August 8, 2005 New York Giants Training Camp Report (Evening Practice)

by Contributor Marty in Albany

There was a brief scuffle between ORT Brandon Winey and WLB/MLB/SLB Kevin Lewis (nobody ever mentions Lewis without reciting that he can play all three positions). The altercation was over quickly, but apparently Lewis won. He got the bigger man down on the ground.

The three most salient features of the evening session were the mounting injuries that are apparently self-inflicted; the inconsistent play of the quarterbacks, and the continued proclivity of Tom Coughlin to hold drills where the public cannot see them. I’ll discuss each in turn.

I did not see the morning practice, but if it was anything like the evening practice, I am at a loss to explain where all the injuries are coming from. The first hour of practice was just about entirely positional drills and devoid of physical exertion. The players just lined up for various offensive and defensive formations. I would have to say that the fastest movement by the players was when the annoying air horn (instead of a whistle) sounded and the players jogged from one location to the next.

It was nice to see TE Visanthe Shiancoe come back from his injury and catch a few short passes. They were mostly of the dump-off kind, but Shank did better than TE Chris Luzar who had a hard pass from QB Tim Hasselbeck bounce off his chest. CB Michael Bragg has come back from the dead, reincarnated as number 31. If I had been cut while wearing number 35(?), I wouldn’t want to wear that number again, either.

None of the quarterbacks was impressive today. Each had a few good passes, but they have not been consistent. I hate to say it, but last year in training camp, Eli Manning looked better than he is looking now. There were not many passes tonight that were longer than 25 yards. One was by Jesse Palmer to WR Michael Jennings over CB Curtis Deloatch (I think) in the red zone drill. Curtis Deloatch, not Frank Walker, is filling in for the injured CB Will Allen.

There was a long pass from Jared Lorenzen, who continues to get slimmer, if not better. There was a deep pass by Tim Hasselbeck to WR Ataveus Cash for a touchdown in the two minute drill to mercifully end the evening session. It was noteworthy that LG Rich Seubert ran all the way down field to congratulate Cash on this play. Other than this one pass, I would have to describe the play by Tim Hasselbeck as ugly and below NFL quality.

Manning and Palmer had ugly moments as well. Manning muffed a center snap, then picked it up and unwisely threw it to Plaxico Burress. The timing was not there and Plaxico jumped for it. He was exposed and Shaun Williams who was covering, put a hit on him. Jesse Palmer, threw a lot of passes that were inaccurate and some were nearly intercepted.

Manning’s best looking pass was a well executed twenty yard strike to WR Plaxico Burress. The play looked effortless. Manning also showed very good touch on a sideline lob pass to WR Plaxico Burress, who was deep in the endzone for the other touchdown in the two minute drill. Plaxico looks very comfortable catching Manning’s passes.

The defense made a few nice plays. SLB Carlos Emmons made a nice play to knock away a pass intended for Chris Luzar and SS Gibril Wilson got underneath HB Brandon Jacobs and stopped him cold. (Trust me, tomorrow on the same play against Jacobs, Gibril is as likely to be the fly as the windshield). DT William Joseph took just about all the snaps with the first team. Kendrick Clancy was the other starting defensive tackle. Although injured, it appeared that CB Will Allen was giving rookie CB Corey Webster a few pointers after the end of the session.

All six kickoffs were fielded by WR Mark Jones. It appeared that he was stripped of the ball on the last of them. With RB Derrick Ward not dressed and RB Ryan Grant somewhat limited, Mike Jemison got a few extra snaps. He caught a nice pass out of the backfield. Mike is a powerful runner, but does not appear to have the elusiveness or cutting ability of Ryan Grant.

Colonel Tom’s Stealth Practice:

The camera cranes were set up on the left hand most of the upper fields this evening. That is where the action (the 11-on-11 drills) would be filmed. Behind the endzone of this field is where most of the public was seated. There are three upper fields that are all side by side. The public can easily move to the endzone of any of these fields, and it is fairly easy to see what is taking place on an adjacent field. If any Giants had practiced on the field that was just to the right of the field where the camera cranes were, the public would have a good view of what they were doing. That did not happen.

During the first hour of the practice, the defensive backs and a few others did positional drills using the main field. The other 60 or 70 players, including the quarterbacks and coaches, drilled on the two lower fields, in virtual obscurity. In order to get from the upper fields to the lower fields the public would have to walk about three quarters of a mile.

I’m sure that Coughlin will come up with some reason for not using the adjacent field at all (to preserve it, it was wet, etc.), but it cheated the fans out of seeing anything of interest other than the defensive backs practicing formations. For the most part the fans, myself included, would just as soon watch the grass grow as watch the first hour of this practice.