For the first time since 2017 we can finally, officially, say this: It is game week for the New York Giants!
After an off day on Sunday, the Giants were back on the practice field on Monday. And unlike previous practices, when they take the field it will be as they start to prepare for their first preseason game. We shouldn’t expect the Giants to scheme for the Cleveland Browns or to run more than the “vanilla” version of their offense and defense, but this is still a first for the new-look Giants.
First up, Eli Manning spoke to reporters during the media availability period.
QB Eli Manning looks ahead to Thursday's preseason opener and discusses the progress of the offense at #GiantsCamp pic.twitter.com/pk89Us3Wdt— New York Giants (@Giants) August 6, 2018
After the press conferences were over, it was time to get on to the practice field.
Since the Giants will be playing their first preseason game this Thursday, it makes sense for them to be practicing in full pads, rather than just shells.
Back to full pads for the #Giants today. Pat Shurmur said this morning that “Teams are practicing in heat and humidity worse than us, it’s something we have to get acclimated to”. pic.twitter.com/4YjAFHHGaS— Matt Lombardo (@MattLombardoNFL) August 6, 2018
They’re probably discussing what kind of steak dinner Eli will buy Solder (and the rest of the offensive line) if he doesn’t get sacked.
Here to protect. #GiantsCamp pic.twitter.com/HmBZSqiBem— New York Giants (@Giants) August 6, 2018
And with full pads back on, the intensity level has ratcheted back up. We don’t know how the Giants will look in games, but they are being plenty physical in practice.
This drill is *supposed* to be half speed ... #Giants pic.twitter.com/YUz1YrzwwN— Matt Lombardo (@MattLombardoNFL) August 6, 2018
First up, Saquon Barkley shows off his pass protection to give Eli Manning time to find Odell Beckham, who doesn’t seem to be hesitating with his surgically repaired ankle.
Solid blitz pickup here by Saquon Barkley, followed by Odell Beckham giving an impromptu update on the health of his ankle. #Cuts #Giants pic.twitter.com/jl5rRD2Tsh— Matt Lombardo (@MattLombardoNFL) August 6, 2018
Later in practice, Odell — ever the consummate teammate — helped set Barkley up for what might be the play of the day.
The day of rest seems to have done the offense good. The offensive line has struggled to deal with Vernon throughout camp, so any stops are a positive.
Nate Solder wins this battle against Olivier Vernon. Allowed Eli Manning to find Russell Shepard in the flat. #Giants pic.twitter.com/uVBJDiVTQO— Matt Lombardo (@MattLombardoNFL) August 6, 2018
The defense did get one back with the third team, however.
‼️PICK‼️ Rookie DB Sean Chandler with the first interception of the day for the defense! #GiantsCamp— New York Giants (@Giants) August 6, 2018
And it is officially “August” in Giants’ camp.
How hot is it? Pat Shurmur takes the players inside for hydration period mid-way though practice. #Giants— Paul Schwartz (@NYPost_Schwartz) August 6, 2018
Dehydration is a serious issue in summer practices, and could have contributed to a scary moment.
Etta-Tawo popped up and walked off on his own. https://t.co/9vO9COeK3t— Matt Lombardo (@MattLombardoNFL) August 6, 2018
After team period, the offense and defense did some situational football. First up is some red zone work in 7-on-7.
Evan Engram red zone TD in traffic. While uploading video, Odell made a one-hand catch, but I think he was ruled OOB. #Giants pic.twitter.com/fHDUvbLO9x— Ryan Dunleavy (@rydunleavy) August 6, 2018
Shurmur gets really detailed with his game situations at the end of practice. Just had the offense try to draw the defense offside on fourth-and-1. Didn’t work, so QB called timeout. Then the next group came in and did the same.— Dan Duggan (@DDuggan21) August 6, 2018
William Gay, Donte Deayon and Thurston Armbrister remain sidelined with hamstring injuries. WR Travis Rudolph (?) also riding a bike to start practice. Curtis Riley (hamstring) is back.— Dan Duggan (@DDuggan21) August 6, 2018
In addition to Riley being back on the field, Eli Apple practiced fully as well. He had a scary moment on Saturday, but doesn’t seem any worse for wear.
Eli Apple on field participating after knee scare Saturday #NYGiants pic.twitter.com/TZStfBGZ1F— Art Stapleton (@art_stapleton) August 6, 2018
With both Curtis Riley and Darian Thompson available, it seems both are playing with the starting unit. This shouldn’t be surprising considering how often James Bettcher uses sub-packages.
Curtis Riley also getting first-team reps at FS https://t.co/a0x9nCTqBa— Dan Duggan (@DDuggan21) August 6, 2018
Sterling Shepard, however seems to have a day off for maintenance.
Sterling Shepard not in pads. Probably not going today. #Giants— Matt Lombardo (@MattLombardoNFL) August 6, 2018