Sep 082020
 
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Deandre Baker, New York Giants (September 22, 2019)

Deandre Baker – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS WAIVE DEANDRE BAKER…
The New York Giants have waived cornerback Deandre Baker, who has been on the Commissioner’s Exempt List since July 27th due to his legal troubles. At the team’s request, Baker had not participated in any team workouts this offseason. Baker was charged with four counts of robbery with a firearm from an incident that occurred in Florida in May. If convicted, Baker faces a minimum prison sentence of 10 years up to life.

The Giants drafted Baker in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Baker had an up-and-down rookie season for the Giants. He started 15 of the 16 games he played in, receiving 87 percent of defensive snaps, and finishing the year with 61 tackles and 8 pass defenses. He did not intercept a pass.

GIANTS VOTE FOR TEAM CAPTAINS…
New York Giants players voted six of their teammates to represent the squad in 2020:

Offense: QB Daniel Jones, RB Saquon Barkley

Defense: DL Dalvin Tomlinson, LB Blake Martinez

Special Teams: S Jabrill Peppers, S Nate Ebner

GIANTS SIGN TWO, CUT ONE FROM PRACTICE SQUAD…
The Giants have signed RB Rod Smith and CB Ryan Lewis to their Practice Squad, and terminated the Practice Squad contract of WR Derrick Dillon.

The 28-year old, 6’3”, 236-pound Smith was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Seattle Seahawks after the 2015 NFL Draft. He was released by Seattle in October 2015. The Cowboys claimed him off of waivers and he played with the Cowboys until the end of the 2018 season. The Giants signed Smith as an unrestricted free agent in May 2019 and waived him from Injured Reserve in September 2019. He then spent time with both the Tennessee Titans and Oakland Raiders in 2019. Smith has played in 55 regular-season games with two starts, rushing 101 times for 364 yards (3.6 yards per carry) and five touchdowns. He also has caught 30 passes for 272 yards and one touchdown.

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.

The Giants signed Dillon as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2020 NFL Draft.

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The New York Giants practice on Wednesday afternoon (12:30-2:30PM). Head Coach Joe Judge and select players will also address the media.

Aug 172020
 
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New York Giants Training Camp (August 17, 2020)

New York Giants Training Camp – Courtesy of New York Giants

AUGUST 17, 2020 NEW YORK GIANTS TRAINING CAMP MEDIA PRACTICE NOTES…
Some snippets from various media and team sources:

  • Quarterback Daniel Jones was very sharp in 1-on-1 drills, throwing six “touchdowns.”
  • Quarterback Colt McCoy was also sharp in 1-on-1 drills, throwing eight “touchdowns.”
  • Cornerback Darnay Holmes continues to have a strong camp.
  • Wide receiver C.J. Board made a couple of impressive catches, including a leaping touchdown reception in the back corner of the end zone over cornerback Jarren Williams on a pass from quarterback Colt McCoy.
  • Wide receiver Alex Bachman looked very quick and scored three touchdowns in practice.
  • In team drills, cornerback Darnay Holmes made a diving interception in the end zone on  a pass from quarterback Daniel Jones intended for wide receiver Golden Tate. Jones and Tate did connect on a couple of touchdowns during team drills.
  • Quarterback Daniel Jones found wide receiver Derrick Dillon for a touchdown over cornerback Dravon Askew-Henry.
  • Offensive tackle Cam Fleming impressed in 1-on-1 drills.
  • Wide receiver Corey Coleman (knee), tight end Evan Engram (foot), and linebacker Ryan Connelly (knee) showed no ill-effects from last year’s injuries and all moved around well. Coleman in particular looked sharp, including a touchdown catch from quarterback Daniel Jones against cornerback Jarren Williams.
  • Wide receiver Binjimen Victor beat cornerback Corey Ballentine for a touchdown on a pass from quarterback Daniel Jones.
  • Linebacker Cam Brown recovered a fumble during 7-on-7 drills.
  • Linebacker Blake Martinez broke up a pass intended for tight end Levine Toilolo.
  • Defensive lineman Leonard Williams was disruptive on a couple of running plays.
  • The Giants provided an excellent 27-minute overview of today’s practice, which is available on YouTube.

INJURY REPORT…
Cornerback Grant Haley (unknown) worked on the sidelines but did not practice.

GIANTS CUT CHANDLER CATANZARO, SIGN DAYLON MACK …
The New York Giants have released place kicker Chandler Catanzaro. His release was expected with the anticipated signing of place kicker Graham Gano. The Giants signed Catanzaro in July after the team released place kicker Aldrick Rosas.

The Giants also signed defensive lineman Daylon Mack, who was waived by the Baltimore Ravens and Detroit Lions earlier this month. The 23-year old, 6’1”, 340-pound Mack was originally drafted in the 5th round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Ravens. He played in one game last season.

Catanzaro was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Arizona Cardinals after the 2014 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Cardinals (2014-2016), New York Jets (2017, 2019), and Carolina Panthers (2018). Catanzaro retired from football in August 2019 after struggling in the preseason against the Giants. In five NFL seasons (2014-2018), Catanzaro was 119-of-142 (83.8 percent) on field goal attempts and 182-of-196  (92.9 percent) extra point attempts. Sixty percent of his kickoffs resulted in touchbacks.

CB DEANDRE BAKER ARRAIGNMENT SET FOR SEPTEMBER 15 …
Broward County, Florida has set the arraignment for cornerback Deandre Baker for September 15th. Baker is currently on the Commissioner’s Exempt List due to his legal troubles. At the team’s request, he has not participated in any team workouts this offseason. Baker is charged with four counts of robbery with a firearm from an incident that occurred in Florida in May. If convicted, Baker faces a minimum prison sentence of 10 years up to life.

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

THE PLAYERS SPEAK…
Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at YouTube:

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The New York Giants practice again on Tuesday evening (5:45-7:30PM), with Head Coach Joe Judge and select players also addressing the media earlier in the day.

Aug 072020
 
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Zak DeOssie, New York Giants (July 25, 2019)

Zak DeOssie – © USA TODAY Sports

FLORIDA OFFICIALS DECIDE TO PROSECUTE DEANDRE BAKER…
Broward County, Florida officials have decided to prosecute New York Giants cornerback DeAndre Baker on four counts of robbery with a firearm. If convicted, Baker faces a minimum prison sentence of 10 years up to life. Baker was placed on the Commissioner’s Exempt List on July 27th due to his ongoing legal situation. At the team’s request, he has not participated in any team workouts this offseason.

Baker was charged in May with four counts of armed robbery and four counts of armed aggravated assault with a firearm from an incident that allegedly took place at a house party in Miramar, Florida. The incident was allegedly sparked by a game of dice that involved high-stakes gambling and allegedly resulted in Baker robbing party guests at gunpoint. Baker was released on bond after he turned himself into police authorities. Baker’s attorneys claim Baker was the victim of a shakedown.

The Giants drafted Baker in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Baker had an up-and-down rookie season for the Giants. He started 15 of the 16 games he played in, receiving 87 percent of defensive snaps, and finishing the year with 61 tackles and 8 pass defenses. He did not intercept a pass.

ZAK DeOSSIE RETIRES…
New York Giants long snapper Zak DeOssie, who remained an unsigned unrestricted free agent this offseason, has officially retired from football. DeOssie was drafted as a linebacker by the Giants in the 4th round of the 2007 NFL Draft, but spent his entire 13-year career on special teams with the Giants. He was voted to the Pro Bowl in 2008 and 2010. Last November, the Giants placed DeOssie on Injured Reserve with knee and wrist issues.

“To everyone at the New York Football Giants – teammates, coaches, trainers, management, ownership, and everyone else who impacted my career and daily experience in big and small ways: I can’t thank you enough for the best 13 years of my life,” said DeOssie. “I have worked with, and for, the best of the best, and that has made me better in every way, every single day. I am forever grateful for the opportunity, the lifelong friendships, and ten lifetimes worth of memories – the big wins on big stages, the tiny victories behind the scenes, and the challenges that have taught me so much. Eli said it best: Once a Giant, Always a Giant, Only a Giant. What an honor.”

DeOssie’s full retirement statement is available at Giants.com.

GIANTS CUT DOMINIQUE ROSS…
The New York Giants have waived undrafted rookie free agent linebacker Dominique Ross.

Jul 272020
 
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Andrew Thomas, Georgia Bulldogs (November 23, 2019)

Andrew Thomas – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS SIGN CHANDLER CATANZARO…
Although not officially announced yet, the Giants have signed place kicker Chandler Catanzaro to replace place kicker Aldrick Rosas.

The 29-year old Catanzaro was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Arizona Cardinals after the 2014 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Cardinals (2014-2016), New York Jets (2017, 2019), and Carolina Panthers (2018). Catanzaro retired from football in August 2019 after struggling in the preseason against the Giants. In five NFL seasons (2014-2018), Catanzaro was 119-of-142 (83.8 percent) on field goal attempts and 182-of-196  (92.9 percent) extra point attempts. Sixty percent of his kickoffs resulted in touchbacks.

Earlier this month, Rosas was charged with three misdemeanors related to a hit-and-run traffic incident that occurred in California in mid-June. He was cited for reckless driving, hit-and-run property damage, and driving on a suspended license due to a previous DUI. Police also alleged that alcohol was a factor in the accident although no sobriety test was administered since Rosas had fled the scene.

The Giants re-signed Rosas as a restricted free agent to a 1-year, $3.259 million contract in April. None of that money was guaranteed so that full amount will now be credited against the team’s cap.

DEANDRE BAKER PLACED ON COMMISSIONER’S EXEMPT LIST…
The NFL has placed New York Giants cornerback Deandre Baker on the Commissioner’s Exempt List due to his ongoing legal issues in Florida. As long as he is on the list, Baker will continue to be paid but he cannot practice or attend games. If permitted by the team, Baker can participate in team workouts and meetings. However, SNY, ESPN, and The Bergen Record are reporting that the Giants have not given Baker permission to rejoin the team.

The New York Post is reporting that Baker will appeal the League’s decision.

Baker was charged in May with four counts of armed robbery and four counts of armed aggravated assault with a firearm from an incident that allegedly took place at a house party in Miramar, Florida. The incident was allegedly sparked by a game of dice that involved high-stakes gambling and allegedly resulted in Baker robbing party guests at gunpoint. Baker was released on bond after he turned himself into police authorities. Since the incident, the Giants told Baker to stay away from team offseason virtual meetings. Baker’s attorneys claim Baker was the victim of a shakedown.

The Giants drafted Baker in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Baker had an up-and-down rookie season for the Giants. He started 15 of the 16 games he played in, receiving 87 percent of defensive snaps, and finishing the year with 61 tackles and 8 pass defenses. He did not intercept a pass.

MOST OF GIANTS 2020 NFL DRAFT CLASS AGREES TO TERMS…
According to media reports, the New York Giants have agreed to terms with offensive tackle Andrew Thomas, the team’s 1st-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. The contract is a fully-guaranteed 4-year, $32.345 million deal that includes a $21.1 million signing bonus.

Most, if not all, of the rest of the team’s 2020 NFL draft class is now believed to have agreed to terms or actually signed, including offensive tackle Matt Peart (3rd round), cornerback Darnay Holmes (4th round), offensive guard Shane Lemieux (5th round), linebacker Cam Brown (6th round), linebacker Carter Coughlin (7th round), linebacker T.J. Brunson (7th round), defensive back Chris Williamson (7th round), and linebacker Tae Crowder (7th round). There has not yet been any word on safety Xavier McKinney (2nd round).

GIANTS ROOKIES PASS INITIAL COVID TESTS, VETS ARRIVING…
It appears that all of the New York Giants’ quarterbacks, rookies, and rehabbing players who reported to summer training camp in East Rutherford, New Jersey on July 23 have passed their two initial COVID-19 tests, held on July 23 and July 26. The rest of the team is scheduled to arrive on Tuesday, July 27.

Actual practices are not expected to be held until mid-August due to COVID-19 restrictions. All preseason games have been canceled. The Giants’ regular-season Monday night home opener is currently scheduled for September 14th. For the bulk of the players who report on July 28th, the current schedule looks like this:

  • July 28: Report and receive first test; participate in virtual meetings.
  • July 29-30: Return to home/hotel and only participate in virtual meetings.
  • July 31: Report and receive second test; participate in virtual meetings.
  • August 1-2: Players who test negative receive physicals and equipment fitting.
  • August 3-16: Strength and conditioning and on-field walk-throughs.
  • August 17: Helmet and shells practices begin, slowing being ramped up to full-padded work (14 padded practices maximum).

Teams have two options with respect to roster sizes:

(1)  Cut to 80 players by July 28.

or

(2) Stay at 90 players until August 16, but split the team into veteran and rookies/first-year players/rehabbing players/select quarterbacks contingents.

According to media reports, the Giants will conduct most training camp functions at MetLife Stadium in order to be better comply with COVID-19 restrictions. The home and away locker rooms at the stadium will allow for greater social distancing. The Giants will also have access to suites inside the stadium in order to hold team meetings. However, the Giants will still practice at nearby Quest Diagnostics Training Center. Practices will not be open to the public.

Jul 262020
 
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Aldrick Rosas, New York Giants (December 2, 2018)

Aldrick Rosas – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS CUTTING ALDRICK ROSAS…
Multiple media sources are reporting that the New York Giants will cut place kicker Aldrick Rosas before the bulk of the veterans report to training camp in East Rutherford, New Jersey on Tuesday.

Earlier this month, Rosas was charged with three misdemeanors related to a hit-and-run traffic incident that occurred in California in mid-June. He was cited for reckless driving, hit-and-run property damage, and driving on a suspended license due to a previous DUI. Police also alleged that alcohol was a factor in the accident although no sobriety test was administered since Rosas had fled the scene.

Back in June, TMZ broke the story and had originally reported that witnesses saw Rosas allegedly driving erratically around 100 miles per hour and failing to stop at a red light at approximately 8:30AM. He then allegedly crashed into the side of a truck at the intersection, but kept driving. Police reported that Rosas later fled his disabled vehicle on foot. They allegedly found him near the crash site with his hands, legs, and bare feet covered in blood. Rosas was treated at a nearby medical facility before being booked by police.

The Giants re-signed Rosas as a restricted free agent to a 1-year, $3.259 million contract in April. None of that money was guaranteed so that full amount will now be credited against the team’s cap.

After a stellar sophomore pro season in 2018, Rosas regressed in 2019. Rosas was 12-of-17 (70.6 percent) on field goal attempts and missed four of his 39 extra point attempts (89.7 percent). Seventy percent of his kickoffs resulted in touchbacks.

Rosas was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Tennessee Titans after the 2016 NFL Draft. He did not make the team. The Giants signed him to a reserve/futures contract in January 2017. He had a poor first season with the Giants, converting on just 72 percent of his field goals and 87 percent of his extra points. However, in 2018, Rosas made the Pro Bowl after making 32-of-33 field goal attempts, including a team-record 57 yarder.

NEW YORK POST Q&A WITH JOE JUDGE…

ARTICLES…

Jul 152020
 
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Leonard Williams, New York Giants (November 4, 2019)

Leonard Williams – © USA TODAY Sports

DEADLINE FOR MULTIYEAR CONTRACT EXTENSION FOR LEONARD WILLIAMS PASSES…
The NFL deadline for any club that designated a Franchise Player to sign such player to a multiyear contract or extension passed at 4:00PM on Wednesday. Thus, defensive lineman Leonard Williams, who the Giants designated as the team’s Franchise Player in March, will play 2020 on his 1-year, $16.126 million tender.

Earlier this year, the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) filed a grievance on behalf of Williams, arguing that his $16.126 million tender slotted for defensive tackles be increased to the $17.788 tender for defensive ends. The arbitration hearing for this dispute has been delayed due to the COVID-19 issue according to The New York Post.

The Giants acquired Williams by trade from the New York Jets in late October 2019 for two draft picks: a 2020 3rd-round pick and what ended up being a 2021 5th-round pick. He played in eight games for the Giants with five starts, finishing with 26 tackles, 0.5 sacks, 2 pass defenses, and 1 forced fumble.

The 6’5”, 302-pound Williams was the sixth player taken overall in the 2015 NFL Draft by the Jets. In four and a half seasons with the Jets, Williams started 70 games, accruing 240 tackles, 17 sacks, one interception, and two forced fumbles. His best season was 2016, when he was credited with 68 tackles and seven sacks.

ARTICLES…

Jun 152020
 
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Jabrill Peppers, New York Giants (September 29, 2019)

Jabrill Peppers – © USA TODAY Sports

With New York Giants training camp hopefully beginning in late July, BigBlueInteractive.com (BBI) breaks down each of the team’s positional groups until the players report at Quest Diagnostics Training Center. Keep in mind that some of the players discussed may be cut as the 2020 NFL draft class signs their rookie contracts.

FIND A COMPLETE LIST OF ALL BREAKDOWNS HERE

POSITIONAL BREAKDOWN: Defensive Backs

2019 YEAR IN REVIEW: Heading into 2019, fans were generally upbeat about a secondary that was clearly in transition. The Giants had heavily invested in the position by drafting corners Deandre Baker (1st round), Julian Love (4th round), and Corey Ballentine (6th round) in the 2019 NFL Draft. At safety, the team had effectively swapped out Landon Collins (signed by Washington Redskins) and Curtis Riley (signed by Oakland Raiders) for Jabrill Peppers (part of Odell Beckham trade) and Antoine Bethea (signed after he was cut by the Arizona Cardinals). It was expected that Janoris Jenkins would rebound from a somewhat disappointing 2018 season and that Sam Beal (who missed his rookie season due to a shoulder injury) and Grant Haley (who started nine games as an undrafted rookie) would develop and improve. Michael Thomas provided depth and special teams value.

But it was a case of the more things changed, the more they stayed the same. Once again, the Giants were one of the NFL’s worst in pass defense, finishing 28th. In the “you can’t make this shit up” category, the team’s best defensive back, Jenkins, was cut in December after calling a fan a “retard” on Twitter. Baker started 15-of-16 games as a rookie, but was very inconsistent with his work ethic being questioned. Nickel corner Haley regressed and was eventually benched. The injury-prone Beal was placed on IR in September with hamstring and groin injuries, added to the 53-man roster in early November, and missed the last game with another shoulder issue. Ballentine had to deal with being shot right after he was drafted and then being thrust into a nickel corner spot that he was clearly ill-suited to play.

At safety, despite being told by team officials that Bethea still had it, he clearly did not and was a significant liability at free safety both against the pass and the run. Peppers did not make much of impact and was lost for the season in November as his overall play was improving. Michael Thomas played in all 16 games with two starts but clearly wasn’t the answer. Julian Love was moved from cornerback to safety early. He ended up starting five games late in the season, flashing at times but also experiencing growing pains as a rookie.

Overall, the unit was a collective disappointment and a major reason the overall defense finished 25th in yards and 30th in points allowed.

ADDITIONS/SUBTRACTIONS: As mentioned, Janoris Jenkins was waived in December. S Michael Thomas was signed by the Texans and CB Antonio Hamilton was signed by the Chiefs. Safety Antoine Bethea remains an unsigned unrestricted free agent.

Grant Haley was re-signed as an exclusive rights free agent in January. The first player the Giants signed in free agency in March was CB James Bradberry (3-year, $43.5 million contract). S/special teams player Nate Ebner (UFA from Patriots) and CB Dravon Askew-Henry (cut by Steelers last year) were also signed.

The Giants drafted S Xavier McKinney (2nd round), CB Darnay Holmes (4th round), and CB/S Chris Williamson (7th round) in the 2020 NFL Draft. After the draft, rookie free agent additions included CB Christian Angulo, CB Malcolm Elmore, and S Jaquarius Landrews. S Montre Hartage was claimed off of waivers from the Dolphins after the draft as well.

TRAINING CAMP STORY LINES: There is a lot going on here and thus each fan probably has their own top story line. Clearly, one is the offseason drama surrounding 2019 1st-round draft pick Deandre Baker, who may or may not make it to training camp depending on the outcome of his offseason legal troubles (four counts of armed robbery and four counts of armed aggravated assault with a firearm from a bizarre incident in Florida). My personal belief is that the Giants were counting on Baker to form a solid starting CB duo alongside high-priced James Bradberry. Will Baker even be a Giant in 2020? If he is, will he be suspended by the team or the NFL? Did he get scared straight and will he commit himself to the game? If Baker is not part of the equation, the pressure increases to find his replacement among Sam Beal, Corey Ballentine, Darnay Holmes, and possibly Julian Love. Are they up to the task? Can Beal stay healthy? Is Love athletic enough to handle corner at the NFL level? Will Ballentine shine more at outside corner rather than inside at nickel?

Speaking of the nickel spot, one would think the Giants would want Holmes to nail down the position if the rookie can handle it. But there are others possibly in the equation, including Love and maybe Williamson.

At safety, it would appear that Jabrill Peppers and Xavier McKinney will have the inside shot at starting, but the coaches may want to configure packages to get Love on the field as either a third safety or additional corner. Depth is still needed here with Sean Chandler (holdover from 2018/2019), Rashaan Gaulden (added late in 2019), Montre Hartage, Chris Williamson, and Jaquarius Landrews all competing to make the roster.

Big picture is this: for the past three seasons, the Giants have invested a tremendous amount of resources into the defensive backfield, including a trading for a former 1st-round pick (Peppers); spending $43 million on a corner in free agency (Bradberry); and drafting players in the 1st (Baker), 2nd (McKinney), 3rd (Beal),  4th (Love, Holmes), 6th (Ballentine), and 7th (Williamson) rounds. It’s time for the investment to deliver returns and for the Giants to get out of the NFL basement in pass defense.

ON THE BUBBLE: There are currently 18 defensive backs on the roster. Probably only nine or ten will make the final roster. The only sure bets are probably Bradberry, Holmes, Peppers, Love, and McKinney. Baker obviously isn’t safe. Beal has to prove he can be a reliable player.

PREDICTIONS: So much here depends on the new coaching staff, not just Defensive Coordinator Patrick Graham but Defensive Backs Coach Jerome Henderson, the latter coming from Atlanta where his unit struggled at times. It’s also interesting to note that Pat Shurmur holdover Anthony Blevins was moved from assistant special teams coach to assistant defensive backs coach. These three men have to develop all of the talent that been acquired in recent years.

In addition, so much depends on the legal and emotional status of Deandre Baker. He was (and still may be) and important piece of the puzzle. The expectation is that versatile Xavier McKinney, who many felt was the best safety in the draft, will be able to handle the starting free safety spot as a rookie.

My prediction is that if Baker is available and truly focused (two big ifs), this unit could be poised for a big turnaround. There were games last year where Baker did shut down his opponent. He can do it. But how important is the game to him? Usually you can’t count on a person to change their ways, but if anything was going to scare Baker straight, facing a long prison sentence might do the trick. Bradberry should be able to more than adequately handle the other corner spot, replacing Jenkins with less drama. The nickel corner should improve with Holmes, Love, or maybe Williamson an improvement over Haley and Ballentine.

At safety, the closer Peppers plays to the line of scrimmage, the more impact he makes. The drafting of McKinney should enable the coaching staff to play Peppers in a role best suited to his skills. I would not be shocked to see packages that get Peppers, McKinney, and Love all on the field together.

FINAL DEPTH CHART: James Bradberry, Deandre Baker, Sam Beal, Darnay Holmes, Corey Ballentine, Jabrill Peppers, Xavier McKinney, Julian Love, Nate Ebner, Chris Williamson

I’m making some bold assumptions here: Baker being a Giant, Beal staying healthy, and Ballentine and Williamson showing enough to stick. Ebner is strictly a core special teams player who Joe Judge obviously targeted in free agency to lead his unit.

Jun 042020
 
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New York Giants Helmets (September 22, 2019)

© USA TODAY Sports

BABY STEPS – GIANTS BEGIN REOPENING TEAM FACILITY…
The New York Giants announced on Wednesday that the team has “started a slow, steady reopening” of the Quest Diagnostics Training Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey “in accordance with the protocols of the State of New Jersey and the NFL.” The facility had been closed since mid-March due to the COVID-19 situation.

According to a Giants press release, approximately 15-20 team officials returned to the facility on Wednesday, including co-owner John Mara and General Manager Dave Gettleman as well as some football, business, operations, and medical staff. No coaches have yet returned.

The press release continues: “The number of employees in the facility will continue to increase slowly over the course of the next couple weeks with more business people filtering in. For the time being, those employees who can continue to work from home will do so.”

“We have been working diligently over the last couple months to prepare for coming back to the facility, the Quest Diagnostics Training Center,” said Senior Vice president of Medical Services Ronnie Barnes. “The primary focus has been to return our employees safely. And so everything that we have been doing has been related to the safety of our employees and how we can get back to work as safely as possible.

“We’re all happy to be back. We’ve been waiting for a long time. The Giants’ COVID-19 Task Force has been working hard to make this facility as safe as possible. We’ve made a lot of changes; those are all for (employees’) safety and they’re very important. We are following the CDC guidelines, the guidelines from the NFL and guidelines from the National Institute of Health, as well as the state’s protocols.”

DEANDRE BAKER UPDATE…
As previously reported, New York Giants cornerback Deandre Baker was charged last month with four counts of armed robbery and four counts of armed aggravated assault with a firearm from an incident that allegedly took place at a house party in Miramar, Florida. The incident was allegedly sparked by a game of dice that involved high-stakes gambling and allegedly resulted in Baker robbing party guests at gunpoint. Baker was released on bond after he turned himself into police authorities.

Since the incident, the New York Giants told Baker to stay away from team offseason virtual meetings and concentrate on his ongoing legal situation.

In May, Baker’s attorneys claimed Baker was the victim of a shakedown. Now one of his attorneys believes Baker will soon be cleared of all charges. “I think we’ve got the case won, to be honest with you,” Baker’s attorney told SNY. “I think it’s only a matter of time…As soon this dismissal goes (through), he’s going to head back to Jersey and start practicing. If it becomes a charge, then the NFL will suspend him. So the Giants are really just playing it cool right now, which is the right thing to do. Just do nothing until the state makes a decision on what they’re going to do.”

However, even if Baker is legally cleared, the NFL could punish Baker for violating the NFL’s Personal Conduct Policy.

“Hopefully it’s a wake-up call for the young kid,” said Baker’s attorney. “That’s what he needed.”

The Giants drafted Baker in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Baker had an up-and-down rookie season for the Giants. He started 15 of the 16 games he played in, receiving 87 percent of defensive snaps, and finishing the year with 61 tackles and 8 pass defenses. He did not intercept a pass.

GIANTS.COM PLAYER BREAKDOWNS…
Giants.com has produced a number of informative players breakdowns on the New York Giants 2020 NFL Draft class:

ARTICLES…

May 182020
 
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Deandre Baker, New York Giants (December 29, 2019)

Deandre Baker – © USA TODAY Sports

As previously reported, New York Giants cornerback Deandre Baker was charged last Thursday with four counts of armed robbery and four counts of armed aggravated assault with a firearm from an incident that allegedly took place at a house party in Miramar, Florida last Wednesday. The incident was allegedly sparked by a game of dice that involved high-stakes gambling and allegedly resulted in Baker robbing party guests at gunpoint.

While an arrest warrant was issued last Thursday, Baker did not turn himself into police authorities until Saturday morning. Baker spent Saturday night in a Broward County jail, but was released on a $200,000 bond Sunday morning, $25,000 for each of the eight counts against him. No bail was requested by the state prosecutor. Baker was also required to turn in his legally-licensed firearm and is not allowed to leave the state of Florida at this time without permission from the court.

According to multiple media reports, the New York Giants have told Baker to stay away from team offseason virtual meetings and concentrate on his ongoing legal situation.

According to Baker’s attorneys, Baker was the victim of a shakedown and that four of the original witnesses have already recanted their original testimony against Baker. The attorneys claim they have witnesses who can attest to Baker’s innocence and that the original arrest warrant was not accurate at all. One of Baker’s attorneys believes in the end that the state will not officially charge Baker (there is a 30-day window to do so).

“He seems like changed individual,” said the attorney in interview with SNY. “In two days. Sometimes going to jail does that. He’s scared straight. He’s completely focused on what he has to do. He’s just going back to work. And he’s certainly looking forward to nobody taking his position. He doesn’t want anybody taking his position as the Giants’ starting cornerback.”

The Giants drafted Baker in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Baker had an up-and-down rookie season for the Giants. He started 15 of the 16 games he played in, receiving 87 percent of defensive snaps, and finishing the year with 61 tackles and 8 pass defenses. He did not intercept a pass.

May 162020
 
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Deandre Baker, New York Giants (September 22, 2019)

Deandre Baker – © USA TODAY Sports

As previously reported, New York Giants cornerback Deandre Baker was charged on Thursday with four counts of armed robbery and four counts of armed aggravated assault with a firearm. The incident allegedly took place at party in Miramar, Florida on Wednesday and allegedly involved Baker robbing party guests at gunpoint.

While an arrest warrant was issued on Thursday, Baker did not turn himself into police authorities until this morning.

Baker’s lawyer has issued multiple written statements on Instagram over the course of the past two days.

(On Friday): “I want to thank @miramarpd for being professional in regard to surrendering and issues with the case. We understand that the officers can only base warrants on what was told to them at the time. We have had affidavits from several witnesses that also dispute the allegations and exculpate our client. Our investigator has had them for some time. We would have rather presented them to the court at the proper time, rather than in the media, but in this day and age, people rush to judgement. Where some seek publicity, we seek justice. I look forward to moving this case forward to proper conclusion, as we believe our client is innocent of any charges.”

(Saturday morning): “We will be presenting the trove of evidence we have obtained over the past 3 days to the judge at the right time 7 affidavuts (sic) exonerating my client and video evidence.”

(Saturday morning): “Reports are correct that Deandre turned himself in this morning. I am a believer in the system and that if everything works the matter will be appropriately resolved. Both my client and I have felt @miramarpd and the Detective working the case, were accommodating and went out of their way to assure Mr Bakers privacy during this hard time. That is not just lip service, it is fact,, and we appreciate it. This is my 23rd year in practice defending those who I feel are wrongly charged or wrongly treated. That doesn’t mean that all police officers are bad or all are good. We all have jobs to do and I believe we all do them to the best of our ability. Police reports are just that, reports of what was told to them or said to them. Court is what we use to then examine those reports, investigate those claims and allow the Defendant an opportunity to confront the evidence. Don’t rush to judgement.”

The Giants issued the following statement on Thursday: “We are aware of the situation. We have been in contact with Deandre. We have no further comment at this time.”

TheAthletic reported that Baker did not participate in any virtual team meetings this past week.

The Giants drafted Baker in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft. Baker had an up-and-down rookie season for the Giants. He started 15 of the 16 games he played in, receiving 87 percent of defensive snaps, and finishing the year with 61 tackles and 8 pass defenses. He did not intercept a pass.

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