Mar 022015
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John Jerry and J.D. Walton, New York Giants (October 19, 2014)

John Jerry and J.D. Walton – © USA TODAY Sports Images

The New York Giants have released offensive lineman J.D. Walton. The 27-year old Walton started all 16 games at center for the Giants in 2014, but his play was sub par. Walton was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos, was claimed off of waivers by the Washington Redskins in December 2013, and signed with the Giants in March 2014.

Walton was set to make $2.25 million in salary in the final year of his 2-year contract and count $3.625 million against the team’s 2015 salary cap had he made the team. But cutting him, the Giants have “saved” $3 million against the cap with $625,000 in “dead” money.

The new starter at center is expected to be Weston Richburg, who started 15 games as a rookie for New York at left guard after being drafted in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Richburg’s natural position is center. The Giants also signed Canadian Football League (CFL) center Brett Jones and re-signed center/guard Dallas Reynolds in February.

Walton is the third veteran the Giants have released in the last week, including defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka and running back Peyton Hillis.

Jan 272015
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Perry Fewell Joins Redskins as Defensive Backs Coach: Perry Fewell, the former defensive coordinator of the New York Giants who was fired by the team on January 7th, has joined the Washington Redskins as their new defensive backs coach. Ironically, Fewell replaces Raheem Morris, who interviewed with the Giants for the defensive coordinator vacancy before the Giants hired Steve Spagnuolo.

Fewell had also interviewed with the San Francisco 49ers, who reportedly offered him a position as their defensive backs coach.

Article on Defensive Coordinator Steve Spagnuolo: Sam Madison: Spagnuolo has unmatched preparation by Dan Salomone of

Articles on WR Odell Beckham:

Article on WR Victor Cruz: Should the Giants try to do something about Victor Cruz’s contract? by Dan Graziano of

Article on OC J.D. Walton: Know Your Giants: Center J.D. Walton by Michael Eisen of “Building Blocks” Feature on Players: Video features on the following players are available at

  • WR Odell Beckham (Video)
  • OC/OG Weston Richburg (Video)

Article on Former Giant TE Mark Bavaro: Bill Belichick praises Mark Bavaro by Bob Glauber of Newsday

Jan 192015
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John Jerry and J.D. Walton, New York Giants (October 19, 2014)

Two Shaky Offensive Line Components – © USA TODAY Sports Images

The overall play of the New York Giants offensive line improved in 2014 from its dreadful performance in 2013 but the unit was still sub par. The Giants were tied for 28th in the NFL with only 3.6 yards per rushing attempt. Pass protection was better as the Giants gave up 30 sacks on the season, which was 9th-best in the NFL. But that figure is a bit misleading given the offense’s new emphasis on getting rid of the ball quickly (West Coast Offense) and quarterback Eli Manning’s long-established tendency to get rid of the ball quickly not take the sack, which he probably actually should do more often when under duress.

The improvement that did take place not only had to do with the individual components playing better, but the Giants had greater cohesion up front due to far fewer injuries. In 2013, the Giants used seven different starting offensive line combinations, the second-highest total in the NFL that season. In 2014, the same players started all 16 games at left tackle (Will Beatty), center (J.D. Walton), and right guard (John Jerry). Weston Richburg started 15 games at left guard and Justin Pugh started 14 games at right tackle. In 2013, not only were the Giants continually shifting players around due to an inordinate number of injuries to starters, but they were sometimes relying on third-stringers as backups were also getting injured.

That all said, it is widely-recognized that the offensive line was once again a sore spot in 2014. The Giants counted on high-priced free agent acquisition Geoff Schwartz to be a major building block, but Schwartz only played in two games due to injuries. Chris Snee, who the Giants never really counted on, retired before training camp. Overall, the line is more finesse than power, which usually is not good for any offense, but especially so for one predicated on balance and the ability to run the football.

Another issue is the poor overall depth situation. For years now, the Giants have not had quality up-and-coming reserves waiting in the wings in case the starters faltered or got hurt. Questionable free agent decisions and shoddy drafting have been the primary culprits. Most of the offensive linemen drafted in recent years have not developed, including Mitch Petrus, James Brewer, Brandon Mosley, and Eric Herman.


Will Beatty, New York Giants (October 19, 2014)

Will Beatty – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Will Beatty started all 16 games at left tackle. He rebounded from a terribly inconsistent 2013 and a fractured tibia that he suffered in the regular-season finale at the end of that year to have a mostly positive performance in 2014. Since Beatty was drafted in the 2nd round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Giants, Beatty has had issues staying healthy, including a broken foot in 2010, a detached retina in 2011, a back injury that caused him to miss offseason work in 2012, and the broken leg in 2013. Beatty is a big lineman with long arms and a very good athlete. When on top of his game, Beatty can mirror and slide with the best pass rushers, and is athletic enough to pull and engage defenders at the second level in the run game. However, Beatty is more of a finesse player. He does not play with a lot of strength and power and he is not a very physical or aggressive blocker. Beatty still has consistency issues.

The Giants drafted Weston Richburg, a 4-year starter at center in college, in the 2nd round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Most of his practice reps with the Giants came at guard in training camp and when Geoff Schwartz suffered a preseason toe injury, Richburg became the starter at left guard. He started 15 games at the position, being benched for one game in November. Richburg had an inconsistent year as a rookie as both a run and pass blocker. Richburg is a good athlete with decent size, but he needs to get bigger and stronger. He is not a mauling type of lineman, but he plays with good leverage and tenacity. Mobile and agile, Richburg, can block at the second level and pull on outside runs. He is smart, tough, and aggressive. His best position is most likely center though he is obviously versatile enough to play guard.

J.D. Walton started all 16 games at center for the Giants in 2014, but his play was sub par. Walton was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos. He started 32 regular-season games in 2010 and 20011 and the first four games of 2012 until he missed the rest of the season with a severe left ankle injury that required surgery. Walton had a setback on the ankle during the following offseason and underwent a second surgery in June 2013. He missed all of training camp and the preseason and was placed on the Physically-Unable-to-Perform (PUP) List. The Broncos waived him in December 2013 and Walton was then claimed off of waivers by the Redskins. The Giants signed him in March 2014. Walton has average size and athletic ability for a center. He does not generate much movement in his run blocks and can be physically overpowered by bigger, stronger linemen. Walton is a better pass protector but he is vulnerable to powerful or quicker linemen in that area as well. The strength of Walton’s game is his intelligence, scrappiness, and effort. The Giants were comfortable with him making all of the offensive line calls.

John Jerry started all 16 games at right guard for the Giants in 2014. He was a wildly inconsistent player who alternated far too much between solid and poor play. Jerry was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Dolphins where he started 45 games in his first four seasons in the NFL. The Giants signed Jerry as an unrestricted free agent in March 2014. Jerry looks the part with very good size and long arms, and he flashes both as a run and pass blocker. But he simply is not consistently reliable, technique-oriented, and physical enough blocking for both the run and the pass. Simply put, Jerry needs to work harder at keeping his opponent from making the play. He also seemed to struggle at times mentally with recognizing stunts and blitzes in pass protection.

Justin Pugh, New York Giants (October 19, 2014)

Justin Pugh – © USA TODAY Sports Images

In his second season with the Giants after being drafted in the 1st round of the 2013 NFL Draft, Justin Pugh regressed a bit and had an inconsistent season at right tackle. Sporting a brace on his left elbow, Pugh struggled in the first half of the season and then missed two games with a quadriceps injury in November. He played much better in the final four games in December. In 2013, Pugh started all 16 games at right tackle and was voted to the Pro Football Writers All-Rookie Team for his performance. Pugh doesn’t look the part as he lacks ideal size and has short arms for a tackle. But he is a good athlete who plays with fine strength, technique, and leverage. Pugh is smart, aggressive, and tenacious. Though not a mauler, he can get movement on his run blocks and he has the agility to do well in pass protection, though he needs to become more consistent in that area. He can pull and block defenders at the second level. Versatile, the Giants think he can play both tackle spots, guard, and possibly even center.


In his first season with the Giants, Geoff Schwartz suffered through an injury-plagued season that saw him play in two games at right tackle because of serious toe and ankle injuries that both required surgery. He missed both the first 10 and last four games of the season, ending up on Injured Reserve in December. Schwartz was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2008 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers. He has spent time with the Panthers (2008-10), Vikings (2012), and Chiefs (2013). He signed with the Giants as a free agent in March 2014. Schwartz has excellent size and can maul people as a run blocker. He is very solid in pass protection. Schwartz is versatile – he is able to play guard or right tackle.


James Brewer simply has not developed as a player since being drafted in the 4th round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Giants. A year after playing in all 16 games with eight starts, Brewer only played in two games in November before being placed on injured reserve in December with a concussion. Brewer has a nice combination of size and athleticism. He can play both tackle and guard spots. However, he has not proven to be a very tough or physical lineman.

Adam Snyder was signed by the Giants in September 2014. He played in four games with one start at left guard in Week 12 before leaving that game with the knee issue that caused him to be placed on Injured Reserve in December. Snyder was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2005 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers. During his career, he’s played eight seasons with the 49ers (2005-11, 2013) and one with the Arizona Cardinals (2012). Snyder is extremely versatile, having starting experience at all five offensive line positions. He has started 88 regular-season games in 10 NFL seasons. However, despite having very good size, Snyder was considered the weak link of the starting units in San Francisco and Arizona in recent years.

Brandon Mosley has not developed since he was drafted in the 4th round of the 2012 NFL Draft. He missed his entire rookie season with an ankle injury. Mosley was active for 22 games the last two seasons, including nine in 2014. His only start came late in the 2013 season. Mosley has good size and athletic ability. He is also versatile, having experience at both guard and tackle. But on a weak offensive line, he has not been able to gain any serious playing time.

Dallas Reynolds was active as a reserve linemen in 15 games in 2014, but he did not start. Reynolds was originally signed by the Philadelphia Eagles as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2009 NFL Draft. He spent time on the Eagles’ Practice Squad from 2009-11. In 2012, Reynolds played in 16 regular-season games with 14 starts. The Eagles waived him August 2013 and he was signed by the Giants in October of that year. A limited athlete with good size, Reynolds is smart and tries hard. He has experience at both center and guard, but he has struggled when called upon to play.

Eric Herman added to the 53-man roster in December 2014 from the Practice Squad, where he spent the bulk of the season. He was also suspended for the first two games of the 2014 season for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs). Herman was drafted in the 7th round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the Giants. He spent most of his rookie season on the Practice Squad until being also added to the roster in December 2013. Herman is a big, strong mauler who struggled with quickness and speed at the collegiate level. Herman needs to develop as a pass blocker in order to make it in the NFL.

Adam Gettis was signed to the 53-man roster from the Practice Squad of the Pittsburgh Steelers in December 2014. Gettis was originally drafted in the 5th round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins. The Redskins waived Gettis in August 2014 and he was signed the Steelers’ Practice Squad in October. Gettis lacks ideal size, but he is athletic.


Rogers Gaines was waived/injured and then placed on Injured Reserve with a shoulder injury in August 2014. Gaines was originally signed by the Baltimore Ravens as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2013 NFL Draft. The Ravens waived him in August 2013. The Bears signed him to their Practice Squad in September 2013. The Giants claimed Rogers Gaines off of waivers from the Chicago Bears in May 2014. Gaines has excellent size and long arms. He is a good athlete for his size. He improved throughout the 2014 preseason at right tackle for the Giants.

Troy Kropog was placed on Injured Reserve in August 2014 with a foot injury that he suffered in training camp. Kropog was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Tennessee Titans. The Titans waived him in September 2012 and he then spent time with the Jaguars (2012), Vikings (2012-13) and Redskins (2013). The Giants signed Kropog to a reserve/future contract in January 2014. Kropog has a decent combination of size and athleticism, and he is a hard worker. Versatile, he can play both tackle and guard. But it hasn’t come together for Kropog at the NFL level and he has never started a regular-season game.


Michael Bamiro was signed to the Practice Squad in November 2014. Bamiro was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Philadelphia Eagles after the 2013 NFL Draft. He spent the 2013 season on the Eagles’ Practice Squad before being waived in August 2014. Bamiro is a very raw player with an intriguing combiation of size (6’8”, 340 pounds) and overall athleticism.

Dec 102014
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (December 7, 2014)

Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports Images

December 10, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report Includes Eli Manning: OT James Brewer (concussion), LB Jameel McClain (knee), and LB Jacquian Williams (concussion/shoulder) did not practice on Wednesday.

QB Eli Manning (back) and LB Mark Herzlich (concussion) practiced on a limited basis.

“I don’t know if I really got hurt,” said. “I feel good. The coach wanted to take a few reps off. It wasn’t many reps anyway, so it is not going to limit me in my practices for the week, or the game. Just kind of some of the procedures you have to go through now in the NFL.”

LB Devon Kennard Named “NFC Defensive Player of the Week”: New York Giants linebacker Devon Kennard has been named the “NFC Defensive Player of the Week” for his performance against the Tennessee Titans last Sunday in the team’s 36-7 victory.

In that game, Kennard was credited with six solo tackles, two sacks, two tackles for losses, and a forced fumble that was returned for a touchdown by defensive tackle Markus Kuhn.

“(Kennard) has been a really outstanding player for us in the last few weeks,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “He has had a number of sacks, a number of hits on the quarterback and he has played well at the linebacker level, whether it is in coverage or whatever. He is a young man who…loves to play. He is physical and he is one of those guys by just looking in his eyes you know that he wants to be on the field.”

Kennard is the first Giant defender to receive a Player of the Week award since defensive end Justin Tuck in Week 13 of the 2013 season. He is the first Giants linebacker to be honored since Mathias Kiwanuka, who played linebacker that season, in Week 9 in 2011 against New England.

Kennard is the first Giants defensive rookie to be honored as a Player of the Week.

“There have been some incredible linebackers to play for this organization,” Kennard said. “So something like that, it was definitely special. But I know that I have a long way to go and a lot of things that I want to improve and continue to develop in my game. I’m just taking it one day at a time and am grateful for that accomplishment.”

“I think I played a good game, but there are always things (to improve),” Kennard said. “Route recognition, understanding formations, just allowing myself to play faster and faster. That’s all going to come with the more reps I get, the more comfortable I’m getting. I just want to continue to get better. I’m not in any way, shape or form satisfied.”

“Kennard is a phenomenal kid,” linebacker Jameel McClain said. “Kennard is focusing on his game and he focuses on details. For him to be so young and be such a professional, it is amazing.”

December 10, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video of Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s Wednesday’s press conference are available at and

December 10, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of media sessions on Wednesday with the following players are available at and

7 takeaways from Giants Media Hour by Dan Salomone of

ESPN Radio Interview with WR Odell Beckham: The audio of Wednesday’s ESPN Radio interview with WR Odell Beckham is available at

Article on QB Eli Manning: The truth about the new offense’s effect on Eli by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Article on QB Ryan Nassib: Ryan Nassib not likely to play for Giants by Kieran Darcy of

Articles on RBs Rashad Jennings and Andre Williams:

Article on WR Odell Beckham: Odell Beckham is most talented ever, David Tyree says by Chris Wesseling for

Articles on the New York Giants Offensive Line: 

Article on DE Jason Pierre-Paul: Jason Pierre-Paul wants to be a ‘Giant for life’ if it’s in the cards by Nick Powell for

Article on the New York Giants and Injuries: Giants lead NFL with 20 players on injured reserve; are these injuries preventable? by Jordan Raanan for

Aug 242014
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Mark Herzlich (58) and Jay Bromley (96), New York Giants (August 3, 2014)

Mark Herzlich and Jay Bromley – © USA TODAY Sports Images (BBI) Updates: In case you missed it, articles from BBI today:

August 24, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing on Sunday were WR Odell Beckham, Jr. (hamstring), WR Marcus Harris (shoulder), TE Xavier Grimble (hamstring), OG Geoff Schwartz (toe), OG Brandon Mosley (back), OT James Brewer (back), OT Charles Brown (shoulder), DT Markus Kuhn (ankle), LB Jon Beason (PUP – foot), CB Prince Amukamara (groin), and S Cooper Taylor (foot).

WR Trindon Holliday (hamstring) participated in individual drills. RB Peyton Hillis (ankle/foot) and CB Jayron Hosley (foot) returned to practice. CB Zack Bowman (triceps), who was injured in the Jets game, practiced.

August 24, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video from Sunday’s press conference with Head Coach Tom Coughlin are available at and

August 24, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Sunday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at

7 takeaways from Giants Media Hour by Dan Salomone of

Article on the New York Giants Running Game: NY Giants offense fueled by rushing duo of Rashad Jennings and Andre Williams by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Article on WR Corey Washington: Corey Washington: Giants coach Tom Coughlin raves about young wide receiver by Jordan Raanan of

Articles on the New York Giants Offensive Line:

Article on DE Damontre Moore: Giants’ Damontre Moore stepping up by JJ Conrad of The Bergen Record

Sights and Sounds from Giants-Jets Preseason Game: A sights and sounds video from the Giants-Jets preseason game is available at

Jul 312014
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (June 12, 2014)

Eli Manning at OTAs – © USA TODAY Sports Images

J.D. Walton has gotten himself into a bit of a routine every time he sets the Giants’ offensive huddle.

Just before Eli Manning ducks his head inside and gives the play call, Walton holds his hands out in fists to his left and right. Simultaneously, guards Brandon Mosley and Geoff Schwartz match his with their own, tackles Will Beatty and Justin Pugh, too.

Manning then leans forward, calls the play and the team marches to the line of scrimmage.

The ‘fist bump’ or ‘pound’ is nothing new, but it’s one way Walton is working on developing chemistry across New York’s rebuilt offensive line.

“We need to get in a routine and get comfortable with each other,” Walton said. “That’s part of it. We’re trying to get confidence, get reset, get focused for this next drill and what we’re able to do.”

J.D. Walton (55) and Eli Manning (10), New York Giants (June 18, 2014)

J.D. Walton and Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports Images

For the past 10 years, the same familiar faces have paved the way for running backs and kept defensive linemen off Mannings’ back. Sure, some were replaced, but there was always someone that was the same.

When Rich Seubert and Shaun O’Hara left, there was still Kareem McKenzie, David Diehl and Chris Snee. When McKenzie hung up the cleats, there was still Snee and Diehl.

Then Diehl retired in January and Snee the day the Giants reported to camp. Now? 29-year-old Will Beatty and 23-year-old Justin Pugh are the ‘veterans’ up front. The once familiar faces are gone, replaced with free-agent and drafted acquisitions.

Over the years, New York’s once proud and powerful offensive line had become bruised and battered. In 2008, two players -Brandon Jacobs and Derrick Ward – rushed for over 1,000 yards. Last season? Manning was sacked a career-high 39 times and running backs averaged the fourth-worst rushing yards per game.

Snee and Diehl have been replaced by the likes of Walton, rookie Weston Richburg, Schwartz and Mosley. While the group is well aware of the prior generation’s accolades, Walton says they’re collectively trying to create their own history.

“They won two world championships the last 10 years and another two the decade before,” Walton said. “But we’re trying to make our own identity. We want to become a great line ourselves and we’re busting our butt out here every day to do that.”

For Walton, he’s been ‘busting his butt’ ever since an injury cost him the last two seasons of his NFL career.

Drafted in the third round of the 2010 NFL Draft, Walton was viewed by some as one of the best centers available. He had the strength to match up with any defensive tackle, along with agility to get to the second level.

He struggled in the early portions of his career. Just as he began to put it all together, it all fell apart. In 2012, Walton suffered a gruesome dislocated ankle versus the Oakland Raiders. Walton, who said prior to the injury had never missed a practice at any level, has yet to play since.

J.D. Walton, Denver Broncos (December 11, 2011)

J.D. Walton – © USA TODAY Sports Images

“It was rough mentally,” Walton said. “You just try to stick with the family. Go up to the facility as much as possible and sit in the meeting rooms. Just be around the guys because they’re your brothers.”

Walton was waived by the Broncos on Dec. 13, 2013 and then signed by the Washington Redskins a day later. He never played a down. Entering free agency this season, he didn’t know what to expect. Sure, Walton knew he could still play. But did other teams?

At the time of his injury, the 27 year old had just been starting to scratch the surface of what he was capable of doing. The Giants saw that and thought he was worth a risk. When Walton’s agent let him know New York was interested, there was not a doubt in his mind.

“It’s the New York Giants,” Walton said. “It has that lure, that credibility and everything you look for in a franchise. It has the name, being able to play for ‘Big Blue’ and Coach Coughlin. It’s a great franchise.’”

This Sunday in the Giants’ Hall of Fame game versus the Buffalo Bills, Walton will have a chance to show New York its gamble was safe. While for some it’s just another preseason game that doesn’t count, to Walton it means the world.

The last time he stepped foot on the field, he left on a cart.

“I’m very, very excited. It’s been a long time coming for me,” Walton said. “Just to be able to knock off all the rust and get back going. It’s gonna be fun.

“I’m a little jittery, but once you get on that field, that’s your comfort zone. For us players, once you get out there on the field, that’s it. There will be a little extra for me because it’s been so long, but I’m looking forward to it. It’s gonna be a good time.”

Jul 282014
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Travis Harvey, New York Giants (July 22, 2014)

Travis Harvey – © USA TODAY Sports Images (BBI) Updates: In case you missed it, original-content articles from BBI today:

July 28, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: LB Jon Beason (foot – PUP), WR Odell Beckham (hamstring), and TE Xavier Grimble (hamstring) did not practice on Monday. Beckham and Grimble were not in attendance at practice as they were undergoing further medical tests.

“They were in treatment and went over to the doctor,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin.

July 28, 2014 New York Giants Coach Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Monday’s press conferences with the following coaches are available at

July 28, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Monday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at

7 things we found out during media hour by Dan Salomone of

New York Giants Practice Reports:

Article on New York Giants Training Camp: Giants: Before first full-padded practice, veterans hope for safe summer by Conor Orr of The Star-Ledger

Articles on QB Eli Manning:

Article on WR Odell Beckham and CB Prince Amukamara: Prince Amukamara can relate to injured NY Giants rookie Odell Beckham Jr. by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Article on the New York Giants Tight Ends: Giants’ TE situation not getting any clearer by Dan Graziano of

Article on LT Will Beatty: Giants practice spotlight: Will Beatty has up and down day; leg still an issue? by Jordan Raanan of

Articles on DE Robert Ayers:

Jul 092014
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (November 10, 2013)

Can the Giants’ line keep Manning upright in 2014? – © USA TODAY Sports Images

With the New York Giants reporting to training camp in less than two weeks, is breaking down each of the team’s positional groups from now until July 21. Today, let’s take a look at the offensive line.



2013 YEAR IN REVIEW: Years of failing to install a contingency plan up front caught up to Jerry Reese in 2013. As injury after injury hit the offensive line, few, if any, reserves were waiting in the wings to step up. The Giants entered the season with a starting line of: William Beatty, Kevin Boothe, David Baas, Chris Snee and David Diehl. By the end of the season…all had landed on the injury report. Quarterback Eli Manning was sacked a career-high 39 times and the deep passes that the Giants had so much success with in previous seasons were eliminated because there wasn’t time to throw. In the end, even Manning himself suffered an injury. Things were bad, very bad. It was a nightmare that ultimately forced Kevin Gilbride to ‘retire.’

Geoff Schwartz, Kansas City Chiefs (August 24, 2013)

Geoff Schwartz was the Giants big signing in 2014 – © USA TODAY Sports Images

ADDITIONS/SUBTRACTIONS: With how terrible things were last year, changes up front were inevitable. Kevin Boothe left for Oakland, David Baas was released and David Diehl retired. The Giants signed notable free agents: J.D. Walton (C), Geoff Schwartz (G), John Jerry (G) and Charles Brown (T) while drafting Weston Richburg (C/G) in the second round. It was a complete and much-needed overhaul.

TRAINING CAMP STORY LINES: While there are many, the health of guard Chris Snee tops the list. Since being drafted out of Boston College, Snee has been a staple on the Giants’ line and considered one of the best guards in the NFL. But the years in the trenches have taken their toll on the 32-year-old. His 6-3, 310-pound frame is bruised and battered and Snee’s hardly the player he was when entering the league over a decade ago. When the Giants reported for their offseason conditioning program, Snee was a full participant, but that quickly changed. His elbow flared, sidelining Snee for the majority of the workouts.

Even when Snee is healthy, he isn’t the same player he used to be. The fact he’s already being held out of non-contact practices doesn’t bode well. Will Snee make it out of training camp? Will he hang up the cleats? If he realizes he can no longer play, who steps up at right guard? There are many questions on the Giants’ offensive line (William Beatty), but many center around the health of Chris Snee.

Chris Snee and Pat Flaherty, New York Giants (July 27, 2013)

Snee was on the sideline for much of the Giants’ offseason workouts – © USA TODAY Sports Images

ON THE BUBBLE: Two names truly stick out: John Jerry and James Brewer. Since being considered an up-and-coming lineman for the Giants, James Brewer has yet to capitalize on the opportunities the team has given him. Now, he finds himself working with the third unit and his days in blue may be numbered. Jerry, meanwhile, is waiting to hear on his punishment for his involvement in the Miami Dolphins bully scandal. There’s a lot of hype around Jerry and talk he could be perfect in the Giants’ scheme, but his baggage may be enough to have the Giants pull the plug before even flipping the switch.

FROM THE POSITIONAL COACH: Pat Flaherty on the new faces in the offensive line meeting room: “Change is going to happen, we all know that. I like it, I really do. I mean, do I miss? You always miss people that you’ve been around for a lot of years, sure. But we all understand in most businesses that there is going to be change on sometimes a daily basis, most of the time on a yearly basis and that’s the profession that we’re in right now. So it’s a challenge because we have a mixture of youth and some veterans that come in from other teams that have to learn a whole new offense, as myself. Any time you have that type of… when you’re a competitor as you are as a player and a coach you kind of grab a hold of that and it’s fun. It is.”


John Jerry, Miami Dolphins (November 17, 2013)

Is John Jerry the answer if Chris Snee can’t go?– © USA TODAY Sports Images

Connor Hughes – I’m just not sold on the Giants’ offensive line yet. I like the addition of Geoff Schwartz, but that solidifies one of the five question marks from left to right. Of every player that could step foot on the field to protect Eli Manning, I have faith in two: Justin Pugh and Schwartz. J.D. Walton has battled injuries, William Beatty is a huge question mark, who goes for Snee if/when he can’t? John Jerry wasn’t exactly a stud in Miami, Brandon Mosley and others on the line haven’t shown much. The Giants made their splashes in free agency and the draft on the offensive side of the ball, adding weapon, after weapon, after weapon…but none will matter if Eli Manning isn’t protected. Last year, Manning ended up injured in the final game of the season. There’s a big part of me that believes he could end up with the same fate far sooner in 2014.

Eric Kennedy – I have to disagree with Connor a bit here and say the #1 question mark on the offensive line – and one of the top three question marks for the entire team – is Will Beatty. Coming off of a fractured leg and possibly an undisclosed knee injury, it remains to be seen when Beatty will be able to practice with the revamped first-team offensive line. He needs the practice. Not only to rebound from a very poor 2013 campaign, but also to develop chemistry and cohesion with LG Geoff Schwartz. The Giants can survive without Chris Snee, I’m not sure they can perform well without Beatty returning to his 2012 form. The “wild card” here is Charles Brown. He has talent, but was very inconsistent at left tackle in New Orleans.

My prediction is that J.D. Walton turns out to be a much more valuable addition to the team than many initially thought. He is a no-nonsense guy who will get the job done and bring some leadership to the unit. Walton and Geoff Schwartz will settle down the middle of the offensive line. I also look for Brandon Mosley to develop and possibly challenge for a starting spot.

Connor Hughes – William Beatty (LT), Geoff Schwartz (LG), J.D. Walton (C), John Jerry (RG), Justin Pugh (RT).

Eric Kennedy – Will Beatty (LT), Geoff Schwartz (LG), J.D. Walton (C), Chris Snee (RG), Justin Pugh (RT). (I also think John Jerry, Charles Brown, Weston Richburg, and Brandon Mosley make the team).

May 202014
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Ryan Nassib, New York Giants (May 20, 2014)

Ryan Nassib – Photo by Connor Hughes

May 20, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Tuesday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at

Articles on Wide Receiver Odell Beckham:

Article on Tight Ends Adrien Robinson and Xavier Grimble: Robinson, Grimble could fill void at TE by Kieran Darcy of

Article on Offensive Linemen Geoff Schwartz and Weston Richburg: New Giants linemen getting outside help by Dan Graziano of on Big Blue Kickoff Live: The audio of Eric Kennedy from being interviewed on’s Big Blue Kickoff Live podcast on Tuesday is available at Eric joins the show at the 30-minute mark of the broadcast.

Mar 142014
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Jon Beason, New York Giants (October 10, 2013)

Jon Beason – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Jon Beason and Henry Hynoski Officially Re-Signed: The New York Giants officially confirmed that unrestricted free agents linebacker Jon Beason and fullback Henry Hynoski have re-signed. Beason reportedly signed a 3-year, $19 million deal with $7 million guaranteed. Hynoski reportedly signed a 1-year, $1 million contract.

“You know how when you pick up a good book and it’s good because they develop a character and there’s always some type of turmoil, something bad happens,” Beason said. “And then the character has to come out and overcome it and then it’s like, ‘Man, that was a really good read.’ For me, I think it just made my career story better, having to overcome some things. You come out, you get drafted high, you start making Pro Bowls and become the highest-paid player, all-pro and all that stuff. That’s a boring book. For me, I feel like it’s prepared me for what’s still to come. If you’re going to lead men, especially at this level, you have to be battle-tested.

“You go through some stuff, you feel like you’re getting dragged through the mud and all of a sudden you just keep fighting, fighting and then you come out clean on the other side. For me, a fresh start was great. But obviously I know who I am and what I’ve already accomplished, so why can’t I continue to do that? I feel like I’m just scratching the surface. I really feel like that. To get a chance to have a great offseason, train and get in good shape to where you can play consistently at a high level is what I’m looking forward to.

“I think what we were able to build last year in a short period of time was scary. I’m a big fan of building camaraderie and sweating with the guys in the offseason, that’s where you build those championships and we missed that – well, I missed that because I came in early in the season. But for me, at this point, I know we have that coming up in April, get out there and earn the right to be a champ. It’s going to be big this year.

“I think when you talk about leadership, obviously your peers pick the captain or the person they choose to lead. There are guys that have done a great job, but the hardest part is being consistent at it. If you’re going to stand up there and say something or you’re going to represent something, or you’re going to be an example of something, I think you have to do it every day. Because as soon as you’re not, as soon as you don’t do it, there’s a chink in your armor and now guys aren’t following you anymore because you’re a façade, you’re not for real.

“Everyone’s going to have to pick up the slack because (Justin) Tuck was such an amazing leader, a guy who demanded respect right when he walked into the room. That’s the way I felt about him from the outside looking in and then obviously getting the chance to get to play with him, that was evident. For me, I just want to continue to try and be consistent. I think when you’re consistent, people follow that.

“I think anytime you get derailed with an injury, it’s not your fault. That wasn’t part of the story, but it happens. Anytime you have a setback, it’s a chance to come back and do something great. For me, you stay who you are and you know when you’re healthy you can be as good as anybody. You go out there, you play well, but that was just scratching the surface. I feel like I can be scary good this year and as a team, especially as a defense, we could be really good.”

Hynoski had an injury-plagued 2013. In May at the team’s first Organized Team Activity (OTA) workout, Hynoski suffered an injury to his medial collateral ligament (MCL) and a chip fracture to the lateral plateau in his left knee that required surgery. He returned in time for the regular-season opener, but suffered a shoulder injury in Week 3 that required surgery and ended his season as he was placed on Injured Reserve.

“I’m finally 100 percent healthy now,” Hynoski said. “I’m ready to go. I’m just extremely anxious to get back on the field. It was a humbling year.”

“The first game (last season) I was really rusty, the second I started getting back and that third game was when I started feeling good again, back to my old self,” Hynoski said. “And then the shoulder happened, unfortunately. But that’s part of the game. It’s the stuff you have to live with. These things happen, it’s just a matter of how you respond to it. I use it as motivation, use it in my workouts, everything, all of that anger and frustration – I used it in rehab and training to get back. I think it’s going to make me a better player because of it.

“It was tough to sit back and watch your team, especially when you know you could help in certain areas. I’m just looking forward. That whole time I was going through all of this, it was just motivation, it just fueled the fire and made me more hungry. I think it’s all going to transfer over to this season and we’ll have a great year ahead of us.”

Hynoski will have to compete for a roster spot with fullback John Conner, who was signed when the Giants lost Hynoski to injury.

“There’s competition all over the NFL,” Hynoski said. “That brings the best out of all of the players. It brings the best out of you when you’re competing against somebody else. I’m just looking forward to working with him and working together and getting better at the same time.”

“This is where I want to be,” Hynoski said. “Don’t get me wrong, Detroit was a great place. I really enjoyed the people I met and the visit out there, but this is home for me. This is where I was comfortable and luckily everything worked out. The Giants had a mutual feeling, the same feeling I had about them. They wanted me back, I wanted to be back here and I’m glad it worked out.

“This is a very special place for me, just the way the fans embraced me. I’m very grateful the coaches, the front office all the way from the ownership down have been 100 percent class, one of the best organizations in the NFL, the best organization in the NFL. I’m just very honored and proud to be part of it again.”

For more from Beason and Hynoski, see these interviews:

March 14, 2014 New York Giants Free Agent News and Rumors: Here is the latest on the free agent front:

  • RavensInsider is reporting that unrestricted free agent (UFA) offensive guard/tackle Bruce Campbell, who was waived/injured by the Carolina Panthers in August 2013, visited the Giants on Thursday. Campbell had signed a contract with the Washington Redskins on Wednesday, but failed their physical.
  • The New York Daily News is reporting that the Giants may be interested in unrestricted free agent defensive end Robert Ayers (Denver Broncos).
  • The Star-Ledger is reporting that unrestricted free agent cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (Denver Broncos) will visit the Giants after visiting the Jets.
  • UFA tight end Brandon Pettigrew, who the Giants were rumored to be interested in, re-signed with the Detroit Lions.
  • UFA center Evan Dietrich-Smith (Green Bay Packers), who the Giants were rumored to be interested in, has signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Details on J.D. Walton’s Contract: According to, the contact signed between the Giants and unrestricted free agent center J.D. Walton (Washington Redskins) was a 2-year, $5 million deal with $3 million in guaranteed money. Contract details for most of the free agents signed are available in the 2014 Free Agency Scorecard section of the website.

For more information on what the Giants have spent, see A look at some of the Giants’ new deals by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News.

ESPN Radio Interview with OG Geoff Schwartz: The audio of Friday’s ESPN Radio interview with offensive guard Geoff Schwartz is available at

ESPN Radio Interview with DE Justin Tuck: The audio of Friday’s ESPN Radio interview with defensive end Justin Tuck is available at

Articles on Former Giants Defensive End Justin Tuck: