Long-time Big Blue View readers will remember that we spent much of last season debating not only why Ahmad Bradshaw wasn't playing more, but why -- in only his second year -- he seemed to have lost a step.
Well, Bradshaw has finally come clean about his sophomore season, admitting that he was slowed by a calf strain for much of the 2008 season. That might explain a lot about last season.
"I had a little injury last year and it wouldn’t let me get to that top speed," Bradshaw said. "Now I feel great, no injuries, my legs aren’t giving me any problems this year, I feel good."
That's good news for all of you who seem to never feel the Giants use AB enough, and it's good news for the Giants. They need him this year, with 1,000-yard rusher Derrick Ward having taken his act to Tampa Bay.
"This is one of the biggest years of my life. To have this opportunity, I just have to take advantage of it," Bradshaw said. "I just want to come in and change the game up when Brandon’s not in. My explosiveness and to be able to read the holes, just different flows with Brandon being in and me being in, the defense plays it a lot different."
Since I won't be at camp today (family obligations) let's look around and see what else in making news in the Land of the Giants.
- Writing for something called Athlon Sports, Ralph Vacchiano of the Daily News ranks Eli Manning as the fourth-best quarterback in the NFL. Then Ralph -- a smart guy -- simultaneously defends himself and ducks for cover.
Depending on what day it is, his position on this list will either be laughed at for being too high or derided for being too low. Such is the life of the man on the NFL’s ultimate roller coaster. Even perhaps the most remarkable final drive in Super Bowl history wasn’t enough to get everyone to believe.
Still, after last year, when he improved his completion percentage to 60.3 and dropped his interception total to 10, he is clearly beginning to show some of the consistency he lacked early in his career. He has had flashes of brilliance that always seemed to be followed by terrible performances. Lately the ride hasn’t been as nauseating as before.
He does still have things to prove. He has led the Giants to the playoffs four straight years, but three of those have resulted in first-game losses. And he wasn’t able to carry his team after his top receiver, Plaxico Burress, shot himself and was suspended last year. But he’s brilliant in fourth quarters, more often than not, and he has that Brady-like composure his brother seems to lack.
There aren’t many other current quarterbacks I’d want on my side with time running out and the game on the line.
- Kickers can go unnoticed during training camp. Which is probably why no one figured out until Wednesday that Lawrence Tynes is hurt. Apparently, Tynes and the fields at UAlbany have agreed to permanently disagree. Remember, Tynes blamed the fields for last season's knee injury.
- Washington Redskins' defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth was surprised at how much interest the Giants showed during the free-agent signing period.
- Not to turn this into the 'Ralph Vacchiano report,' but Ralph had a nice feature on Sinorice Moss the other day.
"I've been so anxious really to just prove to people and to show people what I'm capable of doing," Moss said. "But I feel like now this is the year that I have the opportunity to do it. I'm going to go out and do what I have to do, just whenever they get the ball in my hands, execute and make some plays."
- Giants-themed NJ Lottery Ticket Coming Soon: "Giants Football Fantasy" will debut on Sept. 14, the day after the Giants open their 2009 regular season against the Washington Redskins. Approximately two million tickets will be distributed. The tickets will cost $5 and will be available at all participating locations across New Jersey.
- ESPN's Matt Mosley was in Giants camp Wednesday. I don't know where, since Mosley didn't seem to be hanging out near any of the other assembled media members. But, using the power of the Worldwide Leader, Mosley scored one-on-one interviews with coach Tom Coughlin, and GM Jerry Reese.
- I usually love the work done by Andy Benoit and the folks at NFL Touchdown. I have wonder what on Earth Benoit was thinking, though, when he ranked the Giants as the 11th most likely team to win the Super Bowl this season. Especially since he gives New Orleans, Green Bay, Baltimore, Atlanta and Dallas a better chance. Andy, what exactly were you smoking when you did this?