In a sign of his growing role on the New York Giants’ defense, veteran linebacker Jonathan Casillas has been named one of the team’s three full-season captains. Casillas is the defensive captain, Eli Manning the offensive captain and Zak DeOssie the special teams captain.
Coach Ben McAdoo made that announcement in his weekly interview with Michael Eisen of Giants.com. McAdoo said there will also be three weekly game captains added, giving the Giants six per game.
Casillas, 29, is entering his seventh season. He has played for the New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New England Patriots in addition to the Giants. He was expected to be a backup linebacker and special teams contributor when he arrived as a free agent last season, but has now become the starting weakside linebacker and a defensive leader. The seven games Casillas started last season for the Giants was a career high.
Casillas was humbled by the news that his teammates had voted him a captain.
“It’s surreal. It’s unbelievable. Being a hometown guy, as you call it. I’m from Jersey. Being the captain of a Jersey team, the Giants, it’s unbelievable. It’s something that you can dream of as a kid. Still, the possibility that it happens is very small,” he said. “It’s a very humbling thing to know that these men in this locker room look forward to me or towards me in that light. It’s very humbling.”
Casillas has been dealing with a rib injury suffered in a preseason game against the New York Jets. He has been limited in practice this week, but expects to play Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys.