EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Let’s examine a handful of plays from Saturday’s New York Giants practice, the third of training camp, that tell us the story of the day.
The first 12
This was the first padded practice. Coach Pat Shurmur and GM Dave Gettleman have preached a) the importance and running the ball and b) the importance of stopping the run.
Shurmur said early on Saturday that he was particularly interested to see the guys up front — the ones Gettleman calls hog mollies — work in full pads.
Well, it should come as no surprise that the first portion of practice was extremely run heavy. The first 12 plays, split between four quarterbacks, featured eight runs, three passes ands one Eli Manning scramble.
The results of the runs don’t really matter. The tone was set, and the importance of the run game on both sides of the ball was made crystal clear.
Double D’s double dip
The fight for reserve spots at cornerback is going to be one takes a number of twists and turns before the season begins. Saturday, third-year cornerback Donte Deayon had his day in the sun.
Early in practice, Deayon stepped in front of a downfield throw from Davis Webb for a pick. Nice play, but to be honest this was the worst throw of training camp so far. By anyone. Not sure if Webb got bumped, but this ball practically came out end over end, floating in the air with nothing on it. Very much not typical of the strong-armed Webb.
Later, Deayon ran with Russell Shepard and batted away a pass from Webb on a crossing route.
Yeah, he’s a tough cover
Any Giants linebacker who has been asked about him has said that rookie running back Saquon Barkley is a tough cover. He proved it during a 7-on-7 goal line session during the later stages of practice.
Coming out of the backfield, Barkley drew single coverage from Alec Ogletree. Sorry, but that just wasn’t fair to Ogletree. Barkley planted, cut inside of Ogletree, caught a short pass from Eli Manning and converted an easy touchdown of roughly 7 yards.
Saturday was the first time we saw the Giants practice kicking off with the new rules. There was no return man and no blocking. No offense at all. The Giants were practicing their release down the field with players no longer able to get a running start. With Aldrick Rosas kicking and coverage guys lined up one yard off the line a coach, I believe assistant special teams coach Anthony Blevins, was yelling “stay behind the kicker” on each kickoff. It is going to be interesting to see how that play develops, and this was our first glimpse.
The Giants are back on the field for another public practice on Sunday at 2:45 p.m. ET. Big Blue View will be there.