It’s time for your weekly Big Blue View Mailbag. Let’s get right to your New York Giants questions.
Matt McCarty asks: Unfortunately in the past two games the Giants opponents (DeSean Jackson and Kyle Allen) have suffered gruesome injuries. In both cases Giants players were flagged for personal fouls. If I were an Eagles or a WFT fan I would be pretty pissed about those plays. When you are discussing the Giants with other beat reporters is there any indication that they are getting a reputation as a dirty team?
Ed says: Matt, by way of housekeeping it’s actually twice in the last three games. Yes, the hit by Madre Harper on DeSean Jackson was late and unnecessary. That’s a young, inexperienced player with a reputation for being a little bit undisciplined showing exactly why he has that reputation. You can’t do what he did. The Kyle Allen hit by Jabrill Peppers was just, as Peppers said, a “weird” play. Nothing intentional. Nothing dirty. Washington coach Ron Rivera acknowledged as much. So, no, I see no evidence they are getting a reputation as a dirty team.
Anthony Del Genio asks: It was great that Daniel Jones held onto the ball on that late 4th quarter play where he was sacked by a weak side CB blitz with no one on that side to help. But this is not the first time we have seen something like this. The disastrous end zone INT play against Pittsburgh, in which Bud Dupree was left unblocked by the protection scheme despite there being 2 TEs on that side, is another example. Is the QB supposed to switch out to a different play or motion someone to block it when he sees that look? Is it a poor play design by the coaches?
Ed says: Anthony, Mark Schofield or Nick Falato might have a more technical breakdown, but I will tell you what I see. I see an exceptionally well-designed slot blitz by Washington. There is no indicator, such as a safety over the top of the slot defender, that would be a “tell” for Daniel Jones that slot cornerback Kamren Curl is blitzing. To my eyes, Jones sees a potential six-man pressure with two linebackers in the ‘A’ gaps, and thinks he’s got six blockers (including Dion Lewis) to pick them up. Lewis even moves up closer to the line prior to the snap expecting to have to handle pressure from inside. Washington sends six, but they send the cornerback and one of the linebackers bails. You see left tackle Andrew Thomas and left guard Shane Lemieux passing off stunting rushers. Sometimes you have to give the other guys credit. To me, this is one of those times.
Scott Keller asks: With McKinney’s return getting closer, how do you think that will impact the rotation of players in the secondary? Peppers, Ryan and Love are all seeing time at safety. Any chance Ryan or Love move to 2nd CB to replace Yiadom once McKinney is available? I know both are considered limited athletically which is why they are safeties not corners, but it still may provide some consistency at that spot.
Ed says: Scott, that’s a good question. I really don’t know the answer. My guess is that you aren’t going to see Xavier McKinney in full-time duty when and if he returns. Just like the Giants are using a rotation at offensive tackle, and will soon be using one at guard, my guess is they will rotate McKinney in situationally. Could we see Ryan drop down to cornerback at times? Sure. We could see McKinney take snaps away from Julian Love as well. Lord only knows what Patrick Graham will cook up, but a healthy McKinney gives the Giants another option and increases the talent on the back end. That’s a good thing.
Jeff Newman asks: What do you need to see from DJ to convince you that he’s the guy? To me, a real franchise quarterback is a guy that when you’re behind at the end of the game, and he has the ball in his hands, you just know is going to bring you back. Eli had that. DJ needs to show he has that too, before I can believe he’s our guy.
Ed says: Jeff, for me it really comes down to the things we always talk about with Jones. Can he consistently make quicker, better decisions in the pocket? Can he take better care of the football? He’s got 21 interceptions and 25 fumbles (20 of them lost) in 22 games. that’s untenable. The arm talent, the mobility, the smarts, the toughness, the personality to deal with New York/New Jersey are all there.
Bruce Frazer asks: Given that the season is at the halfway point, If you were drafting for the Giants, what positions would you prioritize in the 2021 draft?
Ed says: Bruce, let me start that answer with what I’m NOT doing. I’m not taking a quarterback. The Giants won’t have a shot at Trevor Lawrence, and you won’t convince me that any other quarterback in the draft will undoubtedly be better than Daniel Jones. so, that’s not happening. I’m also not selecting Penei Sewell. I think the more we see the more we can believe that the Giants have their offensive tackles of the future in Andrew Thomas and Matt Peart.
I think you look at adding playmakers to the defense. Whether that is at edge, cornerback or inside linebacker I really don’t care. If you go offense, I think it has to be a wide receiver. Highest-graded player on the board from any of those four positions.
Jesse Sorel asks: Do you know if the Giants had any interest in Takk McKinley? I thought they were ahead of the Bengals in the wavier order. With the lack of pass rush on the outside I think the Giants should of took a flier on him.
Ed says: Jesse, I do not have any “inside” information on the Giants’ thought process regarding Takk McKinley. It’s apparent, though, from the fact that they didn’t claim McKinley that they didn’t have enough interest to make that move right now.
The Giants like what they have. Kyler Fackrell has been playing well enough. They hope to get Oshane Ximines back soon, and they will need a roster spot for him. Lorenzo Carter will be back next season. They believe Cam Brown will develop.
I thought they might take a shot with McKinley. They decided not to. I think it tells you they believe in what they have.