The Giants had a tryout at minicamp practice Wednesday, only it wasn't a player. It was a drone.
The team's video department used a remote-controlled DJI Phantom 3 to hover over parts of the workout and video plays from a unique overhead angle. Several other teams also have used drones, including the Patriots and the Cowboys. Whether the Giants continue it depends on how it worked and what information the coaching staff is able to glean from the new perspective.
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It was hard to miss the white buzzing device that floated above the playing surface on a practice field, but quarterbacks Eli Manning and Ryan Nassib insisted they didn't even notice the new addition. Others saw it but were unimpressed; center Weston Richburg said he caught staffers practicing with the equipment on empty fields last week so he was expecting to see it soon.
A few, though, marveled at the gadget.
"That stuff is crazy," defensive lineman Cullen Jenkins said, thinking back to the technology in use when he began his NFL career in 2003. He expressed skepticism, though, when asked if the drone will be able to provide a substantial addition to the video study the team does on a daily basis.
"Probably nothing much," he said. "But it looks cool."
The Prince of picks?
Prince Amukamara thinks his coverage can stand with the NFL's best cornerbacks, the likes of Richard Sherman and Darrelle Revis and Patrick Peterson. It's what happens next that separates them.
"When I see their play, the only thing that is mostly different is the ball production," Amukamara said. "My main goal is to get my hands on as many balls as I can."
In four seasons, Amukamara has had only six interceptions, including three in an injury-shortened 2014. During that time Sherman has 24, Peterson has 15 and Revis has 9.
So far in two days of minicamp practices, Amukamara has two interceptions.
"Ball production is huge not only for me but for the team," Amukamara said. "It definitely helps me out, but in the main stream of things, it helps the team out. So any time that the DBs can get our hands on the ball, we are going to make the most of it."
Asked if he is closer to the group of elite cornerbacks this year than at any point in his career, Amukamara said: "Without a doubt."
OL Eric Herman and DT Dominique Hamilton mixed it up with each other late in practice before being separated by teammates . . . OL Michael Bamiro (Stony Brook) suffered a cramp in his left calf and took some ribbing from teammates for his theatrics as he fell to the ground and howled in pain. Many thought it was a more serious injury . . . The players filmed their video introductions for network broadcasts Wednesday, which included them stating their name and alma mater for the camera. WR Corey Washington put a spin on his Division II school by adding emphasis at the beginning and saying he is from "THE Newberry College."