CINCINNATI - In the offseason and spring, when Kerry Wynn was omnipresent in the Giants' weight room and impressing in the OTAs, he made it clear what he wanted to accomplish this season.
His stated goal was to work as hard as he could to get on the field, and once there, never give the coaches a reason to take him off of it.
He's halfway there.
Wynn is listed as a starting defensive end for the Giants on their first depth chart of the season. Yes, it's a very unofficial document. Yes, there will be a rotation of players at the position. Yes, if Jason Pierre-Paul was here, it would be a very different story.
But the fact remains that Wynn is, in title, a starter.
"To be honest, I haven't looked too much into it," Wynn said on Tuesday. "Whether I'm a starter or a second-team player, I'm going in with the same mindset to go in and do what I can to help the team and make sure I'm doing my job."
Wynn made the team last year as a longshot undrafted rookie and wound up shining in the few games he appeared in down the stretch. Now his name is being bandied about by the coaches and front office as one of the players they'll rely on to help replace Pierre-Paul.
"I love the Giants organization and I want to be here a long time," he said. "But if I'm going to be here for a long time, I have to make the most of my opportunities and perform."
He's getting one now. And while he insists that his mind is not on the depth chart right now, he clearly has eyes on what it will look like for that first defensive snap of the game on Sept. 13 against the Cowboys.
"I feel like I can be a starter," he said.
Not only in name, but in actuality.