Excerpt: "With the offseason workout program now a thing of the past and the official start to training camp coming up on July 21st (report date and physicals), it's time to look ahead to each positional battle and how they will ultimately shape the New York Giants' final 53-man roster. Today we examine the offensive line.
Who's in: Brandon McManus, Trindon Holliday, Quintin Demps, Odell Beckham Jr.
Who's out: No change
The Names: Zak DeOssie, Steve Weatherford, Josh Brown, Brandon McManus, Trindon Holliday, Quintin Demps, David Wilson, Odell Beckham Jr.,
Michael Cox, Rueben Randle, Jerrel Jernigan, Jayron Hosley
Starting with the glaringly obvious, Steve Weatherford will remain Big Blue's punter in 2014. He has no competition going into camp and nor should he. Despite the entire unit struggling in 2013 — and he was no exception — Weatherford remains one of the best punters in the NFL and has also become an important piece of the local community and the Giants' locker-room.
Steve Weatherford Stats: Giants Career
YEAR PUNTS AVG TB% IN20 IN20% AVG
2011 82 45.7 7.3 25 30.5 39.2
2012 58 47.5 10.3 22 37.9 39.4
2013 91 46.9 7.7 25 27.5 38.2
One of the biggest issues facing the Giants' Special Teams unit in 2014 is cleaning up their punt return coverage. After surrendering only one punt return touchdown in the first seven years of his NFL career, Weatherford and the Giants coughed up three in 2013 alone.
“We didn’t take care of the ball as well as we wanted to earlier in the season, and special teams definitely hurt us with punt returns,” Weatherford told Giants.com. “We had three of them this year, and that’s something I take pride in — in the previous seven years in the NFL, I gave up one. To give up three this year was really frustrating because [special teams coordinator] Tom Quinn does such a great job in coaching us up. We fought, and there’s a lot of pride on this team. I think starting 0-6 and finishing the way we did says a lot about our locker room, a lot about the leaders.” Read more...
That will absolutely be a point of emphasis throughout training camp and the preseason.
VETERAN OR YOUNGSTER?
The Giants will have a legitimate kicking competition in 2014, having brought in talented youngster Brandon McManus, who spent training camp with the Indianapolis Colts in 2013 after going undrafted out of Temple. And while he was ultimately beaten out by Adam Vinatieri, the competition was exceptionally close and should serve to propel him here in 2014.
"I see everything as a competition," special teams coordinator Tom Quinn. "I really like McManus. I liked him coming out. I thought he was a really good kicker coming out of Temple. He's kicked in the Northeast at a high level, and I think he's got a lot of upside."
However, beating out Josh Brown is not going to be an easy task. The long-time veteran is prepped and ready for a fierce competition, understanding that despite his service to the Giants and the league, this is a business first and foremost." Read more...