Oct 042014
 
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Chandler Fenner (48), Kansas City Chiefs (August 30, 2012)

Chandler Fenner (48) – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Giants Sign CB Chandler Fenner from Practice Squad; Waive LB Dan Fox: The New York Giants signed cornerback Chandler Fenner off of the team’s Practice Squad on Saturday. To make room for Fenner, the Giants waived linebacker Dan Fox.

Fenner was signed to the Practice Squad on August 31, 2014. Fenner was originally signed by the Kansas City Chiefs as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2012 NFL Draft. He did not make the team but the Seattle Seahawks signed him to their Practice Squad in December 2012. He missed all of 2013 with a knee injury that landed him on Seattle’s Injured Reserve. The Giants signed Fenner on August 1, 2014. He has a nice combination of size and athleticism and he plays a physical game.

Fox is a rookie free agent who was also signed to the Practice Squad on August 31. He was signed to the 53-man roster in mid-September when linebackers Jon Beason (foot/ankle) and Devon Kennard (hamstring) got hurt. If he clears waivers, the Giants will likely re-sign him to the Practice Squad.

Because of these moves, we have updated the Transactions, Roster, and Depth Chart sections of the website.

NY Post Q&A With S Quintin Demps: Serby’s Sunday Q&A with Quintin Demps by Steve Serby of The New York Post

Article on the 2014 New York Giants: In the Giants’ Locker Room, Leadership Sits All in a Row by Bill Pennington of The New York Times

Article on the New York Giants Offense: Eli Manning’s New York Giants enjoying offensive revival by Bucky Brooks of NFL.com

Article on RB Peyton Hillis: Peyton Hillis talks Pro Bowl by Tom Rock of Newsday

Articles on TE Larry Donnell:

Article on CB Trumaine McBride: Giants’ CB McBride small in stature, big in ability by Art Stapleton of The Bergen Record

Aug 292014
 
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (August 28, 2014)

Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports Images

If ever there ever was a way to perfectly sum up the Giants 2014 preseason, Friday night’s 16-13 victory over the New England Patriots was it.

The starting offense looked anemic, the defense sporadic. Eli Manning resembled something far similar to a first-round bust than a two-time Super Bowl MVP. There were three-and-outs, muffed punts, sacks and near turnovers.

But some how, some way, the Giants escaped with a victory to improve their preseason record to a meaningless 5-0.

Were there bright spots? Sure. Were there pitch black ones, too? Oh yeah.

Tom Coughlin and Ben McAdoo, New York Giants (August 28, 2014)

Tom Coughlin and Ben McAdoo – © USA TODAY Sports Images

In the final tune-up before the Giants travel to Detroit to take on the Lions, Manning completed just 1-of-4 passes against the Patriots backups for zero yards. Victor Cruz went catchless and there was another miscommunication between Manning and receiver Rueben Randle.

“It was the right route,” Randle said. “It just wasn’t timed right. I guess (Manning) was expecting me to run it quicker since it was press.”

In two drives, the Giants managed one first down, one three-and-out and two punts.

Oh, and that rebuilt, injury-riddled offensive line? It continued to allow pressure. Despite playing an extra preseason game, the Giants looked like they needed four more.

“I’m ready to move on,” Cruz said. “I’m ready to move on to Week 1. I’m ready to get a good week of practice in come next week and get our focus onto Week 1 and starting the season off on the right foot. I’m excited for that opportunity.”

While the Manning and the starters continue to struggle, New York’s reserves continue to show McAdoo’s offense does, you know, work.

Building off of two strong performances versus the Indianapolis Colts and New York Jets, second-year pro Ryan Nassib again found success versus a preseason opponent’s reserves. The quarterback completed 6-of-14 passes for 107 yards and led the Giants two scoring drives including a 14-play, 80-yard touchdown drive which was capped by a Peyton Hillis diving touchdown on 4th-and-goal.

Rookie Andre Williams again displayed strong running, gaining 44 yards on five carries, including a 38-yard scamper on 4th-and-1. Tight end Larry Donnell caught four passes for 60 yards. Even Jerrel Jernigan made a play on a 22-yard catch-and-run.

But it won’t be Nassib under center in Detroit. It won’t be Williams as the team’s starting running back.

Eli Manning, New York Giants (August 28, 2014)

Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports Images

It’ll be Manning, who enters the Monday Night season opener having completed 20-of-41 passes for 188 yards and one touchdown.

“Well, I thought we had a good week of practice,” Manning said. “We didn’t get much going tonight, but we’re getting ready for Detroit, that first game. We got the starters out healthy so that’s always the most important thing.

“We have to get ready for Detroit on Monday night. It should be fun.”

Yes, but unless the Giants improve dramatically, in 10 days, the team won’t be having much “fun” at all.

Video highlights/lowlights from the game are available at NFL.com.

Head Coach Tom Coughlin Post-Game Press Conference: The transcript and video of Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s post-game press conference on Thursday night are available at Giants.com.

New York Giants Post-Game Player Media Sessions: Transcripts and video clips of the post-game media Q&As on Thursday night with the following players are available at Giants.com:

Aug 282014
 
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Giants.com Interview with S Antrel Rolle: The video of Tuesday’s Giants.com interview with safety Antrel Rolle is available at Giants.com.

Article on the 2014 New York Giants: Giants not scared to talk ‘championship’ by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Andre Williams, New York Giants (August 3, 2014)

Andre Williams – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Articles on the New York Giants Running Backs:

Article on TE Daniel Fells: Giants TE Daniel Fells likely to receive first-team snaps vs. Patriots team that dumped him last year by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on the New York Giants Linebackers:

Article on S Nat Berhe: Giants rookie check-in with Nat Berhe: ‘The Missile’ or ‘The Icebox’? by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on PK Brandon McManus: NY Giants keep Eagles from getting kicker Brandon McManus by Stephen Lorenzo and Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Aug 262014
 
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Geoff Schwartz, New York Giants (August 3, 2014)

Geoff Schwartz – © USA TODAY Sports Images

BigBlueInteractive.com (BBI) Updates: In case you missed it, articles from BBI today:

August 26, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing on Tuesday were WR Odell Beckham, Jr. (hamstring), WR Trindon Holliday (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), and CB Prince Amukamara (groin).

The Giants received relatively good news on Schwartz, who was being examined by Dr. Robert Anderson on Monday. Schwartz will not need surgery to repair his dislocated right big toe. Schwartz will be in a boot for 7-10 days before beginning a rehabilitation program. After that, he availability will be determined on a week-to-week basis.

“This is just a minor setback,” said Schwartz. “I plan on attacking the rehab program so I can get back on the field as soon as possible with my teammates and help us win games.”

“He is very optimistic and hopefully it is going to mean the recovery is going to be as fast as possible,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “You know how I am. I hear the news and I say, ‘Okay, let’s see how this goes.’ Obviously you can’t rush him back but it sure would be good to get him back ASAP rather the other way around. It is not going to be easy for him. He is a big man.

I hope (Mosley returns soon),” said Coughlin. “He is up and moving, so that is a good sign…All I know is that hopefully (Mosley and Brewer) both will be back as soon as possible. They both feel better today.”

“I think (Amukamara) is (making good progress),” said Coughlin. “He is feeling pretty good.”

Brandon McManus Traded to Denver Broncos: The Giants announced Tuesday morning that they had waived PK Brandon McManus, along with making 14 other roster moves. However, before that paperwork was finalized, the Denver Broncos made the Giants an offer and traded for McManus. Though not officially announced, the pick is believed to be a conditional 7th round selection in the 2015 NFL Draft.

“I think Brandon will kick in this league,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “He’s a very powerful young man. Needs a little bit of work on the finer kicks, but certainly he demonstrated his ability to kick it through the back of the end zone.”

August 26, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video from Tuesday’s press conference with Head Coach Tom Coughlin are available at Giants.com.

August 26, 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 Giants.com:

Articles on the New York Giants Offense:

Article on WR Preston Parker: Meet the Giant who was broke and building tiki huts last year by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Article on the New York Giants Place-Kicking Battle: Why the Giants went with Josh Brown over Brandon McManus at kicker by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Aug 052014
 
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Craig Johnson, New York Giants (August 3, 2014)

Running Backs Coach Craig Johnson – © USA TODAY Sports Images

BigBlueInteractive.com (BBI) Updates: In case you missed it, original-content articles from BBI today:

August 5, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing on Tuesday were WR Odell Beckham (hamstring), WR Trindon Holliday (hamstring), Daniel Fells (knee), TE Xavier Grimble (hamstring), DT Mike Patterson (shoulder), LB Jon Beason (PUP – foot), and CB Bennett Jackson (ankle).

RB Peyton Hillis left practice early with an ankle injury.

LT Will Beatty (headache), Eric Herman (hip), DE Robert Ayers (ankle), Spencer Paysinger (concussion), and Trumaine McBride (hip) all practiced.

Head Coach Tom Coughlin clarified that some players coming off of offseason surgery were never going to play in last weekend’s Hall of Fame preseason game.

“It was a plan that Beatty wouldn’t play in the opening game, just like it was a plan that McBride and a couple of others, Herman, wouldn’t play in this game,” said Coughlin. “(Beatty) didn’t do anything to set himself back.”

August 5, 2014 New York Giants Coach Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Monday’s press conferences with the following coaches are available at Giants.com:

August 5, 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 Giants.com:

7 takeaways from Media Hour by Dan Salomone of Giants.com

New York Giants Practice Reports:

Article on New York Giants Running Backs:

Article on WR Corey Washington: Giants WR Washington playing for family by Steve Serby of The New York Post

Articles on New York Giants Defensive Backs:

Article on the New York Giants Use of Tablets: Tablets on NFL sidelines get positive reviews from Giants by Tom Rock of Newsday

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

Rashad Jennings – © USA TODAY Sports Images

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

FIND A COMPLETE LIST OF ALL BREAKDOWNS HERE

POSITIONAL BREAKDOWN: Running Backs and Fullbacks

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

Brandon Jacobs – © USA TODAY Sports Images

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

PREDICTIONS:

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

Peyton Hillis – © USA TODAY Sports Images

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

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

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

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

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

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

Jun 132014
 
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Trindon Holliday, New York Giants (June 12, 2014)

Trindon Holliday – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Ever since Kevin Gilbride was replaced as offensive coordinator by Ben McAdoo, there has been much media and fan speculation about what the new offense of the New York Giants might look like. When Head Coach Tom Coughlin came to New York in 2004, he brought along a passing game that featured more of a vertical, down-field passing attack. His first offensive coordinator was John Hufnagel, but Hufnagel was fired near the end of the 2006 season and replaced by Gilbride.

Tom Coughlin has always been about offensive balance. He wants a physical running game combined with a big-play passing game. Coach Coughlin does not want to dink-and-dunk the ball down the field, but gain yardage in big chunks. That formula worked well for him both with the Jaguars and Giants when he had the necessary talent. And it helped the New York Giants to win two NFL Championships.

“I have great respect for Kevin Gilbride winning two Super Bowls,” said former Giants quarterback Phil Simms (1979-1993). “He was worried about hitting four of those big passes every game, and I love that about the Giants’ offense. It wasn’t 17 screens every game.”

Based on comments from current players and observations from the three Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices open to the media, the Giants are changing their style. Ben McAdoo’s background is the West Coast Offense. In a nutshell, the Giants will emphasize stretching the field more horizontally instead of vertically. Though the team will still take its shots down the field, there will be more 3-step drops and an effort to get the ball quickly out of quarterback Eli Manning’s hands. The coaches want to get Eli into a comfortable rhythm throwing the football. More passes will be intended for the running backs and tight ends at the possible expense of the wide receivers.

Ben McAdoo’s background is the West Coast Offense, serving as tight ends and later quarterbacks coach under Mike McCarthy with the Green Bay Packers.

“This offense to me, and I’ve run a lot of West Coast with Mike Shanahan in Denver, a lot of stuff is similar,” said RB Peyton Hillis on Thursday.

Hillis might serve in a similar capacity to John Kuhn in Green Bay, not so much from the standpoint of a traditional fullback, but more of a pass-receiving and rushing one-back.

“(The running back catching the ball is) going to be a big part of it,” said Hillis. “The quarterback’s going to be looking for the check down a lot this year so you have to make sure as a back that you get on your route and make sure we expect it.”

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

Eli Manning at OTAs – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Making such a drastic change in offensive philosophy and terminology may not be quick and easy. Manning has never played in a West Coast system and neither have most of his offensive teammates.  To date, the strength of Manning’s game has not been the short game, particularly screen and swing passes. And while running backs Rashad Jennings, Peyton Hillis, and David Wilson could thrive as pass receivers in this offense, the Giants lack proven talent at tight end. The interior of the offensive line has been overhauled and there are still huge health and ability question marks at left tackle and right guard.

“(The offensive progress has been) slow, to be honest with you,” said Coughlin on Thursday. “Progress is slow but steady. Some days, of course, are better than others. But, you know, we’re getting there…There’s a lot of things that have to be converted in the guys who have been here, in their minds and the new people who have not been in a system such as this, you’ve got a lot to learn. It’s a work in progress.”

“It’s different,” said Manning. “We haven’t gotten everything down. I’m not 100 percent on everything going on. There are still some learning curves and things I gotta digest and think through…I feel good about what our offense can do and the potential of it. It’s just getting to the point where we have a great mastery of it from the mental capacity.”

So the key question is when will the players become comfortable enough with the new system to where the learning curve does not cost them on the playing field? It could take the entire preseason. Worse, it could take the first half or even a full season of actual game experience.

But once the system is learned, it could make life a lot easier for Eli and his receivers.

“I would think the West Coast Offense and some of (that philosophy) will help (Manning),” said Simms. “Give the quarterback 50 percent of his completions as ‘gimmies.’ There are other times you want to make those four or five special throws.”

In the new system, run-after-the-catch ability will be paramount. The good news is the Giants have some extremely dangerous receivers with the football in their hands, including Victor Cruz, Rueben Randle, Odell Beckham, Jerrell Jernigan, and Trindon Holliday.

“The ball is coming out quick,” said Manning. “It does fit my style of play, getting in rhythm, knowing where to go, making smart decisions. Getting the ball into receivers’ hands, let them be the athletes. Throw the little 6 or 7 yard pass and let them make big plays.”

While all pro offenses use pre-snap and post-snap reads, based on early comments from the players, there will be fewer reads in this offense. That should make it more likely that quarterback and receivers are on the same page, causing fewer mental mistakes that turn into turnovers for the opposition. In particular, receivers such as Randle and Jernigan, who were very inconsistent in the old Coughlin-Gilbride system, may perform much better with fewer reads.

Jernigan was asked if there were as many reads as under the old system, “Not at all. We’ve got a couple reads but we don’t have that many reads…you can go out and play faster and get the thing going and don’t have to think that much.”

“I’m liking (the new offense), it’s going to be pretty exciting,” said Randle on Thursday. “Coach McAdoo has done a great job putting us in positions to make plays and using our abilities…Everything is pretty much black and white, it’s simple. What you have is what you run. Just take a lot of things off our minds and go out there and play football and just use your ability to get open.”

“(There are) not as many reads,” continued Randle. “When you can go out there and maintain that focus on one specific thing it allows you to go out there and play a lot faster. That’s what we’re doing here. I think that’s going to be key for us pushing forward to make more plays… We just want to make sure we’re all on the same page.”

“(The new offense) frees me up a lot,” said Randle. “Just go out there and do what I do, just create separation and make plays. I had to really focus on reading than looking all over the field, just running routes. I think we’re all happy to be a part of that type of offense.”

Beckham, Jernigan, and Holliday are all particularly dangerous after the catch. Again, the learning curve will be an important factor. Beckham’s growth has been stymied somewhat by an early hamstring injury that caused him to miss most of the OTAs.

“It’s been tough to go from such an easier offense at LSU with the digit system and stuff like that and then going back to the concepts, which I was in my freshman year,” said Beckham. “It’s actually not that bad once you get into it and you break it down by formation and things like that. It’s really not that bad. It’s just a lot of memorization.”

While the West Coast Offense does place more emphasis on throws to the running backs and tight ends, one would think that Coach McAdoo is drawing up plays that would have Randle and Beckham outside with Cruz, Jernigan, and/or Holliday in the slot.

“(The offense is) a lot different but it goes back to some of the same concepts I had in college in the spread (offense) with Troy (University), so it’s going good, just learning different signals and stuff,” said Jernigan. “We used to go five-wide the whole time (at Troy University) so it’s back to what I’m really used to.”

“I think it’s an offense that fits my game and also spreads the ball out to everyone and gives everybody the chance to make plays,” said Jernigan. “Just get the ball to your playmakers and let them do the rest in open space against defenders.”

“(The spread offense) just allows you to use your playmakers instead of just going with your traditional two-wide set,” said Beckham. “You have four receivers on the field and you’re running routes and you’re all working with each other to get each other open. It definitely makes it a lot more fun for us.”

Mar 122014
 
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J.D. Walton, Denver Broncos (August 26, 2012)

J.D. Walton (50) – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Re-Sign Jon Beason and Curtis Painter: According to The NFL Network, the New York Giants have re-signed unrestricted free agent linebacker Jon Beason. In addition, the Giants have officially announced they they have re-signed unrestricted free agent quarterback Curtis Painter. Terms for both players are not yet known.

Because of these moves, we have updated the TransactionsNew York Giants Free Agent Signings (with scouting reports), and New York Giants 2014 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

New York Giants Sign J.D. Walton: The New York Giants have officially signed unrestricted free agent center J.D. Walton (Washington Redskins). Details of the contract are not yet known.

Because of this move, we have updated the TransactionsNew York Giants Free Agent Signings (with scouting report), and New York Giants 2014 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

Keith Rivers Signs with Bills: Unrestricted free agent linebacker Keith Rivers (New York Giants) has signed a 2-year, $5 million contract with the Buffalo Bills.

Because of this move, we have updated the TransactionsNew York Giants Free Agent Losses (with scouting report), and New York Giants 2014 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

Geoff Schwartz and Rashad Jennings Official – Contract Details: The Giants officially confirmed on Wednesday that they have signed unrestricted free agents offensive guard/tackle Geoff Schwartz (Kansas City Chiefs) and running back Rashad Jennings (Oakland Raiders).

According to the player’s agent, Schwartz’s deal is a 4-year, $16.8 million contract with $6.2 million guaranteed. CSN Bay Area is reporting that Jenning’s contract is a 4-year, $14 million deal with $3 million guaranteed.

“When I was a rookie, I almost didn’t get drafted and I was so excited to maybe become a Giant,” said Schwartz. “Now, it finally happened. It’s one of those franchises where, when they come calling, you can’t really say no. I’m overjoyed. I think when I look back after I kind of get over the initial signing of the contract it’ll be such a pleasure.”

“I’m so excited to be here for so many reasons,” Jennings said. “One, the Giants organization and the history of it. The magnitude of it, the culture, to be a part of that red, white and blue again. It’s funny because I went to Liberty University, those are the same colors I wore. I’m back on the east coast and now I can talk on the phone with people and not feel awkward because of the three-hour time difference, it will kick you in the butt sometimes. I’m closer to home, closer to family, I’m with the team that wanted me.”

Schwartz has the ability to play at tackle and guard.

“I’m best at guard,” Schwartz said. “I’ve played right guard lots in my career and I know that (Chris) Snee is still here, so I will be starting at left guard. I just feel more comfortable there. But I’ve played tackle, I started 11 games at tackle and played lots of other games at tackle, so I can do a lot of it. It’s just nice to be able to come into a place where they want you in a position and you can kind of go from there.”

“I think part of the fun of coming into work every day is that kind of interaction between offensive linemen,” said Schwartz. “Wherever you go you want to have that bond and building that bond is through kind of joking and mocking, but also hard work and some of the other thing that O-linemen are known for. I’m excited to meet everybody and kind of get going when April comes around. I think I do a good job of integrating well in the locker room. I do a good job of trying to learn the system. It’s tough every year to do that. Now hopefully I’ve found a home and I’ll be here for many years and kind of integrate into the system.”

“I have the same attitude every year since college,” Jennings said. “Go in, earn the respect of my teammates and my coaches, lock down the playbook and go show my worth and earn a starting position. That’s my mentality every year and I look forward to being used however they see my talents fitting here. I did an interview a couple weeks ago and they said, ‘What’s your idea of going through free agency?’ I said, ‘It’s my job to show one team that they’re right.’ I’m glad to show the Giants that they’re right.”

“I always tell people there are not too many ways you can run power, there are no too many ways you can run inside/outside zone,” Jennings said. “It’s just the terminology you’ve got to pick up, understand the flow, the chemistry of the system. That does take some time and that’s why we have OTAs. I am looking forward to it. But as far as going from playbook to playbook, it doesn’t phase you. You become a student of the game.”

Interviews with both players are available at Giants.com:

  • OG Geoff Schwartz (Video)
  • RB Rashad Jennings (Video)

Peyton Hillis and Trumaine McBride Official: The New York Giants officially confirmed on Wednesday that they have re-signed unrestricted free agents running back Peyton Hillis and cornerback Trumaine McBride.

O’Brien Schofield Deal Not Finalized: The Giants have not officially sign unrestricted free agent linebacker O’Brien Schofield because Schofield did not pass the team’s physical on Wednesday. The Giants are concerned about one of his knees and thus there is no deal. The New York Daily News and ESPN are reporting that the deal may not be ultimately dead, but the previous terms (2-year, $8 million contract) may have to be renegotiated. NJ.com is reporting that a source says the deal is dead.

March 12, 2014 New York Giants Free Agent News and Rumors: Here is the latest on the free agent front:

  • DT Linval Joseph on what the New York Giants offered before he signed a 5-year, $31.5 million contract with the Minnesota Vikings: “I know it was nowhere near the Vikings number, I can say that.”
  • ESPN is reporting that unrestricted free agents (UFAs) defensive end Just Tuck (New York Giants) and cornerback Terrell Thomas (New York Giants) are visiting the Oakland Raiders today. SFGate.com is reporting that RB Andre Brown (New York Giants) is also visiting the Oakland Raiders today.
  • According to the Lions, UFA Henry Hynoski (New York Giants) will visit the Detroit Lions on Thursday.
  • The NFL Network is reporting that UFA Tracy Porter (Oakland Raiders) arrived in New York on Tuesday to visit the Giants. He left today without a contract.
  • ESPN is reporting that UFA offensive guard Shelley Smith (St. Louis Rams) is visited the Giants on Wednesday. He is now on his way to visit with the New England Patriots.
  • The NFL Network is reporting that the Giants called the Tampa Bay Buccaneers inquiring about cornerback Darrelle Revis before he was cut by Tampa Bay Wednesday afternoon.
  • UFA wide receiver/returner Jacoby Jones, who visited the Giants on Wednesday, has re-signed with the Baltimore Ravens (4-year contract).
  • UFA cornerback Corey Graham (Baltimore Ravens), who the Giants had expressed some interest in, has signed a 4-year deal with the Buffalo Bills.

Giants.com Inside the Film Room: Video breakdowns of the following Giants players are available at Giants.com:

  • Fullback John Conner (Video)
  • Offensive Lineman Brandon Mosley (Video)
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Trumaine McBride, New York Giants (December 15, 2013)

Trumaine McBride – © USA TODAY Sports Images

New York Giants Re-Sign Trumaine McBride, Peyton Hillis, and Dallas Reynolds: According to multiple press reports, the Giants have re-signed unrestricted free agents cornerback Trumaine McBride and running back Peyton Hillis.

McBride’s contract is reportedly a 2-year, $3.1 million deal; Hillis’ contract is reportedly a 2-year, $1.8 million deal.

According to Newsday, the New York Giants have re-signed exclusive rights free agent guard/center Dallas Reynolds. No contract terms were provided.

Because of these moves, we have updated the Transactions, New York Giants Free Agent Signings (with scouting reports), and New York Giants 2014 Free Agency Scorecard sections of the website.

March 11, 2014 New York Giants Free Agent News and Rumors: Here is the latest on the free agent front:

  • The New York Daily News is reporting that unrestricted free agent safety Ryan Mundy (New York Giants) is unlikely to re-sign with the team.
  • The Star-Ledger is reporting that the Giants are one of three teams with serious interest in unrestricted free agent offensive guard/tackle Geoff Schwartz (Kansas City Chiefs). The NFL Network is reporting that the Schwartz will sign with either the Giants or Rams.
  • NJ.com is reporting that the Giants are unlikely to sign unrestricted free agent centers Evan Dietrich-Smith (Green Bay Packers) and Brian de la Puenta (New Orleans Saints). However, The New York Daily News and New York Post are reporting that the Giants are making a big push to sign Dietrich-Smith.
  • CBS and NFLNetwork are reporting that unrestricted free agent defensive end Justin Tuck (New York Giants) is likely to re-sign with Giants.
  • The Baltimore Sun is reporting that unrestricted free agent defensive end/tackle Arthur Jones, who the Giants had expressed interest in, will sign with the Indianapolis Colts.
  • CSN Bay Area is reporting that the Giants have made a contract offer to unrestricted free agent running back Rashad Jennings (Oakland Raiders).

More Details on Re-Structured Contracts for Chris Snee and Steve Weatherford: According to NFL Player Association records, right guard Chris Snee’s 2014 base salary was reduced from $6.75 million to $2 million (not the $1.1 million reported in the media). Records also indicate that punter Steve Weatherford’s 2014 base salary was reduced from $2.025 million in 2014 to $900,000. Weatherford’s base salaries in 2013 ($2.175 million) and 2014 ($2.325 million) were not changed.

Article on the New York Giants 2014 Salary Cap: Updated: Giants salary cap situation heading into free agency by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on the New York Giants and 2014 NFL Free Agency: NFL free agency: How Giants look by Conor Orr of The Star-Ledger

 

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Kevin Gilbride, New York Giants (December 9, 2012)

Kevin Gilbride – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Kevin Gilbride Defends Himself: Kevin Gilbride, who retired as offensive coordinator of the New York Giants in January, spoke publicly on Thursday night at the PKD Foundation benefit in Manhattan. Some speculate that Gilbride only retired because he knew he would be fired. On the contrary, Gilbride said he told his wife before the 2013 season began he would retire unless he was offered a head coaching job in 2014.

“If I wanted to stay coaching I would have stayed with the Giants,” said Gilbride.

Gilbride is blamed by many for the demise of the Giants’ offense, which fell from 14th to 28th. Head Coach Tom Coughlin has said that Gilbride would not have been forced out, but team President/CEO John Mara and General Manager Jerry Reesse have said that it was time for a change on offense.

“I’m kind of surprised to hear (Jerry Reese) say that,” Gilbride said. “No one had figured that offense out for 24 years. To think that they figured it out this year would be pretty ludicrous. I think it was pretty obvious what the problems were. We had a confluence of injuries, we were very weak on the offensive line. We had some guys who struggled. We started six different offensive tailbacks, three different fullbacks, three different right guards, four different centers…You’re not going to have anything (with that). You can say it’s the offense, but it’s pretty clear what the problem was.”

“I certainly have expressed (roster talent) concerns for a number of years,” Gilbride said. “It wasn’t a matter of if, it was a matter of when it was going to happen.”

In a shot at Hakeem Nicks and Rueben Randle, another issue according to Gilbride was that the Giants only had  “one guy playing” at wide receiver (Victor Cruz). Gilbride thought John Mara’s comments about it taking so long for Jerrel Jernigan to be a factor on game day were a “cheap shot”.

“I didn’t understand it,” said Gilbride. “Because (Jernigan) had chances as a kick returner and he’d played before and hadn’t played well. I think it’s a great tribute to (Wide Receivers Coach Kevin M. Gibride) and (Quarterbacks Coach Sean Ryan) that developed him and that he got on the field.”

When asked about the Giants’ prospects in 2014, Gilbride responded, “They have to get some players. If the players come back, if (Chris) Snee comes back healthy and (David) Baas comes back healthy. The running back situation is a little scary – they have to get somebody there. But if they can get somebody there and if (Kevin) Boothe comes back the inside three will be stable. I know they’re going to look for a tight end. There are a lot of holes that need to be filled.”

“If they shore up some of the supporting cast, I think they’ll be fine,” said Gilbride. “Last year we went into the year with some question marks at some spots and sure enough those question marks were all answered in a negative fashion. Between that and the confluence of injuries, it just wasn’t going to happen.”

LB Jameel McClain Visits Giants, But Leaves Without Contract: Linebacker Jameel McClain, who was cut by the Baltimore Ravens last month is a salary-cap related move, visited the New York Giants on Thursday but left without a contract. He had visited with the Buffalo Bills on Wednesday and is scheduled to meet with the Minnesota Vikings next.

New York Giants Interested in Center Evan Dietrich-Smith?: FOXSports1 is reporting that the New York Giants may be interested in pursuing soon-to-be unrestricted free agent center Evan Dietrich-Smith (Green Bay Packers) if the Packers do not re-sign him and center David Baas is released.

Jon Beason Representing Himself in Contract Talks: Soon-to-be unrestricted free agent linebacker Jon Beason recently fired his agent and will be representing himself in his contract talks.

Starting on Saturday, March 8, NFL teams are permitted to contact and enter into contract negotiations with certified agents of players who will become unrestricted free agents on other teams. However, a contract cannot be executed with a new club until 4:00PM ET on March 11. Because Beason will be representing himself, teams will not be able to contact him until March 11. So the Giants will have three more days to negotiate exclusively with Beason.

Articles on the New York Giants and 2014 NFL Free Agency:

Giants.com Inside the Film Room: Video breakdowns of the following Giants players are available at Giants.com:

  • Running Back Andre Brown (Video)
  • Running Back Peyton Hillis (Video)