The seven players had widely divergent degrees of success. Some played in every game. Others didn’t step on the field all season.
The Giants’ 2012 draft class is a tight-knit group that spends time together and supports each other. Near the end of the season, we gave each of them an opportunity to talk about their first NFL season.
Third Round, 94th Overall Selection
Hosley played in 13 of 16 games, missing two early in the season with a hamstring injury and the Philly finale with a quad issue. He started six games. Hosley intercepted a pass at Carolina and had 36 tackles (28 solo), broke up six passes and recovered a fumble.
He had some injury issues, but we think he’s going to be a terrific young player for us as well. I really think he can help us as a punt returner as well. You saw him return some punts in the preseason, but after he hurt his foot and had some injuries there, we took him off the punt return duties, but we think he’s going to be a really good player for us. He has that “moxy” about him that you like. He had some growing pains like all rookies do, but he flashed some things that we like from him as a third round pick.
A cornerback at Virginia Tech, Hosley learned to play in the slot as the nickel corner in his debut season.
“It’s definitely been an adjustment and a growing process trying to become an NFL player and adapt to the game and basically just find my place on the team and where I belong,” he said. “Playing the nickel position for the first time, it was definitely a little tougher. It’s just a lot more assignments, more responsibility and the run defense as well as the pass defense. You have to know what the corner knows and you know how to play the linebacker position as well and know the gaps and things like that, so it was tough. It was different terminology, different schemes. There were some things we did similar with this defense and the V-Tech defense, but really all over it was definitely different. With a pro style defense, it took a lot of studying and a lot of focus. There’s way more focus on this level to really excel.”
Despite his occasional travails, Hosley is convinced he can be an outstanding NFL player.
“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t think that,” he said. “But it’s really just what you make of it and how serious you take the game and not just understand you want to be this good but really putting in that work to excel and be the player that you want to be and the player that others expect you to be with being drafted. So it’s definitely high expectations on you coming in. It’s just up to that individual to where his career goes in this league. It’s a tough league, so you definitely have to separate yourself from everybody else.”
Hosley said his natural patience has helped him to deal with the anxiety and uncertainty all rookies feel.
“I’m a fisherman, so I’m very patient,” he said. “That’s the one thing that this teaches you -patience - and I just try to be patient in life in general. And in football you definitely have to be patient because there might be times where you might not play much at all. You just have to wait your turn and wait till your number is called and do what you have to do weekly to prepare yourself to be ready when your number is called. So I just try to take it for what it is and basically just wait my chance. I definitely just have to be ready when my number is called whenever that may be.”
Of course, Hosley has learned that on the roads of New Jersey, patience is not always a virtue.
“You have to be aggressive,” he said. “I think when I go back home people will be like, ‘What’s wrong with you?’ I’m just so used to driving up there in Jersey and New York. It’s definitely been an experience. I’m definitely enjoying it.”