We looked earlier at Ryan Nassib and his effort to win the backup quarterback job for the New York Giants. Now, let's look at the man who held that job last season and would like to keep it this time around, Curtis Painter. It is Painter's turn in the spotlight as we continue our series of player-by-player profiles of the 90-man roster the Giants will bring to training camp on July 21.
2013 Season In Review
Painter won a training camp competition with David Carr, who had been the Giants' backup for Eli Manning in four of the five seasons from 2008-2012. He dressed for every game and played in three, completing 8-of-16 passes with no touchdowns and two interceptions.
2014 Season Outlook
Painter, 29, will largely watch and wait to learn his fate. If Manning is healthy and second-year man Ryan Nassib proves capable of handling the backup role Painter could be out of a job, and there is little he can do about it. During OTAs and mini-camp Painter received very few reps while the Giants took an extended look at Nassib. That pattern would seem likely to continue during training camp or the preseason, or until Nassib shows he isn't trustworthy as the backup for Manning.
That is a difficult spot to be in, but it is one that Painter handles with aplomb:
"None of that is in my control," Painter said during mini-camp. "I get just as many very good mental reps from watching. Obviously it doesn't replace being in there, but it's early on. That's stuff that's out of my control. I will take what reps I can. I don't really pay much attention to that stuff."
Here is quarterbacks coach Danny Langsdorf talking about Painter:
"He doesn't get very many reps, that's the hard part with him. He doesn't get as many chances out there but fundamentally he's really improved. I think he's a very accurate thrower, that's his strength," Langsdorf said. "He's a veteran guy, too, that's been a backup and kind of knows what that entails. He's done a great job preparing himself and with the limited amount of reps he gets he's been pretty sharp. He stayed sharp through the spring."
Painter knows the drill. Through training camp and five preseason games he will watch, wait, do his best to take advantage of whatever time under center he is afforded and hope for the best. Unfortunately for him it is almost certainly Nassib's play and not his own that will determine his NFL future.