When the Giants extended left tackle Andrew Thomas’ contract at the start of training camp Wednesday, it marked the third big-money extension doled out in recent months by general manager Joe Schoen.
The total guarantees the Giants have given out this year – on deals with Thomas, Daniel Jones and Dexter Lawrence – has reached $208 million. All three are homegrown Giants.
And Lawrence, as you’d expect, loved seeing those commitments.
“It just shows the belief that the organization has in us and the hard work that we put in to earn that,” he said. “I’m excited because things like that build confidence into a person. The more confidence we have, the better the team will be.”
Confidence would be a good thing for the Giants, especially when they take on NFC East foes. Lawrence is keenly aware that the Giants have more to do on that front. The Giants were swept by both the Eagles and Cowboys in the division last year.
“[Coach Brian Daboll] doesn’t really have to say anything [on that subject]," Lawrence said. “I think as a position group, you want to dominate every team but more importantly the teams within the division, simply because that’s the way to the playoffs. And, the playoffs gives us a chance to win the Super Bowl. [Daboll] doesn’t really have to say much about that. I think that’s within the players.”
Asked about the Giants building toward better days, Lawrence uncharacteristically balked.
“I don’t want to talk about building,” he said. “It’s more about doing at this point. [I'm] going into my fifth season, and I hate losing...I want to talk about what we are doing today to get better for tomorrow, and then that day leads into the season. You all can talk about building, but our mindset is winning."
In the center of it
At the center position, Daboll has instituted a rotation between Ben Bredeson and rookie (and presumed starter) John Michael Schmitz Jr.
The two are alternating days as starters.
“[Offensive line coach] Bobby Johnson has done a good job,” Daboll said. “I think we talked about this last year quite a bit, relative to the rotation for the offensive linemen. You will see, I would say, a good amount of rotation on a day-to-day basis. Sometimes a period-to-period basis.”
Bredeson is also in the mix at guard.
An explosive offense?
The one-two punch of Saquon Barkley and Darren Waller might be enough to cure the Giants of their woes when it comes to explosive plays. The Giants finished last in the league in that category – which is defined as pass plays of more than 20 yards. Waller has been absolutely dominant during the two days of training camp. Daboll has talked about amping down the reps for Waller at some point. Which would seem prudent, to say the least.