Major Giant Concerns

The New York Giants have several major concerns as we head into another week of training camp. Not only are they faced with a shorten training camp , they must find answers and resolutions to the following questions:

1. What to do with Osi Umenyiora? At this point, the answer is obvious not only to Giant management, but to the media and fans as well. Regardless who is to blame in this, the Giants need to trade Umenyiora and get the best offer they can. originally, the Giants were looking for at least a 1st rounder as compensation, which I felt was unrealistic. The Giants could and should be able to receive a 2nd and 5th rounder as compensation or perhaps an NFL player and a draft pick for Umenyiora. There have been rumors flying around with teams like Seattle, St. Louis, Denver, Baltimore, San Diego and Atlanta as possible teams interested in Umenyiora.Whether these rumors are true or not, Umenyiora had a solid season last season and the Giants find a taker.

2. The TE position: With the lost of Kevin Boss (signed with the Raiders), the Giants need to find a TE. Currently, the Giants have Travis Beckum slated as their #1 TE. Beckum has skills as a receiver, however his blocking ability doesn’t quite match up with the Giants offensive schemes which requires their TE’s to block. Behind Beckum are two solid blockers in Jake Ballard and Bear Pascoe (who will most likely be the starting fullback, unless rookie Henry Hynoski impresses everyone in training camp and wins the job). The Giants need a TE who is not one-dimensional. The Giants need a TE who can block and catch the ball. Having a one-dimensional TE would certainly give opposing teams an idea what type of play the Giants are going to run and make the Giants a more predictable team.

3. Injury of Amukamara: Listed as a broken bone in his foot, which will sideline him for the next 2 months and possibly another full month after that to see action. The Giants face the season with Corey Webster and Terrell Thomas as the starters. The only backup depth is Aaron Ross, who thus far has been a disappointment for the Giants. The loss to Amukamara is a major setback for this team as Amukamara is the team’s best one on one cover guy (even as a rookie) and the Giants depth at DB is very thin.

Aside from these 3 issues, the Giants do have some good things to smile about. Over the next several weeks I will be following the team throughout training camp and report on any news from possibly trades to injuries.

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BREAKING NEWS: Prince Amukamara Breaks Foot, Surgery Needed

We’re not joking.

To make matters worse, Giants tight end Ben Patrick retired today and Osi Umenyiora is still unhappy about his contract.  Things are not looking good for the Giants.

Could this offseason go any worse for the G-Men?  With Bruce Johnson lost for the year, the Giants are now very shallow in the secondary.  Big Blue still has Corey Webster, Terrell Thomas, and Aaron Ross as their three feature cornerbacks, but Prince would have rounded out that group very nicely.

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Giants Training Camp Update

Ryan Perrilloux, the young quaterback the Giants signed out of the UFL before the lockout began, has a tremendous arm. He showed it off with a couple of great throws on deep outs, one to Beckum and one to Ballard. Of course, Perrilloux also threw the night’s only interception, a badly thrown ball intended for Jerrel Jernigan that Brian Witherspoon hauled in. Again an uphill battle. The Giants have only carried two quarterbacks under Tom Coughlin. Eli Manning’s one and the other will likely be Sage Rosenfels or Jim Sorgi. Also, David Carr has a great shot at winning the backup spot. Undrafted free agent fullback Henry Hynoski is getting all the reps at fullback right now with Bear Pascoe unable to practice yet due to the CBA not being finalized. He didn’t do anything special Wednesday night, but the reps have to help his chances.

From Inside Football about Henry Hynoski

FB Henry Hynoski continues to show impressive hands, catching nearly everything thrown his way out of the backfield. If Bear Pascoe is moved back to tight end, the Giants would appear to be in good shape with Hynoski handling the lead blocking role.

The Giants are clearly worried about their FB position as they pursued both John Kuhn and Vontay Leach, but Hynoski has a real shot to stand out and win a roster spot.

From NJ.com/giants’s Mike Garfolo (he writes the best practice reports and game recaps of any beat writer of any team I’ve read)

The linebackers are impressing.

Translation: there’s lots of playing time to be won for the Giants’ young linebackers. And some of them stated their case by making some big plays on Wednesday night in the first full-pads practice of camp.

“They’ve been aggressive and noteworthy in their play,” coach Tom Coughlin said after practice. “Sometimes they’re in the wrong spot or something, but they recover and they seem to be able to go and make some things happen. I like the way they’re running around.”

one of the players making the biggest impression is Kenny Ingram, a former 6’6 FSU Safety. Ingram spent last year on the practice squad as he transitioned to linebacker and from reports early seems to be impressing all over the field. He could be a player to keep an eye on for Giants fans as a final roster addition this year.  Ingram, a former safety, showed his athleticism by jamming the tight end and then crossing the middle of the field to quickly make a stop on WR Darius Reynaud as he caught a ball over the middle. (S Jarrard Tarrant was there and probably should have picked the pass off but whiffed completely.) And again, Ingram used his wheels to track down RB Charles Scotton a screen pass.  From a couple of days ago: LB Kenny Ingram flashed once tonight when he did a good job of avoiding traffic to make a stop on Scott up the middle.

Also making plays is Boston College LB Mark Herzlich, who apparently will have a 60 minutes special air in September. What happens if he doesn’t make the team? Herzlich, who is being trailed by “60 Minutes” cameras for a feature to be aired in September (guess he’s making the team, huh?) came out of nowhere to make a stop on a run that looked like it was going to be a huge gainer. There was nobody in an enormous gap in the defensive line except OL Mitch Petrus, but Herzlich somehow got there to turn a big gasher into a short gainer.

Lastly the Giants 2nd round pick Marvin Austin is showing why the Giants were so excited to get him in the second round.  Promising signs from DT Marvin Austin, who absolutely rag dolled an OL on one play to throw the blocker out of the way on a run by Da’Rel Scott. He didn’t make the stop, but he blew up the play. And the way he shed the blocker was amazing. One play later, he beat OL Ike Ndukwe for a pressure on the quarterback. I’m rather sure it was Ndukwe on the play before as well, but I’m not positive because the blocker got lost in traffic and when Austin threw him to the side. Either way. Austin continues to impress, though he was drawn offside (along with DE Alex Hall) on Rosenfels’ hard count.

But who all in all has had the best training camp so far? It might be Travis Beckum.  When asked if Beckum would have a bigger role this year; Coughlin replied “Yeah, that’s the plan”.  Beckum has been all over the field catching everything thrown his way and blowing past coverage. Garafolo wrote that Beckum is more athletic as I’ve ever seen him  so far in training camp. Beckum is expected to have a major role this year, since the Giants lost Kevin Boss to the Oakland Raiders.

Osi to be Traded?

It’s early, but ESPN has reported that the Giants have given Osi Umenyiora’s agent permission to work out a trade. Things just seem to be getting tougher for the Giants this offseason. If Ahmad Bradshaw signs anywhere else but with the Giants this offseason can officially be considered a bust for Jerry Reese. Don’t forget Reese has yet to sign first round draft pick Prince Amukamara.

The Giants season is shaping up to be a run of the mill 8-8 year. Reese focuses on the draft and to his credit he has drafted exceptionally; however with the Giants experiencing cap issues and not reeling in any free agents for the first time I’m questioning Reese’s ability. My honest opinion, I believe Osi is dealt and Bradshaw signs elsewhere its just the way this off-season is shaping up.

UPDATE: The Giants have signed Ahmad Bradshaw.

Talking Points: NFL Free Agency Update

– With Nnamdi Asomugha taking his talents to Philly, the focus for the Jets now turns to Antonio Cromartie. With money to spend, there’s no reason the Jets can’t bring him back.

– Braylon Edwards has been rumored to not be wanted by the Jets. Sources have indicated Miami as a possibility. With the Jets allegedly going after Plaxico Burress, this could be accurate. I’d really like Braylon back, but I trust the Jets front office to make the right decisions for the team. The Steelers are also interested in Burress.

– The Jets have re-signed Eric Smith and are on the verge of bringing back James Ihedigbo. The team also signed corner Donald Strickland and may be in the process of acquiring Phillip Buchanon.

– Besides a re-signing or two, the Giants have done virtually nothing. Steve Weatherford signed with the G-Men yesterday, but is that something to really get excited about? With holes at LB, OL, and RB, I have no idea what Jerry Reese is doing.

– Speaking of the Giants, Osi Umienyiora hasn’t reported to camp. This could be an ugly holdout. I’m not sure if the Giants and Osi can reconcile their differences. It would not shock me at all to see him moved for a draft pick or two.

Giants Sign Several UFAs

  • Herzlich was perhaps the biggest name on the UDFA list. Having been a productive linebacker from the outset of his freshman year, a winner of a litany of awards and ranked as a top 50 pick before heading back to Boston College for his senior year, Herzlich was diagnosed a rare form of bone cancer known as Ewing’s sarcoma. The Giants grabbed him quickly when the period for signings opened, reportedly under a “suggestion” from ownership. We noticed a little cynicism on our comments board when he was signed, but please, people, remember: signings like these are no risk, high reward.
  • FB Henry Hynoski, Pittsburgh. Hynoski is billed as an athletic fullback who can maul a potential tackler if he gets him lined up right. Scouting reports also not solid hands and enough athletic ability to catch a few passes. He was used more as a receiver than a rusher at Pitt last year. Expected to be a 6th or 7th round pick, he hurt a hamstring at the combine that prevented him from working at his pro day.
  • OL Jarriel King, South Carolina. King brings the size of a tackle to the field, at 6–5, 317, but did not start a game at LT until midway through his senior year at South Carolina. Had some concussion issues last year year that kept him out of two games, but was named the most improved offensive lineman on the Gamecocks prior to the 2010 season, so perhaps he’s really coming into his own. At the combine, he lifted a respectable 23 reps on the bench
  • DE Justin Trattou, Flordia. At 6–3, 225 lbs, Trattou’s scouting reports contain the dreaded term “tweener.” While the Giants love fast defensive ends, Trattou sounds like a better fit to play OLB in a 3-4 system. Can you say “Clint Sintim“?
  • DE Craig Marshall, South Florida. Marshall started all but one of the games he played in last year but missed four games with a foot injury. He notched nine tackles for a loss of yards and four sacks.
  • DT Martin Parker, Richmond. Now that the Giants have cut Rocky Bernard, there may be a space open for a guy like Parker, who comes in at 300 lbs and had 13.5 tackles for a loss and 5.5 sacks last year. CBS scouting report says he has impressed at every level including the East-West Shrine Game and although may not get a lot of attention in a deep class at DT, is the “type of mid round pick to surprise early in his career.”
  • DT Ibrahim Abdulai, Arkansas–Pine Bluff. We could not find a lot of info on Abdulai. He’s 6–1, 301 lbs and benched 21 reps at his pro day.
  • LB Spencer Paysinger, Oregon. Paysinger’s another guy on whom there’s not a lot of scouting reports out there. He did notch eight tackles —seven unassisted — in the BCS National Championship Game against Auburn. He was also named a Pac–10 All–Conference player by a vote of the conference coaches. Played the WIL as a Duck.
  • S David Sims, Iowa State. The 5–9, 200 lbs safety clocked a 4.50 in the 40 at the combine and broke up three passes last year while making 96 tackles. Changing schools a few times and facing charges that he used a woman’s debit card didn’t help him in the draft, but Reese has found players with big talent and minor trouble before.
  • TE/LS Harry Flaherty, Princeton. Watch your back, Zak DeOssie.

New York Nine: Modern Giants Players (1980-2011)

9) RB Otis Anderson

The MVP of Super Bowl XXV rushed for 2,274 yards and scored 35 touchdowns as a Giant.

8) WR Amani Toomer

Nearly 700 receptions, nearly 10,000 yards, and 54 touchdowns scored in 13 years with the Giants. He played in an unbelievable 190 games throughout his career, all with the Giants.

7) QB Eli Manning

With back to back 4,000 yard seasons, Eli has taken his game to the next level. However, stats mean nothing when you did what he did that fateful Sunday night in Glendale. His Super Bowl XLII heroics against the Patriots will never be forgotten.

6) OLB Carl Banks

In nine years with the Giants, Banks recorded 36 sacks. The two-time Super Bowl champion was a key part of the Big Blue Wrecking Crew. He was voted into the 1980s All-Decade Team.

5) RB Tiki Barber

107 total touchdowns in ten years with the Giants. Tiki never won a Super Bowl, but his breakout year in 2000 helped the Giants make it to Super Bowl XXXV, where they were blownout by the Ravens.

4) QB Phil Simms

From 1979 to 1993, the Giants were Phil Simms’ team. Under Simms, the Giants won two Super Bowls (although he only played in one of them) and made the playoffs seven simes. He was the MVP of Super Bowl XXI.

3) ILB Harry Carson

Carson was one of the most dominant players of his generation. The fourth round draft pick was selected to nine Pro Bowls and was voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006.

2) DE Michael Strahan

Strahan was a dominating force for a decade and a half with the Giants, recording 141.5 sacks in 216 games. His 22.5 sacks in 2001 is still an NFL record. Two seaons later, he recorded 18.5 sacks. Strahan was the definition of unblockable during his tenure with the Giants.

1) ILB Lawrence Taylor

Did we miss anyone?  Is there someone we should have ranked higher or lower?  Leave us feedback here or on Facebook/Twitter.

At one time or another, Giants Stadium was home to all of the players listed above.