New York Giants head coach Joe Judge said to the media on Thursday that he is a “big fan” of joint practices.
One day after Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski announced in a press conference with media that the Browns and Giants will have two days of joint practices in Cleveland prior to their preseason game on August 22, Judge confirmed the news. He also confirmed that the Giants plan to hold joint practices with the New England Patriots.
“With both programs, the Browns and the Patriots, I’ve got great relationships with both coaches, known them both for a sustained period of time,” Judge said. “In all of our conversations, I think one of the things you try to find in this are not only teams that are going to schematically help you with some of the things you are going to see throughout the season but most importantly you want to make sure you go out there and have a good, quality practice. The guys are going to compete. You want to make sure you keep it between the lines, the guys are not doing anything dirty, outside the whistle. So, it’s important you know the coaches and what kind of program you are going against. I think it’s great for the team, it helps you get exposure to different schemes you may not see from your own team in training camp outside having to draw cards or scout teams.”
In Cleveland, it will be a slightly less tense setting than a regular-season game environment but there are some familiar faces on both teams.
The first familiar face that has to come to mind for New York fans is former Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who spent the first five years of his career in New York before joining the Browns in 2019. Beckham did not get the chance to face his former team when the Browns visited the Giants in Week 15 last season due to an ACL injury.
Because Beckham may still be recovering from his ACL injury, it is unclear how much work he will actually do in the practices and preseason game. His rehab might not have progressed to a full workload by the time the Giants arrive in Cleveland.
There will be another reunion of sorts with safety Jabrill Peppers, who played in Cleveland for the first two seasons of his career. Peppers was a part of the trade between the Browns and Giants back in 2019. In exchange for Beckham, New York acquired Peppers, a first-round pick and a third-round pick.
Meanwhile, the Giants are scheduled to play the Patriots in their third and final preseason matchup on Aug. 29. Right now, the plan seems to be to practice in Foxborough despite the game being played at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford.
Joe Judge says the discussion with the #Patriots is to hold joint-practice in NE because the Pats have just one home preseason game and the teams alternating so fans at training camp get a look at another team in years they have just one home preseason game. #Giants #NFL— Matt Lombardo (@MattLombardoNFL) June 10, 2021
Joint sessions with the Patriots was hardly a surprising idea considering Joe Judge’s history in New England. The additional practices with the Browns provide further insight into how Judge best thinks he can prepare this Giants team heading into the 2021 season.