The Giants selected Eli Apple with their first-round draft pick on Thursday night.
But where has he been since then?
While many other first-rounders have been paraded about by their new teams in recent days, appearing at fan parties and news conferences to trumpet their arrivals, Apple has been chilling at home getting ready for the start of rookie minicamp on Thursday. And that’s the way he and his family like it.
“We love how the Giants do business,” Tim Apple, Eli’s stepfather, told Newsday. “They wanted to finalize their draft process and then we don’t report until the rookie camp and that’s when everything will begin. It gives you time to breathe, collect, and learn some things before you get out in front of the media to answer questions about a team you are just joining and you really don’t have all the information on yet.”
Apple did do some interviews and held a conference call on Thursday night, but nothing since then.
“There are no great celebrations, no nothing,” Tim Apple added, with a near sigh of relief.
Soon enough, the spotlight will be back on Eli. The four-day minicamp begins with check-in on Thursday and the first on-field workouts on Friday. Apple will be the star attraction, and his potential one-on-ones with second-round pick Sterling Shepard should be exciting to watch . . . even if the camp trends toward the mundane in general.
“The rookie minicamp is more of an orientation,” coach Ben McAdoo said on Saturday. “We want to bring them in, introduce them to the first install with normal down-and-distance install, teach them how we’re going to practice, let them know where the restrooms are, and just get their feet wet a little bit. We’re not going to be out there for three hours practicing, we’re just going to introduce them to things.”
The biggest adjustment for the Apple family may be in rooting for the Giants. They are from the southern part of New Jersey — Eagles territory — and Tim Apple grew up rooting for that team. He was even at the Vet for the NFC Championship Game against the Cowboys in 1981 that sent the Eagles to Super Bowl XV.
Tim Apple said he became more “detached” from the Eagles in recent years, though, especially as he became more immersed in following Eli Apple and Ohio State. Most of his Sundays were spent traveling home from Buckeyes games instead of watching the Eagles. He joked that he basically missed the entire Chip Kelly Era in Philadelphia, perhaps gladly.
“It doesn’t really matter to me,” he said of his former favorite NFC East team, “and anything that still mattered went out the window around 9:15 on Thursday night. Go Big Blue!”