There was some hitting going on at practice tonight, and it was probably the first really spirited practice I’ve seen so far. It was also pretty much defensively dominated. But we’ll get into those details in a bit.
First the injuries. Osi Umenyiora was back on the bike, so his situation remains status qu-osi. The two sides are batting ideas back and forth to each other but they remain significantly far apart I’m told and it’s hard to see where this stalemate ends. Technically, he was sidelined with a sore knee.
The others who did not practice: DT Marvin Austin (hip flexor strain), WR Devin Thomas (finger), C Jim Cordle (knee), LB Spencer Paysinger (groin), S Brian Jackson (back), CB Joe Burnett (hamstring), WR Domenik Hixon (knee) and WR Sam Giguere (groin).
Lawrence Tynes was back in pads after missing yesterday with a quad injury, and although there were no kickoffs or field goal attempts he did look fluid as the quarterback in some drills for the cornerbacks. Also DB Cary Harris (shoulder) returned to practice.
One player was injured in practice and had to be carted off the field. It was rookie tackle James Brewer, the fourth-round pick and a mountain of a man. He was dinged up in a 9-on-7 running drill and came limping off the field pointing at his right shin or calf. They examined him and brought the truck around to bring him back to the main building. The Giants are calling it a lower leg injury for now, but I’m sure we’ll get an update in the coming days.
Brewer wasn’t the only one dinged up in that drill, so let’s begin the actual practice report there, with the 9-on-7s. For those who may not know, it’s basically everyone except WRs and CBs mashing into each other in full pads. Will Beatty was actually the first player to start limping when he seemed to injure his foot or ankle on the first snap, but he stayed in. Brandon Jacobs had a run on the second snap but it sounded like David Baas missed an assignment from the way Pat Flaherty was screaming at him. Kareem McKenzie was also shaken up a bit on that play but he stayed in the game. Bradshaw had a run on the third snap and this time Chris Snee was getting up gingerly. That’s because FB Henry Hynoski blocked LB Kenny Ingram into Snee’s back. Charles Scott had a run next and he came away a little gingerly too. All of those guys did remain in practice. Rocky Bernard had two good stops in the middle and rookie Greg Jones showed that he can be in the right spot as hit put a good hit on Scott and then followed it up with a hit on Da’Rel Scott.
In 11-on-11s, the offense started with Bear Pascoe at tight end and Travis Beckum lined up in the slot so there was no fullback. It was the regular defense with Kiwanuka at linebacker, just as Jim Herrmann promised. The team started with a hurry-up segment and Manning completed five straight passes – two to Nicks, one to Beckum and two to Bradshaw … The first pass to Bradshaw was a screen and it was lobbed just over the fingers of Tuck, who was chipped by the running back and seemed disappointed that he had disengaged with Bradshaw … When the twos came out Ingarm got knocked over by a blocker on a D.J. Ware run and had Jake Ballard catch a pass while he was covering him … Ware did a nice job picking up a blitz by Sintim that allowed Rosenfels to connect with Victor Cruz … Michael Coe and Aaron Ross had back-to-back pass breakups … Craig Marshall batted down a pass from David Carr … Ibraham Abdulai made a stop on a Charles Scott run.
In punting drills, there were only two guys working as returners: Jerrel Jernigan and Darius Reynaud. Jernigan looks a lot more confident catching the ball than he did at the start of camp. That may be a role for him this season.
Here are some highlights from the second series of 11-on-11 snaps:
Manning;s pass for Nicks was incomplete but Aaron Ross was flagged by the officials at camp for tugging at his jersey … Jacobs was stopped in the backfield by about three defenders on an ugly play where it looked like he bumped into Manning and center Baas wound up on the ground … Corey Webster broke up a pass for Victor Cruz … Brian Witherspoon came up to make a hit on Charles Scott … Dave Tollefson had one of the only true tackles of the day, hitting and wrapping a running back (missed seeing which one it was) … Rosenfels’ pass for Duke Calhoun was incomplete by Witherspoon had his arms tangled up in Calhoun’s and was flagged for interference … The offense was flagged for illegal motion on a Da’Rel Scott run … It was hard to tell if Greg Jones would have made the play or not but he was in the neighborhood as Andre Brown made a turn upfield on an outside run … Perrilloux completed a pass to Calhoun but would have been sacked by Mark Herzlich .
In the next series of 11-on-11 snaps:
Terrell Thomas intercepted a pass from Manning to Manningham. The QB threw a fade down the left sideline but Manningham ran the wrong route (I assume it was Manningham’s mistake since WR coach Sean Ryan was in his ear after the play) … Ingarm, who saw a few snaps with the first sub unit, did a nice job dropping back in coverage over the slot and making a leaping deflection on a pass for a receiver behind him … Christian Hopkins caught a pass but on his jump he landed right in the arms of Gabe Watson … Calhoun caught a ball deep down the left sideline against Coe but there was a flag on the play and Calhoun was called for offensive interference. It did look like he pushed off a little to get separation. There was also a flag on Mitch Petrus for holding … Carr threw a pass that was behind Pascoe but the tight end made a good adjustment to get his hands on the ball. Unfortunately he dropped it … Hynoski put a good hit on Herzlich on a run by Da’Rel Scott.
In red zone snaps Antrel Rolle made his first pick of the preseason when he went up and wrestled the ball away from Pascoe on the goal line … Reynaud caught a touchdown pass from Carr.
Practice ended with a hurry-up segment that began with the ball on the defensive 45 with 46 seconds left. Here’s how it went:
On first-and-10 Eli completed a pass to Nicks who was being covered by Ross for about 5 yards (even though Kiwanuka would have been able to sack Eli). On second-and-5 Manning completed a 3-yarder to Manningham and he got out of bounds with :35 left. They convered the third-and-2 with a pass to Nicks and got up to the line quickly to spike the ball and stop the clock with :22. On second-and-10 from the 22 Manning was sacked by any of about three defenders. The offense regrouoped and spiked the ball to stop the clock with :08. On fourth-and-16 from the 28, Manning tried to hit Nicks on a deep out but Webster was there to tip the ball away and win the game for the defense.
The players are off tomorrow, Tuesday, and remember if you are coming out to see practices this week they’ve been changed. Now the team will be on the field from 2-4 p.m. Remember that you can call 201-935-8111, ext 9385 for updates on times and availabilities, but in general the practices are free and open to the public as long as they are held outside (in other words if it’s not raining).