GIANTS' CORNERBACK PRINCE AMUKAMARA IMPRESSING TOM COUGHLIN IN FIRST FULL OFFSEASON
"Prince Amukamara is like a glorified rookie at this point,
given how much time he missed with a broken foot after what was already an
abbreviated 2011 offseason.
“Prince is making progress, yeah, he is,” Giants coach Tom Coughlin
said of last year’s first-round pick. “They’re letting him do up to a point and
he’s out there competing. It’s a whole different year for him, really, since he
has had that experience and a lot of that is behind him. He’s doing a good job.
Hopefully, he’s going to continue.”
I mentioned in Tuesday’s
practice report and previously here Amukamara has to work on playing
aggressively and with an edge. Coughlin expects that part of the game to come in
“That will happen,” Coughlin said, “If he gets himself in position where he;s
comfortable and knows what he’s doing, we have seen that other aspect – the
physical part of the play. You saw it, too. As a collegiate player, that's what
he was. He was a physical player.”
* * * *
And now, the rundown of today’s practice, which included a bunch of
interceptions left on the field by Amukamara’s buddies in the defensive
backfield. But first, the injuries:
--Sitting out: TE Travis Beckum (knee), CB Corey
Webster (hamstring), WR Hakeem Nicks (foot), DT
Chris Canty (knee), LB Clint Sintim (knee), DT
Shaun Rogers (elbow) and DT Markus Kuhn (work
--CB Terrell Thomas (knee) sat out all of today’s session
after doing limited work for much of the spring. We’ll see if he’s back on
Thursday. Similarly, it appeared RB Ahmad Bradshaw (foot) was
held out today as well.
--DE Osi Umenyiora was back in action after sitting out on
Tuesday in order to pace himself and manage unspecified “soreness,” as Coughlin
termed it. Umenyiora ran with the second team but was also a part of the
first-string "NASCAR" (four defensive end) package.
--No team reps for S Kenny Phillips (knee) and LT
Will Beatty (back).
--LB/DE Adrian Tracy left practice briefly after appearing
to knock or jam his left elbow. (He missed all of the 2010 season with a right
elbow injury.) Tracy, who impressed LBs coach Jim Herrmann with
a nice pass-rush move early in practice, got the elbow wrapped and returned to
show good speed in chasing WR Jerrel Jernigan on a crossing
route. He appeared to be fine.
* * * *
To the action we go:
--Okay, so I mentioned the dropped interceptions. All of them were on passes
by QB Eli Manning. The guilty parties were: rookie CB
Jayron Hosley, S Stevie Brown and S
Antrel Rolle. Hosley jumped a route at the start of 7-on-7
passing drills but couldn’t bring it in. The entire defense groaned and safeties
coach David Merritt told Hosley, “You owe us one!” Brown’s
dropped pick came right after that. Rolle’s would’ve been a tough one but
probably should’ve been caught. He had slipped underneath a slant route from
Manning to WR Domenik Hixon in the end zone.
--CB Justin Tryon had seen enough of the drops. While his
fellow DBs were missing out on the easy interceptions, he grabbed a tough one by
getting position on WR Rueben Randle as the rookie tried to run
a hook route. Tryon won that little battle and held on to the ball from QB
David Carr for a nice interception.
--Just so you don’t panic about the camp Manning has had so far (eye roll),
I’ll let you know he had a terrific touch pass to TE Bear
Pascoe on a route up the right seam over LB Jacquian
Williams. Manning also got LB Michael Boley to jump
offside with the hard count to start the play.
--Speaking of Pascoe, he said this today: "My plan is right now to work hard
and make our team better and hopefully kind of take over that No. 1 spot." We'll
see if he can do it.
--WR Ramses Barden put on a show with a few sliding grabs
from Carr in the 2-minute drill to end practice. One catch required excellent
concentration because LB Keith Rivers was breaking underneath
him in an attempt to get a hand on the pass. The other one came with CB
Bruce Johnson on his back. The one negative for Barden today
came early in practice when he got past Tryon on a go route and had very good
separation, only to have to work back to an underthrown ball from Manning. He
went up to try getting the ball with a one-handed attempt that didn’t seem to
please the coaches.
--The defensive coaches, particularly Merritt, are really working hard to
coach up undrafted free agent S Jojo Nicolas, whom Merritt
praised when he was able to track TE Ryan Purvis out of a bunch
formation. Nicolas came down and fought through traffic to get to Purvis when he
recognized the out route. Later, Nicolas was slow to react while playing the
deep middle. He could’ve come crashing down to step in front of the receiver
running the out cut and make a play on the ball. “That should be a pick, Jojo!”
defensive coordinator Perry Fewell yelled. And finally, it was
Hixon yelling at Nicolas during team drills when he said, “Watch yourself! Pick
(me) up!” after he set up to lay out Nicolas on a crack-back block. Hixon and
Merritt then had a playful exchange of gestures seemingly about whether it
would’ve been a clipping penalty or a clean hit by Hixon. Whatever the case,
Nicolas’ head would’ve been ringing. But thanks to the no-contact rules of
practice, he stayed in there and did a good job of communicating with CB
Dante Hughes to cover Randle on a hook route, forcing QB
Ryan Perrilloux to throw wide and incomplete of Randle.
--You can tell former Rutgers CB Brandon Bing trusts his
speed. (And he does have plenty of it, by the way.) He wasn’t giving Randle much
of a cushion, nor was he backpedaling much, as Randle ran the “stem” of his
route toward him. Obviously, he felt he could turn and sprint to cover any deep
stuff. When Randle broke on an in cut, Bing was right on his hip, forcing the
quarterback to look elsewhere.
--One of the big issues with Perrilloux the coaches have been trying to fix
and that we’ve written about at length is his ability to see the whole field. On
Tuesday, he missed Randle running free through the secondary. Today, he had WR
David Douglas breaking past the DB on a go route but instead
chose to throw for Purvis in traffic on a post up the middle. The ball fell
incomplete. However, Perrilloux did lay one perfectly for WR Dan
DePalma on a sail route near the sideline. Hughes was underneath
DePalma, who ran a nice route, and clearly DePalma thought Hughes was going to
get a hand on it because the ball hit him right in the face mask. “That was a
great pass,” a shocked DePalma said as he jogged back to the huddle.
--Jernigan showed good hands on a quick out from Carr. He had to kind of
reach back and turn his body to make the catch. Jernigan had a few grabs late in
--Undrafted WR Brandon Collins ran a pair of stop-and-go
routes very well. One was up the middle of the field and didn’t result in a
completion because the ball from Perrilloux was behind him (tough to see if LB
Chase Blackburn got a hand on it, but he was at least close)
and the other was up the left sideline forcing CB Janzen
Jackson to grab him after he bit on the stutter step. Good shiftiness
by Collins on both of those routes. Plus, he added some more on a post-corner
route pas Hughes in red-zone drills to grab a touchdown when he barely got both
feet in. “Put your hands up!” Bradshaw yelled to the rookie. Added Hixon, “Call
it now!” Collins seemed to nod at their advice but decided to humbly jog back to
the huddle. Smart move, rook.
--I can’t recall if I mentioned or not that Jackson is playing corner despite
arriving as a safety. At 6-1, 190 pounds, he’s much better suited at this point
to play corner.
--I got an email last night about the lack of updates on DT Marvin
Austin, to which I told the gentleman what I’ve written here a bunch:
there’s really no point in trying to assess the play of the interior lineman
because there’s no contact and the players aren’t wearing pads. We’ll wait until
like drills and games for that. That being said, DT Martin Parker
got off the ball really quickly on one play to get past OT Joel
Reinders and into the backfield to make a stop on RB Da’Rel
Scott. That play reminded me of how Parker did a bunch of that last
summer in camp before injuring his foot and being knocked out for the season.
It’s a small sample size, but Parker has flashed. He’s a guy I’m interested to
see in camp and in the preseason.
--Rookie RB David Wilson continues to look as quick and
shifty as advertised. He's going to make some people miss.
--And finally, I recall writing about how LB Mark Herzlich’s
pass coverage needed to improve after the loss to the Philadelphia Eagles last
season. (To his credit, he
was the one who said he struggled in that department that night.) I’ve been
watching Herzlich in coverage from time to time this spring, and something tells
me we’ll be writing about how solid he is in pass coverage because he’s been
looking extremely sharp in that department this offseason."