Jul 212014
 
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David Wilson and David Diehl, New York Giants (August 24, 2013)

David Wilson (22) has received medical clearance to return to the field – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Throughout this offseason, New York Giants’ running back David Wilson talked over and over about his injured neck. He reiterated there was no pain, no limitation. All he needed was a photo to assure doctors he was good to go.

It got to the point where he refused to address it anymore, telling reporters at the team’s mandatory mini-camp he wouldn’t answer any questions about his neck. This afternoon, he’ll be fielding another Q and A. But unlike before, he won’t have an issue with the subject of his neck.

Wilson announced via twitter that he has received medical clearance to resume all football related activities.

The news of Wilson’s clearance completes arguably the most trying time of the former first-round pick’s young career. Last year, Wilson suffered a herniated disc versus the Philadelphia Eagles on Oct. 6. After attempts to wait it out and let it heal on its own failed, Wilson had neck surgery to fuse the vertebrae together on Jan. 16.

The surgery put Wilson’s football career in question.

David Wilson, New York Giants (July 27, 2013)

David Wilson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

“It was hard to worry because I felt nothing,” Wilson said earlier this offseason. “I thought it would be something that would just pass over but then they said I had to have the surgery, it was best to have the surgery. I understood that and I did my research and weighed the pros and cons and felt that it was the best decision.”

After having surgery, Wilson felt himself getting better and better as the days went on. When the Giants reported to East Rutherford for the team’s offseason conditioning program, Wilson took part in the non-contact drills.

There was never a moment a smile wasn’t on Wilson’s face.

“Just staying positive and going out there and still participating,” Wilson said. “I’m trying to focus more on building chemistry with my team and learning this playbook so we can have a better season than we did last year.”

David Wilson, New York Giants (December 9, 2012)

David Wilson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York’s first training camp practice will be held Tuesday, July 22 and it’s unclear how much Wilson will participate. Just as cloudy is his role. This offseason, the Giants signed Rashad Jennings and drafted Andre Williams.

While Wilson may not be the team’s featured back, the potential of a thunder-lightning combination with Jennings should put a smile on offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo’s face.

“That’s something we’re going to strive to become,” Jennings said following an OTA practice. “He brings an element to the game that’s unique and special. I think every other running back brings something unique and special to this offense. We’ll see how time plays itself out, but I definitely want every running back to contribute as much as they possible can.”

See what fans are saying about Wilson’s return

Jul 182014
 
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Trindon Holliday, New York Giants (June 12, 2014)

Trindon Holliday – © USA TODAY Sports Images

With New York Giants training camp beginning next week, BigBlueInteractive.com concludes our break down of each of the team’s positional groups. We finish by looking at this year’s special teams.

FIND A COMPLETE LIST OF ALL BREAKDOWNS HERE

POSITIONAL BREAKDOWN: Special Teams

2013 YEAR IN REVIEW: For the most part, the specials of the New York Giants in 2013 were quite poor. The exception was PK Josh Brown who made 23-of-26 field goals (88.5 percent) with a long of 52 yards. In addition, half of Brown’s kickoffs (35-of-70) resulted in touchbacks. P Steve Weatherford was inconsistent. He started off poorly but improved as the season wore on. In 2013, Weatherford, averaged 46.9 yards per punt with a net average of 38.2. The usually reliable long-snapper Zak DeOssie had a poor snap against the Eagles that resulted in a touchdown.

Punt coverage was terrible. The Giants were 3rd-worst in the NFL in opposing punt return average (13.6 yards per return) and allowed three punts to be returned for touchdowns.

Kickoff coverage was better as the Giants were 9th-best in the NFL, allowing an average of 21.8 yards per return.

The Giants return game was not good. The Giants were 26th in the NFL in punt returns, averaging only 7.2 yards per return. WR Rueben Randle was the primary punt returner, averaging 8.2 yards per return with a long of 32 yards.

The Giants were 27th in the NFL in kickoff returns, averaging only 21.2 yards per return. The Giants tried a number of players with similar results, including RB Michael Cox (21.8 yards per return) and WR Jerrel JerniganRB David Wilson (24.7) had a bit more success on his limited number of returns.

In sum, the return yardage differential between the Giants and their opponents was too great, making it tougher for the Giants offense and defense and easier for the oppositions’ offense and defense. The Giants also gave up four special teams touchdowns.

ADDITIONS/SUBTRACTIONS: The primary punter, kicker, and long snapper all return though it appears that Josh Brown will face a bit of a challenge from strong-legged place kicker Brandon McManus.

On paper, it appears the Giants dramatically improved their stable of returners with the additions of Trindon Holliday, Quintin Demps, and Odell Beckham, Jr.

Holliday has averaged over 27 yards per kickoff return and 9 yards per punt return in his career, including a total of six return touchdowns the last two seasons (three kickoff, three punt). Demps has also averaged over 27 yards per kick return and has two career kickoff return touchdowns. Beckham was a dynamic kickoff and punt returner at LSU.

Who will form the cover teams and blockers on returns remains to be seen. Newcomers CB Zack Bowman (ex-Chicago Bears) and CB Bennett Jackson (Notre Dame) have strong special teams reputations.

TRAINING CAMP STORY LINES: Trindon Holliday is a home-run threat every time he touches the football as his six career return touchdowns in the last two seasons indicate, including two returns for touchdowns against the Baltimore Ravens in the playoffs. However, he has major fumbling issues (10 lost in the last two seasons). Can the Giants improve his ball security?

David Wilson, New York Giants (December 9, 2012)

David Wilson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Will David Wilson, if he is medically cleared (neck), be allowed to compete in the kickoff return game? Just two years ago, he set a team record with 1,533 kickoff return yards, averaging 26.9 yards per return. Same question regarding Odell Beckham…will the Giants seriously allow him to compete as a punt returner?

Based on comments from the coaches, Brandon McManus is more than an extra leg so his competition with Josh Brown will be more interesting than usual.

It’s not sexy, but the Giants have to find players who can do a better job of blocking for the returners and covering opposing returners. They need some headhunters out there.

ON THE BUBBLE: Trindon Holliday if he doesn’t fix his fumbling issues or show more than he has to date at wide receiver. There will only be one roster spot for Josh Brown vs. Brandon McManus. Brown is the reliable, experienced veteran, but he’s 35. McManus has the big leg but is a big unknown.

Tom Quinn, Tom Coughlin, New York Giants (August 29, 2012)

Tom Quinn and Tom Coughlin – © USA TODAY Sports Images

FROM THE POSITIONAL COACH: Tom Quinn on the gunners:  “(Zack) Bowman, (Bennett) Jackson, we’re really excited about those two. Charles James continues to do well so it will be exciting to see those guys run down and cover punts.”

Quinn on Trindon Holliday: “His speed’s an asset, that’s for sure. He’s a strong guy for his size, ball security obviously will be his biggest focus once we start putting pads on and start knocking him around a little bit.”

Quinn on Brandon McManus: “I really like McManus, I liked him coming out. He went to Indy for last training camp and preseason and I thought he was really a good kicker coming out of Temple. He’s kicked in the northeast at a high level, he did all three so I think he’s got a real big upside once it all starts clicking for him.”

Quinn on Quintin Demps: “Demps, we’re real excited to have him. He’s been consistent in this league and explosive. He’s a legitimate number one kickoff returner for us. He runs with good size and he has a real good understanding of the schemes. He’s been great with all teams. A real leader, coming in likely to start and he’ll be able to contribute on special teams.”

PREDICTIONS:

Eric Kennedy - I may go down in flames with this prediction but I think Trindon Holliday finds a home with the Giants both a less mistake-prone kickoff/punt returner and factor on offense as a role player. I think the Josh Brown vs. Brandon McManus battle could be very telling in terms of where this team actually thinks it is as viable Super Bowl competitor. If they believe they are rebuilding, the choice may be McManus.

Connor Hughes - It’s hard to think of a unit that was worse than the Giants’ offensive line last year, but the special teams sure give them a run for their money. Truly, things couldn’t have gotten much worse for Tom Quinn’s squad and there is only up to go from here. I’m very, very high on the addition of Trindon Holliday and Quintin Demps. While Demps may not have the touchdown returns, if he’s able to get the Giants the ball on the 30-35 yard line regularly it’ll pay huge dividends. Holliday, meanwhile, is the little spark plug the Giants have never really had on special teams.

During their prime, Willie Ponder and Domenik Hixon each were explosive, but none can match what Holliday can do when he’s ‘on.’ The ex-Bronco and Texan is electric and will take at least one to the house this year. If he can hold on to the ball…he may turn out to be one of the bigger acquisitions the Giants made this offseason.

The Giants’ coverage unit should also see improvements this year. Zack Bowman has excelled in the role throughout his career and Bennett Jackson had similar success in college. Barring injuries, I’m expecting to see vast improvements from the special teams.

FINAL DEPTH CHART:

Eric Kennedy - Trindon Holliday (kickoff and punt returner), Josh Brown (place kicker), Steve Weatherford (punter), Zak DeOssie (long snapper)

Connor Hughes - Quintin Demps (kickoff returner), Trindon Holliday (punt returner), Josh Brown (place kicker), Steve Weatherford (punter), Zak DeOssie (long snapper)

Jul 022014
 
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Rashad Jennings, New York Giants (June 18,2014)

Rashad Jennings – © USA TODAY Sports Images

With the New York Giants reporting to camp in less than a month, BigBlueInteractive.com is breaking down each of the team’s positional groups from now until July 21. Our first article concentrated on the team’s quarterbacks. Now let’s take a look at the running backs and fullbacks.

FIND A COMPLETE LIST OF ALL BREAKDOWNS HERE

POSITIONAL BREAKDOWN: Running Backs and Fullbacks

Brandon Jacobs, New York Giants (October 27, 2013)

Brandon Jacobs – © USA TODAY Sports Images

2013 YEAR IN REVIEW: Just a year ago, the New York Giants appeared to be “set” at running back with a 1-2 punch of Andre Brown and David Wilson. But the injury-prone Brown broke his leg in the preseason, causing him to miss half the season. He started the final eight games and finished with 139 carries for 492 yards (3.5 yards per carry) and three touchdowns. The Giants showed no interest in re-signing Brown in the offseason and he is now a Houston Texan. 2012 1st round draft pick David Wilson only played in five games before being placed on Injured Reserve with a career-threatening neck injury that required surgery in January. He started four games and finished 2013 with 146 yards on 44 carries (3.3 yards per carry) and one touchdown. He also fumbled the ball away twice. Da’Rel Scott made the team, was cut, then re-signed, and then placed on Injured Reserve with a hamstring injury.  Scott played in five games with one start in 2013, finishing the season with 73 yards on 20 carries (3.7 yards per carry). The Giants chose not to bring him back. Michael Cox, the Giants 7th pick in the 2013 Draft, played in 14 games as a rookie with one start. But he only carried the football 22 times for 43 yards (2.0 yards per carry). With injuries to Brown, Wilson, and Scott, ex-Giant Brandon Jacobs and Peyton Hillis were mid-season roster additions. But Jacobs arrived as damaged goods, started only one game, and was placed on Injured Reserve with a knee condition that forced his retirement in January. Hillis ended up playing in seven games with one start. He finished the season with 73 carries for 247 yards (3.4 yards per carry) and two touchdowns.

At fullback, 2013 was a disaster for Henry Hynoski, who missed virtually all of the offseason work with a knee injury (MCL/chip fracture) suffered in an OTA, then fracturing his shoulder and being placed on Injured Reserve in September. John Conner was signed off of the street to replace Hynoski and he performed well as a physical lead blocker in 13 games with seven starts.

Overall, the New York Giants finished 29th in rushing, averaging a paltry 83.2 yards per game and 3.5 yards per rush.

ADDITIONS/SUBTRACTIONS: The Giants had no interest in bringing back Andre Brown and Da’Rel Scott, and Brandon Jacobs has retired. David Wilson, Michael Cox, Peyton Hillis, Henry Hynoski, and John Conner return. Kendall Gaskins, who spent time with the Bills and Titans as a rookie, was signed to the Practice Squad in December and returns in 2014. The Giants made a big push to sign ex-Jaguar and ex-Raider Rashad Jennings to a 4-year, $10 million contract. The team drafted the nation’s #1 rusher Andre Williams in the 4th round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

TRAINING CAMP STORY LINES: The two main story lines are the health status of David Wilson and the Hynoski-Conner competition at fullback. Wilson is scheduled to undergo another exam on his next the day camp starts – July 21st – to determine if he can be cleared for football contact. If cleared, the explosive Wilson needs to prove he can stay healthy, hold onto the football, protect the QB, and become an instinctive play-maker. Many fans and media types believe Hynoski is the front runner for the fullback spot, but John Conner may be the better blocker, receiver, and yes, runner. The other main question is who will be the #2 back off of the bench behind Rashad Jennings. Will it be Wilson, Peyton Hillis, or Andre Williams?

ON THE BUBBLE: It would appear that Rashad Jennings and Andre Williams are locks to make the team. If he is cleared for contact, and barring a complete lack of development, the former #1 pick David Wilson is likely to make the squad. Peyton Hillis, Michael Cox, and Kendall Gaskins are fighting for one, possibly two roster spots. Don’t automatically write any of these guys off. Even Gaskins has caught the attention of the coaches.

FROM THE POSITIONAL COACH: Craig Johnson on Andre Williams:  “A big fit (for our scheme). He’s a big, strong physical runner. He led the nation in rushing last year in college football. He is strong, he’s a very explosive runner. I hear that from the defense, they say, ‘Man, that guy has really got it going.’ I’m really excited to see what he’s all about and you can tell, he runs hard.”

Johnson on David Wilson: “He’s got tremendous talent. It’s obvious to see that that. Good hands. I can’t wait to watch him get out there when he gets cleared to show what he can do.”

Johnson on Michael Cox and Kendall Gaskins: “Two guys you probably haven’t heard much about, Michael Cox, a second-year back that was a late draft choice last year, big, strong, physical, can make plays. I’m looking forward to seeing him and Kendall Gaskins, both of them, in pads. They’re young guys, they want to prove it. They’re hungry and they want to go after it. All the backs are pretty good size and pretty physical so I’m excited about the position.”

PREDICTIONS:

Peyton Hillis, New York Giants (December 1, 2013)

Peyton Hillis – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Eric Kennedy – Rashad Jennings, Peyton Hillis, and Andre Williams make this a very big and physical backfield. Considered somewhat of a journeyman running back, I firmly believe that Jennings will blossom in New York not only as a physical, no-nonsense north-south runner, but an incredibly reliable and consistent receiver out of the backfield. He is a natural receiver. I also think he will become a team leader. Some expect Peyton Hillis to be cut, but I see him becoming a John Kuhn-type receiver/runner/pass protector in Ben McAdoo’s scheme. I could see him becoming the third-down back due to his pass pro and receiving skills. I love Henry Hynoski, but I think John Conner is the better blocker, receiver, and runner.

Connor Hughes - I like Andre Williams and Rashad Jennings, too. I believe both are upgrades over Andre Brown and Brandon Jacobs. With that being said, I truly believe the ‘X’ factor for the Giants in the backfield is David Wilson.

Wilson spent the offseason in the weight room packing on the muscle, is still lightning in the bottle and the only player at the position that has the ability to break off a touchdown on any carry. If he’s healthy, I see him as a player that can run for 1200-1400 yards annually. Last year, Wilson struggled, but as the season went it became more evident that that was more of a result of the team’s porous offensive line than the former first-round pick.

I love Wilson’s attitude, he never doesn’t have a smile on his face and is more motivated than ever to get back on the field. Once he does? Look out.

FINAL DEPTH CHART: Running Backs – Rashad Jennings (1), David Wilson (2), Peyton Hillis (3), Andre Williams (4), Michael Cox (cut), Kendall Gaskins (cut)

Fullbacks – John Conner (1), Henry Hynoski (cut)

Jun 272014
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (June 18,2014)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Giants.com Q&A with RB David Wilson: The video of a Giants.com Q&A session with RB David Wilson is available at Giants.com.

Inside Football Player Q&As:

Article on the 2014 New York Giants: 9 reasons Giants fans should be optimistic by Dan Salomone of Giants.com

Article on QB Eli Manning: Eli Manning makes an appearance at Ramsey Dunkin’ Donuts by Rebecca Greene of the Ramsey Suburban News

Article on RB David Wilson: David Wilson waits and imagines by Dan Graziano of ESPN.com

Article on WR Victor Cruz: Still-hungry Victor Cruz a rare Giants rock by Dan Graziano of ESPN.com

Article on the New York Giants Defensive Tackles: Big Blue Morning: Defensive tackle rotation by Dan Graziano of ESPN.com

Article on the New York Giants Cornerbacks: Is Big Blue ‘deeper than ever’ at corner? Who won’t make the cut? by Conor Orr of The Star-Ledger

Article on S Quintin Demps: Quintin Demps: Why the Giants like him as their third safety by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Jun 192014
 
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Odell Beckham (13) and Zack Bowman (31), New York Giants (June 18, 2014)

Odell Beckham and Zack Bowman – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Mini-Camp Ends: The third and final day of the New York Giants mandatory, 3-day mini-camp was held on Thursday. Practice was called after only a few minutes when rain started to fall. Head Coach Tom Coughlin chose not to continue practice within the team’s indoor facility.

The rookies will spend one more day at Quest Diagnostics Center. Players are off until scheduled to report to Quest Diagnostics Center on July 21 for the start of summer training camp.

For more on today’s practice, see:

For more on Wednesday’s practice, see:

New York Giants Sign OT DeMarcus Love and DT Everett Dawkins: The Giants have signed street free agents OT DeMarcus Love and DT Everett Dawkins. To make room for these two, the Giants waived OT Steven Baker and DT Eathyn Manumaleuna.

BBI scouting report on OT DeMarcus Love:

  • The Giants signed DeMarcus Love as a street free agent in June 2014. Love was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings waived him in October 2013 and he was then picked up by the Jacksonville Jaguars, who waived him in June 2014. Love has a nice combination of size and athleticism. He needs to play with more nastiness and fire. He also needs to improve his overall technique in order to make it at the NFL level.

BBI scouting report on DT Everett Dawkins:

  • The Giants signed Everett Dawkins as a street free agent in June 2014. Dawkins was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings. The Dallas Cowboys signed Dawkins off of the Vikings Practice Squad in November 2013, but waived him three weeks later. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers then signed him to their Practice Squad. The Buccaneers waived Dawkins in June 2014. Dawkins is a 3-technique tackle who lacks ideal size, but he is quick and athletic and can be disruptive. He needs to add size and strength. Dawkins is not overly stout against the run. He needs to play with better leaverage.

June 19, 2014 New York Giants Coach Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Thursday’s media Q&A sessions with the following coaches are available at Giants.com or BigBlueInteractive.com:

June 19, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Thursday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:

Articles on Offensive Coordinator Ben McAdoo:

Article on Defensive Coordinator Perry Fewell: Fewell optimistic about Giants’ D, naturally by Kieran Darcy of ESPNNewYork.com

Article on QB Eli Manning: NY Giants QB Eli Manning insists he has a lot of good years left by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Article on the New York Giants Running Backs: Giants’ Backfield Runs Into the Great Wide Open by Alex Raskin of The Wall Street Journal

Article on WR Victor Cruz: Giants: Victor Cruz out to show more by Art Stapleton of The Bergen Record

Article on WR Corey Washington: Low on Giants’ depth chart, Corey Washington stands tall by Tom Rock of Newsday

Article on TE Adrien Robinson: Adrien Robinson the favorite to start for Giants at tight end? Think again by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on DE Robert Ayers and CB Walter Thurmond: Newcomers Ayers, Thurmond getting used to Giants by Jim Hague of The Sacramento Bee

Article on CB Charles James: New and Improved Charles James Flashing with Giants by Connor Hughes of BigBlueInteractive.com

Jun 042014
 
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David Wilson, New York Giants (September 16, 2012)

David Wilson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Comment on RB David Wilson’s Status: Following up on the earlier BBI update that New York Giants running back David Wilson failed to receive clearance on Wednesday from doctors to return to contact drills, the team released an official update on his status.

The Giants announced that Wilson underwent a CAT scan on Wednesday to gauge the progress on his surgically-repaired neck. However, although Wilson was not cleared for contact, the team said the exam “revealed he is progressing to where that could occur next month.”

“There has been significant progress and healing since David had the fusion,” said Dr. Russell Warren, the Giants’ team physician. “But the reality is it has only been four and one-half months since the surgery. We anticipate that when David is re-evaluated at the start of training camp he will be cleared at that point.”

“Everything I got this morning was good news – there was nothing bad or negative,” Wilson said. “I’m very pleased and very blessed for my healing process to continue.”

Wilson suffered a herniated disc in his neck against the Philadelphia Eagles on October 6, 2013 and missed the rest of the season. On January 16, 2014, he underwent spinal fusion surgery.

“I sat down today and (the doctor) showed me the X-rays and the CAT scan and my surgery has been successful,” Wilson said. “We’re just waiting for the bone to heal strong enough for contact. The doctors will know when that point is. I feel perfectly fine.”

Wilson has been working in a limited capacity during the team’s offseason program.

“When the defense is on the field, that’s the only time I’m not participating,” said Wilson. “I can do anything and everything that’s asked of me at this point. I’m removed when it’s defense vs. offense so as not to have an accident. I’m catching passes, taking handoffs from the quarterbacks and getting reps with the offense without the defense.

“There’s no need to have contact (now). We want to wait until it’s fused all the way, but there’s no need to have unnecessary contact at an unnecessary point in the season. We don’t have full contact in OTAs, anyway. We don’t have pads on. Any contact that happens in the OTAs is accidental and wasn’t meant to happen. There’s no need for me to go out there and have an accident that takes us backward when we’ve come so far and my surgery went well and I’m making such good progress. There’s no need for me to go out there and have an accident. We’re just working hard and I’m learning the playbook. As long as I’m getting my mental reps, I think the coaches believe in my athletic ability to take over after that and I’ll be just fine.”

Wilson believe he will be able to return to full practice when summer training camp begins on July 21.

“That’s what I believe,” Wilson said. “As I’ve been telling everybody, I feel fine. I’ve been able to work out. (The doctor) this morning gave the go-ahead to do more in the weight room and be more active in the weight room and be more active in OTAs. Everything I heard today was excellent.”

New York Giants Report to Training Camp on July 21: The New York Giants announced on Wednesday that their players are scheduled to report to summer training camp on July 21 at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey. However, the training camp schedule still has not been released to the public.

We have updated the Important Dates section of the website.

Giants.com Q&A with Former Giants LB Antonio Pierce: The video of a recent Giants.com Q&A with former New York Giants linebacker Antonio Pierce is available at Giants.com.

Jun 042014
 
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David Wilson, New York Giants (July 27, 2013)

David Wilson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

David Wilson Still Not Cleared for Contact: RB David Wilson, who suffered a career-threatening neck injury last October in a game against the Philadelphia Eagles, still has not been cleared for football contact. Wilson underwent an exam and MRI on Monday. The Bergen Record and The Star-Ledger are reporting that while there is improvement, Wilson still has not yet received the blessing of doctors to return to the practice field when contact with other players is possible.

Wilson will undergo another exam shortly before training camp begins in July. Obviously the hope is that he will be cleared for contact at that time. If not, he may wind up on the preseason Physically-Unable-to-Perform (PUP) list.

Publicly, the Giants have said all along that the injury was a herniated disc. But Wilson indicated that he was also suffering from spinal stenosis. Wilson underwent a surgical procedure to fuse vertebrae in his neck in January.

Wilson has been participating in individual, non-contact drills during the team’s offseason program.

“I’m still feeling good and practicing with the team,” said Wilson last Thursday. “I’m still learning and I’m taking a lot of mental reps right now because I can’t do contact…I never had any pain, no pain at all. We’re just being careful because I’ve came so far, I feel the same since before the surgery, but we’ve come so far and the coaches don’t want me to risk it by bumping into somebody, running into something and falling down.”

Article on the New York Giants Offense and QB Eli Manning: Gannon: New offense a ‘dramatic change’ for Eli by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Jun 022014
 
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Will Hill, New York Giants (December 2, 2013)

Will Hill – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Waive Safety Will Hill: In a move that was not terribly surprising, the New York Giants have waived safety Will Hill, one of the team’s best defensive players.

In April 2014, it was revealed that Hill had failed another drug test for substances of abuse (illegal drugs) and would be suspended for the third time in three seasons by the NFL. Hill appealed that ruling, but lost his appeal last Friday. The NFL announced on Friday that Hill would be suspended for the first six games of the 2014 NFL regular season.

As reported on Saturday, Hill had told friends that he was a victim of second-hand marijuana smoke and therefore innocent.

Hill was originally suspended for four games of the 2012 season for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances (reportedly Adderall). Hill was suspended for four games a second time in 2013, this time for violating the NFL’s policy on substances of abuse (reportedly marijuana).

In December 2013, Hill was arrested for being delinquent on child support payments. At the time of that arrest, the police reported that they detected the smell of marijuana in his vehicle, but no drug-related charges were filed.

When he came off of the second drug suspension, Hill played in the remaining 12 games of the 2013 season. Hill started one game at strong safety and became the new starter at free safety in the last nine games. He impressed with his play, finishing with 77 tackles, 2 pass defenses, 2 interceptions (one returned for a touchdown), and 2 forced fumbles. Hill was a top-ranked athlete coming out of high school in New Jersey, but off-the-field issues caused him to be undrafted and unsigned after his junior season at the University of Florida in 2011.

Because of this move, we have updated the Transactions, Roster, and Depth Chart sections of the website.

Article on the New York Giants and the 2014 NFL Salary Cap: It’s June, the Giants have money … now what? by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on RB David Wilson: David Wilson hopes Wednesday’s MRI will clear him for football activities by Tom Rock of Newsday

Article on TE Xavier Grimble: Giants hope for secret weapon in undrafted tight end Grimble by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Article on RT Justin Pugh: Pugh gained from rookie lessons by Ken Mandel of the Bucks County Courier Times

May 292014
 
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Will Beatty, New York Giants (November 10, 2013)

Will Beatty – © USA TODAY Sports Images

May 29, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing at Thursday’s Organized Team Activity (OTA) workout were WR Mario Manningham (knee), LT Will Beatty (leg) and OG John Jerry (knee).

When asked about Beatty and Manningham, Head Coach Tom Coughlin responded, “Supposedly they’ll be ready for the fall.”

Coughlin also revealed that Jerry had arthroscopic knee surgery. “He had a knee, he comes out here and the knee swells,” Coughlin said. “We’ll hold him inside. He had a little procedure (debridement of the knee), a scope, so he might not work this spring but he’s here…He may have a day when he’s a little bit sore and we’ll back off the snaps. Today coming after the first one, he didn’t have any issues at all. We just let him do what he can do.”

RB David Wilson (neck) also did not participate in contact drills as he has not yet been cleared for contact. Wilson said he will have another MRI taken on his neck on June 4. “He is in an area where he’s not supposed to have any contact,” said Coughlin. “He’s out there running and feels good. You’d never know that he’s having issues.”

The good news is that QB Eli Manning, who is coming off of arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle, practiced. “He’s so far ahead,” said Coughlin. “When we started out I didn’t think I would have him for anything (in the spring). We’re about two or three days into phase two (of the offseason program) and he’s running around. I’m trying to slow him down but he feels good.”

RG Chris Snee, who is coming off of offseason hip and elbow surgery, practiced. “He looks good,” said Coughlin. “He looks very good.”

S Stevie Brown, who tore the ACL in his left knee last preseason, also practiced. “Stevie’s had a good winter,” said Coughlin. “He’s been in here rehabbing the whole time. He’s gone through both the first and second phases very well. He’s running very well so we’re very happy with that. He does have some… we’re watching him, let’s put it that way. He is what we call limited but he has been able to demonstrate that he has prepared himself well.”

New York Giants Complete Second OTA Practice: The New York Giants held their second of 10 Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices on Thursday. No live contact is allowed in OTA practices, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.

BigBlueInteractive.com (BBI) was at Thursday’s OTA practice.  See New York Giants OTA Day 2: Quick Hits and Tidbits.

Giants.com also provided the following two summaries: Giants players that stood out at OTA’s and Five things we learned at OTA practice.

New York Giants OTA practices:

  • May 28-30
  • June 2-3
  • June 5
  • June 9-10
  • June 12-13

The offseason program will culminate on June 17-19 with a mandatory, full-team mini-camp.

May 29, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video of Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s press conference on Thursday are available at Giants.com.

May 29, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Thursday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:

May 282014
 
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Eli Manning (10) and David Wilson (22), New York Giants (August 7, 2013)

Eli Manning and David Wilson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Complete First OTA Practice: The New York Giants held their first of 10 Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices on Wednesday. No live contact is allowed in OTA practices, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.

The media was not allowed to view Wednesday’s practice, but the Giants released the following details through their website, Giants.com:

  • RB David Wilson, who is recovering from career-threatening offseason neck surgery, did participate in the non-contact drills. Wilson worked both at running back and returner.
  • New Offensive Coordinator Ben McAdoo’s offense is reportedly an up-tempo West Coast Offense-style of attack.  McAdoo was said to be very hands-on during the drills.
  • Despite undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle on April 10, QB Eli Manning practiced. According to the team, “Manning took quite a few snaps on the first day of OTAs. In addition to individual drills, he took many of the first-team reps.”
  • With LT Will Beatty still recovering from a broken leg, the first-team offensive line had James Brewer at left tackle, Geoff Schwartz at left guard, J.D. Walton at center, Chris Snee at right guard, and Justin Pugh at right tackle. The second unit had Charles Brown at left tackle, Brandon Mosley at left guard, Dallas Reynolds at center, Weston Richburg at right guard, and Troy Kropog at right tackle.
  • According to the team’s press release WR Odell Beckham “showcased his quickness in and out of breaks.”

Video and pictures from today’s OTA practice are available from Giants.com.

The media, including BigBlueInteractive.com, will be granted access to Thursday’s practice.

New York Giants OTA practices:

  • May 28-30
  • June 2-3
  • June 5
  • June 9-10
  • June 12-13

The offseason program will culminate on June 17-19 with a mandatory, full-team mini-camp.

Giants.com Q&A With RB Rashad Jennings: The video of a Giants.com Q&A session with RB Rashad Jennings is available at Giants.com.

Article on Former New York Giant David Diehl: David Diehl begins new career as analyst by Michael Eisen of Giants.com