Jul 082015
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (November 9, 2014)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

ESPN obtained and released a medical record for Jason Pierre-Paul indicating that the New York Giants defensive end had his right index finger amputated on Wednesday at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida. Pierre-Paul suffered serious injuries to his right hand in a July 4th fireworks accident at his South Florida home on Saturday.

In addition to the amputation, the medical document shows that Pierre-Paul also did receive skin grafts, including to his right arm. NFL.com also tweeted that Pierre-Paul had pins inserted into some undisclosed bones.

NJ.com and The New York Daily News are reporting that the Giants were unaware of the amputation until seeing the ESPN report. As we reported earlier, Pierre-Paul refused to see the Giants officials who were sent to check on Pierre-Paul’s medical status. The New York Post is also reporting that Pierre-Paul refused the team’s offer to set him up with hand specialists in Manhattan.

An unidentified “medical source” told ESPN that Pierre-Paul is expected to return to the playing field this season “sooner than people think.”

NFL.com is reporting that it was Pierre-Paul’s decision to amputate the finger as cutting off the finger simplifies and accelerates the recovery process. NFL.com is reporting that Pierre-Paul could be back in fewer than two months. FOXSports says that other options besides amputation were discussed, but amputation was deemed to have the fewest complications. NJ.com is reporting that Pierre-Paul still may return by the regular-season opener and that the damage to the other fingers is considered minor. According to FOXSports, there will be no other amputations for Pierre-Paul. It appears that Pierre-Paul chose to sacrifice his right index finger in order to ensure that he will play football in 2015.

A free agent, Pierre-Paul received a 1-year, $14.813 million Franchise tender in March from the Giants that he has yet to sign. The Giants reportedly are no longer seeking to sign Pierre-Paul to a long-term deal before the July 15 NFL deadline for Franchise players to sign multi-year contracts. So unless the Giants rescind the tender, Pierre-Paul will be forced to sign the 1-year deal if he want to play and get paid in 2015. However, Pierre-Paul can control his absence from the team and the team’s access to him by not signing the tender. If Pierre-Paul signs his tender and misses practice and playing time, the Giants can place him on the Non-Football Injury (NFI) List and not pay him.

Jul 082015
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (November 17, 2013)

Jason Pierre-Paul Returns an INT for a TD – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Giants Return Home Without Visiting Jason Pierre-Paul: According to multiple media reports, New York Giants officials sent to check on the medical status of defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida were not able to meet with Pierre-Paul and have returned home to New Jersey. With or without the acquiescence of his agent and family, Pierre-Paul refused to see the Giants officials who included Vice President of Medical Services Ronnie Barnes.

It is believed that Pierre-Paul suffered serious burn injuries to one of his hands in a July 4th fireworks accident at his South Florida home on Saturday. Pierre-Paul remains hospitalized and there have been unconfirmed reports that Pierre-Paul has received surgical skin grafts on his injured hand. However, team medical officials have not been able to examine Pierre-Paul in order to ascertain the true extent and severity of the injuries.

A free agent, Pierre-Paul received a 1-year, $14.813 million Franchise tender in March from the Giants that he has yet to sign. The Giants reportedly are no longer seeking to sign Pierre-Paul to a long-term deal before the July 15 NFL deadline for Franchise players to sign multi-year contracts. So unless the Giants rescind the tender, Pierre-Paul will be forced to sign the 1-year deal if he want to play and get paid in 2015. However, Pierre-Paul can control his absence from the team and the team’s access to him by not signing the tender. If the injuries are serious enough for Pierre-Paul to miss playing time and he signs the tender, the Giants can place him on the Non-Football Injury (NFI) List and not pay him.

There is speculation that Pierre-Paul is hiding an injury even more severe than reported. There is also speculation that Pierre-Paul and his agent might be using this unfortunate accident to their advantage by trying the team’s patience and encouraging them to rescind the 1-year tender. Doing so would make Pierre-Paul an unrestricted free agent, free to sign with any team.

Giants.com Player Q&As: Video clips of Giants.com Q&As with the following players are available at Giants.com:

Articles on the 2015 New York Giants:

Jul 082015
 
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According to multiple press reports, New York Giants team officials sent to check on the medical status of defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida still have not yet been able to meet with the player. It is believed that Pierre-Paul suffered serious injuries to one of his hands due to a fireworks accident on Saturday at his South Florida home.

An unconfirmed report from BleacherReport.com said that Pierre-Paul suffered third-degree burns on his hand, requiring a skin graft. The New York Daily News is reporting that Pierre-Paul is believed to have already undergone surgery.

NFL.com is reporting that based on the early prognosis, it is possible that Pierre-Paul could be ready for the season opener. Whether that is an overly-optimistic projection on the part of Pierre-Paul’s camp remains unknown.

According to a team official who spoke to The New York Post, the Giants have not been barred from meeting with Pierre-Paul. However, it does appear that the team is currently only receiving updates from Pierre Paul’s agent and team officials have not been allowed to question doctors or examine Pierre-Paul directly. The Daily News reports that a spokeswoman at the hospital said that Pierre-Paul’s family has requested privacy and could not provide specific information.

This saga could be prolonged. According to NFL.com, two sources have said that Giants medical personnel may not be able to examine Pierre-Paul until he signs his 1-year, $14.813 million Franchise tender. Possibly further complicating matters is that NFL.com is also reporting that Pierre-Paul does not intend to sign that tender until he is physically ready to play.

If Pierre-Paul were to sign his tender and he cannot practice in training camp and play in the preseason, the Giants would likely put him on the Non-Football Injury (NFI) List. A player still on the NFI List when the regular season starts is not allowed to play for the first six games of the regular season. So if Pierre-Paul is now projected to miss the season opener, it might be better for him not to sign the tender now as he could then return before the first six games are concluded.

If the Giants rescind the tender, Pierre-Paul would automatically become an unrestricted free agent, free to sign with any team. The Giants are not believed to be considering rescinding their tender offer. While unsigned or on the NFI List, Pierre-Paul would not be paid.

NFL.com is also now reporting that Pierre-Paul was likely to hold out of at least the early portion of training camp even before he was injured.

On the legal front, there was some reporting on Tuesday that Pierre-Paul may be investigated and possibly charged by police authorities for use of illegal fireworks. But at least one local Florida jurisdiction said they would not pursue the case. However, FOXSports is reporting that other police jurisdictions could still proceed with an investigation and possible charges.

Jul 072015
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (August 28, 2014)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Officials Visit Jason Pierre-Paul: According to multiple media reports, New York Giants team officials traveled to Florida on Tuesday to visit defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul in a Miami-area hospital. Pierre-Paul badly injured himself in a July 4th fireworks accident at his South Florida home on Saturday. Media reports on Sunday and Monday indicated that Pierre-Paul suffered serious burns to fingers and palm of one of his hands, resulting in possible nerve damage to one of the fingers. However, the Giants are clearly trying to determine for themselves the true extent and severity of the injuries.

The New York Daily News is reporting that the team sent Vice President of Medical Services Ronnie Barnes to check on Pierre-Paul on Monday afternoon, but he was not able to receive much information or examine Pierre-Paul. Apparently most of the information has come from Pierre-Paul’s agent and that’s why the team has not issued a press release on the situation.

ESPN reported on Monday that Pierre-Paul might miss all of training camp and the preseason, as well as the start of the regular-season, because of the injuries. There is media speculation that Pierre-Paul will be placed on Non-Football Injury (NFI) List at the start of training camp. However, a team official told The Daily News, “Until we know what we’re dealing with, nobody knows if he’ll miss anything.”

Pierre-Paul was designated the team’s Franchise Player in early March with a 1-year, $14.813 million tender. Pierre-Paul has yet to sign the tender and the Giants have not yet rescinded it since the accident on Saturday. Per Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) rules, NFL teams have until July 15th to sign Franchise Players to multi-year contracts. If not, the Franchise Player must play out the 2015 season on his 1-year tender.

There were conflicting reports on Monday and Tuesday on the status of long-term contract talks between the Giants and Pierre-Paul. On Monday, NFL.com reported that the Giants had pulled a $60 million, multi-year contract offer off of the table. On the other hand, The New York Post said that the long-term offer had not been pulled.

On Tuesday, The New York Daily News reported that a team official said that the NFL.com story on the $60 million contract offer was not accurate since there had never been any serious long-term contract talks. That said, the team source told The Daily News that there is now “no chance” that the team would re-sign Pierre-Paul to a long-term deal before the July 15 deadline and that Pierre-Paul’s only option is to sign the 1-year, $14.813 million tender. The Daily News says the team is not currently considering rescinding the tender.

Jul 072015
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (October 28, 2012)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

With New York Giants training camp beginning in late July, BigBlueInteractive.com breaks down each of the team’s positional groups until the players report at Quest Diagnostics Training Center.

FIND A COMPLETE LIST OF ALL BREAKDOWNS HERE

POSITIONAL BREAKDOWN: Defensive Ends

2014 YEAR IN REVIEW: Ever since the New York Giants transitioned to the 4-3 defense from the 3-4 in 1994, the defensive line has been the heart of a New York Giants defense. But for the third time in the last four seasons, the defense gave up over 6,000 yards (the only times in franchise history the defense has done so). Everyone is to blame, including the defensive ends.

The headliner up front, Jason Pierre-Paul (JPP) started the season off slowly and didn’t really impact games the way he should until the Giants were already out of playoff contention. Mathias Kiwanuka started 11 games at left defensive end, but did not play well and finished the season on Injured Reserve. Free agent acquisition Robert Ayers flashed as a pass rusher at both defensive tackle and end, but was inconsistent against the run and also finished the season on IR. The coaching staff did not appear to trust Damontre Moore, who did not start a game. By year’s end, he was surprisingly passed on the depth chart by undrafted rookie Kerry Wynn. Jordan Stanton was a rookie free agent who spent a couple of stints on the Practice Squad.

ADDITIONS/SUBTRACTIONS: The Giants waived Mathias Kiwanuka in February. The team signed George Selvie (1-year, $1.2 million) in free agency. The Giants drafted Owamagbe Odighizuwa in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft and signed Brad Harrah as a rookie free agent after the draft.

TRAINING CAMP STORY LINES: Even before the July 4th fireworks accident that caused severe burns to one of his hands, Pierre-Paul was going to be the main focus given that it was likely (now certain) that he was going to play out the season on his $14.813 million Franchise tender. JPP had a bounce-back year in 2014 but everyone is still looking for the 2011 version of the player who dominated. The Giants are most likely concerned about his inconsistency, previous back injury issues, dedication and focus, and now judgement if he signs a huge, multi-year contract. At this time, it is unknown how Pierre-Paul’s hand injuries will impact his availability and performance in training camp, the preseason, and the regular season. ESPN is reporting that JPP may not return to the line-up until after the beginning of the regular season.

That all said, Pierre-Paul is still one of the very best defensive ends in the NFL, the best player on the Giants defense, and one of the few impact players on the team. How well he plays in 2015 will most likely determine if he remains a New York Giant after the season.

“If you just watch tape with JPP out there, it is evident to me that he is an elite defensive end and fits a 4-3 system, which is exciting,” said Defensive Coordinator Steve Spagnuolo in June.

The other big issue is who starts at left defensive end opposite of Pierre-Paul? Mathias Kiwanuka is no longer in the picture. Though he has bulked up to about 255 pounds, Damontre Moore appears to lack the size and strength to anchor the strongside. So unless Steve Spagnuolo moves JPP to left end, Moore will probably be relegated to a situational pass rusher when JPP returns to the starting lineup. Moore does believe his pass rushing skill set is better suited to Spagnuolo’s system.

Robert Ayers was arguably the team’s best pass rusher until he got hurt and JPP improved down the stretch, but he was up and down in run defense in 2014.

George Selvie was a solid strongside run defender in Dallas who occasionally flashed on the pass rush. “George is going to fill in that gap that we have on that other side,” said Pierre-Paul, who played with Selvie in college. “He is going to fight for that starting spot. That’s a good thing. That will make everybody work harder.”

The dark horse could be Kerry Wynn, the 2014 rookie free agent with a nice combination of size, strength, and athletic ability. He received significant playing time in the final month of the 2014 season. The initial impression of his overall game is that he is a better run defender than pass rusher.

Physically-speaking, Owa Odighizuwa may be the most talented of the group. It would be difficult for a rookie to win the starting job, but Odighizuwa has the tools to become a very good two-way defensive end. He could surprise early.

ON THE BUBBLE: There will be some extremely tough decisions at defensive end. Normally the Giants would only carry four or five defensive ends. Barring injury, the only sure bets to make the roster are Pierre-Paul and Odighizuwa. Complicating matters is that JPP may not be on the active roster early in the season. It would be difficult to see the Giants giving up on Moore and Wynn just yet. Ayers is on the bubble, but he is a very good situational pass rusher. If Selvie plays in camp like he did with Dallas in 2013, he will be difficult to cut. Jordan Stanton has talent, but he and Harrah are extreme long shots.

FROM THE POSITIONAL COACH: Robert Nunn on Jason Pierre-Paul: “You would hope (JPP starts 2015 like he finished 2014). His numbers increased there at the end. I thought he did some good things throughout but just didn’t have the numbers to show for it, and I have said that over and over, sacks are a little overrated, but his quarterback hits and his pressures, he was doing some good things. They were counting for him in a lot of different ways and he took advantage of some opportunities there at the end and got his numbers up. His tackles had to be up there in the top of the league. I don’t know where he was, but he had to be top two or three as far as the production and as far as in the run game and his pass production there at the end. I think it is just coming in healthy and in the right frame of mind and getting ready to start, he is going to be behind (due to missing the spring offseason work) but that is where we will start.”

Nunn on George Selvie: “Selvie is solid, he is a solid pro. He played well last year in Dallas and he has been steady.”

PREDICTIONS: With the signing of George Selvie, the drafting of Owa Odighizuwa, and the likelihood that Jason Pierre-Paul will miss training camp, I am guessing that Pierre-Paul will stay at right defensive end. Because of that, I have a hard time seeing Damontre Moore starting once Pierre-Paul returns to the starting line-up. Ultimately, Owa Odighizuwa will start at left defensive end, but I doubt it happens early in the 2015 season and may not happen until 2016. Unless Ayers dramatically improves his consistency against the run or Odighizuwa really surprises early, I think the starting left defensive end job will be between George Selvie and Kerry Wynn.

JPP was in great shape and looked primed for a big season before the July 4th accident. Now it remains to be seen how the hand injuries will impact his game. Even if he is ready physically for the season opener, the time he missed with the team in the spring and now potentially in the summer will set him back in the new defense. Another question is will the Giants get a solid consistent pass rush on first and second down from the player opposite Pierre-Paul? Selvie and Wynn have flashed in that area but their overall pass-rush ability remains a question mark. Situationally, Ayers proved to be a disruptive pass rusher particularly from the defensive tackle position and I think Spagnuolo will use Moore far better than Perry Fewell did.

If the Giants can get opposing teams into a lot of third-and-long situations, they will present problems with pass rushers like JPP, Moore, Ayers, and Odighizuwa, not to mention Devon Kennard and possibly Jay Bromley. But first and second down could be a problem. All three NFC East rivals like to run the football.

FINAL DEPTH CHART: Even before Pierre-Paul’s accident, I was going to go out on a limb and say the Giants would keep six defensive ends: Pierre-Paul, Odighizuwa, Moore, Wynn, Ayers, and Selvie. Now I’m even more convinced. All six can have important roles on the team. Ayers is too good of an inside pass rusher to cut. The Giants were really high on Wynn when they signed him as a rookie last year and thus far he hasn’t disappointed. Selvie could be vulnerable if he does not flash in the preseason and Wynn does, but my guess is the coaches will be more comfortable with his veteran presence in the line-up on opening night. I’m really hoping things work out for Pierre-Paul and the Giants long term because replacing JPP in 2016 would be extremely difficult.

Jul 062015
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (November 3, 2014)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

There still is no official word on the extent and severity of the injuries suffered by New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul in a fireworks accident at his South Florida home during July 4th festivities. According to NJ.com, Pierre-Paul remains hospitalized in Miami.

ESPN is reporting that Pierre-Paul is undergoing further medical evaluation today, but the Giants are “pretty pleased with the initial prognosis.” ESPN says Pierre-Paul suffered injuries to both hands, although the injuries to one hand are far more significant than the other. ESPN is reporting that Pierre-Paul badly burned three fingers and the palm of one of his hands. There is still concern that there may be nerve damage to one of the fingers.

BleacherReport.com is reporting that the injuries are not considered career- or season-threatening. BleacherReport says the injuries are “flesh wounds” to the hand.

Multiple press reports say the Giants are still in the process of collecting information on what happened and Pierre-Paul’s medical status.

Set to become an unrestricted free agent before free agency started in March, the Giants designated Pierre-Paul their Franchise Player with a 1-year, $14.813 million tender. Pierre-Paul and the Giants had until July 15 to agree to a long-term deal. After July 15, Pierre-Paul may only sign the 1-year tender for the 2015 season and a new contract cannot be negotiated until after the season.

NFL.com is reporting that the Giants had a long-term, $60 million contract offer (number of years not indicated) on the table for Pierre-Paul, but the Giants have now pulled that offer. According to NFL.com, “Given the timing of the (fireworks accident) and the apparent judgment displayed, the Giants do not believe a long-term offer is in the best interest of those involved at this point.”

Before the accident, it was unlikely that Pierre-Paul was going to accept the $60 million offer, choosing to play out the year on the tender.

At the present moment, multiple sources say the Giants are not expected to rescind the 1-year, $14.813 million tender. That could change of course depending on the true severity of the injuries and Pierre-Paul’s state of mind. Rescinding the tender would make Pierre-Paul an unrestricted free agent and allow him to sign with any team.

Jul 052015
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul Suffers Hand Injury in Fireworks Accident: According to multiple media reports, New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul suffered a potentially serious hand injury in a fireworks accident during July 4th festivities at his South Florida home on Saturday.

The full extent of the injuries are not yet known. According to ESPN, the palm and the tips of three fingers of one of Pierre-Paul’s hands were severely burned. Doctors are checking to see if one of his fingers suffered nerve damage. However, one source told ESPN that it is believed Pierre-Paul will be fine. Early reports had erroneously stated that Pierre-Paul had lost several fingers.

Pierre-Paul has yet to sign the 1-year, $14.813 million Franchise tender the team tagged him with. It is not yet known how this accident will affect his availability in training camp, the preseason, and/or the regular season.

Article on LG Justin Pugh: Growing up a Giant: Matured Justin Pugh makes changes for bounceback year by Jordan Raanan for NJ.com

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Jun 262015
 
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Odell Beckham Victor Cruz, New York Giants (June 8, 2015)

Odell Beckham and Victor Cruz – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Giants.com Video Player Q&As: Video clips of Giants.com Q&A sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:

  • WR Victor Cruz (Video)
  • DT Johnathan Hankins (Video)

Articles on the 2015 New York Giants:

Article on WR Odell Beckham: Odell Beckham insists: ‘No problem with anybody’ on Giants by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Article on the New York Giants Tight Ends: What do the Giants think of young tight end Jerome Cummingham, Will Tye and Matt LaCosse? by Jordan Raanan for NJ.com

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Article on DE Jason Pierre-Paul: Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul intent on dropping weight for his contract year by Jordan Raanan for NJ.com

Article on LB J.T. Thomas: How Giants’ linebacker J.T. Thomas got his football education from his ‘toughest critic’ by Nick Powell for NJ.com

Article on New York Giants Cornerbacks: Sizing up the Giants nickel cornerback position after minicamp and the need to be good blitzers by Jordan Raanan for NJ.com

Best of New York Giants Mini-Camp Video: A sights and sounds video of the action from New York Giants mini-camp is available at Giants.com.

Jun 152015
 
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Report: Jason Pierre-Paul Expected to Skip Mini-Camp:  According to multiple media reports, New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul will likely not attend this week’s 3-day mandatory mini-camp that begins on Tuesday. Pierre-Paul was designated as the team’s Franchise Player in early March. Since he has not yet signed his 1-year, $14.813 million tender, Pierre-Paul cannot be fined by Giants for skipping the mini-camp.

Pierre-Paul has not attended any of the Giants voluntary offseason program workouts (which began in April) and Organized Team Activity (OTA) sessions (which ended last week). He has been working out with his own personnel trainer in Miami. Without a contract, Pierre-Paul is unlikely to risk an injury during on-field practice sessions. The New York Daily News is reporting that even if Pierre-Paul decides to show up for mini-camp team meetings, he will not participate in practices because of the injury risk.

July 15 is the deadline for all teams to sign their Franchise Players to long-term contracts. After this date, Pierre-Paul may only sign his one-year tender with the Giants and his contract cannot be extended until the 2015 season is over.

The Daily News is reporting that no serious long-term contract negotiations have taken place between the Giants and Pierre-Paul and that Pierre-Paul will likely sign his $14.813 million tender before training camp begins in late July. The paper says the Giants “are leery of entering into a long-term deal” with Pierre-Paul due to concerns about previous back injury issues that affected him in 2012 and 2013.

Article on the New York Giants OTAs: Which 5 players benefitted the most from OTAs? by Dan Salomone of Giants.com

Article on QB Eli Manning: Another look at why Giants QB Eli Manning isn’t going anywhere by Dan Graziano of ESPN.com

Article on WR Corey Washington: How Giants’ other 2nd-year WR learns from Odell Beckham by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

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Jun 122015
 
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Preston Parker, New York Giants (July 22, 2014)

Preston Parker – © USA TODAY Sports Images

JUNE 12, 2015 NEW YORK GIANTS OTA PRACTICE REPORT…

The New York Giants completed their tenth and final Organized Team Activity (OTA) practice at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center on Friday. The Friday session was not open to the media, but Giants.com did report some of the following tidbits:

  • Wide receiver Preston Parker had a good practice, including making a long completion from quarterback Eli Manning down the right sideline against cornerback Trumaine McBride (video). Parker also caught a short touchdown pass on a ball that was batted around a few times.
  • Quarterback Eli Manning found tight end Jerome Cunningham “a few times for big gains.”
  • Quarterback Ryan Nassib hit wide receiver Dwayne Harris a few times, including a one-handed reception by Harris. Nassib also threw two completions to wide receiver Geremy Davis during the two-minute drill (video).
  • Cornerbacks Chykie Brown and Chandler Fenner each made nice plays in pass defense.

The Giants will hold a mandatory, full-team mini-camp on next week on June 16-18.

Articles on the New York Giants Offensive Line:

Article on DE Jason Pierre-Paul: Why Jason Pierre-Paul can skip Giants ‘mandatory’ minicamp and not get fined by Jordan Raanan for NJ.com

Article on LB Devon Kennard: How Giants’ Kennard battles weakness that could hurt playing time by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

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Early grind with @malessi2 he's been getting me right this offseason. #change

A video posted by Jason Pierre-Paul (@iamjasonpierrepaul) on