Good morning, New York Giants fans! Here are your Thursday morning headlines.
Giants respond to Thurmond's comments
Ex-Giant Walter Thurmond said this week that Giants coach Tom Coughlin "doesn't believe in the modern medicine" some teams have implemented as an injury-prevention strategy. The Giants, per ESPN, have responded:
"You would have to ask Walter what he is referring to specifically when it comes to comparing and contrasting," Giants spokesman Pat Hanlon said in an e-mail Tuesday morning. "But the fact is, over the past 2-3 years, we have adopted and implemented a few programs: the GPS system we employ to monitor workload, diet in terms of offerings and preparation in the dining hall, and sleep studies. Those are a few of the things we have done as we continue to evolve."
The question comes up because the injury-plagued Giants have led the league in a category Football Outsiders calls "Adjusted Games Lost" the past two seasons.
Dan Graziano's conclusion is also worth noting.
I don't think Thurmond was trying to paint Coughlin as some sort of out-of-touch fogey. But I do think the recent injury statistics, combined with the longevity of the people in key positions overseeing the Giants' medical program and the organization's well-publicized loyalty to its own established ways of doing business in other areas, naturally lead to questions about whether those things are connected. Those questions must continue to be asked. It's entirely possible that the Giants as an organization have been slower to adopt and apply modern medical practices than some other teams have and that it's cost them in the standings. It's just not fair to jump to the conclusion that it's because the head coach is a 68-year-old grump who misses training camp two-a-days.
Valentine's View: I used Graziano's conclusion because it is on point. I have maintained that there is no way to prove the Giants' injury situation in recent years is the fault of the strength and conditioning program or what the Giants do in practice. There is no training method that will prevent toe injuries, broken legs, broken ankles, concussions and some of the other injuries that have befallen the Giants. There is, however, no way to prove that those are not connected. It is a truly frustrating situation to which there really is no obvious answer.
Odell Beckham 'hardened' by the spotlight
Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham, as we know, did not talk to the media during the recent mandatory minicamp. He did, however, recently have a revealing one-on-one conversation with Monday Morning Quarterback columnist Emily Kaplan.
Kaplan writes that Beckham "potentially dominant on the field, increasingly polarizing off of it." She also adds that the many things that come with the fame he has achieved in recent months "have hardened Beckham."
Among other things Kaplan found out are these: Beckham understands why Marshawn Lynch refuses to talk to the media; He is tired of talking about The Catch; He feels like the play has set him up in a situation where it will be difficult to satisfy fans who want to see him do it again; He likes the feeling around the Giants as the 2015 season approaches.
Sports Illustrated gives the Giants a B- for their offseason work.
NFL.com ranks Coughlin No. 8 among current coaches, and Elliot Harrison makes it obvious he feels badly about placing Coughlin that low. Incidentally, Jason Garrett of the Dallas Cowboys is No. 14 and Chip Kelly of the Philadelphia Eagles in No. 13 on the list.
No love for Eli Manning? SI.com uses parts of a variety of NFL quarterbacks to build the perfect QB, and doesn't use any part of the Giants' signal-caller.