Giants running back Wayne Gallman rushes past linebacker Devante Downs...

Giants running back Wayne Gallman rushes past linebacker Devante Downs during a scrimmage at MetLife Stadium on Friday. Credit: AP/Adam Hunger

It isn’t just rookies who find themselves on roster bubbles at this time of the year.

Running back Wayne Gallman is fighting for a spot on the team as he enters his fourth season with the Giants, so much so that before Friday night’s scrimmage coach Joe Judge challenged him directly to make an impact in the event.

“We’ve told him we want to see how he responds in competitive situations,” Judge said.

And how did that work out?

“He had a good night,” Judge said.

Gallman was the only Giants player to reach the end zone, scoring on a 43-yard run up the middle and again on a 5-yard touchdown pass from Cooper Rush. On a team that already has Saquon Barkley as the established starter and picked up veteran Dion Lewis in the offseason to help with pass protection and other duties, Gallman’s performance may have been enough to keep him around.

“He’s a guy who’s really flashed over the course of the entire training camp,” Judge said. “He’s shown a lot of potential throughout his career. He’s shown a lot of improvement for us, and we’re happy with the night he had [Friday].”

New York Giants running back Wayne Gallman #22 carries the...

New York Giants running back Wayne Gallman #22 carries the ball setting up a first and goal during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford NJ on Sept 29th, 2019. Credit: Daniel De Mato

It's 'normal' jersey swap, but banned

One of the few parts of the Friday night scrimmage that actually did feel “normal” came after the action when WR Alex Bachman and CB Darney Holmes met near midfield to exchange jerseys. The two players were high school teammates in California and have been practicing against each other all training camp, but they clearly wanted to remember this competition with no guarantee that they will remain teammates after cutdowns next weekend.

Of course, even “normal” is no longer normal.

The NFL’s new COVID-19 protocols will not allow players from opposing teams to swap jerseys after their games, as has become a tradition and sign of mutual respect in recent years. But what happens when the two players are on the same team? Well, it’s doubtful anyone from the league offices will be cracking down on them.

Giant steps

The Giants will hold a second Blue and White scrimmage on Thursday afternoon at MetLife Stadium. It will be the final on-field event of the preseason, with the players to be off on Friday and Saturday. It will also be the last chance for players on the bubble to impress the coaches and front office. The team must trim its roster to 53 players by Saturday afternoon . . . On Saturday the Giants officially signed CBs KeiVarae Russell and Brandon Williams. They waived CB Christian Angulo and RB Javon Leake to make room on the roster.

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