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Kevin Gilbride: No pass for Hakeem Nicks, Victor Cruz

New York Giants offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride said Thursday that the time missed this offseason by receivers Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz "has hurt them and because of that, it has hurt us."

Kevin Gilbride and Eli Manning during mini-camp.
Kevin Gilbride and Eli Manning during mini-camp.

Throughout the offseason New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin has not hidden his frustration with wide receivers Victor Cruz, who did not attend any workouts while negotiating a new contract, and Hakeem Nicks, who skipped voluntary OTAs before attending the mandatory mini-camp this week.

Thursday, offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride followed the head coach's lead, tweaking both star receivers.

"They haven’t been working. They haven’t been listening. They haven’t been growing. They haven’t been developing. They haven’t been receiving the coaching that they need to get better. To be quite frank, they need it. And the absence and not being here has hurt them and because of that, it has hurt us," Gilbride said. "But the good thing is that Brandon Collins and some of the other young receivers have had a chance to get some reps."

Nicks said Tuesday that he did not believe skipping OTAs was a big deal because there is "Nothing too much is new for me in this offense."

Gilbride, conversely, was effusive in his praise of second-year wide receiver Rueben Randle.

"Rueben, you see emerge from a guy that showed flashes at times. He always caught the ball well but maybe didn’t always run the routes as precisely, as crisply, as you wanted. He didn’t have quite the understanding you wanted. He looked like a guy that has been here for five or six years. He really benefitted from the opportunity. His whole demeanor, his whole professionalism, was outstanding," Gilbride said. "That was not what we saw last year; not by a longshot. So to see him growing like that was a great step forward for him."