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Eli Manning, New York Giants (June 8, 2015)

Quarterback Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports Images

With New York Giants training camp beginning in late July, BigBlueInteractive.com breaks down each of the team’s positional groups until the players report at Quest Diagnostics Training Center.

FIND A COMPLETE LIST OF ALL BREAKDOWNS HERE

POSITIONAL BREAKDOWN: Quarterbacks

2014 YEAR IN REVIEW: Largely lost in the disappointing 6-10 season and the Odell Beckham hype was the fact that New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning experienced a renaissance in 2014. Approaching his mid-30’s and coming off arguably his worst season in the NFL in 2013, Manning rebounded with one of his best seasons in 2014. Indeed, had it not been for a dreadful 5-interception game against the San Francisco 49ers in November, Manning would have thrown only eight picks all season – his lowest ever in the NFL. His success was even more impressive when you consider he was coming off April ankle surgery that limited his offseason work, had a new offensive coordinator and position coach, was introduced to a radically-different offensive system, and lost his security blanket Victor Cruz early in campaign. Before the season, many said Manning was washed up and the team should move on. By season’s end, those thoughts had largely disappeared. Of all of the Giants’ personnel problems, the quarterback position is not one of them.

It originally looked like Ryan Nassib was going to have an up-hill fight for the #2 quarterback spot as the Giants had re-signed 2013 #2 quarterback Curtis Painter and had added quarterbacks Josh Freeman and Rusty Smith in free agency. But Freeman and Smith didn’t even make it to training camp, and Nassib clearly out-performed Painter in the preseason, completing 44-of-74 passes for 588 yards, five touchdowns, and no interceptions (107.3 quarterback rating). Nassib not only earned the promotion to the #2 spot, but the team was comfortable enough with him to cut Painter and only go with two quarterbacks on the 53-man roster.

ADDITIONS/SUBTRACTIONS: The Giants signed street free agent Ricky Stanzi in January.

TRAINING CAMP STORY LINES: Entering training camp, Eli Manning seems comfortable, confident, and healthy. He worked hard at improving his arm strength in the offseason and his coaches and teammates have noticed.

“Yeah, (his arm) is lively, very lively,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin in mid-June. “He has worked hard on that.”

“I would definitely agree with you on that,” said wide receiver Rueben Randle. “He overthrew me twice and I don’t ever recall that happening. That is something we noticed down at Duke working with him. We noticed that his arm got stronger and that is exciting for us.”

But more important than the increased arm strength is that Manning appears ready to take the next step forward in Offensive Coordinator Ben McAdoo’s quarterback-friendly system. Combine that with talented targets such as Odell Beckham, Victor Cruz, Rueben Randle, Larry Donnell, and Shane Vereen and Eli may be primed for a really big year.

“Eli is a lot quicker at this point in time in getting everything going and getting everything moving,” said McAdoo. “Eli has put a lot of time and effort into his footwork and his training there and to his upper body and his strengthening and maintenance in those types of things. I like the look in his eye right now.”

“I think he is gaining confidence in what we have asked him to do fundamentally in the system and in the communication that happens in the meeting rooms and is carried on to the field,” continued McAdoo. “He is on the same page with his receivers, his tight ends and his backs. He is working well with the center and the o-line. I think being in the second year of the system helps.”

ON THE BUBBLE: Barring something unusual, the two quarterbacks will be Eli Manning and Ryan Nassib. Ricky Stanzi is a camp arm.

FROM THE POSITIONAL COACH: Mike Sullivan on Eli Manning: “(He) is a lot more comfortable, perhaps, and certainly healthy and we have had a chance to get rolling, but I agree he is definitely throwing the ball well and it is exciting.”

Sullivan on Ryan Nassib: “He is a guy who is a very hard worker. He is a grinder and he is a gym rat and is someone who is very conscientious. He came from a similar type system in college, so he didn’t really have to unlearn, if you will, as much. I am very impressed with his work ethic, his competitiveness and how intelligent he is. He has been really trying to focus on the little things that can get his release a little faster. He is very conscientious about that, “Hey, I can just keep the ball a little bit higher.” He understands the reasoning and timing behind things in terms of not wanting to be too slow with his feet or having an elongated release and just a very bright and competitive player. In the meeting room, he is someone that Eli relies upon. I got the sense early on that those two guys really respect each other and you look at a guy like Ryan and I am excited to see how he is going to perform in these games in the preseason, and he is just a really competitive kid.”

PREDICTIONS: To date, 2011 was clearly Manning’s best pro season. Fans forget that team was 32nd in rushing and 27th in defense. Manning practically single-handily willed that team to a 9-7 regular-season record. It was a league MVP-type performance with six 4th-quarter comeback victories (and two more in the post-season).

Provided Manning stays healthy, Eli will be in serious contention for his first league MVP award. Once again, he will carry his team to the playoffs.

FINAL DEPTH CHART: Eli Manning and Ryan Nassib.

Jul 222015
 
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Eli Manning and Kevin Gilbride, New York Giants (September 8, 2013)

Eli Manning and Kevin Gilbride – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New Deal for Eli Manning Looming?: According to Ian Rapoport of The NFL Network, the New York Giants and quarterback Eli Manning may be close to a new contract either before or early on in training camp. Players report to training camp on July 30.

“This is another one where the Giants hope to do a deal either before training camp or early on in training camp,” said Rapoport. “My understanding is the Giants brass is confident in doing a deal in due time. Actually, just talking to people on both sides of this, it seems to make sense for both sides to do a deal, one that they think and hope will get done this year. Remember, Eli Manning set to make $17 million and a contract extension will give him only a little bit of a raise but will help the cap number, something the Giants certainly would like to do.”

Manning is entering the last year of his current deal. He is scheduled to make $17 million in salary and count $19.75 million against the 2015 salary cap.

Kevin Gilbride Comments on Giants Offense: Kevin Gilbride, who served as the New York Giants offensive coordinator from 2007-13, was asked about the state of his former team’s offense on The NFL Network (video) on Tuesday.

“I think they’re in a good place offensively. I think they’ve got all of the bugs worked out,’’ said Gilbride. “They’ve assimilated some of the things that Eli liked from the year before. They’re all familiar now with the verbiage, the underlining concepts. They’re all confident in what they were doing at the end of the year. The fact that they got Victor Cruz coming back is a great thing.

“The addition of Shane Vereen I think is a tremendous addition — they haven’t had a running back that they could throw the ball to with any confidence since Tiki Barber left. There are a lot of things to be very optimistic about. I think if there is one area that would cause some concern it would be in the offensive line. The tragedy of that is they’ve made some strides over the last couple years to address that issue. They brought in Justin Pugh, they brought in Ereck Flowers, they brought in Weston Richburg. They made some adjustments which I thought they had to make, which was moving Pugh to the inside.

“The problem is it all went astray when William Beatty got injured in the offseason. Now they have to move Ereck Flowers over to the left tackle position; quite honestly, I’m not sure that he’s ready technique-wise to play that. He does a very poor job with his hands. At the right tackle position I think they could have helped him. They are not facing the amount of premium pass rushers. Playing left tackle I think is going to be a difficult thing for him. But more importantly is who is going to play the right tackle position now?

“The good thing is that they are throwing a high percentage, a high volume of short, three-step passing. Quick passes. The fact that they got a guy like Odell Beckham and Victor Cruz who can run very well so they can get the ball out of their hands and still have some big time, productive plays. But I really do think it is going to come down in the end to how well the offensive line plays.”

NFL Network Interview with WR Odell Beckham: The video of an NFL Network interview with wide receiver Odell Beckham is available at Giants.com.

Giants.com Q&A with S Landon Collins: The video of a Giants.com interview with safety Landon Collins is available at Giants.com.

Jul 212015
 
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (June 16, 2015)

Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports Images

The New York Giants training camp schedule was officially released on Monday. Only nine practices will be open to the public at Quest Diagnostics Training Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey due to MetLife Stadium events and the two joint practices held with the Cincinnati Bengals in mid-August. The open practice sessions are July 31 and August 1, 2, 3, 6 16, 19, 20, and 25.

Practice sessions usually last approximately two hours (i.e., 2:30-4:30PM), but the schedule is subject to change and fans should check with Giants.com for the latest updates.

  • Friday, July 31: 2:30 p.m. – Practice
  • Saturday, August 1: 2:30 p.m. – Practice
  • Sunday, August 2: 2:30 p.m. – Practice
  • Monday, August 3: 2:30 p.m. – Practice
  • Tuesday, August 4: CAMP CLOSED; no practice
  • Wednesday, August 5: CAMP CLOSED; MetLife Stadium Event
  • Thursday, August 6: 2:30 p.m. – Practice
  • Friday, August 7: CAMP CLOSED
  • Saturday, August 8: CAMP CLOSED; MetLife Stadium Event
  • Sunday, August 9: CAMP CLOSED; no practice
  • Monday, August 10: CAMP CLOSED; Travel to Cincinnati
  • Tuesday, August 11: 3:00 p.m. – Joint practice with Bengals in Cincinnati
  • Wednesday, August 12: 3:00 p.m. – Joint practice with Bengals in Cincinnati
  • Thursday, August 13: CAMP CLOSED; jog-thru in Cincinnati
  • Friday, August 14: Giants at Bengals, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, August 15: CAMP CLOSED; no practice
  • Sunday, August 16: 5:50 p.m. – Practice
  • Monday, August 17: CAMP CLOSED
  • Tuesday, August 18: CAMP CLOSED; no practice
  • Wednesday, August 19: 5:50 p.m. – Practice
  • Thursday, August 20: 5:50 p.m. – Practice
  • Friday, August 21: CAMP CLOSED
  • Saturday, August 22: Giants vs. Jaguars, 7:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, August 23: CAMP CLOSED
  • Monday, August 24: CAMP CLOSED; no practice
  • Tuesday, August 25: 2:30 p.m. – Practice
  • Wednesday, August 26: CAMP CLOSED; MetLife Stadium Event
  • Thursday, August 27: CAMP CLOSED; end of training camp

The New York Giants have provided the following guidelines for training camp:

Admission: There is no admission charge for watching training camp workouts.

Fan Guidelines: Practice sessions will be open to the public throughout training camp (July 31-Aug. 25). Limited seating is provided alongside the practice fields. Restroom facilities, concession stands and a free kids’ activity area will also be available.

Autographs: A different position group of Giants players will sign autographs for fans each day following practice. In addition, select Giants legends will sign autographs during each practice. A full schedule will be released on Giants.com.

Kids’ Zone: Families will love the Big Blue Kids’ Zone at camp, with games and inflatables for kids of all ages.  The first 100 kids who visit the Big Blue Kids’ Zone at every practice will also receive a Giants’ Back to School Supply Pack. The Big Blue Kids’ Zone will be open as soon as gates open until the end of practice.

Fan Parking: Parking is free and is located in Lot K on the grounds of the MetLife Sports Complex. The lot will open to the public one hour before the scheduled start time of practice and the gates will open 30 minutes before practice begins. The parking lot will close one hour following the conclusion of practice. All fans attending practice will be subject to security screening before entering the seating area.

25th Anniversary Giveaway: The first 1,000 fans who attend practice on Thursday, Aug. 6 and Thursday, Aug. 20 will receive a 25th Anniversary pennant, courtesy of Party City, celebrating the Giants’ 1990 championship season.

Rain Policy: In the event of inclement weather (including rain, thunderstorms and extreme heat), practices will be moved indoors and will be closed to the public. Please check Giants.com prior to every practice for up-to-the-minute changes in the daily practice schedule.

Jul 202015
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul (90), Justin Tuck (91), New York Giants (January 22, 2012)

Jason Pierre-Paul and Justin Tuck – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Justin Tuck Comments on Jason Pierre-Paul: There has not been much word on New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul since the immediate aftermath of the July 4th fireworks accident that severely injured his right hand and arm. There is still no concrete information on the true extent of Pierre-Paul’s injuries which are believed to include a right index finger amputation (including knuckle), fractured right thumb (requiring pins), skin grafts to his lower right arm, and possibly additional finger and hand fractures. It is believed that Pierre-Paul has still not allowed Giants officials to meet with or examine him.

Former Giants teammate defensive end Justin Tuck, who is currently with the Oakland Raiders, told the press on Monday that he has been in regular contact with Pierre-Paul since the injury.

“I’ve been in constant conversation with JPP,” said Tuck. “He is (in good spirits). He’ll be the first one to tell you he made a mistake. He’s fine. He’s going to have a great year.”

“I think he will be (the same player),” said Tuck. “Once he gets used to playing again, you can’t deny his athletic ability. He’s a terror to block. Hopefully everything else gets healthy around him and if that is the case, I don’t see any reason why he wouldn’t be the JPP of the second half of the season like he was last year.”

Tuck did not seem overly concerned about the loss of Pierre-Paul’s right index finger on his overall game. “Honestly, the (three-point) stance is the only thing I think would be new (to him),” Tuck said. “JPP’s got huge hands. So I think he’ll make up for it.”

Giants.com Q&A with WR Corey Washington: The video of a Giants.com interview with wide receiver Corey Washington is available at Giants.com.

Article on RB Shane Vereen: Giants new running back Shane Vereen: Underrated, overrated or as expected? by Jordan Raanan for NJ.com

Article on WR Odell Beckham: Marquee Man Starring Odell Beckham Jr. by Kimberly Jones of NFL.com

Article on OG Geoff Schwartz: Giants’ Geoff Schwartz eager to put 2014 in his rearview mirror by Nick Powell for NJ.com

Article on DE Jason Pierre-Paul: David Diehl says Giants’ Jason Pierre-Paul faces ‘an uphill battle’ after finger amputation by Christian Red of The New York Daily News

Article on S Jeromy Miles: Former Baltimore Ravens safety Jeromy Miles a no-risk signing for Giants by Jordan Raanan for NJ.com