The Outsider’s Report: Special End of Training Camp Edition

By Contributor Daniel in MI

Training camp has ended, which conveniently coincides annually with the close of training camp in Albany. It happens every year like a right of passage – like a bar mitzvah, a first communion, or the first time a woman…Hmm? Right, sorry… – it signaled that it was again time for the TOSR (The Outsider’s Report) reporting staff to pool our notes, take our lithium, steal some material from other people, and create an end of camp report. As usual, although apocryphal, or at least wildly inaccurate, TOSR scores over more pedestrian media outlets in two important ways: (1) it’s free; and (2) it doesn’t blather on about Shockey.

Speaking of Shockey, as usual, the superstars get most of the limelight, and no one got more this year than the Giants’ tight end. You couldn’t watch ESPN, check out some sweater puppies in Maxim, or peruse the Journal of the American Medical Association (we only read it for the articles) without being hit with Shockey’s redneck rampage. We tried to sit down with him for a candid one-on-one but, even if we actually had reporters we wouldn’t be able to get that interview. So, we grabbed the next best thing, TE Mark Inkrott, and made the best of it.

We started off easy. “Mark, why did you stop talking to the media?” we asked him. “I didn’t.” Interesting, yet evasive…We knew this wouldn’t be easy. We continued, “So, do you think you’ll have a sophomore slump?” He met the question head on, “I think you have to have done something to have a slump, really.” Now that we’d established ten seconds of rapport we decided to get to the controversial issues. “Do you think any past Giants coaches are ‘homos’?” He blurted out in his usual brash, out-of-your-face, taciturn way, “That’s an inappropriate question, really. I don’t know, and it’s not my business. I’m just trying to play some ball.” We couldn’t believe he’d say this stuff to a reporter! He is out of control! We pressed our luck, “Dan Reeves, is he a homo? He is, isn’t he?” Mark couldn’t resist the bait, “Next question.” Handley? Perkins? He looked at the clock; clearly the Giants have tried in vain to muzzle this kid like an Iditarod dog. So, we switched to ask him about his infamous off-the-field life. “This off-season, you were all over the club scene, hanging out with celebrities, getting shot down by pop tarts, chilling with Kid Rock, how was that?” He downplayed it all, saying, “That wasn’t me. I hung out at home in Ottawa, Ohio with my mom and my brother. I did a lot of gardening and stuff.” Oh, to be a young superstar in New York! We can now see why the media loves Mark Inkrott; you just can’t get an interview like that everyday. To editorialize for a moment, we just hope Mark stops letting his play do the talking, and starts really letting his big mouth and some crazy off-the-field antics speak for themselves, especially now that he got waived by the team.

To camp news. If we had one, TOSR‘s team of reporters might have noticed that Head Coach Jim Fassel has more of an “edge” this year compared to years past. Fassel demonstrated his new FOX attitude by slamming doors, throwing helmets, having players run laps, and returning his video tapes without rewinding. The players have been impressed. “He’s been a total A-hole,” said T Jeff Hatch, who wished to remain anonymous. But, not everyone thought the change was bad. “Jim’s had more anger in him this year,” said Kitty Fassel, the coach’s wife. “And, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, it’s rather manly,” she said lowering her voice two octaves. “When his chest begins heaving and his lip starts quivering, and he gets all red-faced, and he’s ordering these big, sweaty muscular men around and they’re afraid of him, that’s very exciting. The way he tells them what to do, and takes charge of me like that. Oh my.” Kitty then had to go then, something about playing with her rabbit, which is funny because we didn’t know she had a pet. For what it’s worth, Michael Strahan agreed with her, “He’s so cute when he’s angry,” said the defensive end. “We all think so! He gets all puffy. I mean, we don’t listen or anything, but it’s cute.”

Meanwhile, the Giants continue to struggle to improve their special teams, and now the most recent veteran long snapper the Giants brought in, Ryan Kuehl, has a pinched nerve in his arm. “I was doing fine until that stupid fishing trip, then all the casting just threw it out of whack. What kind of team goes fishing in the middle of pre-season for crying out loud?” Special Teams Coach Bruce Read is a professional, however, and when we found him sitting in the dark in his office, we asked him, “Coach, what did you say when you heard about Kuehl? He looked us in the eye and said, “Son of a bitch! Are we jinxed or something? What do I have to do to get a friggin’ break!” We laughed, understanding his pain. It must have been hard news indeed. Still, Coach Read is keeping it all in perspective. We asked him what he will do now about the snapping situation and he looked right through us and said, “Son of a bitch! Are we jinxed or something? What do I have to do to get a friggin’ break!” Ok, good plan. We thanked him for his time, to which he said, “Son of a bitch! Are we jinxed or something? What do I have to do to get a friggin’ break!” Dr. Joel might want to look in on him.

So, the Giants have stormed to an excellent pre-season record so far, losing only three of their games. At least they haven’t had any of their important players get hurt. Except for Strahan. And Shockey. And Bober. And Williams. And Kuehl. We feel confident that the Giants are in good hands, as long as those hands aren’t on Tim Carter or Visanthe Shiancoe, in which case we’re going to drop like stone. As always, we’ll stay optimistic and remember that in the next game we play the Ravens, and when have they ever beaten us?