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    Nov 2006






    "The Giants held a brief organized team
    activities session today – the final OTA open to the media – that included only
    individual drills, team walk-throughs and 7-on-7 passing drills. In other words,
    at no point did the offensive and defensive lines face one another.

    Still, there was a notable absence once again in left tackle Will
    , who was not on the field for the workout. Beatty is dealing
    with an undisclosed back issue.

    “That’s kind of slowed him down. He’s improving every day,” coach Tom
    said. “I don’t know that he will make the minicamp (next
    week), but he’s making good progress.”

    Beatty missed the final month-plus of the regular season and all of the
    postseason with a detached retina. Now, it’s his back, which flared up in the
    week before the game against the Eagles last November (the game in which he
    injured his eye).

    Coughlin was asked if the back problem is going to be an ongoing issue for

    “I hope not, but it’s always a concern,” Coughlin said. “Anybody that has had
    a bad back realizes that if you get yourself in trouble it’s very difficult to
    get out of trouble in a short amount of time. It’s painful. But he he’s worked
    well at it. He’s in every meeting and I’m encouraged by that. He’s not
    uncomfortable sitting in his meeting room chair, so he’s making good

    In the meantime, James Brewer has worked as the first-string
    left tackle, though Brewer said he’s also taken reps at right tackle.

    * * * *

    Today’s dose of bad injury news came early when S Tyler Sash
    appeared to strain his hamstring in the first portion of practice.

    Sash, a sixth-round pick last year who played in all 20 of the team’s games
    as a rookie and was a key contributor on special teams in the playoffs, was
    limping very badly both on his way off the field and in the locker room a bit
    later. The way he was moving, it was pretty clear he won’t be doing anything for
    the rest of the spring. We’ll see if this issue lingers into training camp.

    * * * *

    As I said, it was a brief practice with no team drills, so we can really only
    highlight a few things that happened during 7-on-7s. But first, a rundown of the
    injury situation:

    --DT Shaun Rogers was not on the field. Coughlin said he’s
    been dealing with an elbow issue. Rogers has been participating in meetings.

    --CBs Corey Webster (undisclosed), Terrell
    (knee) and Prince Amukamara (foot) all sat out
    7-on-7s, as they have for all of the OTAs. Coughlin said Amukamara has only been
    cleared to do individual drills. “I was hoping, having him cleared to do
    individual, and a couple of other guys, we might be outside on the grass,”
    Coughlin said. “But we were in here (in the indoor facility) because of the

    --Obviously, WR Hakeem Nicks (foot) and TEs Travis
    (knee) and Jake Ballard (knee) were not on
    hand. Also, DT Chris Canty (knee) remains out.

    --Others limited at least a little bit: DE Justin Tuck
    (shoulder), S Kenny Phillips (knee), RB Ahmad
    (foot), TE Martellus Bennett (hamstring) WR
    Dan DePalma (hip) and CB Antwaun Molden

    --DT Markus Kuhn is sitting out because apparently he
    doesn’t have a work visa. Jorge Castillo will have more on that for you on

    * * * *

    And now, those highlights I promised:

    --WR Ramses Barden was one of a few players Coughlin
    mentioned as having stood out during OTAs. He had a nice little practice today,
    with a tough catch in traffic on a ball from QB Eli Manning
    that LB Keith Rivers was lunging to reach. As I’ve mentioned a
    few times, Barden has shown an ability to make such catches. Barden later ran a
    good route up the seam to catch a ball from QB David Carr and
    would’ve had another catch on a well-run “sail” route had Carr seen him finding
    a hole in the zone.

    --The other players Coughlin mentioned were: CB Michael Coe,
    LB/DE Adrian Tracy and rookie RB David Wilson.
    So take that for what it’s worth.

    --Nice catch for rookie WR Rueben Randle on an in cut about
    10 yards down the field in front of CB Brandon Bing and S
    Stevie Brown. Bing later rebounded with a pass defensed when he
    peeled off the guy he was covering to jump in front of a receiver running a
    short route close by.

    --A rare miscommunication between Manning and WR Domenik
    . Manning threw outside; Hixon broke inside. Given both players
    are touted for being on point with their assignments, I don’t know which way I’d
    lean if I had to guess which one goofed. Based on body language, I’d say
    Manning, but that’d be a strict guess.

    --RB Da’Rel Scott was lined up out wide (a role the Giants
    tried using him in last season) and did a nice job of getting CB Dante
    to turn his hips and head upfield. When Scott planted on the
    short hook, he had a good 5 yards and then some of cushion.

    --We haven’t seen many deep balls connected in the sessions that have been
    open to the media. Today, Carr tried to hit WR Jerrel Jernigan
    on one but CB Justin Tryon had good coverage up the field.
    Later, Carr overshot WR Brandon Collins but that might’ve been
    because Collins had to reroute at the line to get past a decent jam by rookie CB
    Jayron Hosley.

    --There were two hiccups for Hosley, though: a dropped interception after
    nicely slipping underneath WR Isaiah Stanback’s in cut (from QB
    Ryan Perrilloux) and what appeared to be a missed assignment on
    a short hook over the middle caught by Collins. I was watching LB Jake
    , who seemed to vacate the zone for Collins when he followed TE
    Ryan Purvis on a short out, but defensive coordinator
    Perry Fewell corrected Hosley. Perhaps both Hosley and Muasau
    missed assignments there. Either way, Collins had a big spot to make a

    --Probably the offensive play of the day was Purvis’ coming back to make a
    great adjustment and catch on an underthrown pass from Perrilloux up the left
    seam. Purvis working back toward the ball allowed him to easily out-jump and
    out-position LB Jacquian Williams, whose momentum was taking
    him up the field."



    "An arbitrator has ruled that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has the authority to
    discipline New Orleans Saints players for their role in a bounty system.

    The NFL
    Players Association challenged Goodell's power to impose penalties
    for what
    the league says was a three-year bounty program that targeted specific players.
    Stephen Burbank, a University of Pennsylvania law professor, says Goodell has
    the power to punish the players under the collective bargaining agreement
    reached last August to end the lockout.

    Goodell suspended Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma for the entire 2012 season
    and teammate Will Smith for four games. Former Saints defensive end Anthony
    Hargrove, now with Green Bay, was suspended for eight games, while linebacker
    Scott Fujita, now with Cleveland, was docked three games."






    "Tom Brady’s last attempt at Super Bowl redemption lasted less than 15

    The Patriots quarterback was injured in the first quarter of the 2008
    regular-season opener, seven months after the New York Giants beat New England
    in the Super Bowl. Now that he’s trying to shake the memory of another Super
    Bowl loss to the Giants, Brady is using that season as a lesson.

    “I think one thing that my injury taught me a few years ago was how fragile
    this game is, and to be able to take the field every week is really a blessing,”
    Brady told reporters on Thursday after one of the offseason organized team

    Losing the Super Bowl “is part of learning as a player,” Brady said.
    “Hopefully you get a chance to be in that position again. At this point, we try
    to move on and you try to look forward to what this season is going to be about.
    It’s a different group of players, different coaches, a little different system.
    You’re trying to put together a team here that can go out and compete every
    single week.”

    Asked if he looks at things differently at 35 than he did at 25, Brady
    responded, a little too seriously: “I’m not 35.”

    He turns 35 in August.

    The Patriots went 16-0 in the 2007 regular season and made it 18-0 in the
    playoffs before the Giants came back to win in the Super Bowl with two
    fourth-quarter touchdowns, including one by Plaxico Burress with 35 seconds
    left. In the first quarter of the first game of the ‘08 regular season, Brady
    blew out his knee and was gone for the year.

    This February, New England again blew a fourth-quarter lead in the
    championship game, this time when Ahmad Bradshaw scored — uncontested — from 6
    yards with 57 seconds left.

    Brady has already moved on.

    “You don’t look back too much on the past and say, ‘What if? What if?’ You’d
    drive yourself crazy,” Brady said. “At some point, you have to put it in the
    past and move on.”

    Defensive lineman Vince Wilfork said the loss has “no effect” on this season.

    “You start back from where you started before, from zero. That’s where I’m at
    now,” he said. “You really can’t dwell over spoiled milk. Last year was last
    year, that’s how you have to look at it and keep rolling. You have to be a

    Brady is hoping this season will end better, and the Patriots have stocked
    his receiving corps to make it happen. The team signed free agents Donte’
    Stallworth, Brandon Lloyd and Jabar Gaffney and re-signed Deion Branch and Wes
    Welker to go along with Julian Edelman and Chad Ochocinco."






    "An arbitrator ruled Monday that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has the authority
    to discipline New Orleans Saints players for their role in a bounty system.

    The NFL Players Association challenged Goodell's power to
    impose penalties for what the league says was a three-year bounty program that
    targeted specific players. Stephen Burbank, a University of Pennsylvania law
    professor, took only five days to determine that Goodell has the power to punish
    the players under the collective bargaining agreement reached last August to end
    the lockout.

    Goodell suspended Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma for
    the entire 2012 season and teammate Will Smith for four
    games. Former Saints defensive end Anthony Hargrove,
    now with Green Bay, was suspended for eight games, while linebacker Scott Fujita, now with
    Cleveland, was docked three games.

    Those players have appealed the suspensions. And the
    players' union said Monday it expects to appeal Burbank's decision because it
    believes salary cap violations are involved in the payment. That would give
    Burbank the authority to rule on penalizing any players involved.

    Burbank did, however, retain temporary jurisdiction on
    Hargrove's role and asked Goodell for more information on Hargrove's "alleged

    Burbank "invited the commissioner to clarify the precise
    basis for his discipline of Mr. Hargrove who, among other things, was found to
    have lied to the league's investigators and obstructed their investigation," the
    NFL said in a statement.

    The union filed another grievance with a different
    arbitrator, Shyam Das, claiming the new CBA prohibits Goodell from punishing
    players for any conduct before the CBA was signed. The league's investigation
    showed the bounty program ran from 2009-11.

    Das has yet to rule on that grievance, which also seeks
    to have player appeals heard by Art Shell and Ted Cottrell, who are jointly
    appointed by the league and union to review discipline handed out for on-field

    The league and union have spent plenty of time before
    arbitrators and judges this offseason, with two other major cases pending.

    Vilma has sued Goodell for defamation in a U.S. District
    Court in New Orleans and Goodell has been given until July 5 to respond to the

    The players also have sued the league in U.S. District
    Court in Minnesota, claiming the owners colluded in the uncapped 2010 season to
    have a secret salary cap. NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith has said such
    collusion could have cost players $1 billion in wages.

    That lawsuit stems, in part, from the NFL stripping the
    Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys of salary cap room in 2012 and `13. The
    Redskins had their cap reduced $36 million over the two years and the Cowboys
    lost $10 million in cap space.

    Both teams filed a grievance and lost."




    GIANTS 101


    "Although New York
    rookie 7th round pick Markus Kuhn signed his contract about three weeks ago, he
    still has not participated in any Organized Team Activities (OTA's).

    Jorge Castillo reports that Kuhn, who is a German citizen, still has not received his work visa and can not physically
    participate in OTA's until the issue is resolved.

    Kuhn expects his work visa any day now; however, the rookie defensive tackle
    out of NC State is currently battling for a spot on the 53-man roster, so surely
    he wants to get on the field as soon as possible. Luckily for him, the issue
    should be resolved within the next few days, which will provide him with ample
    opportunity to show the New York
    coaching staff if he is capable of being an effective NFL player.

    It had previously been reported that Kuhn was not participating due to a
    large gash in his leg sustained after a knife sticking out of a box cut him
    while he was moving."


    "Rocky Bernard and Jimmy Kennedy are no longer with the New York
    Giants, having been replaced by 11-year veteran Shaun
    , rookie Markus
    and the returning Marvin Austin. This personnel shuffle appears, at
    least on paper, to significantly bolster the interior defensive line, and the
    now tenured Chris
    sure is excited about it.

    “The new guys that we added all have unique skills that they bring to our
    group,” Canty said, “more bullets in the gun.”

    Canty added that he is very "excited" about the group and specifically
    singled out Austin, who he said he has "high expectations" for.

    Unfortunately for Canty, he will not be available to return to mini-camp
    following arthroscopic debridement on his knee in February. However, he fully
    expects to be back in time for training camp and at 100% by the time the season

    “It's good,” Canty said of his knee. “Everything is good. Doing rehab
    exercises, strengthening it.”

    In the interim, all the new additions will see increased reps. For a veteran
    like Rogers, that may not be as valuable as it will be for Kuhn and especially
    Austin, who missed all of last season with a torn pectoral and all of his senior
    season due to a suspension. It will be imperative for him to stay healthy and
    get as much practice time as possible."




    "Osi Umenyiora
    was among the New York Giants who
    hit the practice field today at the Timex Performance Center for the team's
    latest OTA. Here is some information gleaned from the twitter accounts of Pat
    Traina, Mike Garafolo, Ralph Vacchaino, Ohm Youngmisuk and other Giants beat
      [*]Umenyiora said the Giants offered him a multi-year deal, but be took the one-year
      deal so he can explore free agency at the end of the season.
      [*]Umenyiora told reporters he fired agent Tony
      Agnone because he would not sign off on the deal with the Giants, but that he
      plans to rehire Agnone.
      [*]Tight end Martellus
      , in light of the news he is up to 291 pounds, was in no mood to hear
      fat jokes. See Ralph Vacchiano's classic tweet below.
        [*]Bennett also told reporters he has bulked up and his pants size has gone down, and fired off this one-liner: "I'm looking like Atlas, not Professor
        Klump."[*]Will Beatty has
        not been participating in OTAs due to a back injury that may also keep him out
        of mini-camp. Defensive tackle Shaun Rogers is
        sitting out with an elbow issue.[*]Pat Traina and I apparently jinxed Tyler Sash. The second-year safety
        apparently suffered a hamstring injury Monday morning.[/list]

        Much more later when full reports and interview transcripts
        become available."


        "I recently listed second-year safety Tyler Sash as
        one of my 'Players Under Pressure' for the New York Giants
        entering the 2012 season. Well, good friend Pat Traina of Inside Football has penned an
        encouraging post
        about the work the former sixth-round draft choice has put
        in thus far this offseason.

        Here is Pat's money quote from Giants
        safeties coach Dave Merritt is regards to Sash.

        "One thing that Tyler has done is that he's actually taking classroom
        (work) a little more seriously," Merritt said. "He is growing up and
        understanding that he has to make the calls and the adjustments, so that right
        there alone from his rookie year to where he is right now has been a big
        improvement. Since he's running with the first team with Phillips down, he's out
        there making more coverage adjustments and rotation adjustments than he did last

        Here's one from Sash himself.

        "I feel better moving around," he said of his showing thus far this
        spring, adding that his improved understanding of the defense has also
        contributed this being able to play faster.

        "Last year, I don't think I understood all the run fits and gaps systems
        when an extra safety comes down into the box. With the OTAs, that's something
        I've really been concentrating on because that's something that I feel like I
        can really help the team with."


        "Good morning fellow Giants fans. We are literally barreling through the
        off-season, and there are two reminders this morning about how unbelievable our
        Super Bowl win was just four months ago tomorrow--a new DVD and a dissection by
        former Giants' receiver Mario
        about The Catch II, or whatever you want to call it--I call it
        freaking ridiculous and I mean that in a good way. Anyway, here is what is
        happening as we're less than two months away from the start of training

        Super Bowl XLVI DVD with complete playoff broadcasts on sale Tuesday |

        I try to keep this blog as objective and commercial-free as
        possible but I know folks have been very anxious about when the Giants' Super
        Bowl XLVI DVD with the complete network broadcasts of the playoff games would be
        available. I finally have your answer: (this) week. NFL Films and Vivendi
        Entertainment have announced "New York Giants:
        Road to XLVI" on DVD ($39.99) and Blu-Ray ($49.99) will go on sale on

        For the record, it's actually about the four playoff games, not just the
        Super Bowl.

        Francisco 49ers: Mario Manningham breaks down his clutch Super Bowl moment -
        Chico Enterprise Record

        It looks like a high-speed ballet. Manning
        gets his left foot down, then drags his right, skimming along the surface as the
        ball floats into his fingertips. Watching this scene again, the receiver shows
        no emotion. His dissection is clinical. "As soon as the ball touches your hands,
        that's when your feet have to freeze," he said. "Your body has to be still and
        you have to have control of the ball."

        We've all dissected the play too, but not like this. This is a great article
        that gives intricate details about just how incredible the play was in real

        Umenyiora has 'peace of mind' after restructuring contract with Giants |

        Someone informed of the details of the agreement said it’s
        not an extension and only a reworking of the final year of the contract
        Umenyiora signed in 2006. The person, who requested anonymity because the team
        did not comment on the terms, said the Giants vowed not to place the franchise
        tag on Umenyiora next spring.

        Victor Cruz or Hakeem Nicks be the New York Giants' most valuable fantasy
        receiver in 2012? - Fantasy Football - ESPN

        Could two New York
        Giants wide receivers really be among the top 10 at the position?

        Sorry, you need ESPN Insider to read the full piece, and I don't have
        that--but this is an extremely interesting debate. And it's made even more
        controversial by the fact of Nicks' foot injury. For that reason I might pick
        Cruz before Nicks in my fantasy draft. How about you guys? I'm biased, too,
        because I have had Victor on all of my fantasy teams in 2010 and 2011, but in
        2012 he's going to be drafted very high and will be harder to nab.

        Parcells vs. Tom Coughlin: When it comes to the best coach in NY Giants history,
        start the debate - NY Daily News

        Bill Parcells is considered the
        greatest coach in Giants history and is one of the favorites to be selected for
        the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2013. If Tom Coughlin has not completely
        closed the gap on Parcells as the best Giants coach of all time, he's at least a
        big part of the conversation now that he's tied Parcells with his second Super
        Bowl championship.

        I still pick Parcells, but not by much at this point.

        Quarterback Showdown - New Rochelle, NY Patch

        In a competition
        judged by former New York Giants Phil Simms and Amani Toomer
        among others, student athletes from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut
        competed in passing events, throwing at both targets and to live

        Where are
        they now? | The 2002 Scholar-Athletes - KansasCity.com

        manager at the downtown Indianapolis Walgreen’s, which served as the New York
        Giants’ prescription supplier for the Super Bowl in February. "We knew who was
        on antibiotics, and I had to warn my staff not to talk to anyone about which
        players were sick," Biss said.

        Now that's really interesting. Imagine being the person that has to keep that
        a secret so the Patriots
        didn't have the information. Imagine Belichick walking into the pharmacy and
        casually asking which Giants were on antibiotics. Okay, maybe it's not that
        interesting, but it's another slow news day!"




        "Giants’ second-year safety Tyler Sash broke from the
        defensive huddle and jogged to his position. He leaned forward, full attention
        on the quarterback, anticipating the snap of the ball, and making whatever final
        adjustments were necessary to make sure his area of responsibility was

        The ball was snapped and Sash pounced, well, like the ’Hawk’ he was in
        college. He quickly got into position and knocked the pass from the receiver,
        earning praise from defensive coordinator Perry Fewell and
        safeties coach David Merritt that was no doubt heard two
        counties away.

        For Sash, it was just another day and another chance to make a play – that
        is, after all, his goal as he begins his campaign to win the third safety spot
        previously held by Deon Grant.

        It has only been four months since Sash last played in an NFL game – he last
        contributed on special teams in Super Bowl XLVI. Since returning to the field
        for OTAs, he has shown improvements in nearly all aspects of his game,
        especially in his understanding of the finer points of the defense.

        “I’m at an advantage now going through OTAs where I actually understand why
        we’re in certain coverages and certain sets,” he said. “You understand why the
        linebackers are here, and why the cornerback is doing this, because we have the
        time now where the coaches can sit down and explain things. Last year, we were
        kind of in a hurry-up mode in just trying to get everything in.”

        By having that better understanding, Sash said he has been able to play
        faster this spring, something that Merritt has taken note of as well.

        “You look at all these rookies going into their second year that didn’t have
        a chance to do the things that we’re doing now because of the lockout,” Merritt
        said. “Now, they’re able to get the classroom stuff, slow it down, and
        understand the nuts and bolts of what’s going on to where it’s like, ‘Ok, this
        is what we’re doing and this is why we’re doing it’”

        Merritt also said that Sash has really evolved into a student of the game
        this spring, an evolution that he believes will make a significant difference in
        the Oskaloosa, Iowa native’s performance this fall.

        “One thing that Tyler has done is that he’s actually taking classroom (work)
        a little more seriously,” Merritt said. “He is growing up and understanding that
        he has to make the calls and the adjustments, so that right there alone from his
        rookie year to where he is right now has been a big improvement. Since he’s
        running with the first team with Phillips down, he’s out there making more
        coverage adjustments and rotation adjustments than he did last year.”

        Another goal of Sash’s was to improve his physical conditioning. Although he
        came into camp in shape last year, this off-season, Sash sought to cut his body
        fat because he wanted to gain a step in his quickness.

        In addition to modifying his diet, he put himself through more footwork and
        ladder drills to bring his physical quickness up to a level to complement his
        mental understanding of his assignments.

        “I feel better moving around,” he said of his showing thus far this spring,
        adding that his improved understanding of the defense has also contributed this
        being able to play faster.

        “Last year, I don’t think I understood all the run fits and gaps systems when
        an extra safety comes down into the box. With the OTAs, that’s something I’ve
        really been concentrating on because that’s something that I feel like I can
        really help the team with.”

        While Phillips will eventually return to the starting lineup, both Merritt
        and Sash think that the former Iowa Hawkeye has as goo a chance as any to win
        the third safety spot held by Grant the last two seasons.

        “Physically, I think Tyler can do everything Deon did,” said Merritt, who
        also offered that Sash is probably a better fit for the box at this point in his

        In comparing Sash’s abilities as a box safety to that of Grant’s, Merritt
        said, “Overall strength and playing the run, they’re the same. Tyler might be a
        little more physical vs. the run than Deon was, to be honest with you.”

        In the Giants’ system, the safeties are interchangeable, and it’s in pass
        coverage where Merritt thinks Sash might have a bit of a bumpy road.

        “When you’re dealing with a guy who’s a 6-5 tight end and you have a guy like
        Deon, who was just shy of 6-3, it was easier for him to match up against those
        bigger guys. Tyler, who is about 6-0, is probably going to be a little more
        tested by quarterbacks who see him trying to cover a bigger receiver.”

        Merritt said that Grant, a 12-year NFL veteran, was also more advanced in his
        knowledge of the techniques and in breaking in the angles.

        But that doesn’t mean that Sash can’t one day get to that same level. In
        fact, Merritt praised Sash for how quickly he grasped some of those complex
        intricacies last season.

        “He surprised me last year when he came in and all of a sudden he was playing
        in the middle of the field and he was going right and left and taking proper
        angles,” Merritt said of Sash, who in college had 13 interceptions for the

        “I feel like I can do a little bit of everything,” Sash said. “Safeties today
        have to cover and support the run. In our system, we really don’t have a free or
        a strong. One motion can get me into coverage and another can get me down into
        run support. I just feel like I can help in all areas.”

        While Sash appears to be further ahead in terms of providing run support,
        Merritt believes that as he continues to learn the different pass coverages,
        Sash will continue to evolve into an all-around safety.

        “In college, one of the things that he did was he played more of a quarter
        technique. It wasn’t like he was in the box, but he was close enough around the
        line of scrimmage that he made a lot of plays against the run. When it came to
        the passing game, their scheme allowed him to play and read one guy, and off of
        that read, it took him to his second read, and then he could make plays,”
        Merritt said.

        “In the NFL, we’re not necessarily that simple like, ‘OK, you’re going to
        play this technique and really that’s all you’re going to play against the
        pass.’ We play multiple techniques, so that’s been the struggle for him. To be
        able to go back and forth and play multiple coverages and techniques and
        adjustments is hard, but the kid is actually improving in that area.”

        In addition to his studying and on-field reps, Sash said the pointers he
        received from Grant last year were priceless.

        “He’s probably forgotten more football than I’ll ever know,” Sash said of
        Grant. “He’s taught me so many things, from reading the outside receiver in
        Cover-2 to getting your run pass reads, to when you’re in the box, reading the
        guard, tackle, and tight end. He pointed out little things here and there that
        help you become a better player.

        “He’s seen just about every offense, every offensive set you can imagine, and
        one thing that he really instilled in me is if there’s a motion coming, you have
        to be read to make the adjustment, make the shift, and just get everyone on the
        same page.”

        Another lesson Grant taught Sash is the value of being a leader. These days,
        Sash can be seen helping his new teammates to understand the defense because he
        still remembers how his head was swimming when he was trying to grasp all the
        complexities of the system.

        “It’s funny because when you’re a new guy coming in, you have a lot to learn
        in the playbook,” Sash said. “I remember what it was like to be in that position
        last year. So even if they’re not asking, I’m trying to explain to the new guys
        exactly what’s going on just because I know exactly how they must be


        THE RED ZONE


        GIANTS GAB


        GMEN HQ










        "A couple of months removed from their victory in Indianapolis, the New York
        Giants still have a lot to prove in the always competitive NFC East, arguably,
        the toughest division in the entire league. With training camp a little overtwo
        months away, it is never too early to talk position battles. Here are a couple
        of key battles in camp you should look out for…

        2nd String Running Back

        Thunder and Lightning 2.0, aka Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw, are no
        more. Jacobs has since signed with last year’s NFC Championship opponents, the
        San Francisco 49ers, which opens up a hole as the backup tailback behind
        Bradshaw. Using the last pick in the first round oflast April’s Draft, the
        G-Men picked up former Virginia Tech running back David Wilson, a more balanced
        halfback. Second year man, Da’Rel Scott had shown promise in last year’s
        preseason but only carried the ball five times in the regular season. Veteran
        D.J. Ware has been a solid third option at running back for the last three
        years. His familiarity with the system and veteran savvy should give him the
        upper hand in the battle. Wilson should be the favorite and will prove why the
        Giants invested in him with the32nd overall pick.

        No. 3Wide Receiver

        The Giants let go of Super Bowl XLVI hero, Mario Manningham, who took his
        talents to San Francisco as well, leaving the slot position open. Hakeem Nicks
        and Victor Cruz are arguably the best wide receiver tandem in the league, but
        the Giants offense thrives off three wide receiver sets, so it is crucial that
        they find a replacement for Manningham in the slot. Domenik Hixon would be an
        easy pick here. He has been productive in this system in years past but, coming
        off two back to back ACL tears, you have to wonder about his durability issues.
        Ramses Barden is a big physical, prototypical receiver that can be a red zone
        threat, but he has also had his bout with injuries in his career as well. The
        Giants invested their second round pick in Rueben Randle who the coaches and
        front office guys have called “NFL Ready,” according to the Bleacher Report. One
        would have to think the job is Randle’s to lose.

        Middle Linebacker

        This is probably one of the more interesting battles of the summer. Chase
        Blackburn had been the starter for the majority of last year, including starting
        in the Super Bowl and making a game changing interception, covering an injured
        Rob Gronkowski. Michael Boley was the second leading tackler on the team and is
        the Giants’ Most balanced linebacker. The Giants have also brought in former
        first round pick, Keith Rivers from Cincinnati, which makes the battle even more
        interesting. Blackburn is more suited as arun stopper, while Boley is more
        superior in coverage, which could give him the upside playing against the likes
        of Fred Davis, Jason Witten and Brent Celek twice a year. The advantage has to
        lie with Boley, whose versatility can keep him on the field longer no matter
        what the situation might be."


        "The injury to Hakeem Nicks has thrown the Giants fan world into a panic. Despite
        the fact that numerous commentators and players have rebounded from the same
        injury (broken fifth metatarsal) with no longterm issues, people have instantly
        wondered what the Giants are to do. Manningham is out, of course, and Randle is
        a rookie. Nobody trusts Ramses Barden less than I do. Still, I believe fans
        worry unnecessarily. All signs suggest that Nicks will be back well before the
        season opener against Dallas on September 5th. But just to humor the naysayers,
        let's assume Nicks does miss some serious time. Suddenly, Victor Cruz appears to
        be the only reliable receiver, and he's only had one good year. So what do the
        Giants do?

        Cruz is a natural in the slot receiver position. Nicks is a
        dangerous deep threat. This is where most analysts get sidetracked, wondering
        feverishly which of the remaining receivers--Hixon, Barden or Randle--will
        replace Nicks on the outside. I venture a different opinion: Victor Cruz will
        replace Nicks as the deep threat. Hixon will be the slot receiver. Before his
        injury last season, Hixon was the leading favorite to replace Steve Smith in the
        slot. He's an excellent route runner with good hands but he is not particularly
        effective as a deep threat. But Victor Cruz is. Over the middle is his territory
        but he's often grabbed the ball deep on the outside as well. His first touchdown
        against Philly last year was a model of an outside receiver: get open, grab the
        ball and run like fury. Cruz may be better in the slot but he is better on the
        outside than Hixon who slides into the slot quite easily. Then you have your
        choice on the other side: Tight end Martellus Bennett, rookie Reuben Randle or
        Ramses Barden. Defenses are going to pay attention to Cruz wherever he is, but
        leaving Hixon or Randle open is not going to be a good idea either. Look at some
        LSU footage if you don't believe me.

        I hope Nicks is all right. He is one
        dangerous dude--even doubled in the Super Bowl, he came up with ten catches for
        over a hundred yards. Our passing attack is going to miss him if he can't make
        it back for the opener. But here is just one way the Giants can utilize the
        weapons they have (even supposing they do not go out and sign another receiver
        between now and then) to make up for it for a few weeks. Then he will be back
        and the NFC East will be back on notice."




        FOX SPORTS






        "Arbitrator Stephen Burbank on Monday rejected the appeals of four New Orleans Saints players, who
        were attempting to take NFL-imposed Bountygate suspensions out of comissioner
        Roger Goodell's hands, CBSSports.com has learned.

        When Goodell suspended the players -- Jonathan Vilma, Scott Fujita (now with
        Browns), Will Smith and
        Anthony Hargrove
        (now with Packers) -- the NFLPA appealed on their behalf, saying discipline in
        the case should be under Burbank's jurisdiction. Burbank rejected that notion,
        several sources said. An official announcement is expected soon.

        This means that Goodell's disciplinary process in the Saints matter will move
        forward under NFL jurisdiction."






        "Osi Umenyiora says the New York
        did not change anything from previous contract offers they pitched to
        him, but the defensive end just decided enough was enough and it was time to put
        his contract squabble to an end.

        Saying that he has no hard feelings over his long contract dispute, Umenyiora
        returned to the Giants and joined his teammates on the field during the team's
        organized team activities Monday.

        "(This) could have been done a long time ago," Umenyiora said in his first
        comments to reporters since agreeing to restructure the final year of his
        contract last Friday. "Honestly seeing the way my teammates Kiwi (Mathias Kiwanuka) and JP (Jason Pierre-Paul) and Antrel (Rolle), seeing the way they had my
        back, you need to get this done and the way they were talking, it made me
        realize it was more important to have teammates like that and be on a team like
        this then fighting and haggling over a couple of extra dollars.

        "It really wasn't worth for me to go somewhere else," he continued. "This is
        my 10th year here and I have had a great time here and I want it to continue and
        I feel like something special is being built over here and I just much rather be
        here than continue to fight and face all the negativity and criticism over
        really what amounted to be nothing."

        The Super Bowl champs were one big happy family again on Monday. As Umenyiora
        met with a horde of reporters, Pierre-Paul welcomed Umenyiora back with a shout
        in the locker room. Teammates like Kiwanuka, Rolle and Justin Tuck all backed Umenyiora's desire
        for a new contract in recent weeks and hoped that the two sides would find a
        resolution soon.

        "Very good to have him out there," coach Tom Coughlin said Monday. "There is
        never any question about Osi preparation-wise. He is a tremendous studier of the
        opponent. He knows exactly what his thoughts are going into the game and how the
        game plan fits. He will always do that, but to get back into a football frame of
        mind -- and a positive one at that -- it is a very good thing."

        Umenyiora did not get into specifics of his new restructured contract but
        confirmed 2012 will remain the final year of his deal. The defensive end made it
        clear he holds no grudges toward the Giants and left the door open for the
        possibility of re-signing with the Giants after this season.

        The team did not disclose terms of the new deal, but sources said Umenyiora
        and the Giants had recently been discussing a raise in his contract from the
        scheduled $3.975 million he was going to make in the final year of his deal to
        something in the range of $7.5 million for 2012. When asked if the Giants
        offered any more money above their original offers made in the past, Umenyiora
        replied, "nah, not at all."

        Umenyiora has long sought a new contract to replace the seven-year, $41
        million deal he signed in 2005. He wanted a contract extension similar to the
        four-year extensions Philadelphia's Trent Cole signed worth $48.525 million,
        including $15 million guaranteed. Umenyiora also mentioned Indianapolis' Robert Mathis' recent four-year extension
        worth $36 million with $17 million guaranteed as a measuring stick for what he

        "It just wasn't going to happen," Umenyiora said of his desire for a big
        contract extension. "But I understood completely their perspective."

        "If I was them I'd do the same thing," he added. "I mean obviously you have
        Tuck, who's the face of the franchise and you have JPP who's a young phenom. I'm
        still a very good football player but you can't pay us all that kind of money.
        You're gonna hamstring your franchise so I would make the exact same decisions
        if I was them, no question."

        Umenyiora said his longtime agent Tony Agnone would not sign off on the
        restructured deal so he decided to temporarily part ways with Agnone to come to
        the Giants' terms. The defensive end, though, plans to re-hire Agnone for future
        contract negotiations.

        Last year, Umenyiora held out the first few weeks at training camp. Agnone
        was briefly allowed to seek a trade but no team was willing to offer a
        first-round pick in return. Umenyiora returned for three practices before opting
        for minor knee surgery after experiencing swelling in his knee.

        Umenyiora apparently was not looking forward to going through another camp

        "Last summer was different, what I was looking for last year and what I was
        looking for this year are completely different," said Umenyiora. "Things change.
        This year there was no way they were going to be able to give me a contract
        extension in line of what other people were getting."

        Umenyiora had nine sacks in nine regular-season games in 2011 and another 3.5
        sacks during New York's run to a Super Bowl title last potseason. Umenyiora, 30,
        said there were no promises made by the organization not to use its franchise
        tag on him next season, but he won't be upset if that happens.

        Umenyiora said it will not be a problem coming off the bench.

        "Really if it was anybody but JPP and Tuck then it would matter," said
        Umenyiora, who took first-team reps at defensive end with Tuck watching from the
        sideline to rest his shoulder. "But those are my brothers, man. If they're
        starting I don't care. I'll back those guys up happily."

        Umenyiora was asked if he thinks he is worth more than what he will be
        playing for this season. The defensive end said all that matters is that he is
        happy to be back.

        "Um, it doesn't matter, man," Umenyiora said. "I signed it. I'm here.
        Whatever I feel means nothing at this point. I'm happy with it."

        "This is good for me, I'm happy," he continued. "And more importantly, it's
        the team I'm on and the guys who I'm playing with. Justin and JPP and Kiwi,
        we're all brothers and for all of us to be able to go out and play together is
        more important than anything."


        "Will Beatty continues to be hampered by a back issue. He was
        not out on the field during Monday's OTA.

        "He has a bad back," head
        coach Tom Coughlin said. "That has kind of slowed him down. He
        is improving every day. I don't know that he will make the minicamp. But he is
        making good progress."

        "I hope not, but it is always a concern,"
        Coughlin added when asked if this is an ongoing issue. "Anybody that has had a
        bad back realizes that if you get yourself in trouble, it is very difficult to
        get out of trouble in a short amount of time. It is painful. But he has worked
        well at it. He is in every meeting. And I'm encouraged by that. He is not
        uncomfortable sitting in his meeting room chair. So he is making good progress."

        James Brewer has seen reps at left tackle with Beatty
        out. Defensive tackle Shaun Rogers was also held out due to an
        elbow issue according to Coughlin.

        Wide receiver Ramses Barden knows this is likely a
        make-or-break season for him with the Giants, and so far he's making the most of
        it. He had a few nice catches Monday and was one of three players Coughlin
        mentioned when asked for some young standouts in OTAs thus far.

        "I think
        there are four or five guys that have flashed that would give you some real good
        thoughts about how they performed out here," Coughlin said. "[Cornerback]
        Michael Coe had a couple of outstanding plays -- a real good
        interception the other day. Ramses Barden has had good flash plays out here.
        [Defensive end/linebacker] Adrian Tracy has done the same.
        Those would be the guys."

        Coughlin also said he was impressed with
        first-round pick David Wilson's conditioning and veteran
        Ahmad Bradshaw's participation in practice when many expected
        him to sit out OTAs.

        "A lot of the rookies have -- upon opportunity --
        maybe a flash here and a flash there," Coughlin said. "David Wilson, with his
        conditioning and his quickness and speed, has been there. I'm encouraged by more
        and more guys that have had issues in the past –- like Ahmad, he has practiced a
        couple of days. We have him restricted but he will take the first couple or
        three plays of a practice and go. And he actually looks good and he appears to
        be pretty comfortable."

        Cornerback Prince Amukamara has been cleared to participate in
        individual work. Last year's first-round pick recently began running on grass
        after having an injection in his foot to help it heal this offseason. Amukamara
        broke his fifth metatarsal during training camp last summer.

        said he awaits clearance to see if he will be able to participate fully in next
        week's veteran's minicamp."



        Excerpt: "Former MLB manager Billy Martin had a philosophy when it came to evaluating
        talent. He said, "You've got your mules, and you've got your race horses, and
        you can kick a mule in the *** all you want to and he's not going to be a race

        The same type of thinking applies when it comes to evaluating NFL wide
        receivers. There are many different types of pass-catchers, but in the end the
        ability to get open against good competition is skill a player either has or
        doesn't have. Players who are blessed with that talent are termed
        "matchup-buster" wide receivers.

        So who are the top matchup-buster wide receivers in the NFL?

        One way to find this out is to review how well every wide receiver in the
        league did last year when facing cornerbacks who graded out in my 2012
        Fantasy Football Draft Guide
        (currently available for pre-order) as having a
        red rating (defined as allowing a yards per attempt (YPA) total of less than 7
        yards, a mark that signifies they are among the best in the league) or a yellow
        rating (meaning they allowed a YPA of 7-9 yards).

        To make this as fair as possible, there is also a qualifying bar of 35
        attempts against red- or yellow-rated cornerbacks.

        Using those parameters, here are the top matchup-buster wide receivers in the

        True matchup-busters (those who tallied a YPA of 10 yards or higher
        against red/yellow-rated cornerbacks)

        Victor Cruz, New York
        (10.9 YPA)

        Any th
    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

  2. #2
    All-Pro Captain Chaos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Alexandria, Va

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 10:10 A.M.

    Thanks Roanoke!

  3. #3

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 10:10 A.M.


  4. #4
    Moderator RoanokeFan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 10:10 A.M.

    [quote user="Captain Chaos"]Thanks Roanoke![/quote]

    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

  5. #5

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 11:26 A.M.

    Thanks for all the news RF.

  6. #6
    Moderator RoanokeFan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 11:26 A.M.

    [quote user="nygsb42champs"]Thanks for all the news RF.[/quote]

    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

  7. #7

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 10:10 A.M.

    thanks Roanoke!

    yea, Cruz and Nicks can be top 10 receivers in the league!

    nice to hear Barden is taking an interest! he needs more than one good performance tho!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2009

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 10:10 A.M.

    Thanks RF! [B]

  9. #9
    Moderator RoanokeFan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 10:10 A.M.

    [quote user="BigBlue1971"]

    thanks Roanoke!

    yea, Cruz and Nicks can be top 10 receivers in the league!

    nice to hear Barden is taking an interest! he needs more than one good performance tho!


    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

  10. #10
    Moderator RoanokeFan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Re: NEWS, NOTES, RUMORS, AND GOSSIP: MONDAY, JUNE 4, 2012 - 10:10 A.M.

    [quote user="NY_Eli"]Thanks RF! [B][/quote]

    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

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