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Day 1 Giants' mini-camp notes

Here are a few stories from the first day of New York Giants' rookie mini-camp.

  • Ralph Vacchiano says that Ramses Barden and Hakeem Nicks made a nice first impression on coach Tom Coughlin. Here is part of Vacchiano's report.

“They caught the ball,” Coughlin said. “This morning they caught the ball well.”

Consider that high praise from a coach who would rather not add to the hype of any of his rookies, particularly that of receivers Hakeem Nicks and Ramses Barden. The expectations of those two are already pretty huge, considering how thin the Giants are at their position. Both of them have a chance to contribute right away.

Can they? Well, if you’re crazy enough to judge anything from a few plays in the first practice of rookie mini-camp, Nicks certainly looks as polished as advertised. He had little trouble putting a move on CB Vince Anderson, an undrafted free agent out of Weber International, to get open near the sidelines. And he even showed some speed, flying by seventh-round CB Stoney Woodson (and several other defensive backs) on a deep route. ...

Nicks said he didn’t drop a single pass in practice, and I certainly didn’t see him drop any. I actually didn’t see Barden drop any either, but the 6-6 ex-Cal Poly star looked a little slow out of the blocks at first. By the time they got in 7 on 7 drills, though, he showed an unexpected second gear and at least once was able to get beyond the secondary to haul in a long pass from quarterback Rhett Bomar.