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Sideline View: Practice observations (7/30)

Posted Jul 30, 2017

Giants.com's John Schmeelk brings you Training Camp notes and observations straight from the sidelines:

It was a beautiful, sunny day in the low 80s at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center on Sunday afternoon as the Giants went through the last of three unpadded practices before a day off on Monday. On Tuesday, the shoulder pads go on before the players work in full pads on Wednesday and Thursday. After a big day for the offense in the first full speed practice on Saturday, it looked like the defense took it personally and came out with a good day.
 
•  The officials were on the practice field for the first time and there were not a lot of flags thrown throughout practice. It’s a good sign for a team so early in camp.

•  Landon Collins was in the middle of a couple of plays. In the no-huddle portion of team drills, he jumped a route by Evan Engram and nearly intercepted an Eli Manning pass but he couldn’t hold on. In the second part of team practice, Collins jumped a potential Manning-Beckham connection and knocked it away. He was coming downhill nicely and showed his usual nose for the ball.

•  Eli Apple had a nice day. He was matched up often with Odell Beckham Jr. and did a nice job. Beckham did have a step on Apple down the right sideline but Manning’ pass sailed out of bounds. I would have liked to see Apple have a chance to make a play on the ball against Beckham. Apple made a great play on Sterling Shepard. Shepard was open deep down the middle of the field, but Apple showed great recovery speed and instincts to get his head turned around and knock the ball away.

•  Michael Hunter Jr. and Roger Lewis Jr. had a nice battle going. Lewis drew first blood on a go route down the left sideline. He got a step on Hunter, and then had to adjust to a pass over his outside shoulder to make a tough catch. Hunter got some payback later in practice, knocking two passes away on in-cuts by Lewis. The second popped into the air and went right to Nat Berhe for the interception. Lewis caught an in-cut in the final team session of practice as well.

•  Dwayne Harris had a nice one-handed catch on his back hip.

•  Yesterday it was Geno Smith as the first quarterback to take reps after Eli Manning, but today it was Josh Johnson. It will be a fun battle for the backup quarterback spot. Davis Webb took a rep or two early in practice and then got his chance with the youngsters in a seven-on-seven drill at the end of the day. He tried to find Kevin Norwood deep, but Mykkele Thompson made a great play on the ball to knock it away.

•  Both Brad Wing and Aldrick Rosas kicked today. Wing put a couple of punts right near the sideline. The Giants had Dwayne Harris, Travis Rudolph, Sterling Shepard, Odell Beckham Jr, Shane Vereen and Kevin Snead all return punts. Aldrick Rosas made three of four kicks, although some observers felt his 45-yarder deemed a miss snuck inside the upright.

•  The tight ends continue to battle: Evan Engram made some plays early in practice and got a lot of first team reps. After missing much of the spring with an injury, Rhett Ellison caught a pass from Eli Manning. Will Tye scored a touchdown to cap a scoring drive for the offense in no-huddle.

•  I spotted some leadership from B.J. Goodson. Right before special teams, he was yelling to his defensive teammates to remind them when seven-on-seven drills began, what unit was on the field.

•  I spotted some nice hustle from D.J. Fluker. On a quick screen to Roger Lewis Jr., he stayed with Lewis blocking nearly 30 yards down the field.

•  The coaching staff simulated crowd noise for the first time at camp.