Jan 222021
 
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Darius Slayton, New York Giants (September 14, 2020)

Darius Slayton – © USA TODAY Sports

Perhaps the single most disappointing unit on the New York Giants in 2020 was the wide receivers. Leading up to the season, there was much fan debate about just how good this group would be in 2020. The optimists pointed to Darius Slayton’s impressive 8-touchdown rookie season in which he averaged over 15 yards per catch. As long as he could stay healthy, Sterling Shepard had proven to be a reliable slot receiver who could move the chains. And despite missing four games due to a PED suspension and another due to a concussion, Golden Tate had gained 676 yards and six touchdowns in just 11 games in 2019. On the other hand, the naysayers claimed this group was way overrated. Most agreed that quality depth was non-existent.

The naysayers were right and the optimists were wrong. Slayton had a season to forget. He dropped six passes and saw his touchdown total fall to three (two of which came in the opener). Worse, Slayton all but disappeared from the offense for long stretches, catching only 12 passes for 167 yards and no touchdowns after the bye week. Shepard missed a quarter of the season with yet another injury, a turf toe that likely nagged him much of the year. While he led the team in receptions, Shepard only scored three touchdowns and averaged less than 10 yards per catch. Tate was most disappointing of all. He missed a quarter of the season (three to injuries and one for disciplinary reasons), and finished with just 388 yards receiving. No other wide receiver caught more than 11 passes. And as a unit, this group only scored an embarrassing nine touchdowns. NINE!

So what happened? It’s likely that the absence of Saquon Barkley from the line-up had a dramatic impact on the rest of the offense. Opposing defenses no longer had to worry about Barkley as a runner and receiver, someone who often received double-team and/or special attention. Teams could now spend more resources on defending Slayton, Shepard, or tight end Evan Engram. Golden Tate’s play fell off dramatically and he is clearly nearing the end of his career. Shepard (again) missed significant time due injury and Slayton was also dealing with a foot issue. Whatever the reasons, the top three receivers rarely created much separation from defensive backs. Every throw always seemed to be contested. And with no depth, the coaching staff had few replacement options. In the end, this group simply proved to be a bottom tier group, perhaps even the worst in the NFL.

THE STARTERS

In his fifth NFL season, Sterling Shepard caught a career-high and team-leading 66 passes, but 2020 represented yet another somewhat disappointing campaign. Shepard has now missed significant time due to injury in three seasons, spending four games on Injured Reserve in 2020 with a turf toe injury that he suffered in Week 2. He finished the year with just 656 yards (a career-low 9.9 yards per catch) and three touchdowns. Shepard was selected in the 2nd round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Giants. Shepard started all 16 games in 2016 and 2018, but missed five games in 2017 and six games in 2019, the latter with two serious concussions. He has never come close to cracking the 1,000-yard mark in a single season or duplicating his 8-touchdown season of his rookie campaign (he now has 20 career touchdowns). Shepard lacks ideal size and speed, but he is a fluid athlete with good quickness. Shepard runs good routes, is tough going over the middle, and adjusts well to the football. Shepard is not a consistent deep threat, but more of a move-the-chains underneath target who is ideally suited for the slot position. He needs to make more big plays. Good blocker.

After an impressive rookie season, Darius Slayton did not play as well in 2020. He played in all 16 games, starting 15, and finished the year with 50 catches for 751 yards and three touchdowns. While his reception and yardage numbers were similar to his rookie season, he played in two fewer games in 2019 while scoring eight touchdowns. Slayton also was second on the team in dropped passes with six in 2020. A nagging foot injury could have been an issue for him. The Giants drafted Slayton in the 5th round of the 2019 NFL Draft. He combines good size with very good overall athleticism and speed. Slayton can stretch the field and get deep. He runs good routes, adjusts well to the football, and is dangerous after the catch. To reach the next level, he must become a more physical receiver, including beating press coverage, and more consistent catching the football.

The play of Golden Tate really fell off a cliff in 2020. He missed three games to various leg injuries and was benched another game for disciplinary reasons. Yet despite playing in one more game than he did in 2019, Tate’s reception figures fell from 49 to 35, his yardage figures fell from 676 to 388, and his touchdown figures fell from six to two. The 5’10”, 197-pound Tate was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks. He has spent time with the Seahawks (2010-2013), Detroit Lions (2014-2018), and Philadelphia Eagles (2018). He made the Pro Bowl in 2014.  The Giants signed Tate as an unrestricted free agent from the Eagles in March 2019. In his first season with the Giants, Tate missed five games (four due to suspension and one due to a concussion). Tate is ideally suited for the slot position, but he appears to be slowing down. He is capable of making the tough catch in traffic and can be dangerous after the catch. Tate has a history of wearing out his welcome with teams in the NFL.

THE RESERVES

The Giants claimed C.J. Board off of waivers from the Jacksonville Jaguars in August 2020. He surprisingly played in 14 games, including four starts, but only finished with 11 catches for 101 yards and no touchdowns. The 6’1”, 181-pound Board was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Baltimore Ravens after the 2017 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Ravens (2017), Tennessee Titans (2017), Cleveland Browns (2017-2018), and Jaguars (2018-2019). Before coming to the Giants, his only regular-season experience came in 2019 when his played in four games for the Jaguars and finished the year with just two catches for 31 yards.

The Giants signed Austin Mack as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2020 NFL Draft. He played in 11 games as a rookie with one start, finishing the year with just seven catches for 91 yards and no touchdowns. Mack is a muscular wideout with good size, but he lacks ideal speed and quickness. Strictly a possession-type receiver, Mack is capable of making the tough grab in traffic.

The Giants claimed Dante Pettis off of waivers from the San Francisco 49ers in early November 2020. He played in the final two games of the season for the Giants, catching four passes for 76 yards and one touchdown. The 6’1”, 195-pound Pettis was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the 49ers. He has played in 30 regular-season games, with 12 starts. Pettis has experience returning kickoffs and punts. He’s a good athlete who has struggled with some of the mental aspects of the game.

The Giants claimed Damion Ratley off of waivers from the Cleveland Browns in early September 2020 and cut him in October. He ended up playing in five games, catching four passes for 63 yards. The 6’2”, 200-pound Ratley was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Browns. In 2018-2019, Ratley played in 26 regular-season games with six starts, accruing 25 catches for 344 yards and one touchdown.

PRACTICE SQUAD

The 6’0”, 190-pound Alex Bachman was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Los Angeles Rams after the 2019 NFL Draft. The Rams cut him before the season started and the Giants signed him to their Practice Squad in November 2019. Bachman began the 2020 season on the Giants’ Practice Squad, was cut, and then re-sign to the Practice Squad again. Bachman is an average-sized receiver with good quickness.

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

The Giants signed Binjimen Victor as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2020 NFL Draft. He spent the entire season on the team’s Practice Squad but was signed by the Baltimore Ravens in January 2021.

The Giants signed Corey Coleman to the Practice Squad in late October 2020 and cut him a month late in late November. The 5’11”, 185-pound Coleman was originally drafted in the 1st round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns. The Giants signed Coleman to the Practice Squad and then the 53-man roster in October 2018. He ended up playing in eight games with one start, finishing with five catches for 71 yards. Coleman missed all of 2019 with a torn ACL knee injury. The Giants cut him in early September 2020. The NFL just announced Coleman will be suspended for six games in 2021 for a PED violation.

The Giants signed Johnny Holton in early September 2020. He spent a month on the Practice Squad before being cut in October. The 6’3”, 190-pound Holton was originally signed by the Oakland Raiders as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft.

INJURED RESERVE

Cody Core was placed on Injured Reserve in August 2020 after tearing his Achilles during a training camp practice. While Core only had three catches for 28 yards in 2019, he was arguably the team’s best special teams player, excelling on punt coverage. He was credited with eight tackles and was a big factor in downing punts inside the 20-yard line. The 6’3”, 205-pound Core was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. In three seasons with the Bengals, he played in 35 regular-season games with seven starts, accumulating 30 catches for 360 yards and one touchdown. The Giants claimed  Core off of waivers from the Bengals in September 2019.

David Sills was placed on Injured Reserve before the season started in early September with a broken right foot. The 6’3”, 211-pound Sills was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Buffalo Bills after the 2019 NFL Draft. The Giants signed Sills to the Practice Squad in September 2019 after he was cut by the Bills. The Giants then signed him to the 53-man roster in mid-December 2019. He did not play in a game however.

COVID-19 OPT-OUT

Da’Mari Scott opted out of the 2020 NFL season due to the COVID-19 issue. The Giants claimed Scott off of waivers from the Buffalo Bills in July 2019. They waived him in August but Scott spent time on both the team’s Practice Squad and 53-man roster during the season. In all, Scott played in five games with two starts. He finished the year with just two catches for 22 yards. He also returned four kickoffs (27.5 yards per return) and six punts (5.3 yards per return). The 6’0”, 205-pound Scott was originally signed by the Cleveland Browns as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2018 NFL Draft. The Browns waived him in December 2018 and he was then signed by the Bills.

Oct 052020
 
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Jason Garrett and Joe Judge, New York Giants (October 4, 2020)

Jason Garrett and Joe Judge – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS PRACTICE SQUAD MOVES…
The New York Giants have signed wide receiver Alex Bachman and defensive linemen David Moa to the Practice Squad. The team also terminated the Practice Squad contract of wide receiver Johnny Holton.

The 6’0”, 190-pound Bachman was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Los Angeles Rams after the 2019 NFL Draft. The Rams cut him before the season started and the Giants signed him to their Practice Squad in November 2019. He also began this season on the team’s Practice Squad before being cut on September 15th.

The 24-year old, 6’3”, 296-pound Moa was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Minnesota Vikings after the 2020 NFL Draft. The Vikings waived him on September 5th and he then spent a week on the Practice Squad on the Atlanta Falcons.

The Giants signed Holton in early September and he has spent time on both the 53-man roster and Practice Squad this year. The 6’3”, 190-pound Holton was originally signed by the Oakland Raiders as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Raiders (2016-2018), Philadelphia Eagles (2019), and Pittsburgh Steelers (2019).

OCTOBER 5, 2020 JOE JUDGE PRESS CONFERENCE…
New York Giants Head Coach Joe Judge addressed the media on Monday to discuss his team’s 17-9 loss to the Los Angeles Rams:

Q: How do you create easier throws for Daniel (Jones), and just get receivers more open for him?

A: It’s a combination of… As coaches, we have to do things to put people in the right position and call at the right time. You’re going to play against good defenses that are going to have tight coverage. Individually, we have to play better within our techniques and make sure we work to get open. Then spreading the ball around the field a little bit. That will kind of help alleviate some of those defenses we’ll see. But look, we’re expecting tight coverage and tight throws. It’s the NFL. You’re not going to have a magical scheme that’s going to create guys wide open all the time. We have to do a good job with contested catches and making plays.

Q: Just curious when you look back and you watch the film last night on the last drive, what did you see that Daniel had as options in terms of that play when he broke out of the pocket? What did you guys discuss as far as how you’d handle that situation again?

A: You have to see it through the perspective of the quarterback. It’s easier for us on the sideline or watching on tape to kind of say ‘you should have done this’ or ‘you should have done that.’ Obviously, the execution is the most important thing. Every play he has different options, whether it was throwing to Damion (Ratley) there, did he have the option to tuck that thing and run with the time that we had left, timeouts and stuff like that? But look, he made the decision he made. We can’t sit here and handcuff our quarterback by looking over his shoulder all of the time and second-guessing everything he does. To us, it’s about the execution he has within the techniques and making the throw at the right time. Look, we have to do a better job all across the board at all positions and all coaches, making sure we finish all the drives. I was pleased with the execution of the offense within that two-minute drive, along with the two-minute at the end of the half in terms of how we managed the clock, how we systematically moved it down the field. We gave a chance for our team to have plays and have production in those situations. We have to finish better. We have to finish better as a team. That starts with the coaches and that follows through with the players.

Q: You haven’t played a game in the division in the first month. Do you look at the division, it’s not a get out of jail card, it’s not a new lease on life, but is it something that you and your team can look at as a start of something, the next three in the division and five of the next six in the division?

A: Look, every game is important in the NFL. But I think it’s no secret when it comes to the NFL, it’s about your division to start with. We have to do a good job. Obviously, we have five in the next six weeks division games, so we have to do a good job of coming out here and being ready to roll. It’s going to be tough games. It’s not going to be any easy opponents right here. But definitely, coming in on Wednesday and making sure we start fresh and we start fast. We have the Cowboys. It’s going to be a very tough opponent.

Q: What did Ryan Lewis show you yesterday? Did he solidify his spot as your starting cornerback?

A: I can’t emphasize enough over and over, in terms of the starters, a lot of things just branch into what package we’re playing with certain guys. Based on what the offense puts out there, we may play a specific package which may highlight a different guy. You look at the linebacker packages, whether it’s Tae (Crowder) or Devante (Downs) out there based on different sets and how we’re trying to match the offense. Or defensively, whether it’s Ike (Yiadom) out there or Ryan, or whether it’s going to be (Madre) Harper going forward. There are different things we’re going to look to do. But we’re going to look to get all of our guys involved. If you’re at the game, you’re expected to play. To me, the whole label on starter isn’t really the most critical thing. It’s more about who’s finishing the game for us, and a lot of that ties into how we have to play that game due to the flow of it or how we have to adjust. But I’m pleased with Ryan with how he played yesterday. He showed a lot of positive things in terms of how he played on outside routes. He did some good things on special teams for us as well. We have to keep putting him in positions where he can really use his speed and some of his instincts to make plays for us. Look, there are other situations where Ike is going to have a predominant role based on how we’re trying to match certain things up and really get him worked in.

Q: It sounds like the league is going to look into what happened after the game between Golden (Tate) and (Jalen) Ramsey. Did you have a conversation with Golden about that? Did you find out anything about what went on?

A: I’ll say this. First off, I don’t want John Mara, Steve Tisch or anybody involved with this team to have to deal with something like this after the game. This isn’t why we play the game. We have 60 minutes to beat the hell out of each other legally between the whistles. We don’t need anything extra after. I talked to a number of our players, then obviously, we saw some video on it of guys who were involved. I had enough of a kind of eye witness standpoint myself after me and Sean (McVay) had an exchange at midfield. I turned around and it was kind of happening right there in front of me, so I got a quick glimpse of it right there. Look, all I can say is the account I got from a number of our players was that, there’s a history, obviously, between them. There was a punch thrown. Golden was defending himself. I was told he wasn’t the one who threw the punch. Everybody involved was trying to break it up. I can say both our players and the Rams’ staff and players, from what I saw with my own eyes, were all in there just trying to break it up. I didn’t see everything going on in the pile, but from the accounts I was told and the information I was given and from what I saw with my own eyes, that’s what I saw, that guys were trying to break it up.

Q: Just a quick follow-up on that. It sounds like you won’t be imposing any discipline on your own for Golden then?

A: There are a number of things we still have to look through as a team right here. Based on the information I was given and what I saw with my own eyes and what our players gave me, it didn’t sound like there’s an immediate need for that. But we’ll look into it. Obviously, we’ll always take care of our players.

Q: I wanted to ask you, you mentioned your last drive of the first half. Were you guys intentionally conservative as an offense on that drive? Would you agree with that characterization of that drive?

A: No, I think we were just trying to move the ball down the field and get into position right there. To go out there and just sling the ball every play or try to turn everything into a chunk play, I don’t think in that situation right there it is always the most beneficial thing for a team. We just wanted to move the ball down the field, get into scoring position and see what we had a chance for. They did a good job right there at the end of the half in terms of some of the things they did so we couldn’t get closer on down there. But our offense executed well to get the ball out of bounds and save some time. We were able to use some timeouts, get in position and Graham (Gano) ended the half with some points right there. That’s what we’re working for at the end of the half.

Q: I’m curious what happened in terms of pulling Cam Fleming yesterday? Was it something you guys after you went back and saw the tape that you were trying to spark the offensive line? Was it something you saw in-game? What did you see out of Matt Peart once he was back out there?

A: We didn’t pull Cam Fleming. That’s something that before the game started we wanted to make sure that we had an emphasis on getting some of these guys involved. I mentioned that yesterday. They didn’t have a preseason, so there’s a lot of these young players who are eventually going to have to play for us. We want to get them involved as much as we can to get them game action and just progressing them with what they’re doing. There was no pulling Cam Fleming. We didn’t take him out or something happened with him in the game. But I was pleased with how Matt played when he was in there. There were some things to learn with, some things to build on right there. I think he’s a guy who is a developing player who has a skillset. The more we can keep him involved, the more progress he’ll make.

Q: I guess just following up on that, your four-game progress report on Andrew Thomas and what you’ve seen from him?

A: I’ll tell you what. I think obviously he’s a guy who has a tremendous amount of potential, and that’s why we brought him in here. He’s been baptized by fire really this first part of the season. He’s seen a lot of elite edge rushers. He’s seen a lot of multiples come at him. Obviously, they’re trying to attack him as a rookie and see what he can handle. He’s done a lot of things very, very positively. There are some other things that, like with any rookie, he has to learn from and correct. We’re not going to write him a pass for being a young guy or being a rookie or not having a preseason. That’s not the way we operate here. But look, I’m very pleased with the way he’s working. There are a lot of things he’s learning on the fly right now. I think (Marc) Colombo and Ben (Wilkerson) are doing a good job with him as far as bringing him along, and the guy shows up every day, works and competes.

Q: I’m curious if any of the guys that were nicked up yesterday, if any of them are long-term? I think it was (Oshane) Ximines, (Kyler) Fackrell and I think (Adrian) Colbert was the other one? Or anybody else?

A: I have to get the final report from the trainers after I get off this call. Being on the west coast, it kind of changed up a little bit of our morning routine with these guys getting in to see the trainers. They saw the trainers and the doctors. You come out of any game, there’s some nicks or bumps or bruises. We’ll see where they are as far as going long-term. But I talked to all of the players. They were in good spirits yesterday after the game in terms of health wise. We’ll see where they’re at going forward.

Q: This is a general question. In regards to quarterback development, when do you feel like you know when a quarterback is your guy? How quickly? Is it something that can take years? Is it something you know right away when you see a guy play? How do you feel about that in general?

A: (Inaudible) in terms of just making any blanket statements. Look, if you’re asking if Daniel is our quarterback, Daniel is our quarterback. That’s who we’re playing with. We support him, we have a lot of confidence in him, we have faith in him. Again, he’s a young guy who’s developing. We’ve seen a lot of progress from him day to day. Are there things he needs to correct and clean up, and can we do a better job as coaches and staff to put him in the right situations? Absolutely. But in terms of that blanket statement, I don’t know if there’s ever a pinpoint in terms of what’s the threshold for saying some guy is your guy for whatever. But Daniel is our quarterback.

Q: If it was pre-planned that Peart was going into the game at some point, was it pre-planned that Cam was going to be the one to come out, or was there a chance that Andrew would come out? I guess my question there is, you strike me as a very production-based guy. Is it harder to remove a first round pick because of the optics?

A: I could care less how you got here. I don’t care if you’re a first round pick or if you just walked in off the street yesterday. That doesn’t bother me at all. I’m never going to make a decision based on optics. That’s not going to be something that ever bothers me. No, it was pre-planned. Matt’s worked a lot on the right side in practice, so that’s just simply where we put him in there. It didn’t have anything to do with Cam Fleming, it had nothing to do with Andrew Thomas. It was about getting Matt Peart some experience of being on the field, and that’s all it was. Same as with Shane Lemieux. Shane played yesterday because we wanted to get him some reps in the game. We factored in how we could yesterday with some fullback reps. There are some times where we’ll work him on the offensive line. There are some times we may use him in some other roles, however they come up. We just want to keep these young guys developing and involved in the game so when they have to get out there and play extended periods of time, they’ve already had experience.

Q: That was actually my follow-up, with Shane. Where did that… is that something he had done somewhere in his past, or is that something you guys saw, ‘maybe he can be a fullback for us’ type of thing? How did that come about?

A: Well, Eli’s (Penny) our fullback, but Shane has a skillset as well. We’re just looking to get all of our players involved however we think it could create an advantage. That was something that we just kind of thought would give us something in certain plays and situations yesterday we wanted to use. Shane was the guy that fit the role.

Q: You had a couple of guys in Tae Crowder and Adrian Colbert who played quite a bit yesterday. I’m just curious how you evaluated how those two played individually?

A: Yeah, I’m pleased with the progress Tae is making. I think we have a lot of young guys right now on the roster who are at least starting to come around. You can kind of see a difference in their eyes, which is kind of natural for them to have after some experience on the field. They’re acclimating a little bit to not only the speed of the game on the field, but the speed of the game in the classroom, the speed of the game how you have to carry it from the classroom to practice, and it’s kind of slowing down for them a little bit. I’m pleased with the way Tae and Cam Brown and a lot of other young guys are really coming around right now and making progress. I’d say AC, he’s a guy who comes to work every day, plays with a high motor. Obviously, we missed him last week. He was out with a strain. He’s a guy we’re happy to have out there. I think he’s making some plays for us. He’s been flying around with high energy, he’s good for the defense out there, he’s good for the team just being a good team player. I think the more depth you have in that defensive backfield, the more it helps you. We’re going to play a lot of different packages with a variety of players on a game by game basis, so the more guys you have back there that you feel can contribute and help you win, the better you are as a team.

Q: I wanted to ask about Nick Gates’ snapping. The last couple of weeks, he had some inconsistent snapping with some high snaps. Is that just a matter of him getting more comfortable with it, or do you see something going on there where some of those snaps are just off target?

A: Well, the simple answer is we just have to get that more consistently fixed. We need to make sure we eliminate the one-offs that he has. That always ties into technique within a different situation. Whatever the reason for it is, we just have to make sure we get it off the mat.

Q: If I could just follow up on Nick. What have you thought about his pass sets?

A: Nick has factored into the pass protection. He’s improved on a week by week basis. A lot of what Nick does inside is based on the interior calls, where we’re sliding him, or if we’re trying to create some kind of double team or something game plan wise inside. In terms of how he operates inside, it is a little bit different than playing on the edge as a tackle. But Nick has improved week by week. There are some things we have to clean up with him and keep progressing with it. But it’s different for him, obviously, being inside as a center than it was outside as a tackle, or even one spot over as a guard. That center position is very unique in terms of how they have to operate inside, as far as helping the guards and setting it and creating slides. But he’s progressing week by week, and I’m pleased with how he’s come along.

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players are off on Tuesday and return to practice on Wednesday.

Sep 062020
 
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Adrian Colbert, Miami Dolphins (December 1, 2019)

Adrian Colbert – © USA TODAY Sports

GIANTS CLAIM THREE PLAYERS OFF OF WAIVERS…
The New York Giants have claimed the following players off of waivers:

  • WR Damion Ratley (from Cleveland Browns)
  • OT Jackson Barton (from Kansas City Chiefs)
  • S/CB Adrian Colbert (from Kansas City Chiefs)

The 25-year old, 6’2”, 200-pound Ratley was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Browns. In 2018-2019, Ratley played in 26 regular-season games with six starts, accruing 25 catches for 344 yards and one touchdown.

The 25-year old, 6’7”, 302-pound Barton was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts. The Chiefs signed him off of the Colts’ Practice Squad in 2019. Barton has not played in an NFL game.

The 26-year old, 6’2”, 205-pound Colbert was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2017 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers. Colbert has spent time with the 49ers (2017-2019), Seattle Seahawks (2019), Miami Dolphins (2019), and Chiefs (2020). He has played in 27 regular-season games with 17 starts, accruing 74 tackles and eight pass defenses. Colbert has also played cornerback and is a good gunner on special teams.

To make room for these three players, the Giants released wide receiver Corey Coleman and offensive lineman Chad Slade, and waived safety Sean Chandler.

The Giants signed Coleman to the Practice Squad and then the 53-man roster in October 2018. He missed all of 2019 with a torn ACL knee injury. The team signed Slade to a reserve/futures contract in January 2019. The Giants originally signed Chandler as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2018 NFL Draft.

GIANTS PLACE XAVIER McKINNEY AND DAVID MAYO ON INJURED RESERVE…
As expected, the New York Giants have placed safety Xavier McKinney (fractured left foot) and inside linebacker David Mayo (torn meniscus in his left knee) on Injured Reserve. Both players recently underwent surgery. Both are also eligible to return to the 53-man roster this year once healthy.

To fill their roster spots, the Giants re-signed tight end Eric Tomlinson and cornerback Brandon Williams. Both were with the Giants in training camp this summer and both were cut by the team on Saturday. The Giants signed Tomlinson as an unrestricted free agent from the Las Vegas Raiders in March 2020. The team signed  Williams in late August 2020.

GIANTS SIGN 14 PLAYERS TO THE PRACTICE SQUAD…
The New York Giants have signed the following players to the team’s Practice Squad:

  • QB Cooper Rush
  • RB Sandro Platzgummer
  • WR Johnny Holton
  • WR Alex Bachman
  • WR Derrick Dillon
  • WR Austin Mack
  • WR Binjimen Victor
  • OL Tyler Haycraft
  • OL Kyle Murphy
  • DL Niko Lalos
  • CB Jarren Williams
  • S/CB Chris Williamson
  • P/PK Ryan Santoso
  • LS Carson Tinker

All of the players except for Santoso were with the team in training camp.

The 25-year old, 6’5”, 258-pound Santoso was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Detroit Lions after the 2018 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Lions (2018-2019), Tennessee Titans (2019), and Montreal Alouettes (2019 and 2020). He has not punted or kicked in NFL games other than being used as a kickoff specialist with Titans in 2019.

The Giants receive an exemption for Platzgummer because they were one of four teams chosen to carry an additional overseas player on their Practice Squad in 2020 as part of the NFL’s International Player Pathway Program. However, Platzgummer is ineligible to join the active roster this season.

The Giants have three open slots remaining on their Practice Squad. Although not officially signed, according to media reports, the Giants also intend to sign cornerback Ryan Lewis to the Practice Squad.

The 26-year old, 6’0”, 195-pound Lewis was originally signed by the Arizona Cardinals as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Cardinals (2017), New England Patriots (2017-2018), Buffalo Bills (2018), Indianapolis Colts (2019), Philadelphia Eagles (2019), Miami Dolphins (2019), and Washington Football Team (2020). Lewis has played in 20 NFL regular-season games with two starts, accruing 43 tackles, eight pass defenses, and one interception.

NOTES…
Linebacker Ryan Connelly, who the Giants cut on Saturday, was claimed off of waivers by the Minnesota Vikings. In addition, defensive lineman Chris Slayton was signed to the Buffalo Bills’ Practice Squad while offensive lineman Eric Smith was signed to the Dallas Cowboys’ Practice Squad.

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

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players return to practice on Monday.

 

Sep 052020
 
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Ryan Connelly, New York Giants (September 22, 2019)

Ryan Connelly – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS REDUCE ROSTER TO 53 PLAYERS…
On Saturday, in order to meet the NFL’s 53-man roster limit, the New York Giants made the following 29 roster moves:

Waived or contracts terminated:

  • QB Cooper Rush
  • QB Alex Tanney
  • RB Tavien Feaster
  • RB Sandro Platzgummer
  • WR Johnny Holton
  • WR Alex Bachman
  • WR Derrick Dillon
  • WR Austin Mack
  • WR Binjimen Victor
  • TE Eric Tomlinson
  • TE Garrett Dickerson
  • OL Jon Halapio
  • OL Eric Smith
  • OL Tyler Haycraft
  • OL Kyle Murphy
  • DL Chris Slayton (2019 7th-round pick)
  • DL Daylon Mack
  • DL Niko Lalos
  • LB Ryan Connelly (2019 5th-round pick)
  • LB Josiah Tauaefa
  • CB Grant Haley
  • CB Brandon Williams
  • CB Dravon Askew-Henry
  • CB KeiVarae Russell
  • CB Jarren Williams
  • CB Prince Smith
  • CB/S Chris Williamson (2020 7th-round pick)
  • S Montre Hartage (waived/injured with hamstring injury)
  • LS Carson Tinker

On Friday, the Giants also placed WR David Sills (fractured right foot) on Injured Reserve. Players placed on Injured Reserve before the cut-down date are done for the season.

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The Giants will establish their 16-man Practice Squad on Sunday. The players are off on Sunday and return to practice on Monday.

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Jon Halapio, New York Giants (September 22, 2019)

Jon Halapio – © USA TODAY Sports

SEPTEMBER 2, 2020 NEW YORK GIANTS TRAINING CAMP MEDIA PRACTICE NOTES…
Some snippets from various media and team sources:

  • Giants had a light, half-speed practice today in preparation for Thursday’s afternoon scrimmage. It appears much of the emphasis was on situational and game-ending scenarios.

INJURY REPORT…
Safety Xavier McKinney (left foot fracture), linebacker David Mayo (torn meniscus in left knee), wide receiver Golden Tate (hamstring?), and linebacker Tae Crowder (unknown) did not practice.

ROSTER MOVES – GIANTS RE-SIGN JON HALAPIO…
The New York Giants have re-signed Jon Halapio, who the team chose not to tender as a restricted free agent before free agency began, effectively making him an unrestricted free agent. The team also signed wide receiver Johnny Holton and long snapper Carson Tinker. To make room for these players, the Giants waived/injured safety Jaquarius Landrews (neck) and tight end Rysen John (hamstring), and waived offensive lineman Jackson Dennis.

Head Coach Joe Judge said bringing back Halapio was not an indication that the team is unhappy with their current centers. “Absolutely not,” said Judge. “It’s just an opportunity for us to add another good player to the roster. It gives us some depth and versatility inside. Jon’s a guy who can play center, but he can play guard as well. Again, it’s about position flexibility inside. You can only keep so many guys on the roster. The more players you keep inside that can play multiple positions, it gives you strength as a team right there. So no, that’s no indication on anything we feel about our current players on our roster. I have a lot of confidence in Nick (Gates) and Spencer (Pulley) and Tyler (Haycraft). They’ve done a really good job. Shane’s (Lemieux) coming along. We’re working on developing him in time. He’s been playing a lot more at guard due to our current situation, but he’s working as a center as well. We’re developing all of our guys the best we can at multiple positions.”

Halapio was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots. He has bounced around different leagues and teams including the Patriots (2014), Boston Brawlers (2014), Denver Broncos (2014–2015), Arizona Cardinals (2015), Brooklyn Bolts (2015), and Patriots (2016) again. The Giants signed Halapio to their Practice Squad in 2016 and 2017. The Giants then added him to the 53-man roster in October 2017 and he played in 10 games, starting the last six at right guard. Halapio won the starting center job in 2018, but was lost early when he was placed on Injured Reserve in September 2018 after breaking his ankle and lower leg in the second game of the season. An underwhelming and disappointing season by Halapio in 2019 was unfortunately punctuated by him suffering a torn Achilles’ tendon in the final moments of the season finale. In all, Halapio started 15 games, missing one start with a hamstring injury. He struggled as both a run and pass blocker manning the pivot position.

The 29-year old, 6’3”, 190-pound Holton was originally signed by the Oakland Raiders as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Raiders (2016-2018), Philadelphia Eagles (2019), and Pittsburgh Steelers (2019). The Steelers cut Holton in March 2020. In four seasons, Holton has played in 48 regular-season games with four starts, accruing just 14 receptions for 273 yards and three touchdowns. He does have limited experience as a kickoff and punt returner and is a good gunner on special teams.

The 30-year old, 6’0”, 237-pound Tinker was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Jacksonville Jaguars after the 2013 NFL Draft. He played in 69 regular-season games for the Jaguars from 2013-2018. The Jaguars cut him in March 2019 and he did not play that year.

Landrews and John were signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2020 NFL Draft. Dennis was signed by the Arizona Cardinals as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2020 NFL Draft. The Cardinals cut him in July and the Giants signed him in August.

GENERAL MANAGER DAVE GETTLEMAN…
The transcript of Dave Gettleman’s press conference on Wednesday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available on YouTube.

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

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

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
New York Giants President/CEO John Mara will address the press on Thursday morning. The Giants hold their second scrimmage at MetLife Stadium at 1:00PM with Head Coach Joe Judge and select players addressing the media after the scrimmage.