schematics, so Toney was a great fit. However, there was never a guarantee that Toney would be able to return to the field and give the offense a spark. They’ll proceed with Darius Slayton and Marcus Johnson handling most of the wide receiver snaps. Wan’Dale Robinson, a rookie, is continuing to play a more prominent role (his snaps, target share, and route participation are trending up in his two games back). The only two receivers worth rostering are Slayton and Robinson, and Robinson has the best potential as well as the lowest risk. When Kenny Golladay returns from injury, that might change, but for the time being, this offense still has a low ceiling for passing.