Eli Apple was flagged for holding early in Saturday’s practice, which is not what the Giants want to see from their handsy first-round pick with a penchant for grabbing jerseys. But what he did after that penalty was what got the coaches excited.
“He bounced back and didn’t get one the rest of the (practice),” Ben McAdoo said. “There was tight man-to-man coverage and he was physical out there and he forced guys to the sideline and boundary and it left the quarterback no room to throw the ball, so that was exciting to see.”
It was Apple’s best practice in camp. It included three solid plays in one-on-one drills on the goal line. Twice he broke up passes intended for Victor Cruz and once he stuck with Dwayne Harris on a double move and batted the ball away.
Apple did grab the jersey of Roger Lewis in an 11-on-11 drill as the two jostled for position on a red-zone play, but the officials who were participating in practice did not throw a flag.
Getting Apple to abandon his holding habit has been one of the tasks the defensive coaches have focused on this summer. Defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo said earlier in the week that if Apple continues to do it he would tape his hands into fists so he is unable to grab anything.
It didn’t come to that on Saturday.