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Daniel Jones, New York Giants (November 1, 2021)

Daniel Jones – © USA TODAY Sports

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS 20 – NEW YORK GIANTS 17…
The New York Giants lost a tough game to the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday night at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. With the loss, the Giants fall to 2-6 on the season.

The Chiefs held most of the team statistical advantages in the contest, out-gaining the Giants in first downs (29 to 18), total net yards (368 to 300), net yards rushing (107 to 72), net yards passing (261 to 228), and time of possession (34:38 to 25:22). Both teams were penalized heavily, the Giants being penalized 10 times for 88 yards and the Chiefs 12 times for 103 yards. The Giants won the turnover battle 2 to 1.

The Chiefs received the ball to start the game and promptly marched down the field 70 yards in 12 plays. But on 3rd-and-goal from the 5-yard line, quarterback Patrick Mahomes’ pass into the end zone was deflected and intercepted by safety Julian Love. The turnaround was short lived, however, as quarterback Daniel Jones was intercepted just two plays later, the ball being returned to the New York 13-yard line. Four plays after that, on 3rd-and-goal from the 6-yard line, Mahomes threw a touchdown pass to wide receiver Tyreek Hill. Chiefs 7 – Giants 0.

After both teams exchanged punts, the Giants finally began moving the ball on their third drive of the game. New York marched 85 yards in nine plays to tie the contest at 7-7 when Jones hit tight end Kyle Rudolph for a touchdown on 4th-and-goal from the 1-yard line. The big play on this possession was a 50-yard bomb to wideout John Ross. That was followed up by a 19-yard pass from wide receiver Kadarius Toney to fellow wide receiver Sterling Shepard.

Both teams exchanged punts again, but now it was Kansas City that put points on the board with an 11-play, 68-yard possession that resulted in a 3-yard touchdown run by running back Derrick Gore. The Giants responded with an 8-play, 86-yard drive that unfortunately stalled in the redzone. The big play on this drive was a 41-yard pass by Jones to running back Devontae Booker, combined with a roughing-the-passer penalty. New York settled for a 23-yard field goal by place kicker Graham Gano.

Neither team scored on their final possessions before intermission. At the half, the Chiefs led 14-10.

The Giants only gained one total first down on their first two drives of the 3rd quarter, punting twice. The Chiefs also punted once. Momentum began to change on Kansas City’s second possession of the half. After picking up four first downs and reaching the New York 28-yard line, the Chiefs were first pushed back with a holding penalty. Two plays later, safety Logan Ryan forced tight end Trave Kelce to fumble. Cornerback James Bradberry picked up the loose ball and returned it 13 yards to the New York 43-yard line. Eight plays after that, Jones threw a perfect pass to tight end Evan Engram for the go-ahead score on 3rd-and-4 from the 5-yard line. The Giants now led 17-14 early in the 4th quarter.

The Chiefs responded with a 14-play, 57-yard drive that set up a game-tying 36-yard field goal with just under 9 minutes to play. The Giants attempted to regain the lead, picking up two first downs, but were stopped at their own 42-yard line and forced to punt. The Chiefs got the ball back with 4:41 left to play. After a holding penalty, on 2nd-and-20, Mahomes threw a pass that was intercepted by cornerback Darnay Holmes at the Kansas City 34-yard line. However, linebacker Oshane Ximines was offsides on the play. Then on 2nd-and-15, Kelce caught a 14-yard pass and linebacker Tae Crowder was flagged with a bogus 15-yard face-mask penalty, moving the ball to near midfield. The Chiefs eventually reached the redzone, where they settled for the game-winning, 34-yard field goal with just over a minute left to play.

The Giants had one more shot to tie or win the game, but Jones was sacked twice, including on 4th-and-15 to end the game.

Jones finished the game 22-of-32 for 222 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. He was also sacked three times. His leading receiver was Booker, who caught five passes for 65 yards. Booker also ran the ball 15 times for 60 yards.

The Giants’ defense generated two sacks (defensive Leonard Williams and cornerback Keion Crossen), five tackles for losses, forced two fumbles (Williams and Ryan), recovered one fumble (Bradberry), and picked off one pass (Love).

Video highlights are available at Giants.com.

ROSTER MOVES, PRACTICE SQUAD ACTIVATIONS, INACTIVES, AND INJURY REPORT…
The Giants signed S Steven Parker to the 53-man roster from the Practice Squad. CB Aaron Robinson was activated from the Reserve/Physically-Unable-to-Perform (PUP) List. The team also placed LB Carter Coughlin on Injured Reserve with an ankle injury that he suffered in practice last week.

The Giants also elevated LB Trent Harris and LB Benardrick McKinney to the 53-man roster from the Practice Squad.

Inactive for the game were RB Saquon Barkley (ankle), WR Kenny Golladay (knee), LB Lorenzo Carter (ankle), S Nate Ebner (ankle), NT Danny Shelton, and S J.R. Reed.

WR Sterling Shepard (quad) and WR Dante Pettis (shoulder) were injured in the first half and did not return. WR Kadarius Toney (thumb) was also injured.

POST-GAME REACTION…
Transcripts and video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Joe Judge and the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
Head Coach Joe Judge and select players will address the media by conference call on Tuesday.

Aug 152021
 
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Reggie Ragland, New York Giants (August 14, 2021)

Reggie Ragland – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK JETS 12 – NEW YORK GIANTS 7…
In a game that the New York Giants treated more like a gloried scrimmage, the New York Jets won 12-7 in the preseason opener for both franchises on Saturday evening at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Aside from the offensive line, the Giants sat most of their starters and the bulk of the game was played by third teamers.

The Giants back-ups on defense did a decent job against the Jets’ first-team offense, which played into the beginning of the second quarter. While the Jets out-gained the Giants in first-half yardage 177 to 101, the Jets only led 3-0 at the half.  Those points came on the Jets’ first offense possession of the game, as they drove 52 yards in 12 plays to set up a 30-yard field goal.

The defensive highlight for the Giants in the first half was defensive linemen Danny Shelton and B.J. Hill stuffing the Jets on 4th-and-1 at the Giants’ 42-yard line early in the second quarter. The Giants’ biggest offensive play of the first half was a 37-yard pass from quarterback Clayton Thorson to wide receiver David Sills. The Giants also had one first-half drive end inside the 10-yard line when running back Corey Clement fumbled the ball away at the Jets’ 3-yard line. Nevertheless, the Giants were held to only eight first downs in the first half, gaining 58 yards on the ground and only 43 through the air.

The Jets went up 10-0 on their second drive in the 3rd quarter, moving the ball 68 yards in 11 plays, culminating with a 4-yard touchdown run. The two offensive highlights for the Giants in the second half were a 48-yard run by running back Sandro Platzgummer and a 21-yard touchdown pass from Thorson to wide receiver Damion Willis, cutting the score to 10-7. The later was set up by a fumble forced by linebacker T.J. Brunson and recovered by cornerback Rodarius Williams.

But any notion of a late-game comeback was snuffed out when Thorson was sacked in the end zone for a safety with less than two minutes to play.

Quarterback Mike Glennon only completed 3-of-7 passes for 20 yards with Thorson completing 5-of-16 passes for 72 yards. The Giants did rush for 105 yards, with Platzgummer and Clement accruing 83 of those yards on nine carries. The leading receiver was Sills (3 catches for 49 yards).

Defensively, linebacker Carter Coughlin had the team’s only sack. Brunson forced a fumble that Rodarius Williams recovered.

Video highlights are available at Giants.com.

INJURY REPORT AND HEALTHY SCRATCHES…
RB Saquon Barkley (knee), RB Gary Brightwell (unknown), WR Kenny Golladay (hamstring), WR Kadarius Toney (unknown), WR John Ross (hamstring?), WR Austin Mack (hamstring), TE Kyle Rudolph (PUP – foot), OG Shane Lemieux (knee), OC Jonotthan Harrison (unknown), LB Lorenzo Carter (calf), LB Elerson Smith (hamstring), CB Aaron Robinson (PUP – core muscle), CB Sam Beal (unknown), CB Jarren Williams (unknown), and S Chris Milton (unknown) did not play.

Regarding Toney, Head Coach Joe Judge said after the game, “I’m not gonna disclose any person’s individual injury at this moment, but we hope to get him out there this week… You know, he’s been dealing with it for a little bit. Something was aggravated in practice towards the tail end of this week, so he was unable to play tonight.”

OG Kyle Murphy left the game late in the first half with an ankle injury and did not return. TE Cole Hikutini left the game in the second half with a hip injury and did not return. LB T.J. Brunson injured his knee late in the game and did not return. QB Clayton Thorson was injured on the play where he was sacked for a safety late in the game.

Others who did not play include QB Daniel Jones, WR Sterling Shepard, TE Evan Engram, OT Nate Solder, OL Ted Larsen, DE Leonard Williams, DE Dexter Lawrence, LB Blake Martinez, LB Oshane Ximines, LB Ryan Anderson, CB James Bradberry, CB Adoree’ Jackson, S Jabrill Peppers, S Logan Ryan, S Xavier McKinney, S Montre Hartage, and PK Graham Gano,

POST-GAME REACTION…
Transcripts and video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Joe Judge and the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
Head Coach Joe Judge and select players will address the media on Sunday.

Aug 032021
 
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Joe Looney, New York Giants (August 3, 2021)

Joe Looney – © USA TODAY Sports

AUGUST 3, 2021 NEW YORK GIANTS TRAINING CAMP REPORT…
The New York Giants held their sixth full-team summer training camp practice on Tuesday at Quest Diagnostics Training Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Practices are not open to the public this year.

GIANTS PLACE DERRICK DILLION ON IR; TODD DAVIS RETIRES…
The Giants have placed WR Derrick Dillon on Injured Reserve with an undisclosed injury. In addition, LB Todd Davis, who the team signed on Saturday, has retired from the NFL.

The 5’11”, 185-pound Dillon was signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2020 NFL Draft. He spent much of the season on the team’s Practice Squad, but was cut in early December. The Giants signed Dillon to a future/reserve contract in January 2021.

The Giants signed Davis as an unrestricted free agent from the Minnesota Vikings. The 6’1”, 230-pound Davis has spent time with the New Orleans Saints (2014), Denver Broncos (2014-2019), and Minnesota Vikings (2020). He has played in 96 regular-season games with 69 starts, accruing 479 tackles, three sacks, 15 pass defenses, one interception, one forced fumble, and two fumble recoveries.

INJURY REPORT…
LG Shane Lemieux (knee), LB Lorenzo Carter (unknown), LB Elerson Smith (unknown), WR Austin Mack (hamstring), and RB Mike Weber (unknown) did not practice on Tuesday.

LB Blake Martinez S Joshua Kalu were officially activated off of the Reserve/COVID-19 List. Both returned to practice.

WR Kadarius Toney (COVID) returned to practice, but only practiced on a limited basis.

WR Kenny Golladay left practice early with a possible strained hamstring and/or hand injury.

The following players remain on various PUP and reserve lists:

  • Reserve/COVID-19 List: TE Rysen John
  • Active/Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) List: RB Saquon Barkley (knee), TE Kyle Rudolph (foot), LB Oshane Ximines (hamstring), and CB Aaron Robinson (core muscle)
  • Reserve/Non-Football Injury (NFI) List: LB Reggie Ragland (hamstring) and LB Ryan Anderson (back)
  • Reserve/Injured: WR Derrick Dillon (unknown)

PRACTICE NOTES…
Some snippets from various media sources:

  • Giants practiced in full pads for the first time this year.
  • WR C.J. Board badly faked out CB Isaac Yiadom in 1-on-1 drills.
  • CB Quincy Wilson intercepted a pass in 1-on-1 drills against WR Darius Slayton.
  • RB Devontae Booker fumbled the first handoff.
  • QB Daniel Jones threw a fade into the end zone to WR David Sills for a touchdown against CB Adoree’ Jackson.
  • QB Daniel Jones scrambled and threw a touchdown pass to WR Sterling Shepard, who made a nice catch while falling down.
  • During one red zone drill period, QB Daniel Jones threw three touchdown passes and ran for a touchdown.
  • WRs C.J. Board and David Sills caught back-to-back touchdown passes from QB Mike Glennon against CB Sam Beal. Sills, who is having a strong camp, ended up with two touchdowns in 11-on-11 drills. Board is also off to a strong start.
  • WR Sterling Shepard routinely gave defensive backs issues in 1-on-1 coverage situations.
  • TE Evan Engram stood out in blocking drills.
  • QB Daniel Jones, under pressure, scrambled to his right and completed a pass down the field to TE Evan Engram.
  • QB Daniel Jones was 4-of-4 in 7-on-7 drills and 7-of-7 in the full-team period. QB Mike Glennon was 3-of-3 in 7-on-7 drills and 4-of-4 in the full-team period.
  • WR Kadarius Toney returned punts along with S Jabrill Peppers, CB Adoree’ Jackson, WR Sterling Shepard, WR Darius Slayton, and WR Dante Pettis.
  • Tempers flared after a hit on RB Corey Clement by S Xavier McKinney. TE Evan Engram shoved McKinney to the ground and S Logan Ryan hit Engram in the back. A team melee ensued. QB Daniel Jones ended up on the bottom of the pile. Head Coach Joe Judge was livid and had the entire team repeatedly run sprints for about 15 minutes and do push-ups. Judge spent the remainder of the practice screaming expletives at the team. At the end of practice, Judge sent the rest of the coaches away and addressed the entire team by himself.

    HEAD COACH JOE JUDGE…
    The transcript of Joe Judge’s press conference on Tuesday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

    THE PLAYERS SPEAK…
    Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

    WHAT’S UP NEXT…
    The New York Giants practice Wednesday evening (5:15-7:15PM). Head Coach Joe Judge and select players will also address the media.

    ARTICLES…

    Feb 012021
     
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    Blake Martinez, New York Giants (September 27, 2020)

    Blake Martinez – © USA TODAY Sports

    As we covered in our defensive line review, the New York Giants defense significantly improved from 25th in 2019 to 12th in 2020 in terms of yards allowed. It was a remarkable achievement given the year-long personnel changes in the back seven on defense. There were no adjustments on the defensive line. The same three starters and two back-ups played in every game. The same could not be said for the linebackers and defensive backs.

    In today’s 3-4 defenses, the outside linebackers are more of a hybrid linebacker/defensive end, increasingly commonly referred to as “edge” players. The two Giants who won the starting edge jobs (Lorenzo Carter and Oshane Ximines) were both lost for the season in early October with 3/4ths of the season left to play. Their primary back-up (Markus Golden) was traded to the Cardinals a few weeks later with half the season left to play. The next man up (OLB/ILB hybrid Kyler Fackrell) missed four games due to a calf injury. The Giants were forced to rely on three rookies (7th rounder Carter Coughlin, 6th rounder Cam Brown, and undrafted free agent Niko Lalos) and two retreads (Jabaal Sheard and Trent Harris).

    There was chaos too at one of the inside linebacker spots. Devonta Downs started the season but was unimpressive and lost his job to rookie Tae Crowder, the very last player taken in the draft. But after starting two games, Crowder landed on Injured Reserve with a groin injury for five games. Downs was reinserted into the starting line-up, but now David Mayo, who missed the first five games of the season with a knee injury, also saw increased playing time and two starts. Crowder returned in late November and reclaimed the starting job.

    Whew. Just typing that was confusing. The only constants were free agent godsend Blake Martinez and the coaching staff.

    Martinez was the glue that held the defense together. He directed the defense, played virtually every defensive snap (97 percent), and was a tackling machine (team-high 151 tackles). Long story short, Martinez is the best inside linebacker the Giants have had since Antonio Pierce was cut a decade ago.

    Inside Linebackers Coach Kevin Sherrer and Outside Linebackers Coach Bret Bielema did a marvelous job of mixing and matching on a week-to-week basis. Look no further than the edge position where the Giants were left scrambling. At one point, the available players to use were Sheard, Coughlin, Brown, and Lalos. Defensive Coordinator Patrick Graham, who coached linebackers with the Patriots and Packers, also employed defensive backs at linebacker in various packages. But there was a bit of chaos even in the coaching ranks when Bielema left the Giants with three games left to play to become head coach at the University of Illinois. Sherrer then handled both positions.

    Aside from Martinez, what really stands out is that all four of the team’s late-round draft picks at linebacker made the team in addition to a rookie free agent. All five of these rookies played. The Giants were hammered by injuries at the outside linebacker position – down to their 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th options – and yet the coaching staff held the unit together. The biggest negative was the lack of pass rush, particularly from the edge spots. Of the team’s 40 sacks, 13.5 came from the linebackers (and four of them were from inside backers Martinez and Crowder). Fackrell led the linebacking corps with just four sacks.

    INSIDE LINEBACKERS

    The Giants signed Blake Martinez as an unrestricted free agent from the Green Bay Packers in March 2020. He had a major impact on the defense, starting all 16 games and playing in 97 percent of all defensive snaps. Martinez finished the season with a team-high 151 tackles and also accrued nine tackles for losses, three sacks, six quarterback hits, five pass defenses, one interception, two forced fumbles, and one fumble recovery. The 6’2”, 237-pound Martinez was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Packers. In four seasons with Green Bay, Martinez has played in 61 regular-season games with 57 starts, accruing 512 tackles and 10 sacks. Martinez lacks ideal size and range for the position, but he is a heady player who can make the defensive calls and gets in on lot of tackles. He is better against the run than the pass.

    The Giants selected Tae Crowder in the 7th round of the 2020 NFL Draft. He surprisingly moved into the starting line-up in Week 5 and 6 before suffering a groin injury that landed him on Injured Reserve for five games. Crowder returned in late November, starting four of his final six games. In all, Crowder played in 11 games with six starts (37 percent of all defensive snaps), and was credited with 57 tackles, three tackles for losses, one sack, three quarterback hits, one pass defense, and one fumble recovery that he returned for a game-winning touchdown. The 6’3”, 235-pound Crowder was moved from running back to linebacker in college and thus is still learning the position. Only a 1-year starter in college. While Crowder lacks ideal size, he is a good athlete and seems to have good instincts for the position. He must improve his tackling consistency.

    Devante Downs began the season as a starter, but saw his playing time give way to Tae Crowder. Downs played in all 16 games with eight starts (21 percent of all defensive snaps). He finished the season with 33 tackles, one pass defense, and one fumble recovery. The 6’2”, 252-pound Downs was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings waived him in late September 2019 and he was then signed by the Giants to their Practice Squad and 53-man roster in October 2019. Downs played in seven games for the Giants in 2019 on special teams. Downs has good size, but he did not impress against the run or pass in 2020 despite his eight starts.

    The Giants placed David Mayo on Injured Reserve in early September 2020 with a torn meniscus in his left knee that required surgery. He was activated from Injured Reserve in mid-October. Mayo ended up playing in 11 games with two starts (18 percent of all defensive snaps). He was credited with 29 tackles, two tackles for losses, and one forced fumble. The Giants signed Mayo in September 2019 after he was cut by the San Francisco 49ers. He surprisingly ended up playing in all 16 games with 13 starts, playing in 57 percent of all defensive snaps, and finishing with 82 tackles, 2 sacks, and 2 pass defenses. The 6’2”, 240-pound Mayo was originally drafted in the 5th round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers. After four seasons in Carolina, Mayo signed with the San Francisco 49ers in March 2019. Before coming to the Giants, Mayo only had started four NFL games in four seasons. Mayo lacks ideal tools which limits his ability defend the run and cover receivers, but he plays hard.

    The Giants selected T.J. Brunson in the 7th round of the 2020 NFL Draft. Brunson spent most of the season on the inactive list, but he did play in five games, almost exclusively on special teams. He was credited with three tackles. The 6’1”, 230-pound Brunson is an undersized inside linebacker with decent but not ideal athleticism. He is very physical and aggressive.

    EDGE

    The Giants placed Lorenzo Carter on Injured Reserve with a ruptured Achilles’ tendon that he suffered in Week 5 in October 2020. He underwent surgery and missed the rest of the season after starting all five games and finishing with 14 tackles and one sack. The Giants drafted Carter in the 3rd round of the 2018 NFL Draft. Carter played in 15 games as a rookie with two starts, finishing the season with 43 tackles, 4 sacks, and 4 pass defenses. In 2019, Carter started 12 of the 15 games he played in, finishing the year with 45 tackles, 4.5 sacks, 5 pass defenses, and 1 forced fumble. Carter is a tall, athletic, disruptive forward mover. Carter looks the part, combining good size (6’5”, 255 pounds) and overall athletic ability. He flashes the ability to disrupt, but must do a better job of disengaging from blockers and making more plays. Versatile, he can play with his hand in the dirt.

    Oshane Ximines was placed on Injured Reserve in early October 2020 with a shoulder injury that he suffered in Week 4. He returned to practice in late November, but his season ended when it was determined he would need rotator cuff surgery. Ximines started three of the four games he played in and finished the season with just four tackles. The Giants drafted Ximines in the 3rd round of the 2019 NFL Draft. He played at end in college. Ximines had a mixed performance in his rookie season in 2019. He received significant playing time, playing in all 16 games with two starts, playing in 45 percent of all defensive snaps, and accruing 25 tackles, 4.5 sacks, and one pass defense. Ximines has a nice combination of size (6’4”, 254 pounds) and overall athletic-ability. Ximines flashed at times as a pass rusher, but he must become a more physical run defender and more consistent, dynamic performer when rushing the passer. He also needs work in coverage.

    2020 was an odd year for Markus Golden. Coming off of a superlative debut season for the Giants as a 1-year free agent rental in 2019 (career-high 72 tackles and team-high 10 sacks), Golden did not receive much interest in 2020 free agency. He re-signed with the Giants very late in the offseason in early August, but did not regain his starting position when the season started. The Giants then traded him to the Cardinals in late October. Golden ended up having a much bigger impact with the Cardinals than the Giants in 2020. With the Giants, he played in seven games with one start (16 percent of all defensive snaps) and finished with just 10 tackles and 1.5 sacks. Golden was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Cardinals. After rejoining the Cardinals, Golden started the final eight games, including a 1-sack, 1-fumble recovery performance against the Giants in Week 14. 

    The Giants placed Kyler Fackrell on Injured Reserve in early December 2020 with a calf injury and activated him to the 53-man roster in early January 2021. In all, Fackrell played in 12 games with nine starts. He played in 56 percent of all defensive snaps and finished the season with 34 tackles, seven tackles for a loss, four sacks, 10 quarterback hits, two pass defenses, one interception that he returned for a touchdown, and one forced fumble. The 6’5”, 245-pound Fackrell was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers. In four seasons with Green Bay, Fackrell played in 61 regular-season games with nine starts, compiling 111 tackles, 16.5 sacks, one pass defense, and one forced fumble. Fackrell’s best season was in 2018 when he started seven games and accrued 42 tackles and 10.5 sacks. The Giants signed Fackrell an unrestricted free agent from the Packers in March 2020. Although not a dynamic athlete, Fackrell is a big, versatile linebacker who can play outside or inside linebacker. He flashes as a pass rusher.

    The Giants signed Jabaal Sheard off of the Practice Squad of the Jacksonville Jaguars in October 2020. He ended up playing in nine games for the Giants with three starts (24 percent of all defensive snaps), and finished with 19 tackles, two tackles for losses, 1.5 sacks, two quarterback hits, and one forced fumble. The 6’3”, 268-pound Sheard was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns. He has spent time with the Browns (2011-2014), New England Patriots (2015-2016), Indianapolis Colts (2017-2019), and Jaguars (2020). Sheard has played in 144 regular-season games with 106 starts. While not a dynamic performer, Sheard is a steady, veteran presence who is solid against the run and will occasionally make some noise as a pass rusher.

    The Giants selected Carter Coughlin in the 7th round of the 2020 NFL Draft. He played in 14 games as a rookie with two starts (18 percent of all defensive snaps). Coughlin finished the season with 17 tackles, two tackles for losses, one sack, and two quarterback hits. The 6’3”, 236-pound Coughlin is not a top athlete, but he is a tough, competitive, and reliable linebacker who plays hard.

    The Giants selected Cam Brown in the 6th round of the 2020 NFL Draft. He played in 15 games as a rookie with no starts (8 percent of all defensive snaps). Brown finished the year with 12 tackles, three quarterback hits, and one forced fumble. The 6’5”, 233-pound Brown is a tall and lanky outside backer with long arms and decent speed. His size and solid athletic ability assist him coverage but he needs to improve his run defense at the point-of-attack and overall tackling consistency.

    The Giants signed Niko Lalos as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2020 NFL Draft. Lalos spent most of the season on the Practice Squad but was elevated to the 53-man roster in December. He played in six games with no starts as a rookie (7 percent of all defensive snaps). Lalos finished the season with six tackles, one interception, one pass defense, and one fumble recovery. The 6’5”, 270-pound Lalos played defensive end in college but was moved to the outside linebacker position by the Giants. He has good size for the position, but is not a dynamic athlete. Over-achiever who plays hard.

    The Giants signed Trent Harris to the Practice Squad and then the 53-man roster in October 2020; he was re-signed to the Practice Squad in December after playing in four games with two starts (6 percent of all defensive snaps). He finished they year with five tackles and 0.5 sacks. The 6’2”, 255-pound Harris was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the New England Patriots after the 2018 NFL Draft. He spent his rookie season on the Practice Squad of the Patriots. The Miami Dolphins claimed Harris off of waivers in September 2019. He played in 11 games with three starts with the Dolphins, accruing 20 tackles and 1.5 sacks. The Dolphins cut him in early September 2020.

    Dec 112020
     
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    Daniel Jones, New York Giants (October 18, 2020)

    Daniel Jones – © USA TODAY Sports

    DECEMBER 11, 2020 NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
    LB Blake Martinez (back), CB Darnay Holmes (knee) , and CB Madre Harper (knee) did not practice on Friday. Harper has officially been ruled out of Sunday’s game against the Arizona Cardinals. Martinez and Holmes are “questionable.”

    OT Matt Peart (ankle) was limited in practice; he is officially “questionable” for the game.

    QB Daniel Jones (hamstring) fully practiced; he is also officially “questionable” for the game.

    “(Jone has) been getting better every day, he’s working very hard with the trainers,” said Head Coach Joe Judge before practice. “Coming out of practice yesterday, there was some progress made. We had a long talk with him after practice, long talk with him this morning again. We’re going to kind of put him through it again today, see how his body responds to what it was yesterday. Look, I’m fairly optimistic. At the same time, there are a ways to go and we have to be fair to him. I’m going to talk to the trainers, make sure the medical team and the coaching staff are on the same page and that we do the right thing by this guy.”

    HEAD COACH JOE JUDGE…
    The transcript of Joe Judge’s press conference on Friday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

    THE PLAYERS SPEAK…
    Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

    WHAT’S UP NEXT…
    There is no media availability to the New York Giants on Saturday. The team plays the Arizona Cardinals at MetLife Stadium on Sunday.

    Nov 052020
     
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    Golden Tate, New York Giants (November 2, 2020)

    Golden Tate – © USA TODAY Sports

    NOVEMBER 5, 2020 NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
    OG Will Hernandez (COVID) and CB Ryan Lewis (hamstring) did not practice on Thursday.

    RB Devonta Freeman (ankle), WR Sterling Shepard (shoulder/toe), LB Blake Martinez (hamstring), LB Devante Downs (shoulder), and S Logan Ryan (hip) were limited in practice.

    THE COACHES SPEAK…
    Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following coaches are available in The Corner Forum and on YouTube/Giants.com:

    THE PLAYERS SPEAK…
    Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following players are available in The Corner Forum and on YouTube/Giants.com:

    WHAT’S UP NEXT…
    The New York Giants practice on Friday (11:30AM-1:15PM). Head Coach Joe Judge and select players will also address the media.

    Jul 282020
     
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    Shakial Taylor, Indianapolis Colts (October 20, 2019)

    Shakial Taylor – © USA TODAY Sports

    ALL OF NEW YORK GIANTS 2020 NFL DRAFT CLASS SIGNED…
    The New York Giants announced late yesterday that all 10 of their 2020 NFL Draft picks have officially signed. This includes offensive tackle Andrew Thomas (1st round), safety Xavier McKinney (2nd round), offensive tackle Matt Peart (3rd round), cornerback Darnay Holmes (4th round), offensive guard Shane Lemieux (5th round), linebacker Cam Brown (6th round), linebacker Carter Coughlin (7th round), linebacker T.J. Brunson (7th round), defensive back Chris Williamson (7th round), and linebacker Tae Crowder (7th round).

    ROSTER MOVES – GIANTS CLAIM CORNERBACK SHAKIAL TAYLOR…
    The New York Giants have claimed defensive back Shakial Taylor off of waivers from the Denver Broncos. The 23-year old, 6’0”, 181-pound Taylor was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Indianapolis Colts after the 2019 NFL Draft. He was then claimed off of waivers by the Broncos in November 2019. Taylor played in five games and accrued seven tackles and one pass defense as a rookie.

    The Giants have also waived undrafted rookie free agent cornerback Malcolm Elmore, who failed his physical due to a non-football injury.

    Wide receiver David Sills was placed on the Reserve/COVID-19 List, which means he either tested positive for the virus or came into contact with someone who did. While he remains on the list, Sill does not count against the team’s 90-man roster limit. The 6’3”, 211-pound Sills was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Buffalo Bills after the 2019 NFL Draft. The Giants signed Sills to the Practice Squad in September 2019 after he was cut by the Bills. The Giants then signed him to the 53-man roster in mid-December. He did not play in a game however.

    Quarterback Alex Tanney was placed on the Non-Football Illness List with an undisclosed issue. He counts against the 90-man roster limit. The Giants signed Tanney in May 2018 after after he was cut by the Tennessee Titans. The 6’4”, 220-pound Tanney was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Kansas City Chiefs after the 2012 NFL Draft. The well-traveled journeyman has spent time with the Chiefs (2012), Dallas Cowboys (2013), Cleveland Browns (2013), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2014), Titans (2014), Buffalo Bills (2015), Indianapolis Colts (2015), and Titans again (2015–2018). He surprisingly won the back-up quarterback job to Eli Manning in 2018, but was moved to third-string in 2019, being active for only one game.

    Linebacker Tae Crowder was placed on the Non-Football Injury List with an undisclosed issue. He counts against the 90-man roster limit. The Giants selected Crowder in the 7th round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

    In other moves, the team officially announced that they have waived place kicker Aldrick Rosas. The signing of international player running back Sandro Platzgummer also became official.

    GIANTS DECIDE TO GO SPLIT-SQUAD ROUTE…
    Due to the COVID-19 crisis, NFL teams had to decide whether they wanted to reduce their training camp rosters on July 28 or August 16. The Giants have chosen the latter. But in doing so, the team must be split into (1) veteran and (2) rookies/first-year players/rehabbing players/select quarterbacks contingents until August 16. Teams will be allowed to begin practicing on August 17.

    NEW YORK GIANTS VETERANS REPORTS TO CAMP…
    As scheduled, the bulk of New York Giants players reported to training camp in East Rutherford, New Jersey on Tuesday. Quarterbacks, rookies, and rehabbing players reported on July 23.

    Actual practices are not expected to be held until mid-August due to COVID-19 restrictions. All preseason games have been canceled. The Giants’ regular-season Monday night home opener is currently scheduled for September 14th. For the players who arrived on Tuesday, the current schedule looks like this:

    • July 28: Report and receive first test; return home/hotel and participate in virtual meetings.
    • July 29: Report and receive second test; return home/hotel and participate in virtual meetings.
    • July 30: Stay at home/hotel and only participate in virtual meetings.
    • July 31: Report and receive third test; participate in virtual meetings.
    • August 1-2: Players who test negative receive physicals and equipment fitting.
    • August 3-16: Strength and conditioning and on-field walk-throughs.
    • August 17: Helmet and shells practices begin, slowing being ramped up to full-padded work (14 padded practices maximum).

    According to media reports, the Giants will conduct most training camp functions at MetLife Stadium in order to be better comply with COVID-19 restrictions. The home and away locker rooms at the stadium will allow for greater social distancing. The Giants will also have access to suites inside the stadium in order to hold team meetings. However, the Giants will still practice at nearby Quest Diagnostics Training Center. Practices will not be open to the public.

    Jun 082020
     
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    Blake Martinez, Green Bay Packers (December 29, 2019)

    Blake Martinez – © USA TODAY Sports

    With New York Giants training camp hopefully beginning in late July, BigBlueInteractive.com (BBI) breaks down each of the team’s positional groups until the players report at Quest Diagnostics Training Center. Keep in mind that some of the players discussed may be cut as the 2020 NFL draft class signs their rookie contracts.

    FIND A COMPLETE LIST OF ALL BREAKDOWNS HERE

    POSITIONAL BREAKDOWN: Linebackers

    2019 YEAR IN REVIEW: If we go back in time one year, many believed that while the defensive line and secondary would improve, it was the linebacking unit that still seemed very much unsettled. After all, the 3-4 defense relies on the linebackers to be the play-makers. The Giants had traded away their best pass rusher, Olivier Vernon. Markus Golden was signed in free agency, but he had yet to return to his pre-injury form from 2016 (12.5 sacks). There was a desperate hope and need for second-year player Lorenzo Carter to beat out disappointing free agent Kareem Martin, relegating the latter to reserve duty. The Giants had also drafted Oshane Ximines in the 3rd round.

    Inside linebacker was also a bit confused. The Giants were hoping that Alec Ogletree would become more consistent. It wasn’t clear if B.J. Goodson or Tae Davis would start alongside him. Much wasn’t expected immediately of 5th rounder Ryan Connelly.

    So what happened? Golden actually ended up being a good signing, starting all 16 games and accruing a career-high 72 tackles, and team-high 10 sacks. On the other hand, Carter disappointed. Despite starting 12 games, he finished the year with just 45 tackles and 4.5 sacks. Martin was placed on Injured Reserve in September 2019 with a knee injury that he suffered in the regular-season opener. He was activated back to the active roster in December and finished the year with only three tackles in five games, with no starts. Ximines had a mixed performance as a rookie, receiving significant playing time (45 percent of all defensive snaps). While he flashed at times as a pass rusher (4.5 sacks), he struggled against the run. The Giants also added some in-season pick-ups who saw limited playing time such Devante Downs, Chris Peace, and Tuzar Skipper.

    Inside, it was worse. Goodson was traded to the Packers before the season started. Davis was cut during the season in October. Ogletree missed three games and his overall play noticeably declined. At times, he simply appeared to be going through the motions. The brief bright spot was rookie Connelly, but he tore his ACL in Week 4. The Giants signed David Mayo in September after he was cut by the 49ers and surprisingly ended up starting 13 games. He played just OK. Special teams player Nate Stupar was waived, re-signed, and waived again. Undrafted rookie free agent Josiah Tauaefa made the team but saw most of his action on special teams. Deone Bucannon was signed in October after he was cut by the Buccaneers, starting one game, but playing mostly in a reserve role.

    Overall, except for Golden and a brief couple of games from Connelly, the linebacking corps once again was a disappointment in all phases: run defense, rushing the passer, and coverage. The Giants finished 20th in run defense. The team generated 36 sacks with 23.5 coming from the linebackers (10 of those from Golden alone). Coverage on opposing tight ends and running backs remained abysmal.

    ADDITIONS/SUBTRACTIONS: The revolving door at this position continues. The team’s best linebacker in 2019, Markus Golden, remains in limbo as an unsigned unrestricted free agent. Joe Judge says the team would like him back. Expensive David Gettleman mistakes Alec Ogletree and Kareem Martin were let go in February. Deone Bucannon signed with the Falcons in May. The Steelers re-signed Skipper from the Giants’ Practice Squad in November.

    Devante Downs and David Mayo were re-signed. The Giants signed free agents inside linebacker Blake Martinez ($31 million) and outside linebacker Kyler Fackrell ($4.6 million). An influx of rookies arrived in April, including Cam Brown (6th round), Carter Coughlin (7th round), T.J. Brunson (7th round), Tae Crowder (7th round), Dominique Ross (UDFA), Dana Levine (UDFA), and Oluwole Betiku (UDFA).

    TRAINING CAMP STORY LINES: There are a lot of bodies (17), but how many are good players? The team’s most productive pass rusher, Golden, remains unsigned. As of now, the Giants are relying on Kyler Fackrell, Lorenzo Carter, Oshane Ximines, and a late draft pick/rookie free agent to supply the outside pass rush. While the first three players have flashed at times, that’s asking a lot. The belief by many is that new Defensive Coordinator Patrick Graham will have to scheme the pass rush.

    Inside, much depends on the performance of Blake Martinez and how well Ryan Connelly comes back from a serious knee injury. Opinions on Martinez vary wildly. And Connelly has to prove he hasn’t lost speed/agility. Mayo provides depth and insurance.

    Did the Giants find gold with any of the late four draft picks or three undrafted rookie free agents?

    ON THE BUBBLE: When you have 17 players at one position, a lot of people are on the bubble. Barring injury, one would think that Fackrell, Carter, and Ximines are safe outside and Martinez and Connelly will make it inside. Mayo has an experience advantage, but he faces competition from at least two rookies (Brunson and Crowder). Will the Giants re-sign Golden? All five rookie outside linebackers have intriguing characteristics, but they all can’t make it. Special teams play probably will be a significant factor.

    PREDICTIONS: Stating the obvious, the Giants don’t have an edge rusher who scares the heck out of the opposition and demands potential double-team attention. Even if the team re-signs Golden, he’s more of a complimentary piece than headliner. Fackrell could surprise as he did have a double-digit sack season in 2018 under Patrick Graham. So much depends on whether or not new outside linebacker coach Bret Bielema can develop Carter and Ximines. (Incidentally, a nice addition for Carter was that he former college coach is now coaching the inside linebackers). The pass rush could be aided if the inside linebackers and safeties can improve their coverage against tight ends. The longer a QB has to hold the football, the more time the pass rushers will have to get to the QB. Barring an unlikely breakout season by someone, the Giants are not likely to be a strong pass rushing team in 2020.

    On the other hand, contrary to many, I’m a bit more bullish on the inside guys as long as Ryan Connelly can fully recover from his ACL injury. Martinez and Connelly are two smart, heady, better-athletes-than-advertised players who could form a very respectable duo inside.

    FINAL DEPTH CHART: Kyler Fackrell, Lorenzo Carter, Oshane Ximines, Cam Brown, Carter Coughlin, Blake Martinez, Ryan Connelly, David Mayo, T.J. Brunson

    I’m throwing darts at a dartboard when it comes to predicting rookies at this point. For example, who knows if Brunson or Crowder will show more? The heart of any special teams unit are the reserve linebackers and defensive backs so a lot of these guys could make it. I would not be shocked to see one or even two of the undrafted rookie free agents really push for a roster spot. Don’t sleep on guys like Ross, Levine, and Betiku.

    Jun 042020
     
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    New York Giants Helmets (September 22, 2019)

    © USA TODAY Sports

    BABY STEPS – GIANTS BEGIN REOPENING TEAM FACILITY…
    The New York Giants announced on Wednesday that the team has “started a slow, steady reopening” of the Quest Diagnostics Training Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey “in accordance with the protocols of the State of New Jersey and the NFL.” The facility had been closed since mid-March due to the COVID-19 situation.

    According to a Giants press release, approximately 15-20 team officials returned to the facility on Wednesday, including co-owner John Mara and General Manager Dave Gettleman as well as some football, business, operations, and medical staff. No coaches have yet returned.

    The press release continues: “The number of employees in the facility will continue to increase slowly over the course of the next couple weeks with more business people filtering in. For the time being, those employees who can continue to work from home will do so.”

    “We have been working diligently over the last couple months to prepare for coming back to the facility, the Quest Diagnostics Training Center,” said Senior Vice president of Medical Services Ronnie Barnes. “The primary focus has been to return our employees safely. And so everything that we have been doing has been related to the safety of our employees and how we can get back to work as safely as possible.

    “We’re all happy to be back. We’ve been waiting for a long time. The Giants’ COVID-19 Task Force has been working hard to make this facility as safe as possible. We’ve made a lot of changes; those are all for (employees’) safety and they’re very important. We are following the CDC guidelines, the guidelines from the NFL and guidelines from the National Institute of Health, as well as the state’s protocols.”

    DEANDRE BAKER UPDATE…
    As previously reported, New York Giants cornerback Deandre Baker was charged last month with four counts of armed robbery and four counts of armed aggravated assault with a firearm from an incident that allegedly took place at a house party in Miramar, Florida. The incident was allegedly sparked by a game of dice that involved high-stakes gambling and allegedly resulted in Baker robbing party guests at gunpoint. Baker was released on bond after he turned himself into police authorities.

    Since the incident, the New York Giants told Baker to stay away from team offseason virtual meetings and concentrate on his ongoing legal situation.

    In May, Baker’s attorneys claimed Baker was the victim of a shakedown. Now one of his attorneys believes Baker will soon be cleared of all charges. “I think we’ve got the case won, to be honest with you,” Baker’s attorney told SNY. “I think it’s only a matter of time…As soon this dismissal goes (through), he’s going to head back to Jersey and start practicing. If it becomes a charge, then the NFL will suspend him. So the Giants are really just playing it cool right now, which is the right thing to do. Just do nothing until the state makes a decision on what they’re going to do.”

    However, even if Baker is legally cleared, the NFL could punish Baker for violating the NFL’s Personal Conduct Policy.

    “Hopefully it’s a wake-up call for the young kid,” said Baker’s attorney. “That’s what he needed.”

    The Giants drafted Baker in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Baker had an up-and-down rookie season for the Giants. He started 15 of the 16 games he played in, receiving 87 percent of defensive snaps, and finishing the year with 61 tackles and 8 pass defenses. He did not intercept a pass.

    GIANTS.COM PLAYER BREAKDOWNS…
    Giants.com has produced a number of informative players breakdowns on the New York Giants 2020 NFL Draft class:

    ARTICLES…

    Apr 282020
     
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    Shane Lemieux, Oregon Ducks (April 20, 2019)

    Shane Lemieuxr – © USA TODAY Sports

    MEDIA SESSIONS WITH SHANE LEMIEUX, CAM BROWN, CARTER COUGHLIN…
    Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with New York Giants draft picks guard/center Shane Lemieux (5th round), linebacker Cam Brown (6th round), and linebacker Carter Coughlin (7th round):

    Media Q&A with OG/OC Shane Lemieux  (Video):

    Q: You have obviously played guard in games, but you’ve also done some work at center if I’m not mistaken. Can you tell us where you are in that process and how that transition is coming along for you?

    A: I was really fortunate enough in college, I had a really good offensive line. We never really had to move much because we were experienced veterans. During this draft process, I understood that this game is all about versatility. I think that me getting good at all three interior positions is going to benefit me well in the future. I don’t really have a position. I just want to be ready whenever I get in, to be ready to play whatever coach asks me to.

    Q: Was that your decision to take on center? Did your coach come to you and tell you to learn other spots?

    A: That was probably just on me. Especially as a rookie, there’s not really a guard that only plays guard. Versatility is the biggest factor in this game. Coaches want to be able to put you in multiple spots. I have really good mentors that told me that at training camp, no matter where you are, they are going to throw you in, and you have to be ready. I just want to be prepared before that happened. Even at pro day, somebody asked me to jump in at center and I was ready to do that. It just all works out and versatility is key.

    Q: What is the biggest challenge of playing center?

    A: Every single offensive line position is going to have different techniques. I feel like with center there is a lot more responsibility on you to know the offense and to know more of the defense and be more sound with what’s going on around you. Obviously, you have to snap the ball. Those are the two of the biggest factors that are different. At the same time, I feel like I am a football player. I’ve been working at all three positions. I really appreciate the differences in all three of the interior spots and the tackle spots as well. There’s obviously little caveats, little differences to everything.

    Q: You are the second Oregon player to be drafted to New York. Do you know Sabrina (Ionescu) and what do you think about her basketball game?

    A: Yes, I do know Sabrina. She came in the class after me, obviously she is a really talented athlete, awesome person. A fearless competitor. When you watch her play, that’s the first thing you see. A competitor who loves her teammates and loves the game of basketball. I think that’s the most important part of being a great athlete, loving your sport.

    Q: What was your initial conversation with Coach Judge like? What’s it like going to a coach who is clearly trying to establish a culture?

    A: My head coach in college, Mario Cristobal, emphasized doing the work before doing the talk. I think that’s a really important piece that taught me how to be pro. Coach Judge called me on draft day and said put your head down and work. I think that’s an important thing. I don’t want to elaborate on exactly what he said out of respect for him and I. The main mantra was to put your head down and work.

    Q: As the nearly 500th ranked recruit at the time, three-star, first guy out of West Valley to D-1. What has this ride meant to you the last four or five years? How does it feel to be an NFL draft pick?

    A: First thing I thought of was I remember one day my sophomore year of high school when I told my dad I’m going to play in the NFL. I’m going to get this done, I’m going to play at Oregon and be an All American. I think ever since that day I promised my parents, it’s kind of been uphill since from there. I went through a lot of stuff, a lot of workouts, a lot of force feeding to try and get up to the weight to get into college. It’s awesome, I’ve gotten unbelievable support out of West Valley, my high school area. Just trying to be a good representative of the 509. I take a lot of pride in that. Cooper Kupp came out of Washington and is with the Rams and now there’s me. I think I have to be a good representative of the valley and be a good representative for the University of Oregon. They taught me so much.

    Q: As a country boy who wants to live in a cabin in the middle of nowhere at some point, how does the New York/ New Jersey area sound?

    A: We have a bunch of guys, Justin Pugh, who I’m training with, Jonotthan Harrison of the Jets. They have done a good job of showing me where the places to fish are, where the reservoirs are. I’ve heard a lot about the surrounding areas, even the ocean you can fish. I’m sure I can find stuff to do. At the same time, I want to focus on the season, I’m going to be doing a lot of stuff. I’m probably just going to be living wherever I am, playing ball, and studying film.

    Q: Growing up when you were learning the position, who were some of the guys you viewed as role models?

    A: I probably never really had a role model or someone I modeled my game after. I was always told as a young player, especially from my coaches at Oregon, you are an individual. You play like Shane Lemieux, you don’t play like anybody else. Obviously, there’s great role models in this game. I think one that comes to mind is Marshal Yanda. His toughness and his durability. I remember him walking off the field with a broken leg, I thought that was really impressive. Stuff like that, people who take a lot of pride in the position, people who work really hard are guys I want to look up to but not necessarily who I want to play like.

    Q: A lot of what we have talked to you about is being a center. I assume you are coming in here saying, “I’m a guard”, aren’t you?

    A: I think I’m an offensive lineman, that’s what I’m coming in as. That’s what I have been playing, I’m a football player. I’m a football player that plays offensive line. No matter where the coaches want to put me to help the team, that’s where I’m going to go.

    Q: With a name like Lemieux, how is it you are playing football instead of hockey?

    A: I’ve gotten that question for a long time. I had a left tackle in college named Tyrell Crosby that played right next to me, so it was Crosby and Lemieux and people had a fit with that. I’ve heard I’m not wearing 66, which is a crime. I was 68 in college. I’ve never met another Lemieux that plays hockey so if somebody sees this, let me know.

    Q: After four years of being a starter, what is the mental shift for you in this process of having to compete for a job again and possibly having to be backup to start off? After 52 straight starts, what’s that like for you mentally?

    A: It’s just going to work. I think every single day in college I approached each day as if my job was on the line. I think the biggest factor of why I never liked to miss practice or why I never missed a game rep was if I wasn’t getting those reps, somebody else was. That’s the mentality I had instilled in me by coach Cristobal at Oregon. Alex Mirabal at Oregon. I think that’s just the way I take the game. I take a lot of pride in the sense that any play can be your last. The more I can understand the playbook, earn the trust of the coaches and my teammates and just work, that’s what it takes.

    Q: Did the whole family make it down to Arizona? Did Miranda join you?

    A: It was just mom, dad and my sister in Arizona. My parents drove down, they thought it would be a lot safer than flying. Even here, we did a lot of social distancing. It was good.

    Q: Joe Judge has talked a lot about cross training offensive linemen at different spots. Andrew Thomas at left tackle and right tackle, I’m sure with you playing both guard spots and center. From an offensive lineman’s perspective, how challenging is that and how beneficial is it to get reps at all three of those spots?

    A: Especially as a young player in this league, I think it’s the ultimate test to be able to play all the different positions. I know a lot of offensive line coaches like it. I’m sure these offensive line coaches like it, they talked a lot about it. You want to be the best player you can be. The best player you can be is somebody who can be thrown in at any position and can play.

    Q: Where are you most comfortable? Where do you have the most experience and is there a difference between both sides?

    A: In high school, I played left tackle, right tackle. In college I played left guard, in practice I played right guard. I’ve been all over. I think I don’t really have any place where I’m comfortable. I think I’m a natural offensive lineman where I can play any position I’m asked. I think that’s just been a lot of work. Obviously, there’s techniques and differences between each position. There’s set differences if you’re a guard, if you’re a tackle, if you’re at center. I think it’s just the more reps, the more comfortable you are at a position. I’ve taken so many reps over my career, I’m comfortable at any position.

    Q: You mentioned cross training and you are an offensive lineman, not just a guard. Center is a whole different animal. Have you ever snapped before in practice? What are the main things you need to learn to actually snap the ball and then block? It’s a whole different skill set.

    A: In practice throughout my college career, I snapped just to learn. I think it would just be good to learn. Ever since, now I have been trained at every position. I have even been trained at tackle just to understand the game more and be more versatile. Each offensive line position is a little different, each takes reps to get comfortable. I’ve been working to get more comfortable with the stance and the snaps. Even at right guard, I haven’t played a bunch of right guard, so I am getting better there. I’m probably never going to play tackle, but just the ability to get out there even if you have to take a couple reps in practice is great to have.

    Q: I know you have played every game. Do you have any idea on how many snaps you’ve missed?

    A: I remember one game I missed a snap against Wyoming because my shoe came off. That’s the only snap I have ever missed, that was my sophomore year. Ever since then, it was only if we were up big on an opponent.

    Q: You have never missed a practice either?

    A: Never missed a practice, no sir.

    Q: The general manager Dave Gettleman talked about fixing the offensive line once and for all. You are well aware they drafted Andrew Thomas, they drafted Matt Peart in the third round and you as well. What’s it like to be a part of that group that is tasked with fixing that offensive line once and for all?

    A: I think it’s really awesome seeing a team value the offensive line the way that they do. I’ve heard all about hog mollies and all that kind of stuff. I’m really excited and I can’t wait to get to know these other rookies and I can’t wait to get to know the other teammates on the offensive line. I think we are all ready to get to work. I can’t speak for them, but I’m sure we are all ready to work. I briefly met Andrew Thomas and Peart at the combine and I can’t wait to see them and get to work with them.

    Q: You mentioned getting reps in. With the challenge with COVID-19, how are you getting these reps in. There is so much more about playing center. There’s the movement of the ball and moving at the same time. It’s snapping to a quarterback and getting used to the chemistry there. How are you simulating all that in whatever training you are doing?

    A: Basically, I have been at a private training facility in Arizona with LeCharles Bentley. We do a really good job of keeping people inside the gym social distancing. We have the same group of guys that have been in the gym for the last four months. We kind of live in this bubble and we do a really good job of dividing these groups out, so we are not together. I think I have been taking a lot of reps on air at guard and tackle. I have been doing lot on the bag, too. I’m still able to get the work in.

    Media Q&A with LB Cam Brown (Video):

    Q: I know when you were originally recruited to Penn State, they wanted you as a defensive end but there was that struggle to put weight on to play that position. What was that like for you and what do you think you can bring to this Giants defense that really doesn’t have a pass rush other than Markus Golden, who is not even on the team who has had double digit sacks the last couple years?

    A: Honestly, the struggle coming to Penn State and trying to put on some weight, it wasn’t too much of a struggle, it was just something that would fit at the time. At the time, I was about 220, not even 220, like 200, and they figured I’d be more effective at linebacker at the time than at defensive end. So, I mean of course if I grew into a spot, they’d be open to moving to d-end. For me, luckily, it wasn’t necessary. It worked out well for me to be a linebacker at Penn State. Going into the Giants, I really do hope to just play my role, play whatever role that is as a linebacker, outside, inside, wherever the coaches need. I just want to make plays honestly. Just get my name out there so I can make plays.

    Q: We know your Penn State connections to the Giants, I’m curious how many of those guys have you been in contact with? It’s probably pretty obvious that (Defensive Line Coach) Sean Spencer gave you a high recommendation for you to land here. What’s your relationship with him?

    A: From the start honestly, I talked to Grant (Haley) and Saquon (Barkley) of course, Coach Spence, everybody on draft day congratulated me. Just reconnecting with them a little bit. With Say (Saquon) and Grant, it was more so I was just asking them for a little advice, just bouncing quick ideas off them real quick. But I’m pretty sure more communication will go on as long as this goes on, as long as we’re away from each other. But honestly, Coach Spence, Coach Spence is my guy. Like I said, I was going to be recruited as a d-end, so we had a relationship, he came to see me all of the time during recruitment in high school. It’s grown and blossomed. I feel like I became one of the guys he could trust on the defense and he’s one of the guys that I trusted him to go to with problems or things like that. Our relationship is growing and I hope it continues to blossom.

    Q: What kind of background do you have in special teams? Did you play much in college?

    A: Yeah, freshman and sophomore year, it was how I made my money honestly. It was how I got on the field. Freshman year, I played every special teams, kickoff, kick return, punt, punt return. Made some plays on kickoff and punt return. But sophomore year, I moved into, I still was playing a lot of special teams, that was more so kickoff, punt, a little bit of punt return there. But that year, or those two years, I was getting my feet wet, trying to get the experience, trying to understand the flow of the game. Just going against different players. I mean every game at kickoff you really get to size people up. The game always starts and ends with a kick, so it’s kind of what I got used to and kind of how I started my progression in college.

    Q: Do you expect your NFL career to follow that same path?

    A: Yeah, I do. I definitely understand that as a rookie coming in that I’m going to have to do and play all special teams. I mean it’s a 53-man roster, you’ve got to play your role and that role might be in multiple places. I’m willing and ready to play.

    Q: Did you work a whole lot with Coach Spencer? I know he cross-trains a lot of guys. Can you just talk about working with him and what he teaches and what you think that’s going to translate to when you get to this level?

    A: Yeah, Coach Spence…we used to call him the ultimate motivator. He’s going to get guys riled up, his coaching style is really energetic, he’s out there with you, he’s going to run around, he’s going to crack jokes with you. He’s going to yell at you, and he’ll get on you hard, but you know it’s coming from a loving place. With Coach Spence going through different drills, like certain days we had hunger drills where it was like each day you’re working out on things coaches feel like we need this week. Like maybe tackling, maybe hand work, pass rush. With Coach Spence, he was always there to correct those pass rush moves and things like that. I hope and pray we can get some more cross-training there so I keep up that relationship with him.

    Q: I was wondering with your relationship with Coach Spencer, did you have any inkling that the Giants were looking to draft you? Also, what was your first interaction like with Joe Judge?

    A: With Coach Spence, his congratulations were more so cordial, more so family-like than as coming as a coach. He’s always giving me a little bit of advice just to go ahead. But, with Coach Judge honestly, the conversations have been good. They’ve been positive, they’ve been welcoming is all I can say. But outside of that, I’m getting ready to have more conversations with him and grow from there.

    Q: The Giants seem to embrace the idea of versatility. Was there a time in your college career where you said as much as I’m versatile, maybe focusing on one thing might kind of raise my profile a little bit? Do you feel like what kind of led people to maybe overlook you in college and might be something that when you get to this defense and the way they want to use you might expand your profile a little bit?

    A: Honestly in college, I wasn’t too concerned on doing one thing. I was doing whatever was needed, whatever (Penn State Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers) Coach Pry asked me honestly, if that was jumping from positions — from Will, to Sam, to back to Mike, honestly for me, I feel like that versatility and that diversity in positions I’ve played has only helped me. I feel like I don’t mind if people may have overlooked me, that’s fine. I made my way to the NFL and I’m ready to show what I can do there and whatever the coaches want me to do there, pass rush, drop, coverage, whatever it may be, I’m ready to do it.

    Q: When you watch the game now that is being played in the NFL, do you see yourself as someone who can thrive in doing that variety of things?

    A: One hundred percent, yes, I do. I feel like, like I said the versatility in all the positions I’ve played have helped me a tremendous amount. At middle linebacker, sometimes you’ve got to guard running backs, you’ve got to guard tight ends. The outside, sometimes you’ve got to set up in the slot. Whatever it may be. I feel like with the spread offense that’s coming to the NFL and all these multiple weapons and big tight ends that everybody is using, I feel like I’ll be able to match up very well against them.

    Q: You became kind of a Giants fan favorite on draft day with your tweet about the Cowboys. Where did that come from? Did you grow up a Giants or Eagles fan? Why did you grow up not liking the Cowboys?

    A: Honestly, I couldn’t tell you. I couldn’t tell you. I was probably watching a game when that tweet came out. But honestly, I’d rather not talk about something that went on seven years ago.

    Q: Did you grow up a Giants fan?

    A: Honestly no, I did not. I jumped around teams for a while and then grew up a Patriots fan.

    Q: How does being 6’5” as a linebacker help you? Now, that’s big for a linebacker…the Giants have another one in Lorenzo Carter who’s tall like that, but you’d expect that size at defensive end.

    A: Honestly, it helps getting in windows. When you’re 6’5” on the second level, and the quarterback is trying to throw a dig, it’s kind of hard when you’ve got to clear about seven to eight feet of height and length in arms. It’s kind of, for me, it’s been getting into windows, it helps with the range. Even when you’re diving through tackles, that length allows you to get a little bit further than most.

    Q: Back to that initial phone call with Joe Judge. There’s been a lot of talk about how he was pretty serious with the other players who were drafted, not to go on and talk to us about Super Bowl expectations or anything like that. What was that call like? Also, playing at a program like Penn State where they’ve had 10 or 11 players drafted in the past two years, how does playing in a program like that get you ready for the jump to the NFL?

    A: I think, especially with the Giants, it’s a great organization, it’s a very professional organization. I feel like with us, Penn State is known to be high standard, high character. I feel like that transition will be very smooth for me. Even with Coach Judge, he’s a humble guy. He wants us to have humble but ambitious goals honestly. From there, he wants us to focus on what we’ve got to do now, and that’s honestly getting through this Corona thing.

    Q: You mentioned you feel you are very versatile. I want to get a better idea as to how versatile you are. Are you primarily a stand up a guy, have you ever played much with your hand in the dirt. Are you a five technique if you have played the defensive line, do you play nine wide? Can you fill in those gaps for me?

    A: My freshmen year I played the Will, the boundary backer for us which gets a lot of action. Sophomore year, I moved to the Sam position while playing Will still. The Sam for us is almost like an NFL nickel. We sit on top of two, we’re rerouting receivers, we’re not really in the run game. Junior year, I stayed at Sam and played Mike on third downs. Mike for us on third downs is our pass coverages, our dollar (coverage), we’re mixing stuff up, blitzing, whatever it may be. Senior year, it was the same combination. I bounced around. Even at the Sam position, there’s no two wide, but I was playing the wide guy. Honestly, I played a little bit of everything. I haven’t put my hand in the dirt but outside of that, everything on the second level I have played.

    Q: Joe Judge talked about the way they go about talking to players and they use it as an opportunity at times to pick your brain on other players. How different was your interaction with them as a team than with other organizations?

    A: I can’t say it was too different. A lot of teams want to see how you react and how you respond to teams’ questions about other guys, either negative or positive. With them, they want to get more of a well-rounded view on me and how I looked at the game. That’s what they took out of it. When they asked questions like who is the best player you played against, I answered the question with J.K. Dobbins, who is an amazing player. Things like that, they just want to see your deeper understanding of football. I feel like that’s what they were getting out of that.

    Q: Did they give you an idea of where they are going to start you at position wise?

    A: Honestly at linebacker, I can tell you that. Outside or inside, that’s up for debate.

    Media Q&A with Carter Coughlin (Video):

    Q: What was it like being high school teammates with Ryan Connelly? Have you been in touch with him since the weekend?

    A: I got a chance to play with Ryan my freshman and sophomore year. At Eden Prairie High School, Ryan was the starting quarterback, so it’s awesome that he switched over to linebacker, it clearly worked out for him. He texted me on draft day and I got a chance call him last night. He gave a rundown on a bunch of stuff, so it’s awesome to connect with him and I will be able to get some awesome wisdom from him.

    Q: How was he as a quarterback?

    A: He was a monster as a quarterback. He was built like a linebacker, crazy athletic and super smart. All that obviously translated over to his linebacker game. I still remember him standing on the 50-yard line with his feet planted and being able to throw the ball all the way to the endzone without an issue. He had a cannon for an arm.

    Q: You were versatile at Minnesota. Can you talk about the positions and what they asked you to do on the defense?

    A: At Minnesota, I got a chance to play our edge rush position. We just called it our rush. It’s kind of a hybrid outside linebacker mixed with defensive end. It allowed me to drop into coverage, it allowed me to get after the quarterback, play off tight ends and play near the line of scrimmage. It really allowed me to play a bunch of different aspects of what an outside linebacker could look like or even a defensive end. I loved the rush position.

    Q: Did you play with your hand in the dirt?

    A: No. I always stayed up on my feet at the University of Minnesota.

    Q: You have a long family line that has attended the University of Minnesota. Why was that so important to you to continue that tradition?

    A: I grew up a Gopher fan since the day I came out of the womb. For me, I took a lot of pride in the University of Minnesota. Being a Gopher fan for a while, it was kind of tough sometimes because there were a lot of years where it was down and then you would catch a glimmer of hope and it would go back down. When I was deciding where I wanted to go to school, I decided I wanted to be a part of making Minnesota as great as the days when my grandpa played and they were winning championships and all that kind of stuff. From that aspect, I had pride at Minnesota, and I decided I wanted to be a part of building the program.

    Q: You had a lot success in college getting sacks, rushing the passer. How do you see that translating to the NFL? The Giants did not really draft pass rushers and they need pass rushers. As a seventh rounder, can you be a guy that can contribute in that regard?

    A: Being a swiss army knife is always useful. Whatever position the coaches decide to put me at, I guarantee you I will be able to maximize my potential there. Whether that looks like special teams, whether that looks like a positional fit, I’ll be able to use a lot of the different tools I have been able to build up through college. To able to maximize every opportunity I get.

    Q: What do you think the key to being a successful pass rusher at the next level will be?

    A: I’d say to continue to harness in on some of the details that I think, since I’ve been out of college, that I’ve been able to identify. Stuff that I really want to work on. But I think a lot of it, too, is watching film. That played out a lot for me in college, identifying what the opposing offensive tackle struggles with, how he moves his feet, how he shoots his hands, whether he leans, all of that kind of stuff. I think that transfers even more to the NFL because from what I’ve heard it’s a whole bunch of film and note taking and that’s right up my wheelhouse. I’ll be able to continue to develop those skills of learning and taking notes and watching film and all of that kind of stuff.

    Q: I know you have a long legacy at Minnesota, but the Coughlin name also has a big legacy here with the Giants. Have you ever met Coach Coughlin? I’m assuming you’re not related at a distant point.

    A: No, I’ve never met him, and we are not related, but I’ve got a bunch of people that have been asking me that over social media.