May 312014
 
Stevie Brown (27), Antrel Rolle (26), New York Giants (August 4, 2013)

Stevie Brown and Antrel Rolle – © USA TODAY Sports Images

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There’s one name that often gets omitted when the new faces that will be donning blue in 2014 are talked about.

There’s Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, the high profile, prized free agent acquisition of General Manager Jerry Reese. Lining up next to him is Walter Thurmond III, a player whose talk seems to emulate that of a corner whom he shared Seattle’s secondary with. There’s Geoff Schwartz, J.D. Walton and draftee Odell Beckham Jr., too.

But one player has gone near unnoticed, sliding quietly back to the position he held two years ago.

“I know what I can do,” Stevie Brown said. “It’s just continuing to prove it.”

In 2012, Brown proved that not only did he have the potential to be a starting safety in the NFL, but a pretty good one at that. After signing with the Giants following two sub-par years in Oakland and Indianapolis, Brown broke out. Playing in all 16 games for the first time in his career, the former seventh-round pick recorded 76 tackles, two forced fumbles, two fumble recovers and tied for the league lead in interceptions with eight.

Brown was a key component in New York feeling comfortable letting former first-round pick Kenny Phillips walk in free agency, all but penciling the 26-year-old in opposite Antrel Rolle atop the depth chart.

Entering last season, Rolle and Brown began to talk, boasting claims the two had the potential to be the best safety tandem in the NFL, but versus the Jets in the third preseason game of the season, all that chatter was put on hold. Brown intercepted a Geno Smith that sailed high and behind intended target Kellen Winslow.

As he had done so many times the season before, Brown began to work his way up the field. The safety picked up 15 yards, attempted to cut at the 28 yard line, but immediately dropped to the ground without being touched.

“Just a routine play really. I was returning an interception and kind of hit the turf wrong,” Brown said. “It was one of those things where I thought I would just be able to walk off and then I noticed it was kind of burning a little big longer than normal.

“The doctor came out there and looked at me and told me, ‘Your ACL is probably torn.’ I just kind of looked at him and said, ‘Don’t tell me that.’”

An MRI the next day confirmed the doctor’s early prognosis. Brown had ruptured his ACL; his season was over.

Stevie Brown, New York Giants (August 24, 2013)

Stevie Brown – © USA TODAY Sports Images

“It was one of those things where I may have been down for about two days, but you can’t get better being down on yourself. ” Brown said. “I flipped it into getting back into rehab mode and getting back for this year.”

Despite knowing his contract expired following the conclusion of 2013, Brown continued to rehab and be a prominent figure around the Giants’ organization. He was with the team week in, and week out, feeling even more pain than the burning sensation in his knee knowing his team needed him, but he couldn’t help.

When the season concluded, and the Giants missed the playoffs for the second consecutive year, Brown was free to sign with any team he wanted. His agent fielded a few calls, tested the waters, but when a decision needed to be made, Brown had no hesitation in returning to the Giants.

“At the end of the day, this is where I wanted to be,” Brown said.

With Will Hill continuing to struggle with the words, “No thanks,” the decision is one that has the Giants’ front office doing cartwheels. The troubled safety, who filled in admirably when Brown went down, is facing a six-game suspension and his career with the Giants is in question. In three seasons, Hill has faced suspensions in each. This season marks his second consecutive following a positive test for marijuana.

While still early, Brown doesn’t appear to be limited and has stated he’s been a full participant in all aspects of practice. The Michigan alum is medically cleared and is moving well both in and out of breaks.

When the Giants took the field for the first on-field practices of their organized team activities, Brown was back next to Rolle taking the majority of the first-team reps. During the second practice, which was open to reporters, Brown lined up next to Rolle for all but two snaps.

“I didn’t really expect anything, but I knew that’s where I wanted to be,” Brown said. “I knew that I was going to work and wherever I fell on the depth chart is where I fell. Just keep going from there.

“Right now they have me next to ‘Trel so I’m staying next to ‘Trel.”

May 312014
 
Will Hill, New York Giants (October 27, 2013)

Will Hill – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Will Hill Claiming Second-Hand Marijuana Smoke Caused Suspension: According to a report on NJ.com, New York Giants safety Will Hill has told his friends that second-hand marijuana smoke is what contaminated his blood and led to his third drug-related suspension in three years.

The NFL announced on Friday that they rejected Hill’s appeal and that Hill will have to serve a 6-game suspension, starting with Week 1 of the 2014 regular season. If the Giants do not cut Hill, he is allowed to participate in all offseason and preseason practices and games until his suspension begins. Hill will be eligible to return to the Giants’ active roster on Monday, October 13 following the team’s October 12 game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Hill was first suspended for four games of the 2012 season for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances (reportedly Adderall). Hill was suspended for four games a second time in 2013, this time for violating the NFL’s policy on abusive substances (reportedly marijuana).

In December 2013, Hill was arrested for being delinquent on child support payments. At the time of that arrest, the police reported that they detected the smell of marijuana in his vehicle, but no drug-related charges were filed.

According to the NJ.com story, some of Hill’s friends and mentors were stunned to learn about the third infraction as Hill “seemed to be settling down, staying in more and hanging out with the right people.”

“A lot of us were surprised,” said friend and former Giants teammate Deon Grant. “It was the last thing that we thought we’d be getting from him as far as his situation. Throughout the season, when I was talking to him, I was trying to get it through to him. ‘Do you know how much you could be worth if you just get serious and get focused?’ And we were on the same page.”

Though Hill has not yet spoken publicly about the third suspension, he has told his friends he was innocent and that he he thought the suspension may be overturned.

“He felt like he had a great chance of beating it because of the circumstances,” Grant said. “He said, ‘I’ll be honest with you. If it was something that I did, I would tell you I messed up. But I didn’t. It was an incident in a club where people were (smoking marijuana) and it got in my system. It’s not like how my urine was a certain kind of way before when I did do it. It’s the total opposite right now. They found something in my urine, but it’s not the same thing they found when I did make that mistake.'”

Both Grant and another unidentified source told NJ.com that they do not believe Hill has a drug dependency problem.

“I don’t think he has an issue or problem,” said Grant. “The truth, I’m almost 80 or 90 percent sure that he doesn’t have an issue and he’s not putting it in his system himself. This situation again is something where he was in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

“Will’s grown. All I really tell him is watch the company you keep. It’s all I can really tell him,” said safety Stevie Brown earlier this week. “He knows what to do.”

“I hope they give him another chance,” said Grant. “I don’t want to see him go anywhere else. I like him in the Giants uniform…But they have a slim tolerance of negative energy in that organization. I hope they can see this last incident was not really him messing up again but just picking the wrong place to be in at the wrong time.”

On the other hand, The Star Ledger says one of Hill’s previous confidants said, “He had every resource over the last eight years and blew it. He will never get better.”

May 302014
 
Justin Tuck, New York Giants (October 21, 2013)

Justin Tuck sacking Josh Freeman – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Cut Josh Freeman; Claim Rogers Gaines: The New York Giants have released quarterback Josh Freeman, who was signed as an unrestricted free agent last month from the Minnesota Vikings. The team also claimed offensive lineman Rogers Gaines off of waivers from the Chicago Bears.

BBI scouting report on Rogers Gaines:

The Giants claimed Rogers Gaines off of waivers from the Chicago Bears in May 2014. Gaines was originally signed by the Baltimore Ravens as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2013 NFL Draft. He played at Tennessee State University where he was named first-team All-Ohio Valley Conference. The Ravens waived him in August 2013. The Bears signed him to their Practice Squad in September 2013. Gaines has excellent size (6’6”, 329lbs) with long arms. He is a good athlete for his size. However, he is needs a lot of technique work and development.

Because of this move, we have updated the TransactionsRoster, and Depth Chart sections of the website.

Giants.com Q&A With Safety Stevie Brown: The video of a Giants.com Q&A session with safety Stevie Brown is available at Giants.com.

May 302014
 
Will Hill, New York Giants (December 22, 2013)

Will Hill Returns an Interception for a TD – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Safety Will Hill Suspended for Six Games: New York Giants safety Will Hill has been suspended without pay for the first six regular-season games of the 2014 season. Hill violated the NFL’s policy on substances of abuse. Pleading innocence, Hill appealed the suspension, but lost the appeal.

If the Giants do not cut Hill, he is eligible to participate in all offseason and preseason practices and games until his suspension begins before Week 1 of the regular season. Hill will be eligible to return to the Giants’ active roster on Monday, October 13 following the team’s October 12 game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

This is Hill’s third NFL suspension in three seasons.

Hill was first suspended for four games of the 2012 season for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances (reportedly Adderall). Hill was suspended for four games a second time in 2013, this time for violating the NFL’s policy on abusive substances (reportedly marijuana). Hill was also arrested during the 2013 season for not making child support payments. At the time of that arrest, the police reported that they detected the smell of marijuana in his vehicle, but no drug-related charges were filed.

When he came off of the second drug suspension, Hill played in the remaining 12 games of the 2013 season. Hill started one game at strong safety and became the new starter at free safety in the last nine games. He impressed with his play, finishing with 77 tackles, 2 pass defenses, 2 interceptions (one returned for a touchdown), and 2 forced fumbles. Hill was a top-ranked athlete coming out of high school in New Jersey, but off-the-field issues caused him to be undrafted and unsigned as a junior in 2011.

Now the team will need to decide on whether Will Hill will remain a New York Giant.

May 302014
 
Cullen Jenkins, New York Giants (May 29, 2014)

Cullen Jenkins – Photo by Connor Hughes

New York Giants Complete Third OTA Practice: The New York Giants held their third of 10 Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices on Friday. No live contact is allowed in OTA practices, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.

The media was not allowed to view Friday’s practice, but the Giants released the following details through their website, Giants.com:

  • The tight ends were noticeably active at today’s OTA. Kellen Davis and Daniel Fells caught QB Eli Manning’s first two passes in the opening team period. Adrien Robinson, Larry Donnell, and Daniel Fells all made nice grabs.
  • QB Eli Manning provided further proof that his left ankle is not hindering him. On one play he evaded a rush by easily rolling to his left before stopping and throwing.
  • RB Rashad Jennings demonstrated quickness and speed when he ran the ball to the outside. Jennings was also effective in the screen game by getting upfield behind his blockers.
  • WR Rueben Randle was active all day on short and intermediate routes and caught a long Manning pass down the left sideline.
  • CB Ross Weaver had the lone interception, picking off a Curtis Painter pass intended for WR Marcus Harris late in the workout.

Giants.com also singled out the following players:

  • CB Ross Weaver: The first-year cornerback out of Michigan State showed great instincts early in practice, stepping in front of a receiver and knocking down a pass near the sideline. At the end of practice, he sat patiently in his zone and intercepted a pass on a roll out.
  • TE Adrien Robinson: Robinson made a nice catch over the middle as he ran down the seam. He extended his arms and used his long frame to pluck the ball out of the air. It was a brief display of what his size and straight-ahead speed can mean from the tight end spot.
  • TE Daniel Fells: The vet tight end showed his skills off during seven on seven drills, catching a high pass over his shoulder as he moved toward the sideline. He stayed with the play and ran a good route, resulting in a 20-yard catch.

Video and photos from today’s OTA practice are available from Giants.com.

Remaining New York Giants OTA practices:

  • June 2-3
  • June 5
  • June 9-10
  • June 12-13

The offseason program will culminate on June 17-19 with a mandatory, full-team mini-camp.

Article on the May 29, 2014 New York Giants OTA Practice: Giants OTAs: 5 takeaways include initial impression of the new offense by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on QB Eli Manning: Having Eli Manning for OTAs and minicamp is ‘huge’ for Giants by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

May 302014
 
Eli Manning, New York Giants (May 29, 2014)

Eli Manning – Photo by Connor Hughes

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Eli Manning exited the dual doors at the Quest Diagnostics Performance Center, stepped foot on the patio that overlooked the practice fields and began the short trip to the podium some 30 feet away.

There was no limp, no boot and no sign that the two-time Super Bowl winning quarterback had undergone ankle surgery seven weeks before, just a member from every major media outlet waiting for words to come out of his mouth.

“I’m excited to be back out there, learning the offense and getting going,” Manning said.

Having Manning’s presence on the field may have shocked everyone but himself. The sturdy and stable signal caller underwent the knife for the first time in his football career following a dismal display from those protecting him in 2013.

As injuries began to deplete the Giants’ offensive line, Eli began to hit the ground at a far more frequent basis. No longer could the quarterback sit in the pocket and wait for the likes of Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz to get down the field, there simply wasn’t the time.

Manning was sacked a career-high 39 times, nine more than his previous high in 2009, but it wasn’t No. 40 that left a mark. On his second to last pass of the 2013 season, Manning felt pressure from Redskins defensive tackle Chris Baker.

The quarterback attempted to avoid the sack by throwing the ball away, but was brought down by Baker shortly after releasing the ball. His left ankle rolled underneath the defensive tackle’s 333-pound frame. Manning stayed in the ball game, throwing an interception on his next pass attempt, before limping off the field and to the locker room.

The 33-year-old opted not for surgery, but following the “Manning Passing Academy,” a camp for quarterback hopefuls he holds with brother Peyton, Manning went under the knife.

“I was still experiencing some discomfort as I began my normal offseason preparation, and after consultation, we felt the right thing was to have Dr. Anderson clean out the ankle,” Manning told The New York Times’ Ken Belson after the surgery.

Having never undergone surgery before, neither Manning, Giants’ coach Tom Coughlin or General Manager Jerry Reese knew how long it would take Manning to rehab. At a pre-draft press conference, Reese declared Manning “out for spring ball,” and that he’d “Be back when he gets back.”

But Manning remained more optimistic, knowing the six-to-seven week recovery timetable he was given put him ‘medically cleared’ for the first day of organized team activities (OTA).

“This was my goal, to be back by OTAs,” Manning said. “They said six weeks, so I kind of had it in my head that I should be ready. I knew early on after three weeks that I was feeling pretty good and could do a few things.”

Manning got a sense his goal could realistically be accomplished over the last four weeks. The former No. 1 overall pick began running and rolling out before taking a day or two off to gauge swelling and soreness.

“You try not to overdo it,” Manning said. “Not trying to have consecutive days where you’re doing a lot of pounding, a lot of jumping and landing on it.”

The initial decision to have surgery was based on the discomfort Manning felt during the “Manning Passing Academy.” Comparing how he felt then to how he feels now is night and day, solidifying in Manning’s mind the decision for surgery was the correct call.

“It feels a lot better,” Manning said. “In running and doing drills, I would notice it at times where, at this point, I didn’t notice it. I’m out there worried about football and not thinking one bit about my ankle.”

Yesterday’s practice was the second straight for Manning who said the coaching staff and trainers tested his ankle after it concluded for soreness. For the second day, Manning had no swelling or discomfort. The plan now is to avoid taking days off.

The more Manning is on the field, the more joy it fills his 67-year-old head coach. For the first time in six years, Manning is no longer running Kevin Gilbride’s offense. The long developing deep shots are gone, replaced by Ben McAdoo’s quick-hitting, fast-paced West Coast scheme.

Manning admitted having the new offense made him want to get on the field as soon as possible, and now that he’s there, he’s intrigued.

“We’re at the very early stages,” Manning said. “I like where we’re heading and the options that this offense gives the quarterback and the whole team to be successful.”

As for Coughlin, he’s just happy to see No. 10 lining up under center.

“It’s huge,” Coughlin said of having Manning on the field. “He can get the reps during the spring here and he will have the offense down by the time we break. Then come back and he’ll be comfortable with it.”

Big Blue Interactive was live and in person for yesterday’s OTAs, check out our complete recap here.

May 292014
 
Will Beatty, New York Giants (November 10, 2013)

Will Beatty – © USA TODAY Sports Images

May 29, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing at Thursday’s Organized Team Activity (OTA) workout were WR Mario Manningham (knee), LT Will Beatty (leg) and OG John Jerry (knee).

When asked about Beatty and Manningham, Head Coach Tom Coughlin responded, “Supposedly they’ll be ready for the fall.”

Coughlin also revealed that Jerry had arthroscopic knee surgery. “He had a knee, he comes out here and the knee swells,” Coughlin said. “We’ll hold him inside. He had a little procedure (debridement of the knee), a scope, so he might not work this spring but he’s here…He may have a day when he’s a little bit sore and we’ll back off the snaps. Today coming after the first one, he didn’t have any issues at all. We just let him do what he can do.”

RB David Wilson (neck) also did not participate in contact drills as he has not yet been cleared for contact. Wilson said he will have another MRI taken on his neck on June 4. “He is in an area where he’s not supposed to have any contact,” said Coughlin. “He’s out there running and feels good. You’d never know that he’s having issues.”

The good news is that QB Eli Manning, who is coming off of arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle, practiced. “He’s so far ahead,” said Coughlin. “When we started out I didn’t think I would have him for anything (in the spring). We’re about two or three days into phase two (of the offseason program) and he’s running around. I’m trying to slow him down but he feels good.”

RG Chris Snee, who is coming off of offseason hip and elbow surgery, practiced. “He looks good,” said Coughlin. “He looks very good.”

S Stevie Brown, who tore the ACL in his left knee last preseason, also practiced. “Stevie’s had a good winter,” said Coughlin. “He’s been in here rehabbing the whole time. He’s gone through both the first and second phases very well. He’s running very well so we’re very happy with that. He does have some… we’re watching him, let’s put it that way. He is what we call limited but he has been able to demonstrate that he has prepared himself well.”

New York Giants Complete Second OTA Practice: The New York Giants held their second of 10 Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices on Thursday. No live contact is allowed in OTA practices, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.

BigBlueInteractive.com (BBI) was at Thursday’s OTA practice.  See New York Giants OTA Day 2: Quick Hits and Tidbits.

Giants.com also provided the following two summaries: Giants players that stood out at OTA’s and Five things we learned at OTA practice.

New York Giants OTA practices:

  • May 28-30
  • June 2-3
  • June 5
  • June 9-10
  • June 12-13

The offseason program will culminate on June 17-19 with a mandatory, full-team mini-camp.

May 29, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video of Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s press conference on Thursday are available at Giants.com.

May 29, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Thursday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:

May 292014
 
Stephen Goodin, New York Giants (December 22, 2013)

Stephen Goodin – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Claim WR Corey Washington, Waive OL Stephen Goodin: The New York Giants have claimed WR Corey Washington off of waivers from the Arizona Cardinals. To make room for Washington, the team waived/injured offensive lineman Stephen Goodin with a foot injury.

BBI Scouting Report on Corey Washington:

The Giants claimed Corey Washington off of waivers from the Arizona Cardinals in May 2014. Washington originally signed with the Cardinals as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2014 NFL Draft. Washington played at Division-II Newberry College. In his two-year career at Newberry, the junior college transfer had 95 receptions for 1,615 yard and 22 touchdowns. Washington combines excellent size (6’4”, 214 pounds) with good speed (4.52). Given his small-school background, he will need a lot of development.

Because of this move, we have updated the TransactionsRoster, and Depth Chart sections of the website.

May 292014
 
Ryan Nassib (9), Eli Manning (10), Ben McAdoo, New York Giants (May 29, 2014)

Ryan Nassib, Eli Manning, and Ben McAdoo – Photo by Connor Hughes

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For the first time this season, the New York Giants allowed media access to the team’s Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices. While rookies WR Odell Beckham, Jr. and RB Andre Williams were not in attendance due to an obligation for the NFL’s “Rookie Symposium,” the rest of the team was.

For nearly two hours, New York displayed Ben McAdoo’s new offense, a retooled secondary and a revamped offensive line. Below you will find a few highlights from this afternoon’s practice.

Earlier this week, we asked you, the fans, what you wanted us to focus on at today’s OTA’s. You answered, and we obliged. At the end of the recap, you will find your questions answered. This will be a trend that continues throughout OTAs, minicamp and training camp.

Please note, this blog will contain a bit more scene setting as this is the first time the media was allowed to see players in action. In following reports, you’ll get many more highlights.

Before we get to practice, I’ll set the groundwork and foundation for the afternoon. Practice was held at Quest Diagnostics Performance Center and media were permitted to stand on the patio. The Giants practiced in the corresponding field but little was able to be seen of the offensive line, quarterbacks, or wide receivers in their individual drills. The groups practiced just past where the eye could clearly see what was transpiring. The two-minute drill, 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 were all conducted on the near field driving towards the media. These we were able to get accurate details of, but not much from the line perspective. With three levels of defenders standing in front, it was tough to gauge what was going on in the trenches.

  • As mentioned above, WR Odell Beckham, Jr. and RB Andre Williams were not in attendance as they were at the Rookie Symposium held by the league. WR Mario Manningham and OG John Jerry were in attendance, but both were not practicing. Tom Coughlin addressed the media afterward and said the two will be held out until training camp. Manningham is still recovering from a knee injury that cost him all of last season Jerry recently had a scope. LT Will Beatty also did not practice as he is still recovering from his broken leg.
  • Much has been talked about in regards to those that make up the Giants’ running back corps, but little has been said about RB Peyton Hillis. The bruising one-time Madden cover boy quietly put together a solid season last year and this season looks like an absolute monster. Hillis is ripped, isn’t afraid to show it, and is sporting a nice mohawk to pull the look together. The Bergen Record’s Art Stapleton referred to him as “Peyton Hochuli” and there may not be a better name.

  • The Giants opened practice with individual drills and split the punt returners off to the side to work on fielding from the machine. Those that occupied the group were RB David Wilson, CB Walter Thurmond, WR Victor Cruz, WR Trindon Holliday and WR Rueben Randle.
  • During the above drill, an interesting technique/practice was used that I personally have not seen before. The returner turned and faced away from the machine, lay flat on his stomach with his limbs spread out, waited for the ball to be shot out before popping up, locating and eventually fielding the ball.
  • S Stevie Brown, who is recovering from knee surgery, seemed to be moving pretty well in the individual portions of practice. The safety cut and broke on the ball without much hesitation. Brown also is working with the No. 1’s opposite S Antrel Rolle.
  • Troubled safety Will Hill was also in attendance and a full participant. Hill was working with the No. 2 defensive unit and paired with Quintin Demps. Coughlin spoke about Hill after practice and said it’s “difficult” not knowing the 24-year-old’s status and has no idea when that status will be determined. When on the field, Hill is a dynamic player.

Now on to the highlights, we’ll start with the two-minute drill…

  • Stevie Brown, New York Giants (May 29, 2014)

    Stevie Brown – Photo by Connor Hughes

    The Giants initial team-related function was a two-minute drill. It was tough to really gauge a depth chart in this particular portion of practice because the No. 2 skill position guys were working with the starting offensive line against the No. 1 defense. QB Ryan Nassib took the first reps.

  • From watching practice today, it appears as if this was a very vanilla version of what we can expect from McAdoo’s scheme. With that being said, the ball certainly comes out of the quarterback’s hand faster, but some familiar aspects were still there. We saw quite a few draw plays and screen passes.
  • Speaking of screen passes, something was shown on multiple occasions that I have not seen on a consistent basis since the Jeremy Shockey era: tight end screens. Quite a few were run, one in particular to Adrien Robinson stood out. It appeared as if it would have picked up a good chunk of change down the sideline.
  • There was no clear-cut No. 1 tight end displayed today, as Coughlin & Co. seem to have the competition completely open. Everyone saw reps and a few stood out. Adrien Robinson hauled in three passes from what I saw. Daniel Fells made a nice grab. Larry Donnell stood out for the opposite reason, dropping a wide-open pass down the seam. For what it’s worth, Fells was the first tight end on the field.
  • CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie looks very, very good early on. A few times we saw him matched up with Victor Cruz and he shut the Pro-Bowl wideout down. There was little, if any, window for Eli to fit the ball in.
  • With David Wilson awaiting a hopefully medical-clearing MRI (scheduled for June 4), Rashad Jennings is the back getting reps with the first team. He looked as good as a running back can look with no contact. Jennings caught a few passes out of the backfield and ran it a few times on draws.
  • WR Julian Talley, who made the practice squad and saw action at the end of the year, dropped a pass down the seam on what appeared to be a fourth down. He rebounded later with a grab between two defenders.
  • Little variation of a trick play, first and only we saw today. Ryan Nassib faked a handoff then handed to to Jerrel Jernigan on an end around.
  • Ryan Nassib certainly didn’t have a very impressive practice, but he did stand out on one specific occasion. In the two-minute drill, a rusher came off the edge (couldn’t tell who), Nassib pump-faked, got the defender in the air, rolled out to his left and threw across his body for a completion on the sideline. I believe it was Daniel Fells who made the sliding catch.
  • S Nat Berhe had a near interception of Nassib, jumping in front of a deep in. Defensive Coordinator Perry Fewell could be heard nearly 100 yards away screaming, “Come on Nat!”
  • Adrien Robinson looked good in the action he saw. By my count, he caught two passes in the two-minute drill and showed some good burst. He stood out among the other TE’s.
  • During the two-minute drill, New York had two play clocks set up. A nice touch considering how many times Eli was called for “Delay of Game” last year.
  • Unlike the offense that ran variations, the starting defense was the starting defense during the two-minute drill. The lineup read as follows from left to right looking behind defense: Mathias Kiwanuka, Cullen Jenkins, Mike Patterson, and Jason Pierre-Paul on the defensive line; Jameel McClain, Jon Beason, and Spencer Paysinger at linebacker; Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Stevie Brown, Antrel Rolle, and either Prince Amukamara or Walter Thurmond in the secondary.
  • The reason I say Amukamara/Thurmond is because the two switched out nearly every other play, while Rodgers-Cromartie (DRC) stayed on the field the entire time.
  • John Conner, who is competing with Henry Hynoski for the starting full back position, looks very, very big. He caught a screen pass out of the backfield and several reporters, and myself, had to double check the roster for who it was.
  • Jon Beason dropped a sure-fire interception when Eli Manning overshot Peyton Hillis on a screen pass. Yes, a screen pass that didn’t go as designed.

Now onto the 7-on-7’s…

  • Victor Cruz, New York Giants (May 29, 2014)

    Victor Cruz – Photo by Connor Hughes

    This may have been when the Giants’ offense struggled the most. The team opened with Randle and Jernigan split outside, Cruz in the slot and Robinson at TE.

  • There was quite a bit of miscommunication in this drill. WR Trindon Holliday and WR Preston Parker ran into each other once. WR Travis Harvey did the same another time. A few times the wide receiver broke in when the quarterback threw out, or vice versa. It’s early, very early, and with a brand new offense these kind of things should be expected.
  • CB Charles James notched the lone interception of the practice. Randle ran a curl, Nassib threw it a bit behind him and James jumped it for what looked like a pick-six. That sent the defensive players and coaching staff into a frenzy.
  • There wasn’t much dispersion with quarterback reps as Manning and Nassib took nearly them all. Curtis Painter saw a few reps in the 7-on-7 and Josh Freeman got a few (3-4) in all three drills.
  • Will Hill got two reps opposite Rolle with the No. 1’s.
  • One interesting wrinkle, Trindon Holliday caught a pass with first team on an in-out route and had a LOT of room to run. Curious to see if McAdoo ties to work the speedy returner into the offense.

Now on to 11-on-11’s…

  • Think this is going to be the largest section? Wrong. Much ado about nothing here. Few completions, few drops, nothing much to showcase.
  • One thing to take out of this is we did see the “first team” offensive line. Justin Pugh is at right tackle, Chris Snee at guard, J.D. Walton at center, Geoff Schwartz at left guard and today Charles Brown was at left tackle.
  • One interesting variation of the line we saw, Snee came out and Weston Richburg played right guard with the first team.

Overall impressions…

  • Ryan Nassib did not look very good today. No one looked “great” on offense, but Nassib stood out as noticeably struggling. He missed behind on a few occasions, had nearly three interceptions and looked rattled. It’s early, and he’ll most likely settle in with the new offense, but he didn’t look good.
  • I mentioned this above, but the offense we saw today I assume is very vanilla. Either way, lots of screens, draws and curls. A few shots down the field, mostly taken by Nassib, but none connected.
  • I don’t think Eli Manning made one pass more than 10 yards down the field, nearly everything was a screen, draw, or dump-off.
  • I figured some fans may be interested, so I kept completion stats for all quarterbacks. I did not keep them for 7-on-7’s, so this includes just two-minute and 11-on-11: Manning – 14/19 • Nassib – 6/9 • Freeman – 2/3.

Your questions answered:

From Tom in NY: 1. The O-Line….how is Snee moving? How are the Tackles, without Beatty (or even with), can the reserves stand up to NFL DEs.

  • Snee looks like he is moving pretty well. Took part in all aspects of practice. Tough to gauge how other guys did because of our vantage point.

From Tom in NY: The TEs — Robinson and Donnell…are both or either up to being a quality NFL starter?

  • I was impressed with Robinson, looked good. Donnell didn’t stand out much aside from a drop down the seam.

From DavidinBMNY: Is snee going to practice with the 1s or is he more of a backup…Does jpp look healthy…how does mainingham look? Which rb looks like the 1..

  • Snee practiced with the ones and looked healthy. Can’t say much more than that because he’s a lineman and there was no contact. JPP looked fine and assures everyone he is healthy. Manningham is out until training camp.

From BillT: A run down on the OL. Who is lining up with the 1s, 3’s etc.

  • Tough to say who lined up with 2’s because of our vantage point. 1’s were Pugh-Snee-Walton-Schwartz-Brown.

From dorgan: An inverted bone. Two backs (probably FBs) lined up behind the gap between guard-tackles at 3-4 yards of depth and a TB lined up behind QB at 5-7 yards.

  • This is tough because the offense was very, very vanilla today. I can tell you, as Robinson said last week, the TE position does move around a bit more. There was one formation which was a “trips right” featuring a WR and two tight ends bunched together near the right tackle. Also, I believe it was Donnell, lined up as a tight end before coming in motion and lining up as a full back in the backfield.

From Racer: Interested to hear if in the passing game they run spacing concepts with a trips receiver running a curl @6y directly over the ball like GB. Jim Miller mentioned on Sirius that this was something he expected to see from McAdoo. Appreciate all the work you’re doing.

  • Lots and lots of curls. Look above for trips description.

From Jay on the Island: I would like to know where Mosley lines up. Is he focusing mostly on LG or RG or is he seeing any time at LT or RT. Is he lining up with the 2nd or third team. Personally I would like to see him lined up at RG in the event Snee can’t rebound.

  • I’m sorry Jay, it was very hard to pick out Mosley from where we were standing.

From Klaatu: I’d also like to know how Beatty’s rehab is coming along, along with Snee’s and Mosley’s, too.

  • Coughlin said Beatty will “supposedly be ready for the fall.” Snee and Mosley both 100%.

From Sir-Yes-Sir: Leadership

  • Tough to tell this early. Beason stood out being vocal. Too far to tell for offensive line.

RiffRaff: Does JPP have his old step off the offensive line?

  • This is tough to say because it’s OTA’s and everyone is going at their own pace. JPP did say after practice he was going at full speed.
May 282014
 
Eli Manning (10) and David Wilson (22), New York Giants (August 7, 2013)

Eli Manning and David Wilson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Complete First OTA Practice: The New York Giants held their first of 10 Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices on Wednesday. No live contact is allowed in OTA practices, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.

The media was not allowed to view Wednesday’s practice, but the Giants released the following details through their website, Giants.com:

  • RB David Wilson, who is recovering from career-threatening offseason neck surgery, did participate in the non-contact drills. Wilson worked both at running back and returner.
  • New Offensive Coordinator Ben McAdoo’s offense is reportedly an up-tempo West Coast Offense-style of attack.  McAdoo was said to be very hands-on during the drills.
  • Despite undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle on April 10, QB Eli Manning practiced. According to the team, “Manning took quite a few snaps on the first day of OTAs. In addition to individual drills, he took many of the first-team reps.”
  • With LT Will Beatty still recovering from a broken leg, the first-team offensive line had James Brewer at left tackle, Geoff Schwartz at left guard, J.D. Walton at center, Chris Snee at right guard, and Justin Pugh at right tackle. The second unit had Charles Brown at left tackle, Brandon Mosley at left guard, Dallas Reynolds at center, Weston Richburg at right guard, and Troy Kropog at right tackle.
  • According to the team’s press release WR Odell Beckham “showcased his quickness in and out of breaks.”

Video and pictures from today’s OTA practice are available from Giants.com.

The media, including BigBlueInteractive.com, will be granted access to Thursday’s practice.

New York Giants OTA practices:

  • May 28-30
  • June 2-3
  • June 5
  • June 9-10
  • June 12-13

The offseason program will culminate on June 17-19 with a mandatory, full-team mini-camp.

Giants.com Q&A With RB Rashad Jennings: The video of a Giants.com Q&A session with RB Rashad Jennings is available at Giants.com.

Article on Former New York Giant David Diehl: David Diehl begins new career as analyst by Michael Eisen of Giants.com