I could probably do a full practice report focusing on just one player: Marcus Harris.
That’s how big of a day this was for the second-year player (he was on the practice squad last year) who got his first chance to run with the big boys. With Jerrel Jernigan sidelined with a right knee injury, Harris stepped into the starting role for three-receiver sets (Rueben Randle was the other outside receiver with Cruz in the slot) and there were a lot of them. He caught just about every pass thrown his way, making some nice grabs on high passes and ones over the middle. He looked, well, like he belonged.
He even provided a little drama for us! Late in practice he jumped up for an Eli Manning pass in traffic and came down with a knee injury. He was taken to the sideline and examined by the doctors. In a minute or two he was back on his feet, though, and jogging it off. He eventually went back on the field with the team.
The Giants are very high on Harris, who goes by the nickname “Soup.” Why? It’s short for “Superman” and was given to him by a high school teammate: Eagles receiver Jeremy Maclin.
Ok, a few notes about other injured guys.
Geoff Schwartz did not play and Weston Richburg took his place at left guard with the starters. That meant that for many offensive drills the Giants had three first-year players running with the first team: Harris, Richburg and Andre Williams. I can’t ever remember that being the case for the Giants. It shows that they like their young players and that Tom Coughlin is more open to letting them grow with the starters than he has been in the past.
Kelcy Quarles had to be carted off with an ankle injury suffered during 9-on-7 running drills. He was taken for x-rays.
A few other plays and players that stood out:
Showing shades of last year’s opening night loss to the Cowboys, Eli Manning tried to spike a short screen pass but wound up hitting fullback Henry Hynoski in the back. The ball bounced into the air where it was picked off by Cullen Jenkins. Not good … Victor Cruz, who has had a quiet summer, tried to make a one-handed catch in the end zone. He was open but it looked like Manning put the ball just a hair too far in front of him … Recently signed CB Chandler Fenner made a nice play batting away a fade pass from Manning to Rueben Randle in the end zone. Later in practice he had an interception, cutting in front of even newer TE Jerome Chandler. Both players wear number 48 … Corey Washington almost pulled in a deep pass from Curtis Painter but Zack Bowman got his hand in there just enough to pop it out … Walter Thurmond III continued to haunt Victor Cruz, stepping in front of him to make an interception on a pass from Manning … Manning hit Randle deep down the right sideline, rolling out and lofting a pass over cornerback Jayron Hosley … Michael Cox dropped a toss from QB Curtis Painter on a run play to the left … In the two-minute drill that ended practice Ryan Nassib drove the team towards the goal line but was unable to spike the ball to stop the clock before time expired. Nassib was 6-for-8 on the drive. Nis last pass was a completion to Larry Donnell but the tight end was in bounds and the Giants couldn’t get to the line in time to spike it.