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5 Questions for Giants heading into OTA's

Posted May 17, 2016

The Giants report for the first OTA practice Monday, May 23.


The Giants’ offseason ramps up on Monday with the first of 10 organized team activities.

These OTA practices, which will be held at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center, kick off the third and final phase of their nine-week offseason workout program. No live contact is permitted under the collective bargaining agreement, but there will plenty of action with 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills.

That means plenty of news will also be coming from the facility in the coming weeks as first-year head coach Ben McAdoo and players are set to speak to the media.

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Below Giants.com looks at five key questions to keep in mind when OTAs begin next week.

But first, here’s a refresher on the important dates:

•  OTAs: May 23-24, May 26, June 1-3, June 6-7, June 9-10

•  Mandatory minicamp: June 14-16

•  Giants report for training camp: July 28

1. HOW DO ALL THE NEW PARTS COME TOGETHER?

The Giants held a voluntary minicamp for veterans before the draft and a rookie minicamp after it. But Monday will be the first time that tenured Giants, free-agent additions, draft picks, and undrafted free agents all practice together on the field.

It’s been a franchise-changing offseason for the Giants, beginning with naming McAdoo as the team’s 17th head coach. The former offensive coordinator has preached “evolution, not revolution” while putting his own stamp on things from the coaching staff to practice routines.

“You have a plan in place and you trust the plan, you stick with the plan, and have no kneejerk reactions to anything,” McAdoo said earlier this offseason. “Stay the course and that’s what we’ve done.”

2. HOW DO THE DRAFT PICKS LOOK?


Last month the Giants ushered in a six-member draft class, which was split evenly between offense and defense.

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The 10th overall selection of Ohio State cornerback Eli Apple marked the first time the team used its first-round choice on defense since Prince Amukamara in 2011. From there, general manager Jerry Reese and company selected Oklahoma wide receiver Sterling Shepard, Boise State safety Darian Thompson, Clemson linebacker B.J. Goodson, UCLA running back Paul Perkins, and South Carolina tight end Jerell Adams.

“We got the best six players that we could get,” Reese said after the draft. “We accomplished that.”

3. WHAT’S THE EARLY DEPTH CHART?

In addition to seeing where the draft picks begin in the pecking order, there’s a major haul of free agents to pencil into the lineup, including defensive end Olivier Vernon, cornerback Janoris Jenkins, defensive tackle Damon Harrison, and linebackers Keenan Robinson and Kelvin Sheppard.

At the same time, the Giants parted ways in free agency with starters like cornerback Prince Amukamara, defensive end Robert Ayers, and wide receiver Rueben Randle. They also released veteran offensive linemen Will Beatty and Geoff Schwartz.

“The right side of the offensive line, the story is yet to be written on the right side of the offensive line,” McAdoo said. “We’re just starting the 2016 offseason. We’re going to look at every possible combination, give guys a chance to compete, and see where it goes from there.”

4. WHAT ARE THE INJURY UPDATES?


During voluntary minicamp last month, several players who landed on injured reserve in 2015 were kept out of drills, including wide receiver Victor Cruz, defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins, linebacker Devon Kennard, and cornerback-turned-safety Bennett Jackson.

It’s been extremely difficult, as you may imagine, but obviously you’ve just got to stay the course,” said Cruz, who has not played in a game since October of 2014. “The key is not just to be ready for Week 1, but to be ready for all 16 [games] and into the playoffs. So that’s kind of where my mindset is to get my body ready for the long haul and not just for tomorrow and the day after that.”

5. WHO ARE THE BREAKOUT CANDIDATE(S) HEADING INTO SUMMER?

At this time last year, who thought an undrafted player named Will Tye would go on to lead all NFL rookie tight ends in receptions and receiving yards? The only thing on his mind last spring was to get on the roster and become the first Stony Brook product to appear in an NFL game. It all started somewhere, and OTAs will be the first opportunity for new players to make a name for themselves.

“There are plenty of opportunities out there,” McAdoo said. “You never know when a guy is going to make a great impression, have a chance to be playing at the end of the season for you. Will Tye was one of those guys for us.”