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

Aldrick Rosas – © USA TODAY Sports

MONDAY MEDIA SESSION WITH HEAD COACH PAT SHURMUR…
New York Giants Head Coach Pat Shurmur addressed the media on Monday to discuss the team’s 30-27 overtime win over the Chicago Bears (the video is also available at Giants.com):

Opening Remarks: So the one guy that left the game and didn’t come back was Tae Davis with an ankle sprain. We had a couple other guys that were in and out, and if you’re interested in that along the way here, I can talk about it. Again, Tae will most likely be available this week, but we’ll have to see. Other than that, it was a good team win, took us a little longer to win than we liked. The message after the game: toughness and resiliency in a sport where that’s demanded, we were able to display that yesterday. We didn’t do enough things well enough throughout the game and there’s plenty mistakes that need to be cleaned up, and we’re getting that done today. But in the last month, we’ve won three games, and we’re just fighting forward, looking forward to the opportunity to go down and play a division game against the Redskins this week. I’ll try to answer your questions.

Q: Is Sterling (Shepard)’s status up in the air this week (ribs)?

A: By all accounts, he’ll be there, so we’ll see.

Q: How is Saquon (Barkley) feeling today?

A: Fine. He had a little pad adjustment, so he’s fine.

Q: How do you feel when you see him hurdle a guy? Is there any part of you that doesn’t want him to do that or is it part of his repertoire?

A: No, if he can advance the ball, I think that’s a good thing. He really runs under control, he’s got outstanding body control and the fact that he can do that, I think, is amazing. But no, you certainly don’t want a player to do anything reckless and get himself hurt.

Q: You looked like you sat Curtis Riley for a couple series or he was banged up, and Sean Chandler was in there, Michael Thomas was in there. Is that a position that’s in flux?

A: We’re trying to rotate a little bit there just to make sure we’ve got the right people on the field at the right time. Then you saw (Curtis) go back in when Landon (Collins) was in and out. I think it’s important, the way our roster is right now on the backend, I think it’s good for us to get all those guys in the game.

Q: What was your assessment of the onside kick when you went back and saw it on film? It was said there may have been a missed block, and do you think Odell did everything he could?

A: Yeah, I think we just didn’t execute that very well. We would have liked to have seen better blocking in the front line, which would have created more separation for the back line. I think maybe Odell sort of misjudged the pace of the kick, which kind of put him a little bit behind it, and then he tried to do, based on what I saw, what you would do to the kick if it was closer to the sideline, bat it out of bounds. In my mind, we just executed that play poorly. On the flip side, Chris Tabor, their special teams coach, was my special teams coach in Cleveland, so we worked together. I know he’s a very good special teams coach and they executed that play well. They executed well and we didn’t, that’s really the gist of it.

Q: With this offensive line, are you now going into games thinking more progressively than trying to be defensive with that group?

A: No, I think as you start to play behind an offensive line, you have more confidence just as the play caller, there’s certain things you can maybe get to a little quicker. Keep in mind, I think that was as good a front as you’re going to ever play. I think they’re an outstanding group. We had two sacks before the half in just pure drop-back situations, which there’s always contributing factors in sacks. We missed on a twist and then the second one, and then we were just trying to set up the heroic run for Saquon, that’s what we were really trying to do there. We were trying to back it up so he had further to go. No, I think they’re playing better, I really do. They accept the challenge each week to protect for the passer and then also help the runner have room to run, and I think they’re playing better together. I think a lot of it is because they’ve played together longer, like you said.

Q: You’re very in tune with offensive lines for a lot of reasons. What identity do they have? What kind of group do you think they are?

A: I don’t know, somebody asked me the question last week about what I want the identity of our team to be or our offense (to be). I think they need to be physical, number one. They’ve got to be smart, and then they’ve just got to do their jobs. It’s certainly important to block your guy. Most often, offensive linemen are playing against guys that are better than them physically. There’s times you draft a defensive lineman and move him to offense, you don’t see many guys playing offense that get moved to defense. That’s why the coordination of combination blocks and getting to the next level and doing what we can to work together, in most scenarios, it’s five guys trying to get four guys blocked initially, so that’s where the coordination comes in. First off, you’ve got to be able to block your own guy, but then the coordination of working together.

Q: You moved Kyle Lauletta up to the number-two spot yesterday. Was that any indication he’s closer to being ready to go into a game and be comfortable playing?

A: Yeah, I think that’s a fair evaluation of that. Behind the scenes, we’re watching. We evaluate every step every player takes, everything they do all the time, and I’ve said all along he had a long way to go. He came from a small program, he did enough things in the preseason to say he’s good enough to make our team, but we needed to see more from him in order to feel confident in giving him a jersey, and he’s done some things behind the scenes that have given us more of that confidence.

Q: When you say he has ‘made progress’, what does that mean? What can a QB do behind the scenes or on the practice field when he’s working with the scout team to get to that next level?

A: Practice field, working with the scout team, how he prepares, what he looks at in his preparation, the interaction we have with him. ‘Hey, it’s third-and-five, what play do you like?’ Just the interaction you have with a quarterback, it’s pretty in-depth, and we’re fortunate to have a terrific quarterback room here, so just the things that we see as coaches. That’s really what it is.

Q: Does anything change now with your quarterbacks in practice in terms of who is taking scout teams reps, second-team reps?

A: No, and again, because you don’t get to see it and I don’t know how much you’ve ever seen, the starter gets the reps and the two guys that are backups take the scout team reps. Then the individual work and the drill work and all the things necessary to get yourself ready to go, that’s part of, in my opinion, what makes a good backup – being able to go in and execute with very few reps. That’s where experience plays in, that’s why (Alex) Tanney was ahead of Lauletta, in my mind. We’re in a situation now where we feel comfortable with both of them doing it. That’s really it, because you can’t get two quarterbacks ready. You only run 50 or 60 team plays a day, you don’t have enough time to get two guys ready to play. That’s why you have a starter and that’s why you have backups.

Q: Can you shed any more light on the timing of the decision? A week ago it seemed like you said Tanney was ahead of Lauletta. Why this week to make the change?

A: Because I thought it was time, that’s why. That’s the timing of it. We don’t always tell you everything we’re thinking. If you ask me a question, I’ll tell you. Nobody asked me how close he was to Tanney.

Q: You seemed to feel a week ago that Tanney didn’t deserve to be jumped over, he deserved a shot.

A: I didn’t say that. I said don’t dismiss the fact that Tanney could go in and do it. I didn’t give you an order, I didn’t give you the distance between the two. That’s what I said.

Q: Is there an internal plan to get Kyle game reps to evaluate him?

A: We’re trying to win every game we play. You can look at this a lot of different ways, there’s a lot of models to developing a quarterback. A year ago in Kansas City, the only game (Patrick) Mahomes played was the last game of the year that had nothing to do with their playoff status. But they had seen enough to say we’re going to do this with this quarterback, and do this with this quarterback. The models are all different when you develop quarterbacks. We have a starting quarterback that we believe in. We put him out there because we believe he’s going to lead us to victories, and then behind the scenes, much like every other position, we’re developing those players. It’s just like you guys are experts at your job, deciding what the story line is, writing a story and doing your thing – this is our job, this is our profession, this is what we do, we try to develop young men. We do it behind the scenes.

Q: What can a quarterback gain by being active even if he’s not playing? Is there any benefit for Kyle?

A: I don’t think so. Tanney was on the sidelines just as in tune as if he had a uniform on. In my mind, the only thing is you’re one ankle injury from being in there. If they both don’t train to be ready to play, then they’re selling themselves and this organization short, and based on what I’ve seen and based on the way they train, both guys each week get themselves ready to play.

Q: You talked about how Tanney was one level, Lauletta was another level, and now you feel comfortable moving Lauletta up. That’s two and three. Two and one – is there a huge gap between Lauletta and Eli now still?

A: I don’t know that, and you’ll only know that if and when Lauletta gets in the game. I think that’s where you see that. In my mind, Tanney and Lauletta are both valid choices as backups now. You guys can stack them how you want.

Q: Are you open to playing Lauletta before this season is over if you think he gives you the best chance to win?

A: If he’s active to play and for whatever reason the way the game is going, for whatever reason I feel like he gives us a better chance to win, then he’ll go in. But that’s the case for all positions.

Q: Starting him?

A: Eli is our starter.

Q: Eli will start the rest of the year?

A: Eli is going to start this week against the Redskins. I don’t want to get into a play on words here. Eli’s our starter, and we have two backups. Last week, Lauletta dressed as number two.

Q: Are you open to having Lauletta start at some point this season?

A: I want to win every game we play, starting with the Redskins. That will be with Eli as our starter.

Q: If Kyle doesn’t play in a game?

A: Yeah, then he’ll stand there and watch.

Q: You weren’t here last year, there was a young quarterback who didn’t get in a game, so then all you’re evaluating is practice tape. Now you’ve had the chance to work with Kyle every day. Can you determine without him playing in games whether or not he’s the answer?

A: That’s a decision for down the road. We’re determining what they can do all the time.

Q: You’ve mentioned you’re having young players develop everywhere, but you’re seeing Sean Chandler play, Tae Davis play, all these other guys play.

A: Way different than the quarterback position.

Q: You expect Kyle to be the number two this week?

A: There’s a good chance he’ll be the number two this week. Then we’ll visit next week and we’ll talk again. Good chance.

Q: Obviously you’re focused on the Redskins, but is there no discussion as a coaching staff or you with Dave (Gettleman) about down the line? You’re not making any plans for the last three games after this one?

A: Nope, we’re trying to win this game. We’re trying to get 8-8 one game at a time and then see what happens from there. We have all types of discussions behind the scenes, it’s very fluid. Dave and I talk throughout the week, I have conversations with John (Mara), Steve (Tisch), we’re always talking about this team, evaluating or really talking about who played well, who needs to play better as we move forward, this and that. There’s always conversation about what happened, where we’re going, short and long term plans, but again I would never share that with anybody. But don’t be surprised by the answer because that’s something that we all do all the time regardless of your role. As head coach, I’m obviously involved in all of those. When I was a coordinator, I was only involved with the offensive part of it. Those conversations are happening all the time.

Q: So it’s fair to say that the hypotheticals we’re bringing to you, you may already be having those hypothetical questions behind the scenes but you’re just not ready to present those answers?

A: And I may never present those answers. There’s billion-dollar businesses that have issues of the day they don’t share with the world and I don’t think our business is any different.

Q: Mathematically, the likelihood of making the playoffs, you’re not eliminated from anything.

A: That’s right. It’s amazing for some of you to probably come to grips with, but we’re not.

Q: Right, at the moment. But at some point, is that part of the discussion in your mind that if that happens, then maybe we shift gears?

A: Maybe we will at that time, but if we do, then that’s a question and an answer for a different time. I think that’s fair. Are you all good with that?

Q: The guys that missed last week, any chance they’re coming back (this week)?

A: The two that I’m looking at right here, Evan Engram and Lorenzo Carter, we’ll have to see. We’re hopeful, but we’ll see.

Q: You have a decision to make on (Jonathan) Stewart. Have you made that decision yet?

A: We haven’t. I think we have until Thursday, so we’ll have to make that decision by Thursday. We all know what that means, right? We either have to make a decision and put him on the active roster or he’ll be down for the year. We have a couple of days and we’ll have a couple conversations as we go.

Q: What would bringing him back add to a room with Saquon and Wayne Gallman?

A: We appreciate everything he’s done. He’s been around, he’s been in the room, so his presence has been felt all year. That’s partly why he was here. Everybody in the building thinks the world of who Jonathan is as a person and a player, and all along he’s had a good impact on our young rookie running back who has been asked to carry the load. We appreciate that about him. This really on Thursday just becomes a business decision and we’ll just have to see how it fits roster-wise.

Q: Three-quarters of the way through his rookie season, what’s your evaluation of Saquon and how the season has gone for him?

A: I think he’s had a positive impact on our team. I said it early and I really believe it, he’s got a generational spirit in terms of how he competes and I have not been, WE have not been disappointed in (any) way. He’s extremely talented running the ball, catching the ball, he blocks well, we’re doing what we can to give him the football so he has an impact on the game, and I think he has. Last week someone was talking about how he has great production and the answer he gave was, I’m just trying to continue to work on the little things, just keep being you. If that’s your mindset, then we’ll try to encourage that along the way because great players that have that mindset and are worried about getting a little bit better, then I think that’s good for us.

Q: On defense finishing out the game in overtime:

A: They did a good job of working their way down the field, but we had some guys like OV (Olivier Vernon) had his best game by far and I thought he had an impact on the game. B.J. Hill got sacks and was disruptive. I thought Jackrabbit (Janoris Jenkins) competed throughout, and then Tree (Alec Ogletree) had the two interceptions. He’s going to want to move to tight end now. Couple guys on defense make catches and now they want to play offense, which is good. We had some guys, we did some things in the game that were really, really good throughout the game. The game got tied at one point, but at the end of the game when we needed to get a stop, we did. But there were things within the game that were really good, and I think I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fact that those guys had positive a contribution.

Q: Janoris has really flipped his season on its head here. What has he done differently the last few weeks?

A: He just competes and keeps the noise out, that’s it. He’s a tough sucker and I appreciate his spirit, too, because he just keeps competing. Every once in a while people get beat, but he just keeps fighting, competing. He tackled me once. I just like the way he competes, and you’re all becoming well aware I’m fond of the competitive guys and he’s a competitor. I was glad that he was able to be the focal point of that last throw and he was able to disrupt it the way he did. That’s good.

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

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players are off on Tuesday and return to practice on Wednesday.

Nov 062018
 
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Saquon Barkley, New York Giants (October 28, 2018)

Saquon Barkley – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS ACTIVATE R.J MCINTOSH…
The New York Giants have activated defensive end R.J. McIntosh from the Reserve/Non-Football Illness List. To make room for McIntosh on the 53-man roster, the Giants waived wide receiver/returner Quadree Henderson. McIntosh was drafted by the Giants in the 5th round of the 2018 NFL Draft. An undisclosed ailment prevented him from practicing all spring and summer. McIntosh finally began to practice on October 16. Today was the deadline for the Giants to active him, or McIntosh would have been forced to miss his whole rookie season.

HEAD COACH PAT SHURMUR…
The transcript of Pat Shurmur’s press conference on Tuesday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

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

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players are off on Wednesday and return to practice on Thursday.

Oct 302018
 
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Kyle Lauletta, New York Giants (August 30, 2018)

Kyle Lauletta – © USA TODAY Sports

KYLE LAULETTA ARRESTED…
New York Giants rookie quarterback Kyle Lauletta was arrested on Tuesday for a number of infractions related to a traffic incident. According to police, Lauletta allegedly was trying to make a right-hand turn from the wrong lane, failed to follow instructions, and almost struck a police officer. When Lauletta was finally stopped by a second officer, Lauletta allegedly refused to produce his driver’s license and registration or get out of his Jaguar.

Lauletta was charged with eluding police, obstructing administration of law, resisting arrest, reckless driving, disregarding an officer’s directions, improper turn in a marked traffic lane, and failure to remain in a marked lane.

Police also say that Lauletta did the same thing on Monday but was not stopped.

“We were made aware of the situation this morning, and we have been in contact with Kyle,” said Head Coach Pat Shurmur. “We are still in the process of gathering information. This is obviously very disappointing.”

TRADE DEADLINES PASSES…
The 2018 NFL trade deadline was at 4:00PM on Tuesday and the New York Giants did not make any trades this week after trading away cornerback Eli Apple and nose tackle Damon Harrison last week.

According to media reports, the Giants were listening to offers for defensive backs Landon Collins and Janoris Jenkins. The Giants were reportedly seeking a 2nd-round draft pick for Collins.

GIANTS CUT MICHAEL JORDAN…
The New York Giants have waived cornerback Michael Jordan, who the team claimed off of waivers from the Cleveland Browns in September. The 25-year old, 6’1”, 200-pound Jordan was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Los Angeles Rams after the 2016 NFL Draft. He was claimed off of waivers by the Browns in September 2017. Jordan has played in 22 regular-season games with three starts.

HEAD COACH PAT SHURMUR…
The transcript of Pat Shurmur’s press conference on Tuesday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

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

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players are off during the bye week until November 6th.

Oct 182018
 
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Nate Solder, New York Giants (October 7, 2018)

Nate Solder – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
Wide receiver Russell Shepard (neck), left tackle Nate Solder (neck), and linebacker Olivier Vernon (ribs) practiced on a limited basis on Thursday.

Tight ends Evan Engram (knee) and Rhett Ellison (foot) fully practiced.

GIANTS SIGN COREY COLEMAN TO PRACTICE SQUAD…
The New York Giants have signed wide receiver Corey Coleman to the team’s Practice Squad. To make room for Coleman, the Giants terminated the Practice Squad contract of wide receiver Kalif Raymond, who was signed on Tuesday.

The 24-year old, 5’11”, 185-pound Coleman was originally drafted in the 1st round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns. An injury-plagued bust in Cleveland, Coleman has also had brief stints with the Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots this year. Coleman has played in 19 NFL games with 18 starts, accruing 56 catches for 718 yards and five touchdowns.

HEAD COACH PAT SHURMUR…
The transcript of Pat Shurmur’s press conference on Thursday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

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

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The Giants practice on Friday and Saturday in preparation for Monday night’s road game against the Atlanta Falcons. The team’s coordinators address the media on Friday.

Oct 122018
 
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Pat Shurmur and Eli Manning, New York Giants (October 11, 2018)

Pat Shurmur and Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports

FRIDAY MEDIA SESSION WITH HEAD COACH PAT SHURMUR…
New York Giants Head Coach Pat Shurmur addressed the media on Friday to discuss the team’s 34-13 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles (the video is also available at Giants.com):

Opening Remarks: I think I hit it last night, we didn’t play well enough to win in any area and we got beat by a good football team. I still will stand by it’s important that we as players and coaches just do our jobs and do them better. When you look at the game, there’s a lot of things that happened — the score got stretched out early, we had an early turnover, they score a touchdown, we go down and kick a field goal instead of getting seven, which we’ve got to do a better job of. When you look at it, they had four explosive plays, we had seven, but they were very good on third down and very good in the red zone. That kind of translated into points for them and not for us. There’s a lot of areas you could go to to discuss or talk about the game, but I’ll just try to answer your questions.

Q: As you head into this long weekend, is a change of quarterback on the table?

A: No. We believe in Eli.

Q: How about a number-two quarterback? Would you consider moving Kyle (Lauletta) up above Alex (Tanney)?

A: The guys behind, Kyle and Alex, are both working and improving. They’re working each day trying to get themselves ready to play. There’s no reason to discuss that right now.

Q: You said you were not concerned at all about Eli yesterday. Do you feel the same way about all the players in that locker room?

A: I do.

Q: What makes you feel that way?

A: Because I know these players enough now to know that they’re going to keep fighting and try to get better. We’re certainly not where we want to be record-wise, I will acknowledge that, but I do know this – this group of players is going to stay in there, keep working, keep fighting to win a game, and our next one is against Atlanta on Monday night.

Q: Obviously a lot of expectations coming in here and you’re new. How much of a challenge is this for you to keep the locker room together?

A: We lost games. I think what’s important is we keep trying to improve, we keep working, and we keep doing what we can to win the next game. I don’t know anything about expectations. I know there’s reasons why there’s new coaches, I happen to be one of the new coaches in the league from last year, and you’ve got to do what you can to get your locker room right, get everybody playing the right way and coaching the right way, and do it in a way where you can win games.

Q: Am I right that your team has after today, four days of the next five will be off?  Are they off all weekend?

A: We’re going to give them the weekend off. We’ll be back to work early next week, then they’ll get the traditional day off, and then we will be back to work.

Q: Do you tell them after today, clean your mind of this? Or do you want them to figure out what the heck is going on here?

A: When you get to this point, and every team deals with a Thursday night, the schedules for Thursday night are pretty traditional, the players will have the weekend off. It’s been that way everywhere I’ve ever been. So I think what’s important is you try to reflect on where you’re at and where you want to go. Right now, we’re not where we want to be record-wise, so I encourage them to reflect on that and then just try to think of ways that they individually can get better.

Q: How about the idea that on first and long and then continuing through the series, especially third down, you’re not throwing even close to the sticks? There was one play in particular to Odell where he would’ve had to dodge I don’t know how many Eagles rallying to him to even come close to a first down.

A: We had a couple of situations where it was third and super long, so it’s very hard sometimes to throw it to the sticks, and the way that the Eagles and some teams play defense is they did play the sticks, so you throw a little screen and try to run for it. That is that third down situation. In the other ones where it’s third and manageable, you certainly have the ability to throw it past the sticks, which we did.

Q: This is almost like a bye week. Do you approach this as a self-scouting week – “what are we doing right, what are we doing wrong?”

A: Along the lines of what I already said, we will reflect on where we’re at, where we want to go, and the areas we need to get better. I wouldn’t consider it a bye week. It’s a long weekend. And again, it’s not time off, it’s time away.

Q: Saquon Barkley had over 225 yards in total offense. It seems like that’s not translating to opening things up for the rest of the offense. Why is that?

A: I don’t agree with that narrative. He had production and he got the ball in the end zone, and he is part of the offense. I think we go back and forth with this – why didn’t he touch the ball, he touched the ball, he really touched the ball a lot, he didn’t touch the ball enough.

Q: My question is why isn’t it opening up other opportunities for other players within the scheme, given his production?

A: The way the game played out yesterday, it made sense to run the ball in certain situations and he did a good job with the ball in his hands. Then there were areas where we tried to pass the ball when we didn’t have as much success for whatever reason. It always starts with protection and then obviously the receivers and the passer doing the right thing as well. I don’t think that’s it. We got the ball down in the red zone a couple times, we didn’t score. I think that would have made a difference, and then if we don’t turn the ball over early and spot them seven points, that makes a difference. There’s details to it, there’s things that we need to do better. When you sit back and you look at the film critically, that’s what you go back and learn from.

Q: Did you see the video with Odell and the cooling fan?

A: I did not see that. I have obviously been told about it. I think he explained what he was doing, right?

Q: Yeah. You said you didn’t want him doing that stuff.

A: He said he was trying to fire himself him. In my mind, I wouldn’t try to give myself a headache to fire myself up.

Q: Do you have to say something to him about that though?

A: It’s important that all players in all situations keep their composure.

Q: You know that it gets looked at as symbolic of maybe the frustration of the team and sends out some sort of message, you don’t view it that way at all?

A: We all know that everybody’s always watching, so it’s very important what we say, what we do, how we carry ourselves, and when something like that happened, everybody asked him what was going on and he said he was trying to fire himself up. That’s what it was. Is that what I would have done? Absolutely not. Is that what I want my players doing? No. That’s it.

Q: Any injury updates coming out of the game?

A: Cody Latimer hurt his hamstring. You saw it on the one play where he was the gunner, he couldn’t stop. So we’ll have to see where that goes. Other than that, we just have some normal game wear and tear.

Q: What would you say to the idea that has and will gain steam that given your situation this season, and the age of your quarterback, that at number two overall, it was now a mistake to take a running back when you could have taken a quarterback?

A: The idea that Saquon Barkley was a mistake? I don’t see the logic in that. And I just told you that I believe in Eli.

Q: At the end of the half there when Odell went out, did you know prior to him walking off that he needed an IV or is that something you found out later?

A: At the time, I didn’t know that he left, no.

Q: You would have wanted him on the field, I’m assuming?

A: Yes.

Q: Should he have stayed on the field for that play?

A: He had to get an IV, so that’s about what I know about it. He obviously wasn’t available, so I put in another guy.

Q: It looked like Aldrick (Rosas) wasn’t able to get a full swing on that field goal there. Was that his quad?

A: Yeah, it fell short. Bummer. I don’t know. When we talked to him, he was healthy enough to kick for us, it looks like he just mishit it a little bit. It was on track, it was just a little short.

Q: What did you think his max was?

A: We thought that he could make it from there. That’s why we attempted it.

Q: Not in the locker room but on the field, is Nate Solder what you thought he would be?

A: Absolutely. In the locker room, very competitive, very outstanding player. Yes.

Q: You’ve talked about you were the new coach, (Dave Gettleman) came in and reset the culture here bringing in a lot of new players. For the guys that are still here, the questions they’ve gotten is it a carryover from last year or the year before? Do you have to address that with the guys that are holdovers, more so than maybe you would have to address the entire team?

A: We’re trying to grow away from 3-13, so the young players that weren’t here – the Saquon Barkley’s and the Will Hernandez’s, and the guys that are getting a lot of experience, the rookies have to understand that, they weren’t part of it. But they are going to help the guys that were here a year ago, we want to try to help forget that and keep moving, and the record doesn’t speak to that right now. I get that. But you just keep playing and keep working.

Q: That’s the biggest responsibility that you’ve taken on from the very beginning – you weren’t here but you inherited that baggage to deal with.

A: I think the word ‘expectations’ was thrown out earlier, and your question a week ago was panic versus urgency – there is always urgency to grow away from what was bad season. There is urgency. I think that you’re always talking about doing what you can in the moment to win the next game, and that’s how it all starts.

Q: Given your quarterback’s obvious age, do you feel like you have to at some point advance Kyle Lauletta beyond third string snaps and do you feel like if this season doesn’t go the way you hoped that you’d have to take a look at him in a game at some point?

A: What you miss, to your point, I guess because he’s not active on game day, naturally it feels like he’s third, but during the week, he gets as many reps as Alex does, so we are developing him behind the scenes just like we would any rookie. Aside from putting him in the game, he is getting all the work that he can get.

Q: Would you feel the need to put him in a game at some point if the opportunity arises in the season?

A: We’re not talking about a quarterback change.

Q: You said you believe in Eli. It’s very clear that Dave (Gettleman) and John Mara believe in Eli.

A: Sure – and we believe in all the players, that’s important to mention, too.

Q: His teammates, do you get the feeling they all believe in Eli? There are reports that some of them have started to lose some confidence.

A: I don’t know where that came from and nobody has ever said that to me. People that write reports tend to be very resourceful, so I don’t know where that comes from.

Q:  When you look at the season, a lot of us looked at what you did with the Vikings offense ast year – is it confounding to you at all after going to great lengths to fix the offensive line, with the play makers around Eli Manning, that you just don’t score points at a representative level compared to other NFL teams?

A: We haven’t scored enough points, you’re right. Actually, there were games last year when we didn’t score a heck of a lot of points in Minnesota. I think what’s important is, you just keep trying to do that. We moved the ball in the position to score points last night and did not do it. We were stopped on the fourth down, kicked a couple of field goals, and that is where we need to get better. We moved it down there and we didn’t put it in the end zone. The Eagles did. The Eagles won, we lost. That’s the challenge right now is to finish that up the right way. There’s two things – you’re trying to grow away from the season a year ago and everybody’s trying to predict that you’re going to do exactly what you did, and these are different situations. But again, everything is urgent, and we’re trying to make everything as good as we can be. This is a different roster than what we had in Minnesota – different types of players, different skill sets, so we’re trying to just make sure we’re doing the things that they do more.

Q: With one win on October 12th, do you still have hope for this season?

A: Absolutely. That’s why you do this. We just keep going. Everybody around us is doing the math. We don’t do the math, we just keep playing.

Q: Has this turned into more of a rebuilding season than maybe you or others anticipated?

A: When you come into a new situation, you don’t know what to expect because every situation is different. I don’t know what my expectations are. I expect us to win every week, and I think we have a team that can go out and win every week if we play the right way. That’s what I expect.

Q: Do you know why aren’t they playing the right way?

A: We’re playing hard, we’re just not executing throughout the game at the level that we need to, up to our standards.

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

MARSHALL KOEHN RELEASED FROM PRACTICE SQUAD…
The New York Giants have terminated the Practice Squad contract of place kicker Marshall Koehn.

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players are off until Tuesday when they return to practice.

Sep 042018
 
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John Jenkins, Chicago Bears (August 18, 2018)

John Jenkins – © USA TODAY Sports

GIANTS SIGN JOHN JENKINS, WAIVE ROMEO OKWARA…
The New York Giants have signed nose tackle John Jenkins, who was cut by the Chicago Bears on Saturday. The 29-year old, 6’3”, 327-pound Jenkins was originally drafted in the 3rd round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the New Orleans Saints. He has spent time with the Saints (2013-2016), Seattle Seahawks (2016), and Bears (2017-2018). From 2013 to 2015, Jenkins played in 42 regular-season games with 21 starts. However, in 2016 and 2017, Jenkins played in just 17 regular-season games with two starts. He was inactive for eight games in 2017. With only 1.5 career sacks, Jenkins is strictly a run-defending nose tackle-type.

To make room for Jenkins, the Giants waived linebacker Romeo Okwara. The Giants originally signed Okwara as an undrafted free agent defensive end after the 2016 NFL Draft. Okwara played in every game in 2016 with four regular-season starts. He played in the first five games of the 2017 season before being placed on Injured Reserve in October with a knee injury. He was activated off of IR in December but did not play again.

NEW YORK SIGN JOSH BANKS TO PRACTICE SQUAD…
The New York Giants filled their last remaining vacancy on the team’s 10-man Practice Squad on Tuesday by re-signing defensive end Josh Banks, who was waived from the 53-man roster on Sunday. Banks was originally signed by the Giants as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2017 NFL Draft. He spent his rookie season on Injured Reserve with a shoulder injury (torn labrum).

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players return to practice on Wednesday.

Sep 032018
 
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Olivier Vernon, New York Giants (September 10, 2017)

Olivier Vernon – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS TEAM CAPTAINS SELECTED..
Per a vote by New York Giants players and coaches, the following six players have been selected as team captains:

  • Offense: QB Eli Manning and LT Nate Solder
  • Defense: SS Landon Collins and LB Alec Ogletree
  • Special Teams: LS Zak DeOssie and SS Michael Thomas

Manning has now been selected as a team captain for 12 years in a row. DeOssie has been named eight year times in a row.

NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
Not practicing on Monday due to injury were linebacker Olivier Vernon (ankle) and linebacker Tae Davis (unknown).

“(Vernon) was in the training room getting treatment,” said Head Coach Pat Shurmur after practice. “We’re hopeful, but we’ll just have to see. The fact that he was inside today tells you that he wasn’t out here.”

Tight end Evan Engram (concussion) participated with a red, non-contact jersey. Linebacker Connor Barwin (knee) participated in individual drills.

“Yes, (Engram is) still in the protocol,” said Shurmur. “But we’re hopeful.”

NEW YORK SIGN LINEBACKER TO PRACTICE SQUAD…
The New York Giants filled one of their two remaining vacancies on the team’s 10-man Practice Squad on Monday by signing linebacker Ukeme Eligwe, who was cut by the Kansas City Chiefs on Saturday. The 24-year old, 6’2”, 239-pound Eligwe was originally drafted in the 5th round of the 2017 NFL Draft by the Chiefs. As a rookie, Eligwe played in 14 regular-season games with one start. He finished the year with five tackles and one sack.

HEAD COACH PAT SHURMUR…
The transcript of Pat Shurmur’s press conference on Monday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

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

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players are off on Tuesday and return to practice on Wednesday.

Aug 302018
 
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Kyle Lauletta, New York Giants (August 30, 2018)

Kyle Lauletta – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 17 – NEW YORK GIANTS 12…
The New York Giants preseason ended on Thursday night with a 17-12 loss to the New England Patriots at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The game was a boring, glorified scrimmage for back-ups. None of the Giants starters played and Head Coach Pat Shurmur oddly decided not to play second-string quarterback Davis Webb, with Kyle Lauletta getting the start. Even place kicker Aldrick Rosas sat on the bench all night.

Both teams punted twice to start the game. The only play of note being a sack by linebacker Lorenzo Carter on 3rd-and-9 to end the Patriots’ second drive. Aided by two of the new 15-yard, lowering-the-head-to-initiate-contact penalties, the Patriots set up a successful 33-yard field goal on their third drive. The Patriots got the ball back immediately as Lauletta’s deep pass intended for wideout Kalif Raymond was intercepted at the Patriots’ 18-yard line.

After a three-and-out by New England, the Giants went ahead early in the 2nd quarter as wide receiver Amba Etta-Tawo turned a short pass reception from Lauletta into a 41-yard touchdown sprint. Place kicker Marshall Koehn missed the extra point and the Giants led 6-3.

A subsequent New England threat was stopped by a spectacular, diving interception by cornerback Donte Deayon at the Giants’ 6-yard line. After two New York punts and another by New England, Deayon picked off his second pass, this one over the middle, right before halftime.

Lauletta was picked off on the third offensive play of the 3rd quarter on a deep pass intended for wide receiver Roger Lewis, Jr. at the 42-yard line. Six plays later, the Patriots went up 10-6 on quarterback Danny Etling’s 1-yard touchdown pass after a 45-yard deep strike set up the score.

Both teams punted twice after that. The next scoring threat came from the Giants in the 4th quarter as New York drove from their own 1-yard line to the Patriots’ 14. But on 4th-and-6, fourth-string quarterback Alex Tanney’s pass fell incomplete. The game then got comical as Etling scored from 86 yards out on a quarterback bootleg run with none of the Giants’ defenders playing contain. The Giants scored a touchdown with less than a minute left to play to make the score look more respectable, as Tanney hit wide receiver Alonzo Russell from eight yards out.

Lauletta finished the game 8-of-19 for 118 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. Other than Etta-Tawo’s one catch for 41 yards, no one had more than 30 yards receiving for the Giants in the game. The leading runners for New York were Jalen Simmons (11 carries for 41 yards) and Jhurell Pressley (7 carries for 40 yards).

Defensively, Deayon had two interceptions and four pass defenses. Cornerback Chris Lewis-Harris was credited with six tackles and two pass defenses. Carter had one sack and nose tackle Robert Thomas the other.

Video highlights are available at Giants.com.

INACTIVE LIST AND INJURY REPORT…
Not playing for the Giants due to injury were tight end Evan Engram (concussion), linebacker Olivier Vernon (ankle), linebacker Connor Barwin (knee), offensive guard Nick Gates (foot), defensive end R.J. McIntosh (unknown), and safety Darian Thompson (hamstring).

Offensive tackle Nick Becton (ankle) and running back Robert Martin (ankle) left the game with injuries and did not return. Linebacker Avery Moss (knee) left the game, but later returned.

Healthy scratches included place kicker Aldrick Rosas, quarterback Davis Webb, quarterback Eli Manning, wide receiver Cody Latimer, wide receiver Odell Beckham, cornerback Janoris Jenkins, safety Landon Collins, cornerback Eli Apple, running back Saquon Barkley, running back Jonathan Stewart , safety Curtis Riley, cornerback B.W. Webb, linebacker Warren Long, linebacker Alec Ogletree, guard Patrick Omameh, guard Will Hernandez, defensive end Kerry Wynn, tackle Ereck Flowers, center Jon Halapio, tackle Nate Solder, tight end Rhett Ellison, wide receiver Sterling Shepard, linebacker B.J. Goodson, defensive end Dalvin Tomlinson, defensive end B.J. Hill, linebacker Kareem Martin, and nose tackle Damon Harrison.

POST-GAME REACTION…
Video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Pat Shurmur and the following players are available at Giants.com:

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
Teams must cut their rosters to 53 players by 4:00PM ET on Saturday.

Aug 132018
 
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Kyle Lauletta, New York Giants (August 9, 2018)

Kyle Lauletta – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS ROSTER MOVES…
The New York Giants have placed defensive lineman Kristjan Sokoli on season-ending Injured Reserve. Sokoli tore an ACL in one of his knees in Thursday’s preseason game against the Cleveland Browns. To fill that roster spot, the Giants also re-signed rookie free agent cornerback Mike Jones (Temple University), who had been on the roster for a few weeks in May and June.

The Giants Sokoli signed to the Practice Squad in late December 2017. Sokoli was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks. The 6’5”, 300-pound Sokoli has spent time with the Seahawks (2015), Indianapolis Colts (2016), and New Orleans Saints (2017). The Albanian-born player has played both on the offensive and defensive lines.

INJURY REPORT…
Not practicing on Sunday due to injury were wide receiver Travis Rudolph (quad), tight end Ryan O’Malley (ankle), defensive end R.J. McIntosh (unknown – Active/Non-Football Illness list), linebacker Connor Barwin (“soreness”), linebacker Thurston Armbrister (hamstring), cornerback Donte Deayon (hamstring), and safety Darian Thompson (hamstring).

“(Barwin is) just a little sore from the game,” said Head Coach Pat Shurmur. “We’ll see how long he’s out.”

“(McIntosh is) getting better,” said Shurmur. “It’s an extended rehab-type situation so we’ll just have to see when it’s good.”

PRACTICE NOTES…
Some snippets from various media sources:

  • Curtis Riley started at free safety and William Gay was the first-team slot corner.
  • Quarterback Eli Manning hit wide receiver Cody Latimer deep against cornerback Leonard Johnson. Latimer later beat cornerback William Gay across the middle.
  • Quarterback Kyle Lauletta received some second-team reps and quarterback Davis Webb received some first-team reps.
  • Quarterback Eli Manning tossed a shovel pass to tight end Evan Engram in the red zone.
  • Quarterback Eli Manning threw a fade touchdown pass to wide receiver Cody Latimer over cornerback Janoris Jenkins. Center Jon Halapio picked up a blitzing linebacker Alec Ogletree on the play.
  • Quarterback Davis Webb hit running back Wayne Gallman for a touchdown.
  • Quarterback Davis Webb made an excellent throw to wide receiver Sterling Shepard as he broke deep down the sideline.
  • Defensive end Kerry Wynn intercepted a quarterback Davis Webb screen pass and returned it 80 yards for a touchdown.
  • Wide receiver Kalif Raymond beat cornerback Grant Haley deep down the field, but quarterback Kyle Lauletta overthrew him.
  • Wide receiver Alonzo Russell made two long completions, including leaping over cornerback Grant Haley to make a tremendous catch.
  • Cornerback B.W. Webb knocked away a couple of passes.

https://twitter.com/Giants/status/1028717757444096002

HEAD COACH PAT SHURMUR…
The transcript of Pat Shurmur’s press conference on Sunday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

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

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The players will practice on Monday (no public access) before traveling to Michigan to practice against the Detroit Lions on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday (open to public).

Aug 102018
 
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Saquon Barkley, New York Giants (August 9, 2018)

Saquon Barkley – © USA TODAY Sports

CLEVELAND BROWNS 20 – NEW YORK GIANTS 10…
Although the starters did not play long, the New York Giants were clearly out-played in a preseason match-up between the NFL’s two worst teams last season. The Giants fell to the Browns 20-10 on Thursday night at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

The highlight of the night for the Giants came on their very first offensive snap when rookie running back Saquon Barkley broke off a 39-yard run, demonstrating vision, shiftiness, power, and speed. (Barkley’s other four carries picked up a total of four yards before he was pulled for the evening). Despite the big initial gain, the Giants’ first drive stalled at the Cleveland 23-yard line as New York settled for a 42-yard field goal by place kicker Aldrick Rosas.

The Browns responded with a big play of their own, a 32-yard strike from quarterback Tyrod Taylor to wide receiver Jarvis Landry over cornerback Janoris Jenkins. But Landry was flagged for taunting on the play. The defense then held and Cleveland punted.

The Giants’ first-team offense only played one more series (and two overall). The drive ended when with a 10-yard sack on quarterback Eli Manning by a free blitzing linebacker coming up the middle. Manning finished the night 4-of-7 for 26 yards.

Taylor carved up New York’s first-team defense on his second series, completing a 21-yard pass against cornerback Eli Apple and then burning inside linebacker Alec Ogletree on a 36-yard touchdown pass to tight end David Njoku. Browns 7 – Giants 3.

Quarterback Davis Webb entered the game with the second-team offense on the third series and played into the 3rd quarter. The jittery Webb was awful, completing just 9-of-22 passes (41 percent) for 70 yards. The Giants’ offense ground to a halt. In six straight possessions with Webb at the helm, the Giants punted five times and watched the clock expire before halftime at the Cleveland 21-yard line.

Meanwhile, the #1 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, quarterback Baker Mayfield entered the game and put on a show, completing 11-of-20 passes for 212 yards and two touchdowns, including a second touchdown catch by Njoku (from 10 yards out, 2-point conversion attempt failed). Mayfield also completed a 54-yard catch-and-run score to wide receiver Antonio Callaway, who got away from cornerback Leonard Johnson and safety Orion Stewart, early in the 4th quarter.

The Giants’ only other score in the game came early in the 3rd quarter after defensive end Kerry Wynn forced a fumble on a punt return that was recovered by long snapper Zak DeOssie at the Cleveland 14-yard line. Three plays later, running back Jalen Simmons scored from five yards out. This was Webb’s last possession and his sole contribution here was a 6-yard scramble.

By the 4th quarter, both teams were playing their third and fourth teamers, with both Kyle Lauletta (6-of-9 for48 yards) and Alex Tanney (3-of-7 for 49 yards) seeing time at quarterback for the Giants. Neither team scored after Mayfield’s last pass early in the 4th quarter that went for the 54-yard touchdown.

Overall, the Browns out-gained the Giants in total net yards (372 to 310) and net yards passing (322 to 176) while the Giants were superior in first downs (19 to 15) and net rushing yards (134 to 50). The Giants did not turn the football over. Defensively, nose tackle Robert Thomas accrued New York’s lone sack on the night.

Video highlights are available at Giants.com.

INACTIVE LIST AND INJURY REPORT…
Not playing for the Giants due to injury were wide receiver Travis Rudolph (unknown), tight end Ryan O’Malley (foot/ankle), defensive end R.J. McIntosh (unknown – Active/Non-Football Illness list), linebacker Thurston Armbrister (hamstring), cornerback Donte Deayon (hamstring), safety/cornerback William Gay (hamstring), and cornerback/safety Curtis Riley (hamstring).

Wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. and safety Mike Basile were healthy scratches.

POST-GAME REACTION…
Video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Pat Shurmur and the following players are available at Giants.com:

GIANTS SIGN SAFETY MIKE BASILE….
The New York Giants have signed undrafted rookie free agent Mike Basile (Monmouth University). The 6’1”, 185-pound Basile lacks ideal speed, but he is a hard-working, tough, smart, and instinctive football player with good foot quickness.

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
Head Coach Pat Shurmur will address the media by conference call on Friday. The players are off on Saturday, the same day the team’s summer training camp officially ends. The players will practice on Sunday and Monday (no public access) before traveling to Michigan to practice against the Detroit Lions on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday (open to public).