Evan Engram is having a terrific rookie season, but the New York Giants tight end is struggling to enjoy his personal success with the team limping along at 1-8.
“Honestly, it’s kind of hard to appreciate the personal success with the team’s outcome. It’s tough for me to get excited by how I play when we lose a game,” Engram said on Wednesday. “But, I’m doing some good things and some things I can definitely build on, but it’s definitely tough to kind of enjoy those things with the unwanted team outcome.”
Engram leads the Giants, and all rookie tight ends, with 40 receptions. With Odell Beckham Jr. and Brandon Marshall out for the season, he has become a focal point of the passing offense.
“I’ve just had to grow up a little bit faster, mature a little bit more, learning a lot,” Engram said. “I think that’s probably going to be the biggest step that I’m going to take, just learning the importance of just being a big play-maker, just stepping up in big moments, kind of having to deal with a lot of adversity. So, definitely going forward it will make me a better player, a better person.”
The 6-foot-3, 235-pound Engram has played inline more than many anticipated and said “it creates a lot of mismatches ... I love it,” when asked about that.
“I’m a tight end. People can say that (the he should be out wide more) all day, but I do everything every other tight end does,” Engram said.
Orleans Darkwa’s north-south style paying dividends
Running back Orleans Darkwa leads the Giants with 415 rushing yards, more than he had in his first three NFL seasons combined. Darkwa’s hard, decisive running style has helped the Giants’ running game.
“Really it’s with the line. Once they can get me a hole or something that I can see, I just try to put my head down and get my legs churning,” Darkwa said. “I think that’s something that I’ve tried to pride myself in. Try to get north-south as much as possible, as fast as possible and once there’s a guy that gets his hands on me, just keep your legs churning.”
Darkwa’s career season comes with the 25-year-old headed to free agency in the offseason.
“At the end of the day, I don’t look towards the future right now. I’m focused on the team right now. I let the future play itself out, but right now I’m focused on the team and getting wins,” Darkwa said.
Andy Reid focused on his team
Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid, whose team is 6-3, won’t talk to his players about not taking a win over the Giants for granted.
“No. That’s not what I do. I focus in on what we do and try to get better at what we do and study the opponent. We respect everybody and that’s what we do,” he said. “This is the National Football League, so anything on any given Sunday can happen. So we got to get us right first, that’s what we have to do. We have no room to look at anybody else.”
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