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Decisions to be made with six days until roster cuts

Posted Aug 27, 2017

The Giants backup quarterback and kicker competitions are still in the air heading into the final preseason game: 


EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Ben McAdoo said today he has not chosen the Giants’ placekicker or backup quarterback, the two position decisions that have received the most scrutiny in the preseason.

All of the contestants had an opportunity to state their case last night, when the Giants edged the Jets, 32-31, in the MetLife Bowl. The Giants have one more preseason game, Thursday night in New England, before they must reduce their roster from 90 players to the 53-man regular-season limit.

Mike Nugent, the 13-year veteran signed on Aug. 1, kicked field goals of 50 and 54 yards and an extra point, and had two touchbacks on four kickoffs. First-year pro Aldrick Rosas kicked a 24-yard field goal and two PATs, and had two touchbacks on three kickoffs.

>> WATCH GIANTS VS. JETS HIGHLIGHTS

“We just keep on competing,” McAdoo said. “We have a short week here to get ready to go, and we’ll just keep on competing.”

At quarterback, Josh Johnson relieved Eli Manning, who played only the first quarter. Johnson completed four of six passes before giving way to Geno Smith in the third quarter. Smith hit five of 10 passes for 51 yards. Rookie Davis Webb played the final three series, including one in which he had three kneel-downs. Webb threw only four passes, completing two for 20 yards.

“We’re still not in a position to say who the number two is,” McAdoo said. “Thursday night we’re hoping it cleans itself up.”

Can Webb still capture the No. 2 job? “Never say never,” McAdoo said.

*Will Manning play against the Patriots? “We’ll handle the play time very similar to the way we handled it in last year’s fourth preseason game,” McAdoo said. Manning did not play in that game.

*Asked about potential changes on the offensive line, McAdoo said, “We’re going to continue to evaluate. Brett Jones and D.J. Fluker (both at right guard) and rookie Chad Wheeler (left tackle) all played with the first unit last night.
 
“I thought Jones and Wheeler and Fluker jumped in there and did a nice job,” McAdoo said, “and they’re competing at a high level.”


*The Giants played without four injured wide receivers: Odell Beckham, Jr. (ankle), Brandon Marshall (shoulder), Dwayne Harris (upper body) and Tavarres King (ankle). But the four quarterbacks completed 18 of 34 passes for 259 yards, and 12 different players caught at least one pass.

“We were confident going into the game with the players that we have on the roster,” McAdoo said. “We feel like we have some tight ends and some receivers, even with the caliber of the players we had out, that can get open. I think it showed up that we need to be better against press coverage with those players. We’ll address that in the room tomorrow, but I feel we had some guys step up and take advantage of their opportunities.”

*McAdoo was asked “how likely” it is for Beckham and/or Marshall to be on the practice field this week.

“We’ll see,” he said. “We practice tomorrow, and we’ll get up in the morning and see how they respond to what’s going on medically, the treatment that they’re getting, and if they’re able to go, we’ll practice them.”


*Linebacker J.T. Thomas played in second half, his first game action since last Sept. 11, when he tore his ACL in the season opener in Dallas.

“Great to get some reps in, some live-game reps,” Thomas said. “There is nothing like those game reps. It was good to be back out there with the guys. Being around the guys definitely gave me a lot of energy. Now, it will just be about stacking up days and being back on the field again. Working my way back up into my normal role. Special teams, being able to be more consistent. Today was the first step for me and I look forward to the next opportunity.”

“It was good to see J.T. out there,” McAdoo said. “He was flying around. He actually got knocked off his feet one time on the boundary and bounced right back up. That was great to see. I think that’s a major hurdle when you’re coming back from an injury. But if you can go down and then pop right back up, that’s a big moment for J.T.”

Despite Thomas’ late start, McAdoo said he “absolutely” has a chance to make the team.

*Injuries from the game: cornerback Eli Apple (ankle), defensive tackle Jay Bromley and safety Duke Ihenacho (sprained knees), and rookie defensive Evan Schwann (foot fracture).