We usually file the practice report blogs pretty quickly, but with the workouts running from 6-8 and then us having to file for the paper, it could take a while. And you don’t even have Marty in Albany to rely on!
Anyway, I’ll try to get them up by 10-10:30 each night. And truthfully, tomorrow should be earlier because we get Tom Coughlin before practice and not after.
So let’s see what happened in Practice Number One, shall we?
Only one player who was eligible to practice did not, and that was C Adam Koets who is still not fully back from his knee surgery. He was joined in the bike area at the start of practice by PUPpy Ramses Barden.
The Giants had Domenik (100 percent healthy) Hixon fielding punts along with Darius Reynaud (whose number 81 jersey still confuses me), rookie Jerrel Jernigan, and Aaron Ross. Jernigan muffed his first attempt badly, trying to catch the Matt Dodge offering like a pass with his hands over his head instead of in a basket. The second one he looked better on.
With David Baas unable to practice until Thursday, Chris Snee shifted over to center with the starting unit. (Sidenote: I know I tweeted about the phrase “starting center Jim Cordle” at the start of practice and some people interpreted that to mean that he was working with the first unit. He was not. I was just speculating on the possibility.) Mitch Petrus took Snee’s spot at right guard next to Kareem McKenzie. On the other side it was David Diehl at left guard and Will Beatty at left tackle as expected.
As for the rest of the offensive starters: Hakeem Nicks and Mario Manningham were the WRs, D.J. Ware was the RB, rookie Henry Hynoski was at FB, and Travis Beckum was at TE. Obviously that could all change once the free agents either sign with the team or are allowed to return to practice. Just to finish the lineup: The quarterback was Manning.
The defensive starters were what you’d expect: Tuck, Joseph, Canty and Pierre-Paul across the front, Boley, Goff and Sintim at linebacker, Webster and Thomas at corner, Rolle and Phillips at safety. (Phillips, by the way, looks like he added a lot of muscle.)
The first 11-on-11 play from scrimmage in 2011 was a handoff to Ware running right (right at Sintim!). The first pass was on the next play, a quick hitch to Manningham.
Manning completed 8 of his 9 passes in 11s, the only one missing on a deep ball for Manningham which he overthrew.
The biggest misstep by the first offensive unit was when Manning dropped back for a pass and Ware appeared to go to the wrong side to block and the two nearly became entangled with each other. (I’m assuming the fault was with Ware and not Manning because, well, you know.) Manning still managed to complete the pass to Hixon.
The second group of linebacker had Dillard in the middle flanked by Ingram and Tracy. Mark Herzlich was playing with the third group and missed a bump on tight end Jake Ballard at one point, allowing him to be open down the seam where Ryan Perrilloux found him.
The player who had the best defensive day was probably Aaron Ross, who broke up a pass from Rosenfels intended for Victor Cruz and then later stepped in front of a Roselfels pass for an interception that would have been returned for a touchdown (or at least for a long way). In 7-on-7s, Ross was all over Nicks on one play, climbing up his back, but Nicks still managed to make the catch.
One player who caught my eye offensively was Devin Thomas. He’s still buried pretty deep on the depth chart, but he looked sure-handed and if Barden and Smith are shelved and there’s no Plax to the rescue, he could come in handy.
Matt Dodge, whose job is hanging by a thread with the acquisition of Steve Weatherford, looked impressive. Of course he always has in practices. He had some long, high punts and (I can’t believe I have to say this but) he held onto every snap.
That’s about it. The team will have a walk-through tomorrow morning to go over corrections from the practice and then return to the field tomorrow night.
And so will I!