Damontre Moore Recovering from Shoulder Surgery: Defensive end Damontre Moore informed The Star-Ledger on Tuesday that he is recovering from “minor” offseason shoulder injury. Moore injured his shoulder in the first preseason game against the Pittsburgh Steelers and subsequently missed the rest of training camp and the preseason.
Moore has not yet been cleared to begin fully working out with weights.
“I want to get back as healthy as possible and pick up like 15 pounds of muscle,” said Moore. “I can do light stuff, I’m not cleared to lift weights yet but as far as the other stuff goes, I’m maintaining my cardiovascular strength and stuff like that. Just trying to enhance that part of the game so once I get cleared I can focus on the weights.”
Adrien Robinson Says 2014 Has to Be His Breakout Season: Tight end Adrien Robinson, who missed virtually all of the 2013 season with injuries, told The Star-Ledger on Tuesday that 2014 has to be his breakout season.
“I hope so,” said Robinson. ”Definitely. It has to be this year.”
Robinson suffered a foot injury in the preseason and did not play again until Week 16 against the Detroit Lions. But he immediately left that game with a sprained knee and his season was over.
Robinson is also encouraged about the Giants hiring Ben McAdoo as their new offensive coordinator. McAdoo coached both the tight ends (2006-2011) and quarterbacks (2012-2013) in Green Bay. ”Definitely, I watched to see what type of offense it would be,” Robinson said. “(The Green Bay Packers) throw the ball to the tight end a lot. So for me, individually, that’s good.”
BBI on Giants.com Big Blue Kickoff Live on Thursday: Eric from BBI will be a guest on Big Blue Kickoff Live, the Giants’ Monday-Friday live call-in show from 9:30-10:30 AM ET on Giants.com. Eric will be on Thursday at 9:40 AM. You can call with your questions at (201) 939-4513 or on twitter using #GiantsChat. The show is live on Giants.com or the Giants Free Mobile App. Listen live here: www.giants.com/bigbluekickoff
December 11, 2013 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing on Wednesday were DE Jason Pierre-Paul (shoulder), DT Cullen Jenkins (shin/quad), CB Terrell Thomas (knee), and S Cooper Taylor (hamstring).
CB Corey Webster (ankle) practiced on a limited basis.
CB Prince Amukamara (illness) fully practiced.
December 11, 2013 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video of Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s Wednesday press conference are available at Giants.com.
December 11, 2013 New York Giants Player Media Sessions: Transcripts and video of Wednesday’s media sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:
BBI Contribution Campaign Ends Soon! The annual BBI contribution will end on September 14. Please help to keep this website in business. For details on the contribution campaign, click here. We need your support!
Giants Must Reduce Roster to 53: By 6:00PM on Saturday, the Giants must make at least 22 roster moves in order to reduce their roster from 75 to 53.
Injury Update: Various press sources are reporting that RB Andre Brown, who fractured his left leg in the preseason game against the Patriots, will miss 4-6 weeks. Head Coach Tom Coughlin was less definitive. “Not really (any timetable), said Coughlin. “Not until I hear some more information. There’s MRI’s and that type of stuff going on so, when we know, you’ll know.”
Coughlin was asked if Brown could be placed on Reserve/Designated-to-Return List (temporary Injured Reserve). “He could be. Yeah. Sure,” replied Coughlin. If Brown is placed on the Designated-to-Return List, he would be ineligible to return until for eight weeks. And the Giants could only put him on temporary IR after he is first on the 53-man roster, meaning another player would have to lose a roster spot first. Teams can only use the temporary IR option once per season.
TE Adrien Robinson sprained his left foot in the preseason game against the Patriots. “Supposedly a sprain,” said Coughlin. “At this point in time and, again, you could come back in five minutes and I could say it’s a different story. There’s no surgery or anything like that to talk about…It’s not exactly mid-foot (sprain), it’s off to the side a little bit. I think he tried to turn around at halftime and go last night, but he couldn’t really get up on his toes well enough to be able to do that. ”
LB Dan Connor suffered a burner in the preseason game against the Patriots, but is not expected to miss any time. “Just shoulder tightness, nothing terrible,’’ Connor said. “I could play today, I could have played a lot more (against the Patriots).’’
S Tyler Sash suffered a concussion in preseason game against the Patriots. No word yet on how much time he might miss.
WR Victor Cruz, who suffered a heel contusion in the preseason game against the Jets, says he hopes to be able to play in the season opener against the Cowboys but is unsure if the team will let him. “I hope so,” said Cruz. “We’re still going to gauge it throughout the weekend. I’m still going to be coming in for treatment or whatnot, so we’ll see how it goes. Still doctors that have to say it’s OK. The training staff is taking it slow, but I’d like to practice and get some live work in on Monday if possible.”
OC David Baas, who sprained the MCL in one of his knees in the preseason game against the Colts, says he is improving but Baas is not sure if he will be ready for the season-opener against the Cowboys. “It’s responded really well,” Baas said. “My doctors have said they are very happy with my progress. And, like I said, this is something that we’re just going to continue to work on and keep pushing it to its max and hope for the best. We’ll take it day-to-day.”
Surgery for S Stevie Brown, who tore the ACL in his left knee in the preseason game against the Jets, has not yet been scheduled. “It’s very disappointing,” said Brown. “You work all summer getting ready for the season and just a freak accident like that to happen definitely sucks.”
Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s Press Conference: The transcript and video of Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s Friday press conference are available at BigBlueInteractive.com and Giants.com.
Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Friday’s media Q&As with the following players are available at Giants.com:
Andre Brown, Adrien Robinson, and Tyler Sash Injured in Preseason Loss: The New York Giants fell to the New England Patriots 28-20 at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts on Thursday night. The Giants finished the preseason 1-3, with three straight losses.
However, the truly bad news for the Giants was once again on the injury front. RB Andre Brown broke his left leg, TE Adrien Robinson injured his left foot, and S Tyler Sash suffered a concussion. It remains to be determined how long all three players will be out.
“It’s not that bad of a break,” said Brown after the game. “Just like a little tiny crack in it. We’ve still got to do some more tests on it. Last time when I broke it we knew immediately what the problem was…They’d let me know if it was serious, but it’s not. So definitely spirits are high, positive, and I’m looking forward to coming back this season. No (surgery). Definitely not. We’ve got to go do some more tests, but it’s not as serious as it was last year.”
X-rays on Robinson’s foot were negative, but he was on crutches and in a walking boot after the game and will have to undergo further tests. “I know it is not broken,” said Robinson after the game. “First play of game, kickoff return, somebody stepped on it.”
As for the game, the Patriots decided not to play their offensive and defensive starters. The Giants played their starters for almost all of the first quarter.
The Giants’ first-team offense continued to struggle on their first two possessions of the game, netting only 19 yards and one first down. But on their third and final drive of the evening, the first-team offense drove 91 yards in 10 plays against the Patriots’ second-team defense. The big play on the drive was a 37-yard pass from QB Eli Manning to WR Louis Murphy. RB David Wilson also had a 16-yard run. The drive culminated with a 3-yard touchdown pass from Manning to WR Hakeem Nicks on 3rd-and-goal. Manning finished the game 6-of-9 for 74 yards and one touchdown.
Meanwhile, the first-team defense did give up 50 yards and three first downs to New England’s second stringers, but they did force two punts before leaving the game. The Patriots’ second-team offense did drive 86 yards in 12 plays against a mixed first- and second-team defensive unit to tie the game 7-7 in the second quarter. It appeared CB Prince Amukamara ended that drive with a leaping interception in the end zone, but after the play was reviewed, the officials questionably ruled that Amukamara landed out-of-bounds on the play. On the very next snap, CB Corey Webster batted away an end zone pass on 3rd-and-goal, but was questionably flagged for pass interference. New England scored on the next play.
The Giants went three-and-out on their next possession with Ryan Nassib at quarterback. The Patriots went up 14-7 on their very next offensive snap on a 41-yard touchdown pass against CB Terrell Thomas, who slightly stumbled on the play.
The Giants and Patriots then exchanged punts and turnovers, with QB David Carr fumbling the ball away on one series, and LB Mark Herzlich intercepting a deflected pass on the next series.
The Giants then cut the score to 14-10 late in the second quarter by moving the ball 18 yards in seven plays to set up PK Josh Brown from 35 yards out.
In the second half, the Giants scored on their first two possessions of the third quarter, going up 20-14, after a 9-play, 37-yard drive set up a 48-yard field goal and then a 3-play, 21-yard drive finished with a 6-yard touchdown pass from QB Curtis Painter to RB Da’Rel Scott. That score was set up by a 30-yard punt return by CB Charles James.
However, the backups on offense could not score on their final six possessions of the game, turning the ball over three times on downs and punting it away three other times. The Giants were moving the ball late in the fourth quarter and appeared poised to set up a game-winning field goal, but the officials ignored an obvious defensive pass interference penalty on a deep pass on 3rd-and-5 from Painter to WR Kevin Hardy. On the very next play, Painter was sacked on fourth down, thus ending the Giants’ last real shot to win the game.
Defensively, the Giants kept the Patriots and QB Tim Tebow under wraps for most of the second half except for one play where Tebow hit his receiver over the middle. CB Trumaine McBride was beat and S Cooper Taylor failed to make the tackle in the open field as the receiver sprinted 52 yards for the go-ahead touchdown early in the fourth quarter. The Patriots led 21-20. The score would remain that way until the game was practically over. After the Giants had turned the ball over on downs at their 9-yard line with 10 seconds left, the classless Patriots threw the ball to pad the lead 28-20.
BBI Contribution Campaign – Only Three Weeks Left to Be Eligible for Prize! The annual BBI contribution campaign continues. Please help to keep this website in business. We will randomly select two contributors to each receive one VIP ticket to the “Tuna Roast” honoring Bill Parcells on September 15 in Secaucus, NJ. (But we must receive your contribution by September 1 in order to be eligible for the prize). For details on the contribution campaign and how to enter the contest, click here. We need your support!
ESPN Radio Interview with RB David Wilson: The audio of Friday’s ESPN Radio interview with RB David Wilson is available at ESPN.com.
Giants.com Player Interviews: Video clips of recent Giants.com interviews with the following players are available at Giants.com:
BBI Contribution Campaign – We Need Your Help! The annual BBI contribution campaign continues. Please help to keep this website in business. We will randomly select two contributors to each receive one VIP ticket to the “Tuna Roast” honoring Bill Parcells on September 15 in Secaucus, NJ. (Prize does not include lodging or transportation to and from the event). For details on the contribution campaign and how to enter the contest, click here. We need your support!
Tuesday’s Training Camp Practice: The Giants held their ninth training camp practice on Tuesday afternoon at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center. The next practice is on Wednesday from 1:30-3:45PM. For a complete training camp schedule and Giants.com Q&A guide, see the Training Camp section of the website.
Injury Update – Snee and Thomas Off the PUP: Not practicing on Tuesday were OL Justin Pugh (concussion), FB Henry Hynoski (PUP – knee), DE Jason Pierre-Paul (PUP – back), and DT Markus Kuhn (PUP – knee).
“(Pugh is) feeling better,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “He was out today with his helmet on, and he was running on the side. Hopefully, that’s a good sign.”
“JPP’s on schedule,” said General Manager Jerry Resse. “He’s looking good, he’s running around a little bit. He’s going to be out on the field a little more than usual as we move along. We expect him to hopefully be back, ready to go for the (Week 1) Dallas game.”
Pierre-Paul was not quite as optimistic as Reese. “I’m rehabbing, I don’t know when my return will be, but at the end of he day I’m going to go out there when I feel comfortable,” said Pierre-Paul. “I’ve been doing some running lately, and it feels good. Like I said, it’s basically day-by-day.”
“It’s not really the doctor’s decision (on when I return),” said Pierre-Paul. “I say it’s not the doctor’s decision anymore because it’s basically on me. It all depends on my recovery and how my back feels and if I can go out there and practice with the team but I’m going to have to get a couple practices in before, if, I decide to come back before the first game. I already know I’m going to be taking on two guys, double team, triple team maybe so, I’m not in a rush to come back and put myself in that position…And right now I’m still at that stage that I know I can’t go out there and perform. So, I’m not going to try and rush back.”
“At the end of the day, you know that your coaches and general manager and head coach want you out there, to help the team out, but, it’s all on me, like I said,” said Pierre-Paul. “I’m focused on coming back 100%, not being like 85%, you know what I’m saying? And I know I’m going to be a big factor of the defense, so I’d rather come back 100% and that’s it.”
OG Chris Snee (hip) and CB Terrell Thomas (knee/hamstring) were activated off of the Physically-Unable-to-Perform (PUP) List and practiced on a limited basis. WR Hakeem Nicks (groin) and CB Corey Webster (groin) also returned to practice.
Snee participated only in individual drills. “It felt good, it felt like I was part of a football team,” Snee said. “It’s a lonely feeling when you’re not even allowed to stretch with your team before practice. So, it was exciting to be out there and I think my teammates like having me out there.”
Most of Thomas’ work also came in individual drills. “It felt great to get out there and be with the guys for the first time and run around,” Thomas said. “Obviously, I’m a little rusty. I’ve still got to get my legs under me. The first day is in the books and we’ll just keep building off that.”
“It wasn’t really reported, but I had a (hamstring) strain,” said Thomas. “I wanted to let that fully heal so it wasn’t an aggravating thing throughout training camp. They wanted me under their supervision and not have me rush things. Last year I came out right away and, unfortunately, I tore my ACL. They wanted me to take it a little bit slower this year.”
Nicks participated in all drills, but saw his number of snaps limited. “I would have liked to have done more, but I’m going to stick to what they want me to do right now,” Nicks said. “I felt good. I have got to keep going up from here. The reps they’ve got me doing right now is really not too much, so I’ve just got to keep on working as more and more gets thrown on me. Take it in stride.”
OL James Brewer (possible concussion), TE Larry Donnell (ankle), S Taylor Cooper (hamstring), and RB Ryan Torain (unknown) left practice early.
Coach Media Q&As: Transcripts and video clips of Tuesday’s media sessions with the following coaches are available at Giants.com:
BBI Contribution Campaign – We Need Your Help! The annual BBI contribution campaign is now in its second week. Please help to keep this website in business. We will randomly select two contributors to each receive one VIP ticket to the “Tuna Roast” honoring Bill Parcells on September 15 in Secaucus, NJ. (Prize does not include lodging or transportation to and from the event). For details on the contribution campaign and how to enter the contest, click here. We need your support!
Bill Parcells Enshrined Into the Hall of Fame: Bill Parcells, who served as Giants’ defensive coordinator and linebackers coach (1981-1982) and head coach (1983-1990), was officially enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday. Former Giants’ defensive end George Martin (1975-1988) introduced Parcells. Giants’ co-owner Ann Mara, President/CEO John Mara, and Head Coach Tom Coughlin were in attendance for the ceremony.
For a complete list of Giants in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, see the Hall of Fame section of the website.
Saturday’s Training Camp Practice: The Giants held their seventh training camp practice on Saturday afternoon at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center. The next practice is on Sunday from 1:30-3:45PM, but this practice is closed to the public. For a complete training camp schedule and Giants.com Q&A guide, see the Training Camp section of the website.
Injury Update: Not practicing on Saturday were WR Hakeem Nicks (groin), CB Corey Webster (groin), OL Justin Pugh (concussion), FB Henry Hynoski (PUP – knee), OG Chris Snee (PUP – hip), DE Jason Pierre-Paul (PUP – back), DT Markus Kuhn (PUP – knee), and CB Terrell Thomas (PUP – knee).
“(Pugh is) getting better,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “He’s feeling better.”
“(Webster) does (feel better),” said Coughlin. “But he seems to be doing okay. Hopefully it’s not going to be long.”
“I would hope (Nicks will practice on Tuesday),” said Coughlin. “That’s the plan.”
Coach Media Q&As: Transcripts and video clips of Saturday’s media sessions with the following coaches are available at Giants.com or BigBlueInteractive.com:
Quotes: Tight Ends Coach Mike Pope on tight ends Adrien Robinson and Larry Donnell: “We want to get Adrien on the field. He’s a terrific target and runs well. We’d like to see if Larry Donnell can make a contribution. Certainly size and talent-wise, he has that. But he missed all the spring and mini-camps because of a broken foot, so he’s virtually just starting right now. So, how fast can those guys grow? The faster they grow, the more effective we’re going to be. I do think we have, size-wise, the biggest group I’ve ever worked with. These guys are 278, 280, 282, and they can run fairly well. We haven’t had that around here since I’ve been here. That’s since 1982. We haven’t had that size player. So that should add to our running game on the edge, and should enable us to block some of these defensive ends and some of these outside linebackers that are in this league now. Hopefully, with the quickness and speed of our running backs, that can be a huge contribution: the way we block the edge of the offense and are more effective in the run game.”
BBI Contribution Campaign – We Need Your Help! The annual BBI contribution campaign has begun. Please help to keep this website in business. We will randomly select two contributors to each receive one VIP ticket to the “Tuna Roast” honoring Bill Parcells on September 15 in Secaucus, NJ. (Prize does not include lodging or transportation to and from the event). For details on the contribution campaign and how to enter the contest, click here. We need your support!
Thursday’s Training Camp Practice: The Giants held their fifth training camp practice on Thursday afternoon at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center. The next practice is on Friday from 1:30-3:45PM. For a complete training camp schedule and Giants.com Q&A guide, see the Training Camp section of the website.
Injury Update – Nicks Sits Out: Not practicing on Thursday were WR Hakeem Nicks (groin), FB Henry Hynoski (PUP – knee), OG Chris Snee (PUP – hip), DE Jason Pierre-Paul (PUP – back), DT Markus Kuhn (PUP – knee), and CB Terrell Thomas (PUP – knee).
“(Nicks) is being treated for a groin, it’s a day to day type thing,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “They just want to quiet it down, make sure that he heals before he goes back out and continues to maybe make it worse…I want to see him on the field and he wants to be on the field. It’s frustrating, but I’ve got to learn to control myself when it comes to that as well and just realize that you know what, he’s trying like heck to get out there and he knows he needs to practice and work at it and he came in excited about being able to go and then he had this little groin injury, which I hope is not going to set him back for very long, but obviously they’re taking all the necessary precautions.”
“I think (Nicks) needs to practice,” said Wide Receivers Coach Kevin M. Gilbride. “He knows it. He and I talk about it all the time and he knows it. In order for you to be ready for the season, you need to have done it and done it over and over and done it wrong, made the adjustment and then have it become part of what you do, the correct way to do it. He’s not there yet, he needs to continue to improve and he knows that. He understands that. In order for him to be ready to produce the way that he wants to produce and the way that we need him to produce, he needs to practice and get ready for that.”
DT Cullen Jenkins was excused from practice due to the death of his grandmother.
OC David Baas (still recovering from various and undisclosed offseason surgeries) was limited in practice.
Giants Waived/Injured WR Jeremy Horne; Re-Sign WR Julian Talley: The Giants waived/injured WR Jeremy Horne on Thursday after he injured his foot in practice on Tuesday. To replace Horne’s spot on the roster, the team re-signed WR Julian Talley, who the Giants originally signed as a rookie free agent last year and waived in August 2012.
Giants Release Unofficial Depth Chart: The Giants released an unofficial depth chart yesterday. For details, see the Depth Chart section of the website.
Ann Mara, John Mara, and Tom Coughlin to Attend Hall of Fame Ceremonies: Giants’ co-owner Ann Mara, Giants’ President/CEO John Mara, and Head Coach Tom Coughlin will attend the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies for former Giants’ head coach Bill Parcells on Saturday in Canton, Ohio.
Coach Media Q&As: Transcripts and video clips of Thursday’s media sessions with the following coaches are available at BigBlueInteractive.com or Giants.com:
Quotes: Head Coach Tom Coughlin on TE Adrien Robinson and TE Larry Donnell: “Well, I think (Robinson is) making steady progress. You know, today I thought he practiced well, made some plays, and more importantly, from an assignment standpoint he did well, so, we look forward to having him continue that way because we also see Larry Donnell making a couple plays, so with those two big, young tight ends, they certainly do give us flexibility provided they can continue to improve.”
Wide Receivers Coach Kevin M. Gilbride on WR Louis Murphy: “Just, in general terms, great speed, great power, runs very sharp routes and is a tremendous professional. He’s studies our offense, he asks great questions, and so when you have a player like that who wants to learn it, who wants to put himself in a position to help the team and to put himself in the position to be successful, physically if he can do it, he’s going to do it. That’s what I’ve seen from him, he’s giving himself every opportunity to make an impact through this season.”
If a tight end can’t block, he won’t play for the New York Giants. It’s that simple. In the Giants’ system, blocking is as critical, if not more important, than pass receiving. The traditional down tight end (hand in the dirt, lined up next to the offensive tackle) is often called upon to block not only linebackers, but defensive ends as well. The problem is that quality two-way tight ends are hard to find. With the proliferation of spread offenses in college, the two-way tight end is disappearing at many schools. There are 32 NFL teams and a very limited supply of quality prospects coming out in the NFL Draft. One-dimensional, pass-receiving, H-Back types (motion tight ends who often do not line up in a down position) are more plentiful, but the Giants’ offense does not tend to feature these types of players.
The good news is the Giants have 71-year old Mike Pope, arguably the best tight ends coach in the NFL. He’s been with the Giants seemingly forever (1984-1991, 2000-present) under head coaches Bill Parcells, Ray Handley, Jim Fassel, and Tom Coughlin. Pope has a history of developing players with good size and just enough athletic ability into solid, two-way tight ends.
The tight end position has been a bit of turnstile for the Giants since Jeremy Shockey (2002-2007) was traded to the Saints in July 2008. Since then, the primary tight end on the Giants has changed from Kevin Boss (2008-2010) to Jake Ballard (2011) to Martellus Bennett (2012) and now to Brandon Myers (2013).
Including Myers, there are six tight ends on the Giants’ current training camp roster. Historically, the team tends to keep three tight ends on the 53-man roster.
Brandon Myers: Myers was signed by the Giants as an unrestricted free agent from the Oakland Raiders in March 2013. He was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Raiders. Myers had a breakout season for the Raiders in 2012, catching 79 passes for 806 yards and four touchdowns. His 16 regular-season starts in 2012 were more than all of the starts he had combined his first three years in the NFL. His 79 catches also dwarfed the 32 he had from 2009-2011.
Myers lacks the size that the Giants usually look for in their primary tight end. He’s only listed at 6’3’’, 256 pounds. The Giants usually like their tight ends an inch or two taller and 15-20 pounds heavier. He’s also not very fast or quick for the position – the Raiders used him more as a short- to intermediate-receiver. But Myers seems to be a smart, heady player with just enough athleticism, a feel for getting open, and good hands. His blocking was reportedly subpar in Oakland last year. A painful shoulder injury (sprained AC joint) could have been a factor. Still his lack of size and strength is worrisome in the blocking department.
“We think he’ll be a great piece to our offense and I think (Eli Manning) will have a relationship with him really quickly,” said General Manager Jerry Reese.
“He is a good receiver,” said Pope. “I think at the Raiders he was more of an intermediate receiver. And now our passing game does allow the tight end to get more vertically down the field – flag routes – double seam routes – post routes – that kind of thing. And he appears to have the skills to get those balls. He has a little bit of a jet that can accelerate and go get a ball that is a little deeper. You may not think he is going to reach it, but he has that little bit. So we are very interested to see him in pads.”
“I’m with a great organization, a proven team with a proven quarterback, in an offense that if you’re a tight end and you can get open, you’ll get a lot of opportunities to catch the ball,” said Myers.
“Obviously, my blocking (in Oakland) wasn’t up to par,” said Myers. “But we kind of went over some things, (Pope’s) technique that he could teach me to help me out, so I think it will be a good fit.”
Coughlin doesn’t appear concerned about his blocking. “He’s a well-rounded tight end,” said Coughlin. “He’s a blocker in the running game as well. We’re looking forward to that.”
Bear Pascoe: The Giants picked up Pascoe in 2009 after the 49ers cut him as a rookie. Pascoe is a jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none type of player whose strength is his overall versatility. Pascoe plays tight end, H-Back, and even some fullback for the Giants. In fact, he filled in at fullback for the bulk of the 2010 season when Madison Hedgecock was placed on Injured Reserve. And Pascoe may have to do so again in 2013 with Henry Hynoski’s knee injury casting doubt on his availability.
Pascoe does not really stand out as a blocker or receiver, and needs to improve his productivity and consistency in both areas. But Pascoe is big (6’5”, 283 pounds), solid, and dependable. Pascoe finished the 2012 with only four catches for 35 yards and one touchdown. In four seasons with the Giants, he has 26 catches for 252 yards and one score.
“We’re very confident that Bear, no matter what role we place him in, he does an outstanding job,” said Coughlin. “Bear has had opportunities to play in that slot, B tight end, Y tight end, and he’s always done a nice job.”
“This is kind of what I do. This is my role,” Pascoe said. “The more I can do, the better it is for the team. It’s one of the reason I’ve been here for five years, is I have versatility.”
“(Pascoe) has had to do that for us whenever the fullback has been hurt,” said Offensive Coordinator Kevin Gilbride. “It hasn’t been Henry (Hynoski) but it was Madison Hedgecock before. And so he has done a great job with that. It is not an easy thing. He is not a natural fullback but he is one of those guys that just whatever you ask him to do, he goes out and does it with as much courage and determination as anybody. As a result of that he plays above – sometimes – what your expectations might be. We asked him to do a very difficult role – he does it very well.”
Pope thinks having Pascoe playing fullback may make the Giants’ offense less predictable. “Bear has played a good bit of fullback for us,” said Pope. “Actually he played about 160 snaps at fullback last season. So he is aware of the assignments. There are still some finite things that he can get better at there. But it gives us a great deal of flexibility because when Hynoski is in the game they pretty well know that there are some limitations as to where he will line up. He is pretty much a backfield player. When we can put Bear in with one of these other guys, now we can do a lot more things as far as open formations – a little more difficult for the defense to predict where they can’t just key on one of the those guys and say the ball is going there. So that helps us.”
Adrien Robinson: 2012 was mainly a redshirt year for Adrien Robinson, who the Giants drafted in the 4th round of the 2012 NFL Draft. Robinson made the 53-man roster, but was only activated for two games. He did not catch a single pass. Robinson combines good size with excellent athleticism. He has very good speed and agility for a big tight end. However, he is a very raw player who will need a lot of coaching up. He was not targeted much in college (only 29 receptions in four years), but he displayed an ability to get down the field, adjust to the football, and make the difficult catch. Robinson has the physical ability to be a good blocker.
Because Robinson’s college has trimesters, he missed Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices his rookie season. “I think going through OTAs this year, seeing how slowly the coaches install the plays and understanding how everything feeds off each other, I realize that I did miss a lot last year by coming in so late and trying to jumpstart everything,” Robinson said. “I’ve been here since the (offseason) program started, and it’s a new year. I’m just trying to work my way up.”
“I think the biggest improvement I’ve made is in my understanding of the offense and knowing the plays, my assignments, where to line up, and how to read the defenses,” said Robinson. “Last year, I didn’t get many game reps, so I had to watch a lot, which helped, but it’s not the same as lining up on the field.”
“The biggest thing I want to show the coaches is that I fully understand the offense,” said Robinson. “I understand everything that’s going on, and I want to earn their trust. Once they are confident that you know what you’re doing, you’ll get on the field.”
“Adrien Robinson appears to have gone into the Land of the Believers and yes he has been making some good progress,” said Pope. “He is understanding assignment-wise. But the plays are still not the lines on the page that we give them for instruction. So he is doing a lot of the assignment things correctly. Now we have to get him to adjust to the way the defense is playing on each particular play and to make the best decisions based on how the defense is playing. But he is running well and he has his weight down some. The quarterback is starting to find him. He is hard to miss – he is the tallest tree in the forest out there. So he is a good target. But we are more than mildly pleased with the progress that he has made from an assignment standpoint.”
“Adrien was in that group of guys who came in, didn’t really know much about working with an offensive tackle on a double team block or how do you read coverages, what happens if they blitz here, what do I do?” said Pope in June. “It has taken him some time to learn and feel a little more comfortable. His speed and athletic skills did not surface as quickly as we hoped because he was thinking his way through every single play which slowed him down. Now he’s developing some confidence and he knows a little bit more about what he is doing. These last three or four weeks have been the very best weeks of his Giant career.”
“Wish we could have gotten him in some games more last year, but it just didn’t work out for us to get him in some games,” said Reese. “But we really think – the guy is 280 pounds, he ran a 4.57 (40-yard dash) at his Pro Day, and we think he can really develop into a terrific blocker. In practice, he flashed some things that were really like some ‘Wow’ things in practice. So we’re expecting him to make a jump this season and get in and get going and give us some contributions as our big blocking tight end. And he can catch the ball really nice. So we expect to bring him along, and hopefully he’ll contribute for us.”
Larry Donnell: Donnell went undrafted and unsigned in 2011. The Giants signed him as a street free agent in March 2012 and Donnell spent 2012 on the Giants’ Practice Squad. Donnell has excellent size (6’6”, 270 pounds) and is a good athlete. However, he is raw and needs a lot of coaching. Unfortunately, Donnell missed most of the spring work with a right foot or ankle injury that forced him to wear a walking boot.
Jamie Childers: The Giants signed Jamie Childers to a Reserve/Future contract in January 2013. Childers was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the St. Louis Rams after the 2012 NFL Draft. The Rams waived him in August. Childers needs a lot of technique work not only because of his small school background but because he played both quarterback and tight end in college. Lacking bulk (6’5”, 250 pounds), Childers is built more like an H-Back than true tight end. He’s athletic and has good hands. He probably will never be more than a finesse blocker. According to press reports, Childers did flash as a receiver in spring workouts.
Chase Clement: Clement was signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Giants after the 2013 NFL Draft. In college, Clement converted to tight from defensive end. He has good size (6’6”, 262 pounds) and strength and could develop as a blocking-type tight end with better technique. He was not used much as a receiver in college with only 14 career receptions in four seasons. Clement isn’t overly fast.
“When I first looked at (Clement) I had visions of Jake Ballard,” said Pope. “Just because he was a good blocker on the goal line. (LSU) seldom ever threw him the ball. But when the ball was snapped he had kind of that tough-guy mentality – old school. But he really had a motor…He is not going to be an all-world receiver way down the field as far as being explosive and flexible, but he has pretty good football savvy…I think there is something to work with there.”
Summary: Brandon Myers is clearly the #1 guy heading into training camp and will likely be the Giants’ primary tight end, though due to his size, it would be easy to see the Giants using him some at H-Back too. Myers could be the type of receiver who Manning quickly develops chemistry with. But Myers needs to block better than he did last year in Oakland. Pascoe is a limited athlete and his attention will be split between fullback, H-Back, and tight end. The real question is how fast can Adrien Robinson develop? He has the size to be a good blocker and the athletic abiity to be a good receiver. Can he put it all together, and if so, how quickly? Don’t completely discount Donnell (two-way tools), Childers (receiver), and Clement (blocker) either, but their best shot is probably the Practice Squad unless someone gets hurt.
The final OTA practice will be on Friday. Next week the Giants will hold a mandatory, full-team mini-camp on June 11-13. The Giants will then be off until they have to report to training camp on July 26. The first training camp practice at the Timex Performance Center will be held on July 27.
Injury Update: As would be expected, Head Coach Tom Coughlin was asked on Thursday about DE Jason Pierre-Paul’s back injury and ensuing surgery that is expected to keep him out three months.
“(I was) surprised,” said Coughlin. “We were trying to manage it; seemed to be doing a pretty good job of it. All of a sudden there was a circumstance that he was in some pain. So he went through the normal procedure, which we have gone through many times. The doctors recommended the surgery. They got a second opinion and the doctor recommended the surgery as well. It wasn’t anticipated, but it is a fact now. Surgery is completed and he will do the best job he can in rehab.”
Coughlin was asked if he thought Pierre-Paul would be ready for opening day. “I don’t know that,” replied Coughlin. “I wouldn’t – I’m hoping, but I wouldn’t say that. That is an aggressive position to take. If anybody can do it, it is him. But I would like to wait and see. And again, listen to what the professionals are telling him. That is the key right now.”
LB Jacquian Williams (knee) was spotted practicing for the first time this spring. “A little bit of something. He is starting to do a little,” said Coughlin. Williams has been slowly recovering from a posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) knee injury he suffered last October that caused him to miss six games, even though he later returned to the playing field in December.
“It’s early,” Williams said. “But I want to get out there and get the feel of things, get involved with the team and stuff. So it’s definitely a big step for me just to be out there.”
CB Terrell Thomas (knee) participated in individual drills. “I’ve done everything to the extreme as far as jumping and cutting, so it’s more of just getting comfortable now,” said Thomas. “It will be a challenge once I start guarding somebody, that’s the next step.”
OC David Baas (elbow and possibly hip or lower back), OG Chris Snee (hip), and DT Markus Kuhn (knee) continue to sit out.
Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s Press Conference: The transcript and video of Thursday’s press conference with Head Coach Tom Coughlin are available at Giants.com.
Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video clips of today’s media Q&As with the following players are available at Giants.com:
Quotes:QB Eli Manning on WR Rueben Randle: “A lot of times that second year you have a better feel for what’s going on, what his assignments are and the ins and outs of the offense. He’s confident out there. He’s got a great skill set. I think he’s had a great spring. I think he’s done a lot of good things, made a lot of plays for us and I think he can be a great playmaker for us this year.”
DE Justin Tuck on DE Damontre Moore and DT Johnathan Hankins: “Again, I really like what we did with the draft, especially Damontre because he’s a guy that’s going to get after the quarterback. He’s very athletic and hungry. You could tell. He wants to learn. He was asking me to work with him in the offseason and working with him after practice. I like what I am seeing from him early. But again, it’s OTAs. We’re out here in shells and shorts. We don’t get the full effect until you put the pads on and see how they adjust to that. But again, I’m excited about him and (Hankins) for that matter because those types of rookies don’t say much. They’re going about it the way rookies should. Just trying to be a sponge in the meeting room and learn everything they can learn and go on the football field and execute. So I’m pretty excited.”
DE Adrian Tracy on himself: “I’m a smaller guy, so I think one of my best attributes is speed and keying the ball. To get off at the snap is one of the best things that I can do. That gives me an advantage over offensive linemen. But then again, being a smaller guy, people think I’m not as stout and strong, and I think putting in the work with the strength and conditioning stuff has allowed me to prove them wrong as far as being a power rusher as well.”
Tight Ends Coach Michael Pope on TE Adrien Robinson: “(He’s) running well, he’s got his weight down some, and the quarterback is starting to find him. He’s hard to miss. He’s the tallest tree in the forest out there. He is a good target, but we’re more than mildly pleased with the progress that he’s made from an assignment standpoint.”
Pope on TE Chase Clement: “When I first looked at him, I had visions of Jake Ballard. He was a good blocker on the goal line, they seldom ever threw him the ball (in college). But when the ball was snapped he had kind of that tough-guy mentality…He really had a motor.”