As I write this, most of the New York Giants players, coaches and staff members are already zipping up the Thruway heading for their in-season homes in and around New Jersey.
The final practice of New York Giants training camp at UAlbany was held this morning -- perhaps the last Giants' practice ever in Albany. That means this will be your final practice report from me.
- Practice began with a real downer this morning. On the first pass play off 11-on-11 drills, Aaron Ross was left crumpled on the ground in agony grabbing at his left hamstring. Ross, trying to work back in after missing most of camp with the hamstring injury, was trying to cover Steve Smith on a deep ball. Instead, he wound up being helped off the field. I doubt we see him again any time soon.
Great quote from Tom Coughlin on Ross' injury.
The poor kid cannot get beyond that. He starts working his way back and he obviously made a sudden move to try to catch back up to a receiver that was going by and…it’s very frustrating because he’s not had a lot of time on the field.
- Hakeem Nicks followed Monday afternoon's all-world practice with an up-and-down effort. Nicks was consistently open, but dropped the first two deep balls he got his hands on. Both times he had beaten defenders. Toward the end of practice, though, Nicks beat safety Kenny Phillips and made a gorgeous stretching touchdown catch of an Eli Manning floater for a touchdown.
- Never thought I would see this from backup tight end Michael Matthews. Not exactly known for his receiving skills, Matthews made an oustanding one-hand leaping catch on an out in the flat from Manning. He stuck his big old right hand up and the ball stayed in it.
- Typical Coughlin during pre-practice stretching drills. Walking up and down the lines yelling "Be a winner, be a winner ... Focus ... Effort, effort."
- I guess the Giants couldn't leave Albany without Adam Koets and Andre Woodson messing up one final snap. I can't give Koets too much grief, though. It's the first bad exchange since prior to the first exhibition game.
- Perfect illustration of the Ramses Barden effect this morning. Rhett Bomar threw a triple-covered Barden a deep ball that he had no business sending in Barden's direction. Guess who came away with the ball?
- Perfect illustration also of the limitations of Sinorice Moss. Single covered down the middle by Kevin Dockery, Moss could only watch David Carr's slightly overthrown pass sail over his head. Barden catches that ball. Then again, I think several of the other receivers could have hauled it in.
- Kenny Phillips made a nice play to knock a Carr pass away from Beckum.
- Bomar threw the ball well this morning. Several nice short throws in limited opportunities.
- Domenik Hixon outran Corey Webster to haul in a deep throw from Manning.
- Some nice battles this morning between Derek Hagan and Terrell Thomas.
That's about it for today. Now I go back to being a regular blogger.