August 23, 2006 New York Giants Training Camp Report (Last Practice)
by BigBlueInteractive.com Contributor WeatherMan
Practice was on the lower fields today, so I couldn’t see as much as usual. Players were in shells and shorts – they opened with walk-through speed drills, no contact. QB Eli Manning ran the first unit, QB Jared Lorenzen the second, then more reps for the first team to get started. Following about 25 snaps, the team went into the usual stretching routine.
The walked wounded: LB Carlos Emmons was nowhere to be found. However, LB Nick McNeil was wearing a red 51 jersey over the top of his regular one, playing the role of Emmons on the second-team defense for the day. WR Sinorice Moss was in uniform but on the side with no reps as usual. LT Luke Petitgout and OC Shaun O’Hara were sans shells riding the bikes along with HB Little John Flowers. LB LaVar Arrington was in full action, going 100% with the first-team defense. TE Visanthe Shiancoe was out there going full speed, as was CB Sam Madison.
Special Teams Drills: After stretching, there was a series of special teams drills, alternating between punts, kickoffs, field goals, and a few onside kicks. For the punt returns, WR Michael Jennings got almost all the reps (CB R.W.McQuarters took one and looked good), doing well at the start but muffing one near the end of the drill, drawing the ire of Tom Coughlin. Add to that the tight coverage on that play (it wasn’t just the punter – full coverage and blocking units were in action) and it was a turnover in live action. PK Jay Feeley made two short field goals right down the middle. On the first one, General Tom could be heard barking out orders, as OC Grey Ruegamer was late getting on the field for the play (“pay fucking attention!” was what I heard). On the kickoffs, three were returnable – the first by HB Chad Morton, the second by WR Willie Ponder, and the third by Jennings. All looked good, cutting smoothly and following their blockers well. Two onside kicks were attempted, the first going out of bounds over the head of CB E.J. Underwood, the second being recovered by the coverage unit.
Offense-Only Drills: The defense was on the far side – I could not see them. They started this segment with more walk-through drills, with the reps going first team to Eli, second team QB Tim Hasselbeck, and third team Lorenzen. QB Rob Johnson watching from the sideline. As this went on, the receivers were doing catching drills, with Plaxico Burress making a couple nice one-handers. That followed with QB to WR/TE passing drills, with Manning looking far and away the better QB. His passes were consistently right on the hands of his receivers, with perfect passes to TE Jeremy Shockey (twice), Burress, and WR Amani Toomer on fades, and Ponder and WR Triandos Lukes on slants. Luke dropped his though, despite the ball hitting him in the hands. Lorenzen threw a perfect fade pass to the corner for Carter, who let it go right through his hands. J-Load impressed me with his touch on passes today – something that had been notably missing earlier in camp. He also completed solid passes to tight ends Boo Williams and Darcy Johnson. Hasselbeck hit WR David Tyree in stride but was often throwing in tandem with Eli, so that’s all of him I saw here. Johnson started to get some work in this drill, completing passes to WR Anthony Mix and TE Wade Fletcher, but was not as crisp or accurate as the other quarterbacks.
7-on-7 Drills: Started right out with a touchdown, Manning to Burress over CB Gerrick McPhearson with ease. Eli followed that with two more TD passes (the line of scrimmage being about the 15-yard line), a corner route to Carter and a great leaping catch by Burress. Lorenzen came in and was picked off, but through no fault of his own – the ball hit HB James Sims in the hands in the flat, he juggled it and had it then snared away by S Quentin Harris. The first Arringotn sighting occurred here, showing tight coverage on a RB to catch my eye. HB Mike Jemison caught the pass from Lorenzen in the practice scenario, but in a game I doubt he would’ve held on – LaVar was in position to blast him. Eli got a few more reps, arching a slightly overthrown fade for Carter that went incomplete, though Tim really should have had a shot at the ball if he’d gone full speed. Hasselbeck got a few reps in, with a dropped pass by Jemison and an interception by the unknown defensive back shielded from view by the video tower. Johnson did not get any reps in this drill.
11-on-11 Drills: First-team offense started it out with some obscured running plays – I couldn’t see much. Lorenzen came on the field to work his gun, launching a great sideline pass that Mix didn’t catch up to, drawing the ire of Burress who was cheering him on from the side. Jennings then dropped a slightly late throw from Lorenzen. When the first unit came back out on offense it was clear they were clicking, with quick completions to Shockey and Burress to move down the field. Hasselbeck ran the second unit, with Tyree making a nice one-handed catch on his first throw and Ponder reeling in the second on the sideline despite tight coverage (and possible interference) from CB Frank Walker. HB Chad Morton got a few reps with the first unit taking short passes out of the backfield. Lorenzen then got some more work in, mostly on handoffs, nothing spectacular. Rob Johnson finally got some action late in the drill, and promptly tanked his first pass with a sidearm junker that missed any receiver by a mile. He then followed it with an excellent completion, right on the hands – to Sam Madison! He did get a real completion before switching off, to James Sims in the flat – however, he held the ball too long and would’ve been planted in a game. Hasselbeck made a nice completion to soon-to-be-cut reserve FB Greg Hanoian in his last pass in Albany. Lorenzen tacked on two more completions, a solid catch by Tyree and a great pass to Luke over McPhearson for a touchdown. Johnson got three more plays and didn’t look any better – the first to Jennings was broken up (S Charlie Peprah), the second to Mix was broken up (CB Corey Webster), and the third, though completed to Fletcher, should have been picked by Peprah, he mistimed his jump on the route. HB Brandon Jacobs got a few runs in, with corners noticeably shying away from him as he ran (McPhearson), not wanting to get plowed over. Manning finished the drill, with a nice TD throw to Shockey, a corner endzone TD throw to Toomer, and a nice catch by Shank.
Other Notes: The first-team defensive tackles who I was able to see were Barry Cofield and Fred Robbins, with William Joseph and Jonas Seawright running with the second teamers. Wilkinson was working with the first team at weakside linebacker and looking good – I did not see LB Brandon Short all practice. Nick McNeil worked with the second-team linebackers. I didn’t see any injuries occur, and the team was jubilant at the end of the session, with a few helmets being tossed in the air to go along with the cheering that camp was over. OC Todd Londot, Underwood, and McNeil stopped and signed for the kids on the line for a while, as did Coach Coughlin.
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Good – The Manning-to-Shockey a