Feb 262015
 
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Josh Brown, New York Giants (December 7, 2014)

Josh Brown – © USA TODAY Sports Images

While there were some bright spots, the special teams of the New York Giants continued to under-perform in many key statistical areas in 2014. Consider the following:

Field Goals: The Giants finished 3rd in the NFL as place kicker Josh Brown converted on 24-of-26 attempts for a 92.3 average. This is all the more remarkable when you consider one of those misses was blocked. Brown also hit all 44 extra point tries. Unfortunately, the only real miss by Brown was a factor in the 1-point loss to Jacksonville in November.

Punting: Steve Weatherford, who was impacted by an early-season ankle injury, finished 16th in the NFL in gross average (45.5 yards per punt) and 22nd in the NFL in net average (40.1 yards per punt). He was middle-of-the-pack with punts in the 20-yard line with 25 and touchbacks with six. The Giants also allowed a blocked punt for a touchdown against the Eagles.

Kickoff Returns: The Giants finished 18th in kickoff returns, averaging 23.3 yards per return. They did not return a kickoff for a touchdown and the longest return was only for 45 yards.

Punt Returns: The Giants finished 19th in punt returns, averaging 7.7 yards per return. They did not return a punt for a touchdown and the longest return was for only 25 yards (which was 26th in the NFL). The Giants were 5th in the NFL in fair catches with 27.

Opposing Kickoff Returns: The Giants were very good at covering kickoffs as opposing teams averaged only 18.3 yards per return (2nd best in the NFL), with a long of 33 yards. Forty-six of Josh Brown’s 82 kickoffs resulted in touchbacks (56 percent).

Ted Ginn, Arizona Cardinals (September 14, 2014)

Ted Ginn – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Opposing Punt Returns: The Giants were not as strong covering punts as opposing teams averaged 10.6 yards per return and the Giants allowed a punt return to go 71 yards for a touchdown against the Cardinals. In addition, the Giants finished 23rd in the NFL in opposing fair catches with 17.

With the additions of Trindon Holliday, Quintin Demps, and Odell Beckham, plus the expected return of David Wilson, the return game was supposed to be a strength for the Giants in 2014. However, Holliday missed the bulk of camp with a hamstring injury as was placed on Injured Reserve. David Wilson re-injured his neck in training camp and retired. Beckham kept injuring his hamstring and was not a factor in the punt return game until later in the season. Demps never really flashed on kickoff returns like he did in Kansas City.

The kickoff return game was split among Preston Parker (21 returns, 24.2 yard average), Demps (12 returns, 21.3 yard average), and Michael Cox (11 returns, 23.7 yard average). The punt returns were split between Beckham (21 returns, 11 fair catches, 8.1 yard average), Parker (8 returns, 6 fair catches, 6.6 yard average), and Rueben Randle (no returns, 10 fair catches).

Zak DeOssie, New York Giants (August 18, 2013)

Zak DeOssie – © USA TODAY Sports Images

THE KICKERS AND LONG SNAPPER

Steve Weatherford tore ligaments in his left ankle in September and was hobbled with the injury for much of the season. He finished 18th in the NFL in punting average (45.5 yards per punt) and 25th in net punting average (38.6). Twenty-five of Weatherford’s punts were downed inside the 20-yard line and only six resulted in touchbacks. He did suffer his first blocked punt of his career. Before coming to the Giants, Weatherford played for the Saints (2006-08), Chiefs (2008), Jaguars (2008), and Jets (2009-2010). He is a good directional punter with average length strength.

In his 12th season, Josh Brown had his finest season, making 24-of-26 of his field goals (92.3 percent) with one of the misses being blocked. He made all44 extra point attempts. And 45 of his 82 kickoffs resulted in touchbacks. Brown was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2003 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks. Before coming to the Giants as a free agent in 2013, he kicked for the Seahawks (2003-07), St. Louis Rams (2009-11), and Bengals (2012). Brown now owns the Giants records for both single season and career field goal percentage. In his two seasons with the Giants, Brown has succeeded on 47-of-52 field goal attempts (90.4 percent).

Zak DeOssie is one of the NFL’s most consistent and better long snappers, being voted to the Pro Bowl in 2008 and 2010. DeOssie was drafted as a linebacker by the Giants in the 4th round of the 2007 NFL Draft. He is now strictly a special teams player. Aside from his long snapping duties, DeOssie also excels in punt coverage.

Feb 062015
 
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Giants.com Q&A With TE Larry Donnell: Know Your Giants: TE Larry Donnell by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

Article on the 2015 New York Giants: 5 things the Giants must do to make the Super Bowl in 2016 by Nick Powell for NJ.com

Article on the New York Giants and Potential Salary-Cap Cuts: Looking at potential Giants cap cuts by Dan Graziano of ESPN.com

Article on P Steve Weatherford: NY Giants punter Steve Weatherford recalls Ann Mara as ‘beautiful spirit’ by Ebenezer Samuel of The New York Daily News

Giants.com Feature on Players: Video features on the following players are available at Giants.com:

  • TE Larry Donnell (Video)
  • TE Adrien Robinson (Video)

Articles on Former New York Giants Co-Owner Ann Mara:

Giants.com Video Tribute to Ann Mara: A video tribute to former New York Giants co-owner Ann Mara is available at Giants.com.

Article on Former Giants LB Lawrence Taylor: Lawrence Taylor at 56: ‘Hard to believe‘ I’m still alive by Steve Serby of The New York Post

Articles on “The Fumble”:

Jan 292015
 
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Rashad Jennings, New York Giants (October 5, 2014)

Rashad Jennings – © USA TODAY Sports Images

RB Rashad Jennings on the NFL Network: The video of Thursday’s NFL Network interview with RB Rashad Jennings is available at Giants.com.

P Steve Weatherford on ESPN Radio: The audio of Wednesday’s ESPN Radio interview with P Steve Weatherford is available at ESPN.com.

DE Justin Tuck on WFAN Radio: The audio of Thursday’s WFAN Radio interview with former Giant DE Justin  Tuck is available at CBS New York.

Article on LB Mark Herzlich: LB Mark Herzlich ready for new defense; SBXLIX prediction by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

Article on CB Prince Amukamara: Checking in on Prince Amukamara by Dan Graziano of ESPN.com

Article on Former Giant WR David Tyree: Catching up with Super Bowl hero David Tyree by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

Article on Former Giant OG Chris Snee: Chris Snee reflects on career and plans for life after football by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

Dec 242014
 
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No Giants Voted to Pro Bowl: The 2014 NFL Pro Bowl teams were announced on Tuesday. No Giants were elected to this year’s Pro Bowl team by coaches, players, and fans (each with one-third of the vote). Wide receiver Odell Beckham was named a first-alternate and defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul was named a fourth-alternate.

December 24, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: LB Devon Kennard (toe) did not practice on Wednesday.

RB Rashad Jennings (ankle), RB Andre Williams (shoulder), LB Jameel McClain (knee), and DE/LB Paul Hazel were limited.

December 24, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video of Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s Wednesday’s press conference are available at BigBlueInteractive.com and Giants.com.

December 24, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of media sessions on Wednesday with the following players are available at BigBlueInteractive.com and Giants.com:

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

Article on WR Victor Cruz: Injured Giants receiver Victor Cruz has ‘no doubt’ he will return to form in 2015 by Nick Powell for NJ.com

Article on DE Kerry Wynn: The biggest surprise youngster to enter Giants’ 2015 plans by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Article on LB Devon Kennard: How Devon Kennard’s father helped him become an NFL pro by Mark Cannizzaro of The New York Post

Article on P Steve Weatherford: After killing of police officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu, NY Giants’ Steve Weatherford visits NYPD to say thanks by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Article on the Upcoming Giants-Eagles Game: Why finale vs. Eagles is anything but meaningless for Giants by Kevin Kernan of The New York Post

Dec 172014
 
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Giants Sign TE Jerome Cunningham to 53-Man Roster: The New York Giants signed tight end Jerome Cunningham to the 53-man roster from the team’s Practice Squad on Wednesday. Cunningham fills the roster vacancy created when the Giants put linebacker Terrell Manning on Injured Reserve on December 2. Per an obscure NFL rule, Manning could not be replaced on the 53-man roster for three weeks after he was signed from the Bengals’ Practice Squad on November 25.

Cunningham played college football at Southern Connecticut State University from 2009-2012, but he was not with an NFL team in training camp until August 2014 when the Giants signed him. He did try out with the Indianapolis Colts in May 2013 and Arizona Cardinals in May 2014, but was not signed by either team. Cunningham lacks ideal size for the position; he’s built more like an H-Back. But he is a good athlete who catches the ball well.

Giants Sign FB Nikita Whitlock to Practice Squad: To fill the vacancy created when the Giants signed TE Jerome Cunningham to the 53-man roster, the Giants signed fullback Nikita Whitlock to the Practice Squad on Wednesday.

Whitlock, who played defensive tackle in college, was originally signed by the Cincinnati Bengals as a rookie free agent after the 2014 NFL Draft. He was cut by the Bengals in their final round of cuts and then signed by the Dallas Cowboys to their Practice Squad. The NFL suspended Whitlock in November for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) and the Cowboys terminated his Practice Squad contract. Whitlock was converted to fullback by the Bengals and he flashed in the preseason as a lead blocker with good size.

December 17, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) and LB Jameel McClain (knee) did not practice on Wednesday.

December 17, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video of Head Coach Tom Coughlin’s Wednesday’s press conference are available at BigBlueInteractive.com and Giants.com.

December 17, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of media sessions on Wednesday with the following players are available at BigBlueInteractive.com and Giants.com:

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

Article on Giants President/CEO John Mara: NY Giants owner John Mara will be able to tune out fans if he doesn’t fire Tom Coughlin by Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News

Article on the New York Giants Offense: Kevin Gilbride still questions overhaul of Giants offense by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Article on DT Johnathan Hankins: Giants’ Johnathan Hankins steps up by Art Stapleton of The Bergen Record

Article son S Antrel Rolle:

Article on the Giants and the 2015 NFL Draft: NY Giants need help on offensive and defensive lines this draft by Ebenezer Samuel of The New York Daily News

Nov 012014
 
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Cullen Jenkins, New York Giants (September 8, 2014)

Cullen Jenkins – © USA TODAY Sports Images

November 1, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: RB Rashad Jennings (knee), DE Jason Pierre-Paul (shoulder), and DT Cullen Jenkins (calf) did not practice on Saturday. Jennings and Jenkins have been officially ruled out of Monday night’s game against the Indianapolis Colts. Pierre-Paul is “probable.”

CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (back/hamstring) and P Steve Weatherford (left ankle) were limited in practice. Rodgers-Cromartie is “questionable” for the game while Weatherford is “probable.”

Giants.com Q&A with Head Coach Tom Coughlin: The Coughlin Corner: Play above the X’s and O’s by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

Articles on the New York Giants Offense:

Article on the New York Giants Defense: Giants weekly defensive observations: Damontre Moore’s role to increase? Believe it when you see it by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on the New York Giants Linebackers: Giants need to work hard to replace Jon Beason by Anthony Rieber of Newsday

Oct 102014
 
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Robert Ayers, New York Giants (September 8, 2014)

Robert Ayers – © USA TODAY Sports Images

October 10, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: DE Robert Ayers (neck), RB Rashad Jennings (knee), and LB Spencer Paysinger (hamstring) did not practice on Friday. Jennings and Paysinger will not play against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night; Ayers is officially listed as “questionable.”

“(Ayers) came in this morning with it,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “I think hopefully he will be fine…I hope he feels better tomorrow morning.”

CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (ankle/hamstring), LB Jon Beason (foot/toe), and P Steve Weatherford (left ankle) practiced on a limited basis. Beason is “questionable,” while Rodgers-Cromartie and Weatherford are “probable.”

“We will see (with Beason),” said Coughlin. “We will see tomorrow morning how he feels.”

October 10, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video from Friday’s press conference with Head Coach Tom Coughlin are available at Giants.com.

Giants.com Q&A with Head Coach Tom Coughlin: The Coughlin Corner: Expectations for Eagles game by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

October 10, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Friday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:

Article on QB Eli Manning: Eli is saving N.Y. football from itself by Ian O’Connor of ESPNNewYork.com

Article on New York Giants Wide Receivers:

Article on OG Geoff Schwartz: Where does Geoff Schwartz fit in Giants’ offensive line when he returns? by Tom Rock of Newsday

Sep 122014
 
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Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (October 7, 2012)

Jason Pierre-Paul – © USA TODAY Sports Images

September 12, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing on Friday were DE Jason Pierre-Paul (neck), WR Odell Beckham (hamstring), OT James Brewer (back), DT Markus Kuhn (ankle), and LB Devon Kennard (hamstring). Pierre-Paul is “probable” for the game against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday while the other four players have been ruled out of the game.

DT Cullen Jenkins (hip), LB Jon Beason (foot), OT Charles Brown (shoulder), and P Steve Weatherford (ankle) practiced on a limited basis. Weatherford is listed as “questionable” for the game while the other three players are “probable.”

“Oh yes. Absolutely (I am ready to play),” said Weatherford. “We have 48 hours until kickoff and if we keep coming in the right direction, I could play. If I had to, I could play tomorrow. We have got two days, so that is good.”

September 12, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video from Friday’s press conference with Head Coach Tom Coughlin are available at Giants.com.

Giants.com Q&A with Head Coach Tom Coughlin: The Coughlin Corner: Making corrections by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

September 12, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Friday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:

Article on the New York Giants Offense: Giants offensive struggles: An All-22 look at what went wrong in loss to Detroit by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on WR Odell Beckham: Odell Beckham eyes Week 3, but that seems like a stretch by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Article on TE Daniel Fells: TE Daniel Fells and brother Darren to face off Sunday by Michael Eisen of Giants.com

Article on the New York Giants Offensive Line: Film Room Week 1: Analyzing the Giants’ offensive line vs. Lions by Nick Klopis of Newsday

Article on CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie: Giants CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie admits to using bad technique; compares Calvin Johnson vs. Larry Fitzgerald by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Sep 112014
 
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BigBlueInteractive.com (BBI) Updates: In case you missed it, articles from BBI today:

September 11, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing on Thursday were WR Odell Beckham (hamstring), OT James Brewer (back), DT Markus Kuhn (ankle), LB Jon Beason (foot), LB Devon Kennard (hamstring), and P Steve Weatherford (ankle).

“We’re going to go out there and test it tomorrow and see if it’s going to be good enough for me to be able to help the team on Sunday,” said Weatherford. “If it’s not, I’m not going to try to be a hero, because most importantly, it’s having somebody out there that’s going to be able to change field position and help the New York Giants. I’m not here to prove a point on how tough I am. I want to help this team and if I’m not able to do that, well I think I’ll tell them that. I’m optimistic and hopeful that I’ll be out there.”

DT Cullen Jenkins (hip) and OT Charles Brown (shoulder) practiced on a limited basis.

Perry Fewell, New York Giants (June 19, 2014)

Perry Fewell – Photo by Connor Hughes

September 11, 2014 New York Giants Coach Media Sessions: Transcripts and video clips of Thursday’s media sessions with the following coaches are available at Giants.com:

September 11, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Thursday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:

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

Article on the New York Giants Offensive Line: Giants offensive line knows ‘it better click soon’ by Steve Serby of The New York Post

Articles on the New York Giants Defense:

Article on DE Damontre Moore: Now Tom Coughlin blaming D coordinator for sitting stud by Brian Lewis of The New York Post

Giants Online – Week 2 Preview: The video of this week’s Giants Online is available at Giants.com.

Sep 102014
 
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Steve Weatherford, New York Giants (August 9, 2014)

Steve Weatherford – © USA TODAY Sports Images

September 10, 2014 New York Giants Injury Report: Not practicing on Wednesday were WR Odell Beckham (hamstring), OT James Brewer (back), DT Cullen Jenkins (hip), DT Markus Kuhn (ankle), LB Devon Kennard (hamstring), and P Steve Weatherford (ankle).

The Star-Ledger is reporting that Weatherford suffered several torn ligaments in his left ankle, but he will not require surgery.

“Just trying to get healthy at this point, trying to reduce inflammation, get the range of motion back and get ready and try to go on Sunday,” said Weatherford. “It’s my plant foot, so it’s weight bearing…Right now we’re not looking for me to just get the ball off. I’m not going to tell Jerry Reese and Tom Coughlin that I’m ready to go unless I know that I can help my team and I can be as good as I can be. At the same time you don’t want to have another punter come in here that’s not used to this stadium, it’s not an easy place to play. I’m going to do what’s in the best interest of the team and if I don’t feel like I can help my team, I’m going to tell them that I need another week. It’s progressing well. It actually felt better yesterday than it did on Monday night.”

“His ankle actually looks better today than it did yesterday and he’s doing jumping jacks and stuff in there now,” said Head Coach Tom Coughlin. “Hopefully, that will continue.”

LB Jon Beason (foot) and OT Charles Brown (shoulder) practiced on a limited basis.

DE Jason Pierre-Paul, who suffered a neck stinger during the game on Monday, was not listed on the injury report and fully practiced.

September 10, 2014 Tom Coughlin Press Conference: The transcript and video from Wednesday’s press conference with Head Coach Tom Coughlin are available at Giants.com.

September 10, 2014 New York Giants Player Media Q&As: Transcripts and video of Wednesday’s media Q&A sessions with the following players are available at Giants.com:

Article on New York Giants President/CEO John Mara: Giants president John Mara will make changes if necessary by Bob Glauber of Newsday

Article on the New York Giants Offense: Giants’ O’s problem talent, not tactics by Johnette Howard of ESPNNewYork.com

Article on QB Eli Manning: Cardinals coach: It’ll take half a season to ‘re-program’ Eli by Paul Schwartz of The New York Post

Article on WR Odell Beckham: Odell Beckham feels good but doesn’t want to rush back again by Jordan Raanan of NJ.com

Article on the New York Giants Secondary: Giants’ secondary eager to get past Motor City meltdown by Zach Braziller of The New York Post