Jul 252018
 
Share Button
Saquon Barkley, New York Giants (July 25, 2018)

Saquon Barkley – © USA TODAY Sports

VETERANS REPORT TO NEW YORK GIANTS TRAINING CAMP…
New York Giants quarterbacks, rookies, and select veterans reported to summer training camp last Sunday. The rest of the players reported today. Also, the first rookie practice open to the press (but not public) was held today.

“You got a chance to see the third day of our rookie camp; rookies, select vets and quarterbacks,” said Head Coach Pat Shurmur. “Very valuable time for those guys. I think I mentioned a little bit earlier, but they get a chance to get the first, second, and third installment before the veterans get here. That is very helpful for the rookies. Then the selected vets that didn’t get a bunch of work in the spring, that kind of gets them up to speed, so that’s the idea. As we move forward here, we’re certainly looking forward to the 2018 season. As the coach, I’m going to try and keep the focus on playing football, keep the focus on trying to determine who our initial 53-man roster is, and keep the focus on playing Jacksonville and beyond. So that’s the goal, for us to keep getting better and trained up for what we hope to be a very productive season.”

The first full-team training camp practice and the first practice open to the public will be held on Thursday. The complete training camp schedule is available at Giants.com.

WITH THOMAS MCGAUGHEY AILING, TOM QUINN RETURNS…
The New York Giants simply can not get rid of Tom Quinn. It appeared that the Giants had finally parted ways with Quinn, who served as the team’s special teams coordinator from 2007 to 2017, when they hired Thomas McGaughey to replace him in January 2018. But McGaughey has a medical issue and Giants have hired Quinn as assistant special teams coordinator. Anthony Blevins remains the team’s new assistant special teams coach. Ironically, McGaughey served under Tom Quinn from 2007 to 2010. Now their roles are reversed.

“Tom was in town and available and is back assisting us,” said Head Coach Pat Shurmur. “T-Mac (Thomas McGaughey) had some health issues, so Tom is here to assist in anyway possible. Outstanding coach and was in town, so he’s here. So T-Mac is running things and will have two assistants.”

INJURY REPORT – SAM BEAL LIKELY DONE FOR THE SEASON…
Various media sources are reporting that cornerback Sam Beal, who the Giants selected in the 3rd round of the 2018 Supplemental Draft, will likely miss the entire 2018 season with a shoulder injury. While other options are being discussed, Beal will likely need surgery, which would end his rookie year.

Beal aggravated a pre-existing shoulder issue in Monday’s practice. NJ.com is reporting that Beal had shoulder surgery in February. Oddly, Beal did participate in practice on Wednesday before the injury was revealed to the public.

Defensive lineman R.J. McIntosh (unknown) remains on the Active/Non-Football Illness list and did not practice.

Linebacker Avery Moss (unknown) and safety Darian Thompson (unknown), who were sidelined during spring workouts, both practiced.

REPORT – DAVE GETTLEMAN’S CANCER IS IN REMISSION…
According to The New York Post, New York Giants General Manager Dave Gettleman’s lymphatic cancer is in remission. Recent scans have come back clean. Gettleman is expected to continue to undergo chemotherapy treatments for the time being.

NEW YORK GIANTS SIGN IZAAH LUNSFORD, CUT TWO PLAYERS…
The New York Giants have signed free agent defensive lineman Izaah Lunsford. The 24-year old, 6’3”, 310-pound Lunsford was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Green Bay Packers after the 2017 NFL Draft. He spent all of 2017 on the team’s Practice Squad.

The Giants also waived punter Taylor Symmank, who the team signed in June, and tight end Kyle Carter, who the Giants claimed off of waivers from the Minnesota Vikings in January.

PRACTICE NOTES…
Some snippets from various media sources:

  • Quarterback Eli Manning was given the day off. He did participate in the first two training camp practices on Monday and Tuesday.
  • Veterans present included linebacker Avery Moss, safety Darian Thompson, and safety Orion Stewart.
  • Quarterback Davis Webb made two excellent deep passes.
  • Wide receiver Jawill Davis beat cornerback Grant Haley, but Davis let the ball pass through his hands.

HEAD COACH PAT SHURMUR…
The transcript of Pat Shurmur’s press conference on Wednesday 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:

NY POST Q&A WITH DAVIS WEBB…
Davis Webb talks new mantra as he enters Year 2 with Giants by Steve Serby of The New York Post

BUFFALO BILLS SIGN KEENAN ROBINSON…
The Buffalo Bills have signed New York Giants unrestricted free agent linebacker Keenan Robinson,who was placed on Injured Reserve in November 2017 with a quad injury. Robinson played in six games with three starts and had 32 tackles. He missed the season’s first two games with a concussion.

Robinson was originally drafted in the 4th round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins, where he missed time in 2012 (four games with right pectoral tear), 2013 (entire season with left pectoral tear), 2014 (three games with a knee injury), and 2015 (four games with a shoulder injury). The Giants signed him as a free agent in March 2016.

In 2016, Robinson officially only started 6-of-16 regular-season games, but he was second in playing time on the team among all linebackers (71 percent of all defensive snaps). Robinson finished 2016 with 83 tackles and seven pass defenses.

ARTICLES…

Jul 162018
 
Share Button
Aldrick Rosas, New York Giants (August 31, 2017)

Aldrick Rosas – © USA TODAY Sports

With New York Giants training camp 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.

FIND A COMPLETE LIST OF ALL BREAKDOWNS HERE

POSITIONAL BREAKDOWN: Special Teams

2017 YEAR IN REVIEW: Hired by the team in 2006, Tom Quinn somehow managed to become one of the longest tenured assistant coaches on the New York Giants. From 2006-2017, there was a revolving door of offensive coordinators, defensive coordinators, and position coaches. But Quinn survived each offseason until January 2018 despite the fact that New York’s special teams were annually a sub-par unit. His last year may have been his worst. In 2017, the Giants were:

  • 31st in field goal percentage (72 percent).
  • 32nd in extra point percentage (87 percent).
  • 32nd in net punting (38.6 yards per punt).
  • 28th in kickoff returns (19.6 yards per return).
  • 31st in punt returns (5.5 yards per return).
  • 14th in kickoff coverage (20.5 yards per return).
  • 27th in punt coverage (10.4 yards per return).

In short, the Giants were a train wreck on special teams.

ADDITIONS/SUBTRACTIONS: Punter Brad Wing’s statistics plummeted in 2017 and the Giants cut him in March. Punt/kickoff returner Dwayne Harris spent most of the season on IR and was also cut in March.

Place kicker Marshall Koehn was signed in January 2018. The Giants acquired punter Riley Dixon by trade from the Denver Broncos shortly before the draft. The Giants also signed punter Taylor Symmank in June.

TRAINING CAMP STORY LINES: Enter Thomas McGaughey as the team’s new special teams coach. Ironically, McGaughey served under Tom Quinn from 2007 to 2010. Even more ironically, the Panthers decided to let McGaughey walk when his contract expired as they wanted to promote former Giants’ linebacker Chase Blackburn to the position.

Riley Dixon replaces Brad Wing as punter. Both players were acquired by trade. Hopefully, Dixon works out better than Wing did. The 6’4”, 221-pound Dixon was originally drafted in the 7th round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Broncos. In 16 regular-season games as a rookie, Dixon punted 89 times and averaged 45.7 yards per punt (41.3 yard net). He was named to the all-rookie team. In 2017, Dixon punted 73 times and averaged 45.6 yards per punt (40.2 yard net) with two blocked punts.

The 6’2”, 195-pound Taylor Symmank was not drafted in 2016. The Minnesota Vikings signed him in January 2017 and waived him in early September of that year. Symmank punted nine times during the 2017 preseason, averaging 42.9 yards per punt.

More media and fan focus is likely to be on Aldrick Rosas. The Giants gambled on the green kicker in 2017 and got burned. Rosas was 17-of-25 (72 percent) on field goals and 20-of-23 (87 percent on extra points). Most alarming was his inconsistency on field goal attempts from 30 to 49 yards out, where he was 7-of-14 (50 percent). Somewhat surprisingly, the Giants still have not signed a veteran to compete against him. Marshall Koehn was originally signed by the Miami Dolphins as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2016 NFL Draft. He has spent time with the Dolphins (2016), Minnesota Vikings (2017), and Cincinnati Bengals (2017), but he’s played in only one regular-season game with no field goal attempts. So the new coaching staff also appears enamored with Rosas’ potential. Will their patience pay off?

With Dwayne Harris gone, it is not clear who will return kickoffs and punts for the team in 2018. The diminutive Kalif Raymond ended up the leading kickoff and punt returner last season, but there is no guarantee that he will even make the 2018 squad. Even if he does, ball security is an issue with him as Raymond has seven fumbles in his 12 NFL regular-season games.

The good news is that it appears the Giants made a conscious effort to sign good special teams players in the offseason, including wide receiver Russell Shepard, safety Michael Thomas, wide receiver Cody Latimer, and cornerback Teddy Williams.

ON THE BUBBLE: Everyone. Kickers don’t need to know schemes or playbooks. They are easily replaceable if a decent one hits the waiver wire. The 2019 7th rounder the Giants gave the Broncos for Riley Dixon is a conditional pick. So he’s not safe. The Giants kick and punt returners also may not be on the roster yet.

FROM THE COACHES: Special Teams Coordinator Thomas McGaughey on Michael Thomas: “Absolutely (one of the best special teams players in the NFL). Mike is the ultimate competitor, he does an outstanding job in the coverage game, he’s a smart player…Mike is a high impact player and we look forward to him making big plays.”

McGaughey on Aldrick Rosas: “I see a kid that was a rookie last year and like most rookies in this league, they’re inconsistent. It’s rare where you see a rookie that just comes in and just rips it up just walking through the door. He’s young and like Dave Gettleman always says, we’re not going to give up on talent. He’s a talented guy and there’s some things that he can do that a lot of people can’t do and I think there’s some talent there and we’re going to work with that talent.”

Head Coach Pat Shurmur on whether or not he would risk Saquon Barkley on returns: “He’ll perform return duties – typically, not normally your first returner.”

PREDICTIONS: Special teams studs Cody Latimer and Mike Thomas should really help the coverage units. More linebackers on the roster such as Lorenzo Carter should also help. Riley Dixon most likely will be the punter. If Aldrick Rosas is shaky in the preseason, look for the Giants to make a move either by trade or picking up a discarded veteran. Who returns kickoffs? Who returns punts? With so many unknowns, Thomas McGaughey is not in an enviable position.

FINAL DEPTH CHART: At this point, it would appear Riley Dixon will be the punter. The Giants obviously are pulling for Aldrick Rosas to nail down the place-kicking job. Are the returners even on the roster? If the answer is yes, Kalif Raymond probably makes the team.

Jun 052018
 
Share Button
Dave Gettleman, New York Giants (December 29, 2017)

Dave Gettleman – © USA TODAY Sports

DAVE GETTLEMAN DIAGNOSED WITH CANCER…
New York Giants General Manager Dave Gettleman has been diagnosed with lymphoma, a type of cancer that starts in lymphatic cells that are part of the body’s immune system.

“Recently, I underwent an annual physical, during which it was discovered I have lymphoma,” said Gettleman in a prepared statement. “Over the past week, I have undergone more testing to determine the course of treatment, which is scheduled to start in the very near future. The doctor’s outlook for the treatment and the prognosis is positive, and so am I.

“I will continue to work as much as the treatment process will allow, and as they know, when I am not in the office, I will be in constant communication with (Head Coach) Pat (Shurmur), (Assistant General Manager) Kevin (Abrams) and the rest of our staff.

“I am thankful to John Mara and Steve Tisch and our organization for their support and encouragement, and to Ronnie Barnes for his guidance and assistance. And, of course, to my wife Joanne and our children for their love and support.

“And I want to thank you in advance for respecting my privacy and that of my family as we work our way through this. I look forward to being back at full strength and devoting all my energy to helping make this 2018 New York Giants team the best it can be.”

NEW YORK GIANTS SIGN PUNTER TAYLOR SYMMANK…
The New York Giants have signed unrestricted free agent punter Taylor Symmank. The 25-year old, 6’2”, 195-pound Symmank was not drafted in 2016. The Minnesota Vikings signed him in January 2017 and waived him in early September of that year. Symmank punted nine times during the 2017 preseason, averaging 42.9 yards per punt.

NEW YORK GIANTS OTA PRACTICE #8…
The Giants held their eighth voluntary organized team activity (OTA) practices on Tuesday. No live contact is permitted during OTAs, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are allowed.

The practice was not open to the media, but Giants.com provided the following summaries of the action:

The two remaining OTA practices will be held on Wednesday and Thursday. A mandatory mini-camp will be held on June 12-14.

ARTICLES…