Kerry Wynn – © USA TODAY Sports Images
AUGUST 28, 2016 NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY UPDATE…
ESPN is reporting that tight end Matt LaCosse, who has been sidelined since last week with a knee issue, will undergo surgery on his right knee. LaCosse apparently hurt the knee several weeks ago in practice and was trying to play through it. He missed practice this week and did not play against the New York Jets on Saturday. It is not know how long LaCosse will be out. He might end up on season-ending Injured Reserve or short-term Injured Reserve.
The following Giants were injured in the game against the Jets: linebacker Jonathan Casillas (ribs), linebacker B.J. Goodson (concussion), cornerback Leon Hall (concussion), and fullback Nikita Whitlock (foot).
Head Coach Ben McAdoo said the x-rays on Casillas ribs were inconclusive and that he is still undergoing evaluation. McAdoo also said Whitlock has a mid-foot sprain.
McAdoo was also asked about two players who have missed the last two preseason games: left guard Justin Pugh (shoulder) and tight end/fullback Will Johnson.
“Justin is making progress,” said McAdoo. “We expect him back in a limited role this week…There’s nothing really new to report with Will. We’ll know more this week.”
SUNDAY BEN MCADOO CONFERENCE CALL…
New York Giants Head Coach Ben McAdoo addressed the media by conference call on Sunday to discuss the team’s 21-20 preseason win over the New York Jets.
Opening Statement: Alright, I’ll start with a couple things here, what we did well. Defensively, our tackling improved, which limited their YAC. I thought our conditioning from week two to week three in the preseason was on point there. We were impactful with some plays and some situations. Our sudden change was big for us, one out of two there with a turnover. We were backed up with a turnover there, gave us a chance to win the game in the end. The score by Kerry [Wynn] was a huge play for us, it was great to have him back. And then, our short yardage stop on the first series of the second half was a good momentum changer there.
Our offense, we showed a lot of fight in the second half. We kept playing, even though things weren’t ideal and we got stopped down in the green zone there, and we took advantage of a takeaway by the defense and took the lead late in the game. I thought special teams, our punt return unit took a step forward with two explosive returns of 20 plus yards.
Where we need to improve, our third down defense on, you know, third down and long. Offensively, obviously we need to go forward. We need to a better job of going forward. Everything there is correctable. I’m expecting a lot of questions there about the offensive line, but it’s more than just the offensive line. But everything is correctable, we need to work hard to finish, detail our fundamentals, eliminate the penalties and we need to stay ahead of the chains. Special teams-wise, our punt awareness on the first snap wasn’t good enough. Can’t have a blocked punt the way we did, we need to clean that up. Where we go from here, we need to improve in practice this week, it’s a short week of practice and we have to get everything we can out of it to get better.
Q: Coach, you said you expected questions about the offensive line. Do you see things you can do? Do you feel the need to add personnel?
A: I think that everything with the offensive line is correctable. We need to have better effort to finish. Our detail and our fundamentals need to improve and we need to stay out of long yardage situations.
Q: You said it’s more than just the offensive line, what do you mean?
A: I think everybody’s included in the blocking part of things. Our tight ends are also a part of that as well.
Q: In that regard, does Will Tye have to show you a lot more on the blocking and you’ve mentioned several times that he needs to keep his pad level down. Is he one of the guys that you are talking about?
A: Yes, he had a couple of penalties yesterday, we expect Will to play better. He’s still a young player, he’s still a player that’s going to develop. We have faith that he’ll do that, but he needs to play better.
Q: Andre Williams didn’t have a snap in the first half yesterday. Was there a reason for that, as far as the fumble in Buffalo, or you wanted to see more of somebody else? What can you attribute that to?
A: It was a part of the plan, as far as we wanted to take a look at different players and some different situations. You know, it just happened to fall that way.
Q: Where do you stand with your tight ends and fullbacks right now? There’s a report that Matt LaCosse needs surgery on his knee, Will Johnson’s been out for a while, and now Nikita Whitlock has a foot injury from last night.
A: We have a lot of competition at the position. It’s really open at this point in time. We’re giving guys an opportunity to go out there and compete for the positions. Larry has done a nice job for us, he made a nice play for us yesterday. We need to find some guys who can block better for us.
Q: Where is Will Johnson right now, and can he be that guy?
A: Will, there’s nothing really new to report with Will. We’ll know more this week.
Q: Has Bobby Rainey, I know had trouble holding onto the ball in the Miami game, but especially his work on special teams, is he a guy who can make the team? Is he showing you a lot of explosiveness with some of these returns?
A: Absolutely he’s a guy that can make the team. He does contribute as a returner, both kick return and punt return. He does a nice job with that role. He’s a guy that provides some versatility out of the backfield.
Q: What did you see from Eli Apple last night?
A: Eli, jumping back in there after a little time off. He competed, he was physical at the line of scrimmage. He competed down the field, they went after him a little bit on the press man coverage and he didn’t back down, he stepped up. He did a nice job.
Q: When you watch the film were there things that you may have to correct to avoid future penalties for Eli?
A: Eli, we are just going to keep coaching him to be physical, playing the technique the right way, and just keep competing.
Q: With the offensive line is it more an inconsistency with technique or missing assignments?
A: I think we can tighten up our assignments, but it is really the details and the fundamentals. We need to be detailed in what we are doing fundamentally, and then we have to work like heck to finish hard and finish with effort.
Q: Do you like seeing Odell getting frustrated, even though it’s a preseason game, with the fact that the offense isn’t moving the ball?
A: No one is happy with the way the first offense operated yesterday. We need to improve, we need to make sure we are going forward, so we give guys opportunities to showcase their abilities, but frustration doesn’t solve anything. At the same point in time, we need to improve, we need to execute better and we need to play forward. We can’t be going backwards.
Q: Eli said that he thought that, in the context of a preseason game, he didn’t blame Odell Beckham for pulling up on that interception. Since it is a dry run for the regular season, would you rather see a guy go in to make that catch, or do you agree that he is so important that you do not want to see a big hit there?
A: I think the coverage surprised him. It was a post safety defense and the post safety was low and didn’t get much depth, so when the ball was on him and the safety was on him at the same time, I think he was surprised by the safety more than anything.
Q: What did you think when you saw Victor Cruz on tape? What did you think of his performance and how he looked overall?
A: It was good to see him out there. Same thing as I saw last night. He looked confident, looked comfortable, looked like he was excited and I would like to get him more touches.
Q: How was his explosion and speed?
A: The route you saw – saw some explosiveness and saw some change of direction show up when he was down the field. Eli didn’t really have an opportunity to really finish that throw, but Victor got out of a double move and he won, and we had a chance to get him the ball there, but it didn’t work out.
Q: Do you have an update on Jonathan Casillas?
A: He is being evaluated right now for his ribs.
Q: Last night’s X-rays were inconclusive?
Q: What about Pugh? Is he expected back soon?
A: Justin is making progress. We expect him back in a limited role this week.
Q: Do you have any update on Nikita Whitlock?
A: Nikita Whitlock has a mid-foot sprain.
Q: How important is Justin Pugh to your offensive line? How much of the struggles can you attribute to him not being there?
A: You can’t point any offensive line struggles to one person. The unit has to play well, they have to play well together, and when it is the next man up he has to step in, and they all have to function the same and they have to function well together. You can’t just blame that on one individual.
Q: When you talk about the offensive line as a unit, do you feel you have the right five guys as your starters?
A: I feel very confident that we are going to get the offensive line going in the right direction.
Q: What did you think of Keenan Robinson’s play last night?
A: I thought he stepped in and he flashed admirably. He played hard and made some effort plays.
Q: What is your philosophy on the last week of the preseason? How do you plan to attack it, do you plan to get your starters playing time?
A: First thing is first. We need to jump back out there on the practice field tomorrow and we need to get better right from jump street. We will approach the game and we will talk about the play time for the game as we get closer to the game. That is not something that I am comfortable speaking about right now.
WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The Giants return to practice at 11:45AM on Monday.