Apr 062014
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Rusty Smith, Tennessee Titans (August 17, 2013)

Rusty Smith – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Quarterback Rusty Smith Visits Giants: According to the National Football Post and New York Daily News, unrestricted free agent quarterback Rusty Smith (Tennessee Titans) worked out for the New York Giants on Friday. The 27-year old Smith was drafted by the Titans in the 6th round of the 2010 NFL Draft out of Florida Atlantic University.

In four seasons with the Titans, Smith has only been active three times with one start his rookie season. He has completed 23-of-45 passes for 234 yards with no touchdowns and four interceptions (29.3 quarterback rating). Smith has very good size (6’5”, 226 pounds) and a strong arm.

Robert Ayers Admires Justin Tuck: Recently signed unrestricted free agent defensive end Robert Ayers (Denver Broncos) says he admires the man he is possibly replacing: defensive end Justin Tuck, who signed with the Oakland Raiders earlier this offseason.

“Justin Tuck was kind of a guy that I idolized for a lot of my career throughout college and even in the NFL,” Ayers said on a SiriusXM Radio on Saturday. “I felt like I could play the same way and be that type of guy.”

Like Tuck, the Broncos have moved Ayers around the defensive line, playing both end spots and sometimes moving inside at defensive tackle in certain situations. Unlike Tuck, the Broncos also played Ayers at linebacker for two seasons.

“(The Giants) didn’t have to sell me too much on (their) scheme,” said Ayers. “The opportunity was there and I felt I could take advantage of it.”

Ayers will wear Tuck’s old jersey number – 91 – the same number he wore in Denver.

Ayers said he received interest from the Cincinnati Bengals, Chicago Bears, and Dallas Cowboys in free agency.

“I feel like (the Giants were) a perfect fit,” said Ayers.

Ayers is also glad he is joining ex-Broncos cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, receiver returner Trindon Holliday, and center J.D. Walton.

“That’s gonna be huge to have some familiar faces come to New York with me,” said Ayers, “and they were some of the top players on the team.”

Quotes: Antrel Rolle on all of the new free agents the Giants have signed: “(The offseason has) been very explosive. We added some key guys to our program that can definitely help us out and help us win and contribute right away to our plan that we have going on for the 2014 season.”

Mar 232014
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John Mara, New York Giants (January 28, 2014)

John Mara – © USA TODAY Sports Images

John Mara Talks New York Giants Personnel: New York Giants President and CEO John Mara spoke to the media at the NFL owners meetings in Florida on Sunday. Some of the topics discussed included:

  • On any future free agent moves: “(We are) pretty close to done…I think we’ve improved the team. Time will tell, but we all feel good about the players we’ve added. I would say we’re pretty close to done (signing veterans). Certainly, if the opportunity presented itself with another player, we’d look at it. But I don’t anticipate there being any big-money players being signed at this point.”
  • Mara said they would not rule out re-structuring QB Eli Manning’s contract to create more cap room. However, he said, “That’s not been something we’ve discussed.”
  • The emphasis on defense by the Giants in free agency: “I think that’s more a case of that’s where the opportunities have presented themselves. There were defensive players who were available that we thought could really help us. We did add some offensive players, but we have the draft coming up, so that will be another opportunity.”
  • The focus on improving the secondary: “There were good players that were available, and obviously, if you have a real strong secondary, it allows you to do a lot of other things. I think that was an area where we felt we had to improve a little bit. It wasn’t our number one priority, but those were the players who were available. I think they should help us.”
  • On signing OT John Jerry, who was involved in the bullying controversy of Jonathan Martin: “We were certainly aware of that and did some research into him, and we’re satisfied that he’s going to be a good citizen for us. We did not talk to the league about him, but we did talk to a number of people. We did do our due diligence on him.”
  • The loss of DE Justin Tuck to the Oakland Raiders: “You expect decisions like that in this business but there are some that affect you a little bit more than others…That was very hard. He was and still is very special to us. I’m happy for him that he got that kind of contract. It will be tough to walk into that locker room and not see him there.”
  • On the need for a new defensive leader: “Somebody is going to have to step up and be a leader…Hopefully between (Jon Beason) and Antrel Rolle, and there are other guys who are capable of doing that…but we’re obviously going to miss Justin quite a bit.”
  • On the fact that there are only four players remaining from the Super Bowl XLII team still on the roster (Eli Manning, Chris Snee, Mathias Kiwanuka, and Zak DeOssie): “It is pretty hard to believe, but that’s the nature of the business. Players come and go. It’s an unfortunate part of the business, but it is what it is.”
  • On what still needs to be done: “We feel like we’ve improved the team, but we also need to have a really great draft. And we’re going too have to count on some guys to come through for us – guys that we drafted last year and the year before.”
Mar 232014
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Latest CineSport NFL Update

Antrel Rolle, New York Giants (November 17, 2013)

Antrel Rolle – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Antrel Rolle Wins 2013 “BBI Giant of the Year”: Safety Antrel Rolle has been voted “BBI Giant of the Year” for his performance in the 2013 NFL season. Rolle had his finest season as a New York Giant. He started all 16 games and finished with 98 tackles, 2 sacks, 12 pass defenses, 6 interceptions, and 1 forced fumble. Rolle also played in the 2013 Pro Bowl as a second-alternate.

Based on fan voting, the “BBI Giant of the Year” award is given to the Giants’ player, coach, or member of the front office who most contributed to the team’s success on the field in a given year. The vote is held at the end of each season by members of the BBI community and the award is presented at a ceremony on the practice fields during training camp.

The award carries a special significance as the trophy has been renamed to honor Hope Johnson, a beloved member of the BBI community and organizer of the “Giant of the Year” presentation, who died in 2009.

With 2,920 votes cast, Rolle received 64 percent of the vote followed by linebacker Jon Beason (16 percent), defensive end Justin Tuck (7 percent), Head Coach Tom Coughlin (4 percent), Defensive Coordinator Perry Fewell (4 percent), cornerback Prince Amukamara (3 percent), and place kicker Josh Brown (1 percent).

For a listing of past winners, see the BBI Giant of the Year section of the website. Rolle is the first defensive player to win the award.

Article on the New York Giants and 2014 NFL Free Agency: NY Giants break from old way of doing business and spend big in free agency by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Article on S Quintin Demps: Giants’ Quintin Demps plays with a song in his heart by Conor Orr of The Star-Ledger

Mar 172014
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Trindon Holliday, Denver Broncos (January 12, 2014)

Trindon Holliday – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Sign Trindon Holliday: According to multiple press reports, the New York Giants have signed unrestricted free agent (UFA) wide receiver/returner Trindon Holliday (Denver Broncos) to a 1-year contract. The diminutive Holliday has proven to be one of the most dangerous punt and kickoff returners in the NFL, but he also has had serious fumbling issues as a returner.

Because of this move, we have updated the New York Giants Free Agent Signings (with scouting report), New York Giants 2014 Free Agency Scorecard, and Roster sections of the website.

Kevin Boothe Signs with Oakland Raiders: Unrestricted free agent offensive lineman Kevin Boothe (New York Giants) has signed a 2-year deal with the Oakland Raiders. Because of this move, we have updated the New York Giants Free Agent Losses (with scouting report), New York Giants 2014 Free Agency Scorecard, and Roster sections of the website.

More Details on Mathias Kiwanuka’s Pay Cut (or Re-Structure?): USA Today is reporting that in addition to the pay cut defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka has accepted, he will receive a new $700,000 roster bonus and possibly another $125,000 in incentives. Kiwnauka’s 2014 base salary was reduced from $4.375 million to $1.5 million.

Giants.com Interview with CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (DRC): The video of today’s Giants.com interview with cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is available at Giants.com.

New York Giants Safety Antrel Rolle on ESPN Radio: The audio of today’s ESPN Radio interview with safety Antrel Rolle is available at ESPN.com.

Feb 052014
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Antrel Rolle, New York Giants (December 15, 2013)

Antrel Rolle – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Antrel Rolle Talks Defense, His Contract, and Recruiting Jermichael Finley: The New York Giants finished 8th in the NFL in total defense in 2013 in terms of yards allowed, a dramatic improvement over their 31st ranking in 2012. But safety Antrel Rolle spoke yesterday about what the Giants defense needs to do in order to improve in 2014 and be more like the NFL’s best defense – the Seattle Seahawks.

“I think Seattle’s defense set some pretty big standards and some pretty big shoes to fill for the 2014 season,” said Rolle. “Our expectations are always great. We’re just wishing for more consistency and better play overall from the Giants because we can do it.”

Rolle lamented the fact that Defensive Coordinator Perry Fewell was forced to simplify the defense last year because some of his teammates could not keep up with the more complicated schemes.

“There were sometimes during the year when Perry Fewell was restricted from running certain defenses that I know he would love to run,” Rolle said. “Certain defenses I know could have helped us out defensively at the beginning of the year. But it takes everyone. It’s a collective effort and if one guy is wrong we’re all wrong. For the early part of the year that’s something that we failed to do as a defensive unit. You’re going to have guys who study and go way beyond the X’s and O’s and you’re going to have guys who go in there and just do what is taught to them during meeting times and when they study at the facility and what is taking place on the field. This game, you have to study this game and that’s what a lot of people don’t understand. You have to study the game with the guy beside you because that’s who you’re going to be playing with, that’s who you need to have the same chemistry with.”

“We failed to do that, especially in the beginning of the season, so coach Perry Fewell had to simplify a lot of things for our defense this year,” said Rolle. “We’re looking for the guys who can step in, who can understand the defense, who can play the defense and can be very versatile because that’s the way we won when we won the Super Bowl in 2011.”

Rolle also talked about the Giants playing with a more aggressive, physical swagger on defense.

“I think we can also get better at that, being more consistent, bringing more swagger and more attitude to the game of football and be a fearful defense,” Rolle said. “When you go out there and you see Seattle’s defense, they instill fear in Denver from the first play, from the crowd noise to the hike going over Peyton (Manning’) head to the Kam Chancellor hit on Demaryius Thomas at the beginning, they set the tempo early. In my eyes, Denver was a little bit timid throughout the game. That bar is set extremely high for that game. They went out there, more importantly like I tell everybody throughout the week even with the Giants and myself, this game is won on attitude. They went out there and set the tempo extremely early. You saw some fear in the Denver offense, from the front line all the way through. The defense created that. They created their own mismatches and they took advantage of every opportunity.”

Rolle currently has one year left on his current contract and is set to count $9.25 million against the Giants 2014 salary cap. “I won’t approach (the Giants about a new contract),” said Rolle. “I’ve never been the kind of guy to worry about contract issues. In my eyes I’m still under contract, I still have a year left to go. If the Giants want to do something, they’ll come to me. They’re a very professional organization, I’m a professional about my business, and whatever happens it won’t be in the media until they reveal it because I never speak about contract issues. So we’ll see what happens.”

Rolle watched the Super Bowl with soon-to-be unrestricted free agent tight end Jermichael Finley of the Green Bay Packers. Finley’s 2014 season ended when he underwent spinal fusion surgery in November. Rolle said he was lobbying Finley to sign with the Giants.

“We were recruiting each other,” Rolle said. “(Finley) said he would love to be a part of the Giants. And going up against this guy for a number of years now, I said I would love for him to be a part of the Giants so we don’t have to face him. He’s an extreme talent. He’s an exceptional guy and more important, I know he’s a fiery guy. I think that’s something we could definitely use on the offensive side of the ball, a guy with some intensity…He’s a guy I would love to be a teammate with, and I think we could do some great things together.”

New Giants defensive coordinator Ben McAdoo coached Finley in Green Bay. McAdoo was the Packers tight ends coach from 2006-2011.

“(Finley) was telling me Ben McAdoo is a brain, that he’s going to keep defenses guessing, he’s very smart,” Rolle said. “I just said, ‘Yes!’ I feel like our offense is definitely going to excel in his system and Eli is going to do what he does best, which is lead our offense. And the defense will be there to pick up the pieces and make sure we create more turnovers and give them more opportunities to do their thing.”

Article on Offensive Coordinator Ben McAdoo: Ben McAdoo’s history of Red Zone success by Dan Salomone of Giants.com

Article on Safety Steve Brown: Stevie Brown makes progress from ACL injury while angling for new deal by Ross Jones of FOXSports.com

Article on the 2014 New York Giants: Can the Giants be the 2014 Philadelphia Eagles? by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com


Jan 302014
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (January 29, 2014)

Eli Manning and Michael Irvin – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Justin Tuck Says He Will Test Free Agent Market: Defensive end Justin Tuck, who is set to become an unrestricted free agent on March 11, told The New York Post that he will not re-sign with the Giants before free agency begins.

“I will see what the market is for me,” Tuck said. “I’ve never been in this situation before, and it’s a great opportunity for myself. I would be doing myself a disservice if I didn’t see what the market is, and I will.”

Tuck did say he will extend the Giants the courtesy of sitting down with them in February.

“We will sit down in a couple of weeks and see what happens, but obviously, the Giants are going to do what’s best for the Giants, and vice versa with me and my family,” said Tuck. “I understand where they’re coming from and what obstacles they have to overcome this offseason. There’s no guarantee, and that’s obvious. It’s a business, and (I) understand both sides of it.”

“I’m a pretty good football player,” Tuck said, “and I’m pretty sure there will be some interest in a pretty good football player.”

Punter Steve Weatherford on ESPN Radio: The audio of Thursday’s ESPN Radio interview with punter Steve Weatherford is available at ESPN.com.

Articles on Quarterback Eli Manning and the Giants:

Article on Defensive End Jason Pierre-Paul: Pierre-Paul prepared to lead Giants defense if Tuck leaves by Zach Braziller of The New York Post

Article on Safety Antrel Rolle: Antrel Rolle: Giants needed to make changes by Zach Braziller of The New York Post

Article on Defensive Tackle Shaun Rogers and Linebacker Keith Rivers: Giants free agents: Keith Rivers, Shaun Rogers likely moving on by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on Former Giants Defensive Coordinator John Fox: Broncos coach John Fox’s success stems from days with NY Giant by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Article on Former Giants Defensive Coordinator John Fox and Former Giants Running Back Coach Eric Studesville: Former NYG coaches together for SB run by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

Article on Former Giants Center Shaun O’Hara: Shaun O’Hara makes most of post-NFL life by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

Giants.com Video on Super Bowl XLVII: Super Bowl XLVII Flashback by Giants.com

Jan 282014
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (October 28, 2012)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

No Shoulder Surgery for Jason Pierre-Paul: Newsday is reporting that defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul will not need surgery on his injured shoulder. Pierre-Paul injured the shoulder in Week 10 against the Oakland Raiders. He played in two more games but was then shut down for the remaining five games of the season. How the shoulder responded to treatment was to determine whether offseason surgery was necessary or not. Newsday is reporting that Pierre-Paul’s shoulder rehab has been going well.

Cornerback Terrell Thomas on WFAN: The audio of Tuesday’s WFAN interview with cornerback Terrell Thomas is available at CBS New York.

Linebacker Mark Herzlich on ESPN Radio: The audio of Tuesday’s ESPN Radio interview with cornerback Terrell Thomas is available at ESPN.com.

Articles on New York Giants President/CEO John Mara:

Article on Quarterbacks Coach Danny Langsdorf: Tom Coughlin to new QB coach: We need to get Eli Manning playing better by Conor Orr of The Star-Ledger

Giants.com Inside the Film Room: Video breakdowns of the following Giants players are available at Giants.com:

Article on Super Bowl XLVII: Super Bowl Rewind: Giants 17, Patriots 14 by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Giants.com Video on Super Bowl XXI: Super Bowl XXI Flashback by Giants.com

Jan 202014
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Antrel Rolle, New York Giants (December 22, 2013)

Antrel Rolle – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants President/CEO John Mara on ESPN Radio: The audio of Monday’s ESPN Radio interview with New York Giants President/CEO John Mara is available at ESPN.com.

Safety Antrel Rolle on ESPN Radio: The audio of Monday’s ESPN Radio interview with safety Antrel Rolle is available at ESPN.com.

Safety Antrel Rolle Will Go to Pro Bowl as Replacement: Safety Antrel Rolle was named to the Pro Bowl as a substitute. He will replace Seattle Seahawks safety Earl Thomas who will not be available due to his team’s participation in the Super Bowl. Rolle was credited with 98 tackles, 2 sacks, 12 pass defenses, 6 interceptions, and 1 forced fumble in 2013.

“It was definitely one of my best years,” said Rolle. “Not so much for the big plays I made, but for being a very, very consistent player at whatever position I’m asked to play. It’s going out there and playing that position at a dominant level. And for overall understanding of the game and understanding leadership, being a veteran guy. That speaks more for me than any interception I had or any sack. My leadership alone and being able to stand strong through times of adversity mean more to me than anything.”

Rolle has been voted to the Pro Bowl twice (2009 and 2010) and named All-Pro twice (2010 and 2013). Rolle will be the only Giant to play in the Pro Bowl this year.

Justin Pugh Has Thumb Surgery: Right tackle Justin Pugh tweeted on Monday that he had surgery on one of his thumbs. “Surgery on my thumb went great,” tweeted Pugh. “Procedure was nothing major. Hanging out now waiting to go home.”

Jan 032014
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Brandon Jacobs, New York Giants (August 2009)

Brandon Jacobs Accepts BBI Giants of the Year Award

RB Brandon Jacobs Retires: RB Brandon Jacobs announced his retirement from football on Twitter on Thursday. Jacobs played eight seasons for the New York Giants (2005-2011, 2013) and one season with the San Francisco 49ers (2012). In 2013, in seven games, Jacobs rushed for 238 yards and four touchdowns. He had cartilage graft surgery to repair osteo-arthritis in his left knee on December 11 and was placed on Injured Reserve the next day. Jacobs leaves the NFL as the Giants’ #4 leading rusher in franchise history with 5,087 yards and #1 rushing touchdown leader with 60. (Both figures are regular-season totals).

“After 9 years in this whirlwind business they call the NFL, I am proud to announce that I am hanging up my cleats,” wrote Jacobs. “I’ve had an amazing run and I appreciate all of the support from the fans through the good and the bad. The New York Giants are a great organization and I am proud to have been a part of it for so long. I love my coaches and my teammates and will miss them as well as the game itself but I am healing well from my surgery and I look forward to running around with my kids for years to come!”

After the 2008 season, Jacobs received the BigBlueInteractive.com “Giant of the Year” trophy. That season, Jacobs rushed for 1,089 yards and 15 touchdowns.

Head Coach Tom Coughlin on WFAN: The audio of Friday’s WFAN interview with Head Coach Tom Coughlin is available at CBS New York. For an overview of the interview, see Giants coach Tom Coughlin insists Kevin Gilbride wasn’t forced out by Dave Hutchinson of The Star-Ledger.

Safety Antrel Rolle Named Second-Team All Pro: New York Giants safety Antrel Rolle has been named second-team All Pro by the Associated Press. Rolle finished the 2013 season with 98 tackles, 2 sacks, 12 pass defenses, 6 interceptions, 1 forced fumble, and 1 fumble recovery.

Giants.com Q&A with LB Jon Beason: The video of a recent Giants.com Q&A with LB Jon Beason is available at Giants.com.

Articles on New York Giant Offensive Coordinator Candidates:

Best of Sights & Sounds: A best of sights & sounds video is available from Giants.com.

Jan 012014
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Perry Fewell, New York Giants (October 16, 2011)

Perry Fewell – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Washington Redskins Ask and Receive Permission to Interview Perry Fewell: The Washington Redskins have requested permission to interview New York Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell for their head coaching vacancy. According to various press reports, the Giants have granted that permission. It is not known if and when Fewell will interview with the Redskins.

The Giants reportedly will begin organizational meetings to discuss the fate of members of the coaching staff on Thursday.

Star-Ledger: Andre Brown and Giants Express Mutual Interest in New Deal: The Star-Ledger is reporting that that the New York Giants would like to re-sign soon-to-be unrestricted free agent RB Andre Brown, and that Brown would like to re-sign with the Giants.

For a complete listing of upcoming Giants’ free agents, see the New York Giants 2014 Free Agency Scorecard of the website.

Article on S Antrel Rolle: Rolle will do what it takes to remain a Giant by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post