Adding a number of high-priced free agents can seem like a good idea during the offseason, but it doesn’t always translate to success on the field. For the New York Giants, adding Damon Harrsion, Janoris Jenkins and Olivier Vernon is a gamble that seems to be paying dividends thus far.
“Anytime you add free agents to the mix, you want to make sure they’re your type of character guys. We brought in some great New York Giant type characters. They’ve fit in well, are pushing the group. It’s good to see we have a very good and healthy locker room,” coach Ben McAdoo said on Friday.
“I think they all have leadership in their own way. They’ve all had opportunities to step up, and I give Spags credit for that. He’s given these guys opportunities to step up on Fresh Friday and they step up. They speak from the heart. It’s great to see.”
Friday, Harrison had his turn to speak to his defensive teammates, and McAdoo said Snacks gave a “very inspired” address.
Harrison said it “meant a lot” to him that defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo gave him the opportunity.
“I didn’t expect for it to happen here so soon, but apparently guys listen to what I have to say. I don’t know why, man,” Harrison said. “I don’t want to sit here and lie to you, I don’t know why, man, but I am very passionate about what I believe in and it comes off verbally and guys tend to buy into it.”
Patrick Graham: Olivier Vernon a game-wrecker
Giants’ defensive line coach Patrick Graham had that same job with the New England Patriots before coming to New York. As such, he was familiar with the play of Olivier Vernon.
“The previous place that I was at, we talked about guys that could wreck the game. He was a guy that could wreck the game, run and pass, so I already had a ton of respect for him as a player. I already had a ton of respect. Run game, pass game, his intelligence, his athletic ability, all that stuff. I already knew about all of that,” Graham said. “Just to be able to have the opportunity to work with him has been great for me. This guy comes out here every day doing whatever he has to do to get better and it is just going to improve. I can’t wait to see how he grows into his role, but to question whether he can play the run? I would have laughed, too, if I were him.”