Dec 122017
 
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Hunter Sharp, Denver Broncos (August 26, 2017)

Hunter Sharp – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS ROSTER MOVES
The New York Giants have signed wide receiver Hunter Sharp off of the Practice Squad of the Denver Broncos and offensive guard Damien Mama off of the Practice Squad of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Sharp was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Philadelphia Eagles after the 2016 NFL Draft. The Eagles waived him in August of that year and Sharp was then signed to the Practice Squad of the Broncos in December 2016. He spent 10 days on Denver’s 53-man roster in October 2017. The 5’11”, 198-pound Sharp lacks ideal size and speed, but he’s a tough, versatile, elusive competitor with return skills.

Mama was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Kansas City Chiefs after the 2017 NFL Draft. The Chiefs waived him in their final round of cuts in early September and then signed him to the Practice Squad. The 6’3”, 342-pound Mama is a big, strong player who lacks ideal overall athleticism and consistency.

The Giants also signed tight end Ryan O’Malley and defensive back Tim Scott to their Practice Squad.

O’Malley was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Oakland Raiders after the 2016 NFL Draft. He spent time on both the Practice Squad and 53-man roster of the Raiders in 2016. The Raiders cut him in September 2017 and he spent a few weeks on the Practice Squad of the Bills.  The 6’6”, 260-pound O’Malley has a nice combination of size and athletic skills.

The 5’11”, 195-pound Scott was originally signed as a rookie free agent by the Dallas Cowboys after the 2015 NFL Draft. He spent time with the Cowboys (2015), Cleveland Browns (2015), and Washington Redskins (2017). The Giants signed Scott in August 2017. He started the season on the Giants’ Practice Squad and was signed to the 53-man roster in November 2017. He played in one game and was cut. Scott is a tough and physical corner with a decent combination of size and athletic ability.

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players return to practice on Wednesday in preparation for Sunday’s home game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Dec 112017
 
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Steve Spagnuolo, New York Giants (October 10, 2017)

Steve Spagnuolo – © USA TODAY Sports

ROSTER MOVES
The New York Giants placed wide receiver Darius Powe on Injured Reserve on Monday. Powe broke his foot during Sunday’s game against the Dallas Cowboys in his NFL debut. The Giants originally signed Powe as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft and he spent the 2016 season on the team’s Practice Squad. The Giants added him to the Practice Squad again in October of this year and signed him to the 53-man roster last week.

The Giants also waived defensive tackle Khyri Thornton, who the team signed in late November after he was cut by the Detroit Lions.

Meanwhile, the Denver Broncos signed tight end Matt LaCosse off of the Giants’ Practice Squad. LaCosse played in three games this season. He was released in November and then signed to the Practice Squad. LaCosse was originally signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2015 NFL Draft.

The Giants also terminated the Practice Squad contract of linebacker Trevor Bates, who the team signed to the Practice Squad in late October 2017. Bates was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts.

INTERIM HEAD COACH STEVE SPAGNUOLO…
The transcript of Steve Spagnuolo’s press conference on Monday 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:

LANDON COLLINS ON ESPN RADIO
The audio of Monday’s ESPN Radio interview with New York Giants safety Landon Collins is available at ESPN.com.

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
There is no scheduled media availability the New York Giants on Tuesday. The players return to practice on Wednesday in preparation for Sunday’s home game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Dec 102017
 
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LATEST ON THE NEW YORK GIANTS GENERAL MANAGER SEARCH…
ESPN is reporting that the Cleveland Browns hired John Dorsey as their new general manager before the New York Giants could interview him. Dorsey, who was general manager of the Kansas City Chiefs (2013-2016), was scheduled to interview with the Giants on Tuesday.

ESPN also reports that Dave Gettleman is now the favorite to become the Giants’ next general manager. Gettleman was the Giants pro personnel director (1999-2011) and senior pro personnel analyst (2012) before becoming the general manager of the Carolina Panthers (2013-2017). The Panthers fired Gettleman in July 2017.

Meanwhile, NFL.com is reporting that the Giants do want to take a deliberate approach and interview general manager candidates who are also currently employed. That said, NFL.com also says Gettleman is the early favorite to land the position. It is speculated that if Gettleman is hired, he may tap Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks as the team’s next head coach.

DALLAS COWBOYS 30 – NEW YORK GIANTS 10…
Another game day, another loss. The pathetic New York Giants fell to their division rival Dallas Cowboys 30-10 at MetLife Stadium on Sunday. The Cowboys blew the tight 10-10 open late with 20 unanswered 4th-quarter points. With the loss, the Giants fall to 2-11 on the season. The last time the Giants were 2-11 during a season was 1974.

Offensively, the Giants continue to show an inability to put enough points on the scoreboard. For the eighth time this season, the Giants were unable to score more than 17 points. The Giants scored 10 points on their first three drives and then the offense called it a day as the team’s final nine possessions resulted in seven straight punts and then two interceptions.

After the Cowboys took an early lead by driving 73 yards in 16 plays on their first possession to set up a 21-yard field goal, the Giants responded with a 17-play, 62-yard drive that ended with a 39-yard field goal by Aldrick Rosas. The Giants scored their only touchdown of the day on their third possession, sparked by a 35-yard pass from quarterback Eli Manning to tight Evan Engram. Five plays later, Manning rolled out and found tight end Rhett Ellison for a 1-yard score. The Giants briefly led 10-7 with just over two minutes to go before halftime.

Defensively, the Giants were done in by three big plays of 50 yards or more. On Dallas’ fourth offensive possession, with just 2:07 left on the clock, quarterback Dak Prescott completed three passes for a total of 25 yards before hitting wide receiver Dez Bryant for a short completion in which Bryant broke an attempted tackle by cornerback Brandon Dixon en route to a 50-yard touchdown. At the half, the game was tied 10-10.

The game remained tied until midway through the fourth quarter. Dallas punted the ball away three times and missed another long field goal attempt, while every Giants possession until late ended with punts. Then on 3rd-and-2, with eight minutes to play, Prescott threw a short pass to wide receiver Cole Beasley who broke off a 54-yard gain. On the very next play, Prescott hit Giant-killer tight end Jason Witten for a 20-yard score, as Dallas went up 17-10.

The Giants drove across midfield but punted. Three plays later on 3rd-and-2, Prescott hit running back Rod Smith for an 81-yard touchdown to put Dallas up 23-10 with 4:08 to play (the Cowboys missed the extra point). Smith badly beat linebacker Kelvin Sheppard in coverage.

With the contest all but officially over, Manning threw his first interception a few plays later. After two Dallas runs picked up six yards, Smith broke off a 15-yard touchdown run as the Cowboys went up 30-10 with three minutes to play. Manning threw a second interception at the Dallas 17-yard line with just over a minute left in the game.

Manning finished the game 31-of-46 for 228 yards, 1 touchdown, and 2 interceptions. He was not sacked. His leading receivers in terms of catches were wide receiver Roger Lewis (7 catches for 46 yards) and running back Wayne Gallman (7 catches for 40 yards). Gallman was also the leading rusher with 12 carries for 59 yards.

The Giants defense did not garner a sack or force a turnover. Prescott was officially only hit twice.

INACTIVE LIST AND INJURY REPORT…
Inactive for the game were offensive lineman Justin Pugh (back), linebacker B.J. Goodson (ankle), cornerback Eli Apple (hip/back), wide receiver Travis Rudolph (hamstring), quarterback Davis Webb, WR Tavarres King, and defensive tackle Khyri Thornton.

“We deactivated (Apple) today,” said Interim Head Coach Steve Spagnuolo after the game. “The decision there was because he just didn’t get enough reps during the week. I talked with him earlier. He’s going to be ready to go next week and hopefully we’re up and running.”

Safety Landon Collins left the game in the 4th quarter with an ankle injury; he was spotted wearing a boot after the game.

Wide receiver Darius Powe broke his foot (fractured his fifth metatarsal) in his NFL debut. He did so in the first half, but stayed in the game. Powe was on crutches after the game.

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

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
Interim Head Coach Steve Spagnuolo and select players will address the media on Monday.

Dec 082017
 
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Eli Apple, New York Giants (October 1, 2017)

Eli Apple – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
Offensive lineman Justin Pugh (back) and linebacker B.J. Goodson (ankle) did not practice on Friday and both have been officially ruled out of Sunday’s game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Running back Orleans Darkwa (illness), running back Wayne Gallman (hip), wide receiver Sterling Shepard (hamstring), wide receiver Travis Rudolph (hamstring), defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (finger), defensive tackle Damon Harrison (elbow), and cornerback Eli Apple (hip/back) practiced on a limited basis. Gallman and Harrison are unofficially “probable” for the game; the other five players are officially “questionable”.

Offensive tackle Chad Wheeler (concussion) fully practiced, but is “questionable” for the game.

RASHAD JENNINGS RETIRES AS A NEW YORK GIANT…
Running back Rashad Jennings, who played for the Jacksonville Jaguars (2009-2012), Oakland Raiders (2013), and New York Giants (2014-2016), announced his retirement from the NFL on Friday. Jennings chose to retire as a New York Giant.

In his career, Jennings played in 93 regular-season games with with 54 starts (37 with the Giants). He rushed for 3,772 yards (2,095 with the Giants) and also accrued 1,469 receiving yards (723 with the Giants). Combined, Jennings had 25 career touchdowns (12 with the Giants).

“I had my most success here as a Giant, both on and off the field,” Jennings said. “It’s such a prestigious organization, and it was the last football team I played for that I felt just a part of home with. From front office top to bottom, and I couldn’t see myself if I’m able to, retire with any other team but the Giants.

“I got a chance to play with one of the most prestigious organizations in the NFL. I got to play under the leadership of a soon to be Hall of Fame coach in coach (Tom) Coughlin. The Mara and Tisch families are amazing. I got to play for some of the greatest fans in the NFL, playing in the mecca of everything. The locker room, my teammates. My locker was right beside Eli Manning’s. We still text today silly stuff. So the relationships in the locker room you can never take for granted.”

INTERIM HEAD COACH STEVE SPAGNUOLO…
The transcript of Steve Spagnuolo’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:

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
There is no media availability to the New York Giants on Saturday. The Giants play the Dallas Cowboys at MetLife Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Dec 072017
 
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Landon Collins, New York Giants (December 3, 2017)

Landon Collins – © USA TODAY Sports

JONATHAN CASILLAS PLACED ON INJURED RESERVE…
The New York Giants placed linebacker Jonathan Casillas (neck/wrist) on Injured Reserve on Wednesday. Casillas suffered through an injury-plagued season, playing in eight games and missing four others due to injuries. He finished the season with just 35 tackles and one pass defense.

To fill that roster vacancy, the team has signed wide receiver Darius Powe from the Practice Squad. The Giants originally signed Powe as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft and he spent the 2016 season on the team’s Practice Squad. The Giants signed him to the Practice Squad again in October 2017. Powe is a big receiver with decent overall athleticism.

The Giants signed linebacker Derrick Mathews to the Practice Squad. Mathews was originally signed to the Practice Squad of the Washington Redskins in November 2015 as an undrafted rookie free agent. The 6’0”, 232-pound Mathews was signed by the Green Bay Packers in August 2016 and spent parts of 2016 and 2017 on the team’s Practice Squad.

The Giants also waived linebacker Nigel Harris from Injured Reserve. Harris was placed on Injured Reserve with a rib injury in November.  The 6’2”, 230-pound Harris was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the San Diego Chargers after the 2017 NFL Draft. The Giants claimed Harris off of waivers from the Chargers in October 2017.

Other players recently waived (since November) from Injured Reserve include defensive end Evan Schwan, linebacker J.T. Thomas, wide receiver Kevin Norwood, offensive lineman Adam Gettis, defensive tackle Corbin Bryant, and defensive end Nordly Capi.

NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
Running back Orleans Darkwa (illness), offensive lineman Justin Pugh (back), defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (finger), and cornerback Eli Apple (hip/back) did not practice on Thursday.

Pugh is back on the sidelines after practicing on Wednesday. “It’s been one of those things where I came back and I came back probably too soon,” Pugh said, who is awaiting the results of an MRI. “We’re trying to avoid doing that again, so we’re not trying to rush it. But at the same time, there’s obviously a timeline because there’s only four weeks left in the season. So we’ve kind of backed off a little bit and we’re going to try to get it going again and see if we can go next week.”

Running back Wayne Gallman (hip), wide receiver Sterling Shepard (hamstring), offensive tackle Chad Wheeler (concussion), defensive tackle Damon Harrison (elbow), and linebacker B.J. Goodson (ankle) practiced on a limited basis.

“Sterling Shepard is headed in a positive direction,” said Head Coach Steve Spagnuolo. “He did some things today so hopefully we’ll get him back knock on wood.”

THE COACHES SPEAK…
Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following coaches are available in The Corner Forum and 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:

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The New York Giants practice on Friday at 10:55AM. Interim Head Coach Steve Spagnuolo and players will address the media after practice.

Dec 062017
 
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Steve Spagnuolo, New York Giants (December 6, 2017)

Steve Spagnuolo – © USA TODAY Sports

ELI MANNING TO START ON SUNDAY…
New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning has once again been named the starting quarterback. Manning was benched by Ben McAdoo, who was fired by the Giants on Monday. Manning had started 210 regular-season games in a row, dating back to November 2004.

“Eli Manning will be the quarterback for this football team in this game,” said Interim Head Coach Steve Spagnuolo. “Okay, the ‘why Eli?’ All I can tell you is this. When John Mara and I talked, one of the first things he asked was about the quarterback situation and I said, ‘John, my gut right now is that Eli should be the starter.’ What you have to understand is when I was coaching just the defense, I had the blinders on and all I’m worried about is the defense. I stay in my lane. So, I didn’t have my eyes around what was going on on offense – who was playing what. None of that. So, I took my gut and visited with the offensive coaches and together with that and my gut, Eli Manning is going to be our quarterback. Had a conversation with Geno (Smith), which was a tremendous conversation. I have a great deal of respect for Geno Smith in the way he reacted. He was a man. He obviously didn’t agree with the decision, but he is a team player and he told me that he was going to go forward and wants to be a part of this and I just have a great deal of respect for him. It’s not an easy thing to do.”

“I just wanted (Coach Spagnuolo) to know that I do want to play,” said Manning. “I want to be the starting quarterback, I want to be out there and I just want to make sure that he knew that. He said that he was going to think about and talk with the coaches, but his gut said that I would be the starting quarterback. So, I’m happy that he went with that decision and he has the faith in me, we can go win this football game with me as the quarterback… It’s important to play. That’s what I love to do. I love to play quarterback and love playing quarterback for the New York Giants. ”

When asked about his future, Manning responded, “Hey, this is all I know. This is all I know, is playing for the New York Giants and I’ve never wished to change that. I appreciate everything the Giants organization has done for me and you have so much family in this building. From the Mara family, the Tisch family, people in the equipment room and the film room, the training room. I’ve known a lot of these people for 14 years and grew up around them. So, this is all I know. Hey, I’m going to finish out this season and then I’m sure they’ll be a discussion with the organization to figure out what’s the plan going forward… No, no retirement plans. So, that’s not on my mind.”

GIANTS TO BEGIN PRACTICING ON FRIDAY AGAIN…
Interim Head Coach Steve Spagnuolo has changed the New York Giants in-season practice schedule to once-again have the team practice on Fridays. Under Ben McAdoo, the Giants did not practice on Friday, having a “recovery day” instead and a “launch” practice on Saturday.

“The reasoning on the Friday deal was we just felt at this time of the season, really third down and red zone are really, really important – winning those areas, and you got to win them both offensively and defensively,” said Spagnuolo. “So, what that schedule does is gives us an opportunity to do more third down on Thursday and then extend more red zone on Friday and it’s a schedule I’m real familiar with and I think it’ll help us in the upcoming games.”

JERRY REESE ISSUES A STATEMENT…
Former General Manager Jerry Reese, who the New York Giants fired on Monday, issued the following written statement on Tuesday:

I would like to thank the New York Football Giants for allowing me the opportunity to be a part of such an amazing franchise for the past twenty-three years. My time here has been filled with many great memories. Thank you John and the Mara family, Steve and the Tisch family for your confidence in me for so many seasons. I want to extend my deepest gratitude to Tom Coughlin and Ben McAdoo for their commitment to the NYG and my time working with them. I’m thankful to the late George Young, who hired me, and to Ernie Accorsi for grooming me. Many thanks to the front office, personnel staff, support staff, scouts, coaches, and current and former players for your dedication to a first class organization. My family, friends and many fans that have supported me, I sincerely appreciate all of you. I am truly grateful and blessed for my time with the NYG. All the best to you. Go Giants.

BEN MCADOO ISSUES A STATEMENT…
Former Head Coach Ben McAdoo, who the New York Giants fired on Monday, issued the following written statement on Wednesday:

It was a privilege and an honor to serve as the head coach of the New York Giants and be a member of the organization for four years. I thank the Mara family, the Tisch family, and Jerry Reese and Tom Coughlin for taking a chance on a first time offensive coordinator and enabling me to take an important step in my career. My family and I enjoyed every day of my tenure with the Giants, thanks in large part to the commitment of everybody in the organization. I particularly want to thank the entire coaching staff for their dedication and hard work. I would be remiss if I did not thank the support staff who are often underappreciated but vital to the success of any football team. Finally, I will always appreciate having had the chance to coach so many outstanding players. As I have said many times, they are men of talent, and I believe in their integrity and character. I wish them and the entire organization success in the future.

NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
Wide receiver Sterling Shepard (hamstring), offensive tackle Chad Wheeler (concussion), defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (finger), linebacker Jonathan Casillas (neck/wrist), and cornerback Eli Apple (hip/back) did not practice on Wednesday.

Running back Wayne Gallman (hip), offensive lineman Justin Pugh (back), defensive tackle Damon Harrison (elbow), and linebacker B.J. Goodson (ankle) practiced on a limited basis.

HEAD COACH STEVE SPAGNUOLO…
The transcript of Steve Spagnuolo’s press conference on Wednesday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

NEW YORK GIANTS PRESIDENT/CEO JOHN MARA…
Audio of John Mara’s radio interviews on Monday are available at:

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:

The audio Eli Manning’s WFAN interview on Monday is also available at CBS New York’s website.

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The New York Giants practice on Thursday at 12:30PM. The team’s coordinators and select players will also address the media after practice.

Dec 032017
 
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New York Giants Fans (December 3, 2017)

© USA TODAY Sports

REPORT – BEN MCADOO COULD BE FIRED ON MONDAY…
Before today’s game started, ESPN reported that New York Giants Head Coach Ben McAdoo could be fired by the team as early as Monday. Giants’ team owners John Mara and Steve Tisch were at today’s game but refused to comment on this report.

OAKLAND RAIDERS 24 – NEW YORK GIANTS 17…
The New York Giants were defeated in a sloppy game by the Oakland Raiders 24-17 on Sunday afternoon. With the loss, the Giants fell to 2-10 on the season. Geno Smith started the game for Eli Manning, who was benched by the team earlier in the week. It was the first time a quarterback other than Eli Manning started a regular-season game for the Giants since November 2004.

The Raiders out-gained the Giants in first downs (18 to 15), total net yards (401 to 265), net yards rushing (119 to 65), and net yards passing (282 to 200). The Giants were hurt by two turnovers, fumbles by Geno Smith, in Raiders’ territory.

New York went three-and-out on its first three offensive possessions of the game. The Raiders took an early 7-0 lead on their first possession when running back Marshawn Lynch carried the ball three times in a row for 60 yards, including a 51-yard touchdown gallop. The Giants’ defense then settled down and forced two three-and-outs by the Raiders.

The Giants tied the game on their fourth possession. New York drove 74 yards in 11 plays, the big play being a 29-yard pass from Smith to tight end Evan Engram. A few plays later, running back Orleans Darkwa scored from one yard out.

The Giants got the ball back when the defense stuffed Lynch on 4th-and-1 at the New York 45-yard line. However, the Giants gave the ball right back when Smith was sacked on 3rd-and-5 from the Oakland 29-yard line. Smith fumbled on the play and the Raiders recovered. Oakland then drove 47 yards in 12 plays to set up a 39-yard field goal that gave the Raiders a 10-7 lead with 3:37 left to go before the half.

The Giants went three-and-out for the fourth time of the game, but a 69-yard punt by Brad Wing pinned the Raiders on their 1-yard line. After picking up one first down, the Raiders were set to punt but fullback Shane Smith smothered the punter for an 11-yard loss at the Oakland 9-yard line with 46 seconds left on the clock. New York got zero points out of this as Geno Smith was sacked on 2nd-and-goal from the 4-yard line, fumbling in the process and turning the ball over at the Oakland 11-yard line.

At the half, the Raiders led 10-7.

Neither team scored in the third quarter. The Raiders’ first three drives resulted in two punts and a fumble (cornerback Brandon Dixon forced a fumble that safety Landon Collins recovered at the Giants’ 27-yard line). The Giants likewise punted three times in a row.

The Raiders went up 17-7 early in the fourth quarter after an 8-play, 79-yard drive. The Giants impressively responded with a 9-play, 88-yard effort that included a 47-yard catch-and-run from by wide receiver Sterling Shepard and then a 10-yard touchdown reception by Engram. The defense could not hold however, and the Raiders quickly went up again by 10 points when they drove 68 yards in four plays, with the big play being a 59-yard pass to start the possession.

To the Giants’ credit, they did make the game a one-score contest again by driving 46 yards in nine plays to set up a 52-yard field goal by Alrick Rosas with 1:38 to play. Engram made a superlative one-handed catch for 22 yards on this possession. However, the Raiders recovered the onside kick and ran out the clock.

Geno Smith finished the game a respectable 21-of-34 for 212 yards, 1 touchdown, and no interceptions. However, he did fumble the ball away twice in Raiders’ territory. Engram led the Giants in pass receptions with seven for 99 yards and a touchdown. New York struggled to run the ball as Darkwa was held to 32 yards on 14 carries.

Defensively, the Giants only had one sack by linebacker Calvin Munson. The only turnover was the fumble recovery by Collins.

Video highlights are available at Giants.com.

INACTIVE LIST AND INJURY REPORT…
Inactive for the game were offensive lineman Justin Pugh (back), linebacker Jonathan Casillas (neck/wrist), cornerback Eli Apple (hip), quarterback Davis Webb, wide receiver Travis Rudolph, defensive tackle Khyri Thornton, and linebacker Jeremy Cash.

Running back Wayne Gallman (hip), offensive tackle Chad Wheeler (concussion), linebacker B.J. Goodson (ankle), and safety Nat Berhe (concussion) all left the game with injuries.

POST-GAME REACTION…
Video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Ben McAdoo and the following players are available at Giants.com:

ARCHIE – ELI MANNING MAY RETIRE…
The father of New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning, Archie Manning, told NFL.com that his son may retire from the NFL after the end of the current season. Eli was benched by the Giants this past week.

“It just flat broke his heart,” said Archie Manning. “There’s no sense speculating (on his future). If he’s still there, we don’t know what their future plans are, if other people are there. And you have no idea what other teams will think of a 37-year-old quarterback. You don’t have any idea. Eli might say, ‘I’ve had enough. I’m feeling good. I’ve got a beautiful wife, three little girls, I’m healthy. And that’s it.’ So there’s no sense speculating.

“We had our team, we loved our team. But for Eli… it’s always kind of been like this: Eli’s passion for the Giants goes deeper than most and I’ve mentioned it through the years. Eli loves playing for the New York Giants. He just does. He just loves it, I think more than most. So therefore, it broke his heart.”

However, after today’s game, Eli said he plans on playing in the NFL in 2018.

REPORT – GIANTS NOT TALKING TO THEIR OWN SOON-TO-BE FREE AGENTS…
ESPN is reporting that the New York Giants have not held any contract discussions with soon-to-be free agents such as guard/tackle Justin Pugh, center Weston Richburg, and linebacker Devon Kennard. According to ESPN, players on the team “welcome the opportunity leave what has devolved into a depressing and dysfunctional situation.”

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
Head Coach Ben McAdoo and select players will address the media by conference call on Monday.

Dec 012017
 
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Justin Pugh, New York Giants (October 1, 2017)

Justin Pugh – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
Linebacker Jonathan Casillas (neck/wrist) has officially been ruled out of Sunday’s game against the Oakland Raiders. Offensive lineman Justin Pugh (back) is “doubtful” and defensive tackle Damon Harrison (elbow) is “questionable” for the game.

Cornerback Eli Apple (hip) was added to the injury report late on Friday and is officially also “questionable” for the game.

Wide receiver Sterling Shepard (illness), linebacker B.J. Goodson (ankle), and linebacker Calvin Munson (quad) are unofficially “probable.”

HEAD COACH BEN MCADOO…
Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with Head Coach Ben McAdoo are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
There is no media availability to the New York Giants on Saturday. The Giants play the Raiders in Oakland on Sunday afternoon.

Dec 012017
 
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (February 5, 2012)

Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Game Preview: New York Giants at Oakland Raiders, December 3, 2017

THE STORYLINE:
The Eli Manning era began on November 21, 2004 with a 10-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons. It ended on Thanksgiving night on November 23, 2017 with a 10-20 loss to the Washington Redskins. In between came 210 consecutive starts (second most in NFL history), four Pro Bowls, an 8-4 playoff record, two miraculous playoff runs, two Super Bowl MVP awards, and – most importantly – two Super Bowl trophies. In the end, Eli will be leaving the Giants owning just about every meaningful record a quarterback can hold for the 93-year old franchise, including over 50,000 yards passing and 334 touchdown passes. There were also 40 game-winning 4th-quarter drives in the regular and post-season.

This transition was inevitable. Father time waits for no one. And unless there was going to be a Michael Strahan-like Cinderella finish with Eli walking away on his own terms with a third Super Bowl trophy, the ending was always going to be less than ideal.

It is important to remember where the Giants were in April 2004. Since the departure of Bill Parcells early in 1991, the franchise had been adrift. While the team teased with an unanticipated Super Bowl appearance in 2000, the New York Giants appeared to be treading water as they just fired their third coach in a row after a disastrous 2003 season. The conservative Giants stunned the NFL that April doing something they never do – they traded away two #1 picks for the goofy kid from the University of Mississippi. At the time, it smelled like a desperate roll of the dice. And the early returns were not good. During his rookie season, the quarterback with the permanently-boyish face actually finished a game with a 0.0 quarterback rating. Manning may have hit rock bottom in November 2007 after a 4-interception, 3-pick-6 game against the Minnesota Vikings. Fans rapidly became annoyed with the lack of visible emotion and the shoulder shrugs after each bad play. The Giants appeared to have made a huge mistake.

Then came the still-unreal playoff run in 2007. And the second one in 2011. 8-0, beating the NFC’s #1 and #2 seeds on their respective home turfs. Twice. And beating the unbeatable AFC #1 seed Patriots. Twice. And wrecking the inevitable “perfect season” in the process. In each of those runs, Manning was THE key figure. He became a new quarterback in January 2008 when he efficiently sliced his way through an outstanding Tampa Bay defense. A week later he calmly changed the complexion of the entire game by marching the Giants down the field with pinpoint passing for a touchdown right before halftime in Dallas. Then came perhaps his best game, the -24 degree wind chill, NFC Championship in Green Bay where he clearly out-dueled legendary Brett Favre. Two memorable 4th quarter touchdown drives against Bill Belichick’s defense, including what NFL Films guru Steve Sabol labeled as the “greatest play in NFL history” resulted in Super Bowl trophy #1 and perhaps the greatest upset in sports history next to the “Miracle on Ice.” Eli had pulled it off. He had done it. And we caught a rare glimpse of emotion from him as he fought to hold back the tears.

The Giants were even stronger in 2008 but injuries and the Plaxico Burress shooting incident sabotaged what could have been another run. Then in 2011, Eli had his career-season. Encumbered with a bottom-ranked defense and running game, and a once-venerable offensive line that was eroding fast, Manning literally carried the team to the playoffs with six 4th-quarter regular-season comeback victories, and then two more in the post-season. He blew the game open late against the Falcons. He out-dueled the 15-1 Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay. He was never tougher despite getting the crap kicked out of him against the 49ers in the NFC Championship game. And his late-game beyond-perfect pass to Mario Manningham in the Super Bowl was the dagger that resulted in Super Bowl trophy #2.

In January 2011, Eli Manning was still only 31 years old. A young 31 who was coming off a league MVP-like season. He had an 8-3 record in 11 playoff games. In hindsight, that was the pinnacle of his career. While the reasons vary, his play noticeably declined in subsequent years with an ironic uptick in 2014-15 when Ben McAdoo became offensive coordinator. The overriding sense is that team management screwed the pooch by not surrounding Eli with enough talent on offense, defense, and special teams from 2012-2017. Six years wasted. An offensive line in permanent shambles. A finesse offense that couldn’t pick up an inch in short-yardage. Last-place defenses that couldn’t hold a 4th-quarter lead. Inevitable and catastrophic special teams breakdowns. An injury-plagued and riddled roster year after year. Bad coaching hires, particularly on defense – remember Bill Sheridan and Perry Fewell? When all is said and done, Eli only played in 12 playoff games.

Quarterback is the most important position on every NFL team. And the Giants have been 41-50 in the regular season since their last Super Bowl. Eli has been a victim of his team’s roster, but he also hasn’t played like a $20+ million per season quarterback. Perhaps the same inner passion and hunger has dissipated with success and time. He has a family now and priorities become different. Perhaps the skills have eroded enough to make subtle but meaningful difference. But 2011 is long gone and Eli can no longer carry a team.

Let’s go back to April 2004 again. If you were asked at the time if you would give up two #1 picks for a quarterback who would pass for 50,000 yards in his career and win two Super Bowls, you would gladly accept that in a heartbeat. Regardless of how it began or ended, Eli Manning’s career was a tremendous success. He IS the most successful quarterback in team history. And in an era of douchebag assholes permeating the league, he was a class act through and through. New York Giants fans are PROUD that he was our quarterback.

*********************

The most alarming aspect of this week was not that Eli Manning was benched, but how the transition was handled. Geno Smith is not the future of this team. It’s either Davis Webb or a yet-to-be-drafted quarterback. The Giants season ended in September. In October, Davis Webb should have been bumped up to the #2 spot. Not in case Eli got hurt, but simply to give Webb the extremely limited #2 quarterback practice snaps. Webb isn’t ready to play. He hardly had any snaps in training camp, barely played in the preseason, and has hardly thrown the ball in practice since the season started. When and if he plays late this year, it won’t be pretty. Success comes with preparation and Webb has had none. And now fans in a foul mood are ready to jump on him when he struggles.

Beyond that, the optics of Eli’s benching are horrific. John Mara spoke to Eli after the announcement, not before. You don’t do that. Not to the face of the franchise for the past 14 years (or 15 percent of its entire 93-year history). If Mara had previous commitments, you cancel them. Or you postpone this move. And you don’t have Eli answer questions in the locker room with a bunch of clueless fucking teammates yucking it up in the background while he is struggling to fight back the tears. You hold a press conference. In the proper setting. With the owner, general manager, and coach explaining what hopefully is the real reason for this move – to get Webb some late season snaps. Because if this is about Geno Smith, and Geno Smith plays every snap in the five final games, then Giants’ ownership/management may be beyond redemption.

Ben McAdoo (aka Ray Handley 2.0) lost his job when San Francisco embarrassed the Giants. If you don’t think Mara is stupid, then this reeks of Mara throwing McAdoo further under the bus to justify his firing. (Which he really didn’t need to do given how the fan base already feels about the coaching staff). Perhaps this is a set up for a complete house-cleaning. We’ll see. But I don’t trust Mara’s public statements. And the competency of ownership/management and the team structure that has existed since 1979 is now very much in question as the Giants have rapidly turned into the Cleveland Browns. (Keep in mind, these guys hired Ben McAdoo in the first place).

The best general manager the Giants have ever had was the 1980’s edition of George Young, who unfortunately was at a loss in dealing with the salary cap and the new NFL in the 1990’s. Ernie Accorsi, his hand-picked successor, was not the same caliber. But he clearly was a better GM than Jerry Reese, who doesn’t seem to understand how to put together an offensive line or linebacking corps. In hindsight, what we’ve learned is how important Tom Coughlin and Eli Manning were to the franchise in their respective primes. As various parts came and went, they held this mess together and somehow willed the team to two more NFL titles.

As Matt in SGS has adeptly pointed out, what this move does do is clear the way for the new coaching staff in 2018. The new coach won’t have to deal with the public relations nightmare of being the one who dumped Eli Manning. He’ll get to start from scratch. By botching this so badly, the Giants have most likely burned any bridge that Manning could come back in 2018 under a new regime. And the Machiavellian in me thinks that may have been intentional. The only way I see Eli sticking around is if the Giants hire a coach with an exceptionally strong persona who demands that Eli return to mentor the new QB for one more year. But that’s not likely.

So if this is it, Eli, we thank you. You never complained. You never threw anyone under the bus. You worked your tail off each and every year, organizing unofficial passing camps, conducting private post-practice film sessions. There was never any visible ego involved in your game, no “look at me” narcissism. While we wish you had more on-the-field success, the highs were so high that expecting and wanting more may have been too greedy on our part. Decades from now, fans will look back in wonderment at the two playoff runs, shake their heads, and just say, “Wow!”

Nov 302017
 
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (November 23, 2017)

Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
Defensive tackle Damon Harrison (elbow) and linebacker Jonathan Casillas (neck/wrist) did not practice on Thursday.

Offensive lineman Justin Pugh (back) and linebacker B.J. Goodson (ankle) practiced on a limited basis.

Wide receiver Sterling Shepard (illness) and linebacker Calvin Munson (quad) fully practiced.

THE COORDINATORS SPEAK…
Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following coaches are available in The Corner Forum and 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:

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
Head Coach Ben McAdoo and select position coaches and players will address the media on Friday.