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‘Valentine’s Views:’ Giants doing something smart, more thoughts as the NFL tries to open training camps

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It’s a “things I think” column

Buffalo Bills v New York Jets Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

NFL training camps are apparently going to move ahead, at least that is what we think today. With that in mind, here are some New York Giants-related things I’m thinking about.

A really smart idea

The Giants have the luxury of having MetLife Stadium across the parking lot from their Quest Diagnostics Training Center headquarter. Art Stapleton reported that in an effort to meet the social distancing guidelines required as NFL teams open training camps in the coming days, the Giants are going to take full advantage of that proximity.

The Giants will practice on their Quest Diagnostics fields, but will locker in the stadium — where they will also have access to the visiting team locker rooms so they can space players out. They will also be given access to stadium suites for position group meetings. Players will

I don’t know who came up with the idea, but I think it’s a terrific one. The Giants, obviously, will have far more space at their disposal in the stadium than in their own facility.

Aldrick Rosas and DeAndre Baker

Not that long ago I would have wagered that neither Aldrick Rosas nor DeAndre Baker would be Giants when training camp opens. With each passing day I wonder if that’s a wager I would have lost.

i will say this for Joe Judge, Dave Gettleman, John Mara, Steve Tisch and Co. To their credit they have not rushed to judgment about either of these young men.

NFL, NFLPA have long way to go

Rookies are supposed to report to training camps this week, but the league and the Players Association still have an incredible number of things to work through before we have a real idea how training camps and the upcoming season are actually going to work. It’s actually pretty amazing to me that with the clock winding toward the 11th hour so much — preseason games, training camp schedules, how lost revenue will be dealt with, player opt outs, roster questions, and more — have yet to be figured out.

NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith and NFLPA President J.C. Tretter held a conference call with Pro Football Writers of America members (of which I am one) on Friday.

Here are a couple of quotes from Tretter:

“The league is in charge of opening and closing the plant. We ask the question, ‘Is it safe?’ It’s up to the NFL to make those decisions on when we open. Every decision we make that doesn’t look at the long term of getting through the whole season will set us up for failure.”

“We’re in a different world now, and the idea that this is going to just go away with the snap of a finger and you don’t have to change, that’s wrong. You’re going to have to change this year, and every thought, every idea that leans on ‘Oh we’ve always done it that way’ or ‘This is what we’ve done for the last 10 years,’ it’s unacceptable now,. When you look at how training camp runs, how buildings are run, how practice schedules are run, it all has to be revamped to fit in this world of coronavirus, because the expectation that you’re going to be able to fit coronavirus into football, it’s not the right expectation.”

Here’s one from Smith:

“What’s good for the country is good for sports, and something as simple as wearing a mask will have, probably, the most significant impact on whether sports return in this country. That’s not a political statement. That’s a common-sense and scientific statement. Where our guys can be incredibly helpful, stepping out onto a larger stage than football, is that nothing will bring fans back to our stadiums faster than a simple decision across our country to wear a mask.”

I want football, just like everyone else. Shoot, writing about the sport is my job — and it’s a heckuva lot easier to do when there actually is football to talk about. I still, though, have monumental doubts about whether or not all of this is going to work.

About Washington

Just when you thought things would calm down around the Washington NFL team after the organization finally — and whether they admit it or not, reluctantly — agreed to “retire” the nickname Redskins, along came the report of 15 female employees alleging sexual harassment.

I don’t know what is going to happen here. I am, honestly, looking forward to talking with long-time D.C. sports columnist and 40-year friend of mine Rick Snider about this in the coming days.

I know that these days owner Daniel Snyder is trying to say the right things. Quite honestly, though, I hope the other league owners can find a way to force Snyder to sell the team. He’s embarrassed the league and that franchise long enough.