Real quick, these guys have to go back to work. I just want to say thank you to these guys, thank you to Coach Flats. Obviously awards are awards, but the guys who play next to you make you the player you are. Thank you guys. Thank you __.
Hope Johnson, I knew she was a true fan. You guys on BBI are Giants fans. I think the reason why I wake up in the morning, I practice hard, I like to play hard is because the fans actually truly appreciate New York Giants football.
New York Giant football fans know what they’re talking about. I can’t lie, every once in awhile you go on BBI, you take a look at what the fans are saying about you personally, about your teammates. If it was good stuff, you felt good about yourself. If it was bad stuff, it made you work harder. I just think every player wants the fans to like him. You want to work hard. You want to be able to show your support to the fans for playing hard and all of that good stuff. We want to win. You guys want to win. New York Football Giants want to win football games.
This award does mean a lot, but the guys who are out here, my teammates, Eli, Coach Flats, Coach Jack, Coach Coughlin – they’re the ones that get everything going. A guy gets hurt, they have a guy ready to play the next position. Those are the guys that truly deserve the credit for making players who they are. I was just blessed to be a New York Giant for 10 years. It’s my life. It’s my family’s life. It’s been truly fun.
But thank you guys for having me out here. It means a lot. And [Eric] knew more about me than I think I know about myself. Thanks Pat [Hanlon] for setting it all up today. It was a little weird coming back. I am a Giant. I told my family this, my wife has talked about this, I’m rehabbing like I want to play football. I think for me personally, that’s the best rehab you can get. I’m going to Excel. Matt Gibble over at Excel, where I’ve been throughout the whole lockout. There have been a few guys over there training. We’re working hard. I’m lifting at Overtime Sports. Those guys are trying to get me back into shape. If my knee feels good enough in a few months to go out, we’ll see what team comes calling, but until then, I’m a New York Giant and I’m happy to be one.
You never play the game for work, you play the game because you love it. I’m honored to have it with Hope Johnson’s name on it. I knew she was a Giants fan and it’s going to go in a special place in my house.
Q: Talk about your rehab, what you’re doing right now. You’re saying you’re still a New York Giant, that’s something that’s special to you.
A: Wellington Mara once said, ‘Once a Giant, always a Giant.’ I was a New York Giant for ten years so it’s kind of hard not to say that I’m still a New York Giant. I’m rehabbing like I want to play football and when the time comes, we’ll see what happens, but that time’s not here yet. I have to go back to work like I did a couple of years ago, rehabbing my leg. I’m giving it everything I ‘ve got. We’re going to see what happens in about two months and I’ll make the decision then.
Q: If you had a chance to say something to all of these fans that said something to you, what would you say?
A: Thanks. Obviously, the fans know what they’re talking about. No, I’m just kidding. I think the fans truly appreciate hard work. If you work hard and truly care about something, you can do whatever you want to do. My career, you get knocked down you just try to get back up and keep on fighting. That’s what I’m going to do here in the next couple of months.
Q: Do you miss football?
A: I think yeah, you miss football. But I still talk to the guys. I’ll watch practice today. I still have the love to play the game of football. That’s the hardest part. I’m watching the preseason game – I didn’t have any feelings. I have three kids now. Hunter, Isaac and a newborn Hailey, who’s four months old. I truly enjoy my family. I figured I’d have a little more free time on my hands, but I really don’t – rehab, lifting, my children. It’s been a good run so we’ll just see what happens.
Q: We haven’t had a fight in training camp, are you a little disappointed?
A:I can fight Pat [Hanlon] if you guys want me to. I can stick around and maybe get him to the ground or something.
Q: Does that surprise you?
A: No. You don’t have to have fights in football. It’s something that Keith Hamilton taught me back when I was a young kid. Obviously, I didn’t pass that trait on to anybody.
Q: Do you have any idea when you might be able to get back out or run?
A: I’m just going week-to-week. I saw the doctor yesterday. I’m improving so hopefully I can start running here in a couple weeks and once I start running, the pounding and stuff allows me to see what I need to do to play. I’m just taking my time, making sure I’m doing it right. I’m not going to push it. I want to play football. I love playing the game, but I also have to think about my body and my family. We’ll see how I feel when the time comes.
Q: How tough was it when you heard you weren’t going to be coming back here?
A: It’s always hard. I’ve been here 10 years, I haven’t been cut once. This is my first time ever being cut. You see guys come and you see guys go. It’s the part of the business that nobody likes. Like I said from day one, no hard feelings for the New York Giants. This is my family. My kids love coming here. My kids love the game of football because the Giants gave me a job for the last ten years. I’m grateful for the Mara family, the Tisch family. It’s been a true blessing to be in one organization for so long. I thought I would’ve gotten cut ten years, when I was a rookie. For some reason I stuck around for this long and it’s been truly fun.
Q: Did you expect it?
A: I think about that every day of my life when I wake up. This is the game of football, you can get cut today, you can get cut tomorrow. Me being hurt, not being able to play, it was either PUP or this. They decided this. It’s their decision. Like I said, I’m still rehabbing like I want to play football and I’ll be fine.
Q: Besides the knee, you’ve had some other bumps and bruises along the way.
A: If you just cut my right leg off I think I’d be pretty good. My shoulder feels good. My back is good. I feel healthy. This is the best my body has felt in a long time with all of the rehab and working out I’ve been doing, but just my knee. We’ll see. I know that’s a key component to you’re body, but I can still kick Mike [Garafolo] with it.
Q: Do you rehab every day? Lift every day?
A: Everyday. It’s a full-time job. That’s my job right now, rehab. That’s what I’m doing.
Q: You had a choice of trying to come back or retiring…
A: I think it’s just me. I can’t let this say I’m done. If this wants to say I’m done fine, but I’m going to give everything I have to prove that this isn’t going to end it. We’ll see. I’m truly happy. Either way it goes, I’m happy. I’ll still being going to games, still be watching.
Q: But there comes a time for every player. Why now is it not the time for you?
A: It’s just the mentality I have. I don’t want an injury to tell me when I’m done playing. It’s just the way I am. You know that Mike [Garafolo]. I’m stubborn. You can say I’m stubborn.
Q: Have you had contact with any teams?
A: A few teams have called, yes. But basically, I want to clear a physical, so what’s the point of running all over the country seeing teams? I told them let’s get healthy and see what happens?
Q: When is that time frame?
A: Like two-three months.
Q: From now?
A: No, from when camp started. It’s like two months.
Q: Six weeks into the season?
A: That’s what I’m shooting for.
Q: You said it felt weird coming back here?
A: It’s just weird. You’re coming back, you see all of the guys you used to practice with and now I’ll be sitting here watching them. I’m not a shy guy, so I’m not going to worry about that. You want the pads on, to be out here practicing, but obviously I can’t do that. Maybe I’ll try and trip someone running down the sideline.
Q: Did you go to your locker?
A: Snee’s got it. My locker was still warm when Snee took it over. I left a present for him. I don’t know if he found it yet. No, but that’s fine. It’s prime real estate right there. He took my locker and he took my seat in the meeting room. I had prime real estate. I’ve been around here long enough where I got to choose kind of where I want to be.
Q: We just got the news about Osi. Did something happen in the first couple of practices?
A: I don’t think anything happened…It swelled up. He didn’t want to continue like this; practice, swell up, practice, swell up. So between the doctors and Osi, the decision was made that they would perform this scope and hopefully eliminate that part of it. Allow the recovery time and then allow him to go back to the field without having this as an issue. Hopefully it will take less time than the other range, the other extent and we’ll get him back as fast as he can.
Q: Your doctors and a specialist told him that he wouldn’t need surgery. Is this a surprise?
A: I don’t think that was the case at all. As a matter of fact, Ronnie (Barnes) and Dr. (Russell) Warren talked about a period of time maybe 6 or 8 weeks ago when they talked about the possibility of having to have this cleaned out. So I think this is no surprise. There’s no surprise.
Q: How does this change what you do now?
A: We just keep going. We’ll keep going, thinking in terms of him being back. We’ll use different combinations and (Dave) Tollefson will obviously be involved more with each combination and there will be some packages that we won’t be able to use but probably we wouldn’t use them anyway in preseason. So hopefully these other guys will take full advantage of the playtime and the practice time. We had a couple of issues the other day and some of these young kids got a chance to go. I thought it would be a good idea to play some of these guys extensively anyway.
Q: So you definitely will leave Kiwanuka at linebacker.
Q: Are you thinking Osi will be out for the opener?
A: I don’t know about that. I’m not going fit anything on the end of that. Maybe he comes back fast. Maybe it’s three weeks.
Q: You knew this was a possibility but I thought the specialist told him he could manage it.
A: I don’t know what the… I think that word was used. But I think the management part of it would have probably gotten into less field time and some frustration. So I think after a few days and looking at the calendar. He was very open and very positive with Jerry about getting back on the field, really enjoying the time he was out there with his teammates, really wanting to be a part of our team. So I thought, and I’m hearing it second hand, too, but I thought that those thoughts were very encouraging and if that’s what the situation is, let’s get this taken care of today.
Q: Does this mean that once he gets back here he should not be limited.
A: I think that’s what he’s trying to do. They’re trying to eliminate the idea that whenever he works and goes hard in practice that the knee swells up. That’s the point, to eliminate that.
Q: Could this also eliminate the nonsense as far as what has been going on the last couple of weeks with him?
A: Well hopefully, again, that’s behind us and he’s now focused on making a huge contribution to our team this year. Get healthy and do it.
A: Well he started to. Then he had the two days where he was not able to go. For Travis that’s always…he’s got to stay out there. When he stays out there he becomes more confident, he does a lot more things with consistency. Just like any of us would, I suppose you could say that. There’s no doubt, that was not…the way he was progressing was a positive thing and those couple of days without practice set him back a little bit and hopefully he’s starting to get that back.
Q: Have you seen flashes in him that show why you drafted him?
A: You do see it. You see it. You see him maneuver and run and catch the ball in traffic and that type of thing. He even made some really hard catches there right before he missed a couple of days. You just need to see more of it. You need to know that he’s out there and he’s going to practice and he’s going to get to work. He can experience a lot of these things on the practice field.
Q: You always say you’re looking to get better personnel-wise but now that you’ve seen two weeks of these guys, are you comfortable with these tight ends?
A: Well that’s a position that’s got to get better. If the group that we have here can improve over the next couple of weeks, fine. If not, we’ve got to get better.
Q: What’s the plan with getting Rosenfels back on the field?
A: Well we’ll see whether…we had really…this was going to be a Carr game and Sage was going to play and Ryan was not gong to get any time but this may change. We’ll see how these next couple of days go for Sage.
Q: Will JPP practice?
A: I think he’s ready.
Q: Is Boley’s back any better?
A: Boley still has some issues. He was tight this morning so we’ll see. Maybe he can loosen up and practice a little bit today. If not, then the young guys are going to get more work.
Q: Is it usual to have this many camp ailments or does it seem like there’s more this year?
A: This has been better than most, to tell you the truth. It looks like a long list, I know that, but when you dig into it, most of them are working. So I don’t think it’s… This is maybe one of the benefits of one-a-days. You don’t have this extensive list that people can’t work. A lot of this stuff they can get through.
Q: You talk about finishing the season strong. How do you build toward that during training camp?
A: Finish. You’re constantly saying finish, finish, finish. Let the last drill be better than the first. Finish the practice in such a way that we can say we accomplished something. We were better at the end than we were in the beginning. Fourth quarter, stronger, win the physical battle, all those things.
TE Travis Beckum
Q: How is your health?
A: It is good. Obviously I missed the first game and I am anxious to get out there. It has been a while with the whole lockout stuff but I am anxious to get out there and play and have some fun.
Q: Is it the same issue as before?
A: I think it had something to do with me being off and not being adjusted. So I have been making sure I stay on top of that and it’s getting better.
Q: What happened the other day in practice when Kevin Gilbride yelled at you on the practice field?
A: I messed up a play and obviously with him being the offensive coordinator it is his job to be upset about it. I actually talked to him about it and it was just a miss communication and that’s all it was. I think that if you didn’t know what was going on then you kind of got a misrepresentation of what was going on.
Q: What kind of miscommunication was it?
A: He just didn’t want me in that play and then I ran the wrong way so he was frustrated about that.
Q: How nice was it to end practice with a nice catch?
A: Obviously catching as many balls is great for me and coming through and putting our team in a position to score.
Q: Who put you back in?
A: I think coach Gilbride wanted me in regardless. I think the day before we had did a two-minute drill with the ones and the next day with the twos so he wanted me to take some reps with them.
Q: How do you feel about playing on the line?
A: The thing about the NFL is that you pay these guys X amount of dollars to do what they excel at. That is just stating the obvious and I think I read what coach Pope said. If anybody has any kind of smarts, why would you want to put a 235 pound tight end against a 290 pound defensive end for the whole game? That is just common sense. There are plays that they will put you position to do it, yes but as far as every down… Kevin was 270 pounds and that’s a big difference. I am definitely willing to do it but I think the coaches are just going to put me in the best position to have success and maybe that is just moving around.