The New York Giants continued their 2021 training camp on Wednesday. Here are some of the things we learned.
“Old-school” Joe Judge addresses brawl
The way Joe Judge reacted to Tuesday’s melee at Giants practice, multiple 100-yard punishment gassers for players, two sets of pushups and an epithet-filled tirade that probably lasted 15 minutes, probably drew more attention than the brawl itself.
Judge isn’t worried about the outside perception of his reaction, or that his players won’t respond to harsh methods not often use these days by professional coaches.
“We’ve had a great experience with our players. We have guys in this program now for about a year and a half. We constantly communicate with these guys, we’re very transparent, we explain why we do what we do. They understand that there’s a goal at hand, what it’s supposed to look like, and how we’re supposed to get there. I think by doing that it kind of makes the path clear and easier to understand,” Judge said. “I’ve said before, I’m a little bit old school and how I believe. Coaches have really influenced me. The one thing I’ve really learned from some great coaches that I had the opportunity to play or coach under is they really reaffirmed everything I learned young in the game as a player. That’s really about fundamentals and foundation. It’s about discipline, it’s about culture. So, in terms of the modern day, I know a lot of people have different ways of doing things. I know there’s a proven way that works, and we’re going to stick to the base fundamentals that we believe in.”
Judge said the brawl, which started when defensive back Xavier McKinney knocked running back Corey Clement to the ground, was a “violation” of the temp the team was supposed to be practicing at.
“It’s a teaching point no matter how it happens. To be honest with you, my message to the team is the reason it happened is insignificant, the result of what happened is what the consequence is going to be and we can’t have that. We can’t coach that,” Judge said. “This time of training camp, guys do get a little bit chippy with each other, but I’d say that stays on the field. When all our players walked off the field yesterday, we had no issues carry over to the locker room, the cafeteria, the training room, anywhere else. Our guys are in here and I’m not saying we’re laughing off the situation, but they understand that we’re all one team and we can’t do that to each other. And the most important part of that lesson we have to learn is ultimately we have to eliminate bad football. Penalties are bad football. The lesson has to be we’re not doing anything that’s going to get our team in a position to be penalized.”
The Giants avoided the worst-case scenario of season-ending knee surgery when left guard Shane Lemieux was injured early in camp. Lemieux remains day-to-day.
Now, they appear to have done the same with the hamstring injury suffered Tuesday by wide receiver Kenny Golladay.
“I think we’ve kind of avoided that,’ said Judge.
There is no timetable for Golladay to return to practice.
Two days, two retirements
Two newly-signed veterans, linebacker todd Davis and now offensive lineman Joe Looney, retired on back-to-back days. Davis on Tuesday and Looney on Wednesday.
The easy narrative crawling all around Twitter is that both players quit because they didn’t want to deal with Judge.
Neither player had anything bad to say about the Giants.
Here is what Davis said about the Giants:
“The Giants, I was only there a little bit of time, and I think I had a shot at doing everything I wanted to do there,” Davis said. “It was just everything combined. It was great there. I feel like they have a great coaching staff. There’s a lot of coaches there who care about their players doing well, so I expect them to do well.”
Looney also did not have anything negative to say about Judge or the Giants.
Spoke to his agent @adross77 just now. “Joe always felt when his body didn’t respond the way he needed it to, it would be time to step away. He has too much respect for the Giants and Coach Garrett to not do that.” https://t.co/aU59uRjdSF— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) August 4, 2021
it’s easy to beat up on Judge for these. It’s harder to figure out what really happened, or to accept information that doesn’t fit the narrative you want to believe.
As for Davis and Looney, I wish both of them well.
Cam Brown moving around
Carter Coughlin isn’t the only second-year linebacker who is bouncing between the edge and off-ball positions. Cam Brown is doing the same.
“That came up as an offseason decision. This wasn’t anything as a result of numbers. We made the decision in the offseason to really work Cam with some inside stack and have some flex go to the edge for some pass rush situations,” Judge said. “He’s a guy that’s got a good skill set. He’s got some length, he is athletic. He can really run in space, so we’re going to try and find him a home based on the packages.
“We don’t want to limit him that he can only do one thing and then we’re stuck that we can’t get him on the field as much as we want to. So, by cross-training right now on the edge and the stack, that’ll free us up as the season goes, as the packages change, the game plans change, that we have more people that are available to help us.”
Brown played off-ball at Penn State, so the position isn’t new to him.
It turns out the Giants had recently issued t-shirts to players and staff with the word “FIGHT” across the front. Offensive coordinator Jason Garrett was wearing one on Tuesday when the brawl broke out. Offensive tackle Nate Solder showed up for a Zoom call with media today wearing one.
The Giants practice Wednesday evening. Big Blue View is not in attendance. Should, however, there be any noteworthy news we will be sure to get it to you.