Defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins has signed a three-year, $30 million deal with the Indianapolis Colts including $14.5 million guaranteed. Hankins spent the first four seasons of his career with the New York Giants.
Former Giants’ DT Johnathan Hankins, the top-rated available free agent, is signing a 3-year, $30M deal with Colts, source tells ESPN.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 13, 2017
Johnathan Hankins Signs With Indianapolis Colts
Hankins was drafted with the 49th overall pick in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the New York Giants. The tackle out of Ohio State has since played an important role in the defensive line, and has improved over his four seasons at Big Blue.
It was in 2016 where his drastic improvement was most evident. In his second season working with Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo, his role as a right defensive tackle in a much improved New York defensive line was key to his successes and to the Giants finishing with an 11-5 record.
The 24-year-old built chemistry with the newly formed defensive line in New York over the season, and the results were evident. Playing alongside Damon ‘Snacks’ Harrison with defensive ends Olivier Vernon and Jason-Pierre-Paul helped create a solid line that was important in the Giants’ defensive successes in 2016. The 6’2” 320 pound tackle finished the season with 43 tackles, three sacks and a forced fumble.
Along with the Giants defensive line as a whole in 2016, it was the successes as a strong defense against the running game that ultimately defined the line last season. Hankins was a big part of that, with his run stuffing ability alongside NFL First Team all-pro Snacks Harrison making a successful tackle partnership in Steve Spagnuoulo’s 4-3 defensive scheme.
In the 2016 regular season, the Giants were ranked fourth in yards given up against opposition rush attacks, averaging a mere 88.6 yards given up. Hankins had a big role to play in this, along with his partners on the line. The improvement was clear when comparing to 2015 as Big Blue gave up an average of 121.4 rushing yards per game that year. In Ben McAdoo‘s first season as Giants head coach, the defense only gave up an average of 18.9 points per game, putting them second in the rankings, well above the NFL average of 22.8 points per game and the 2015 Giants average of 27.6 points per game.
So, it’s evident how well Hankins has developed over his NFL career, and 2016 was a brilliant year for him and the rest of his defensive line at Big Blue. Entering his fifth season, he has all the tools to improve his game further and has the potential to develop into an elite tier NFL tackle.