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5 things we learned at Giants practice (11/8)

pugh-center-11817.jpg's Dan Salomone highlights five takeaways from Wednesday's team practice and media hour:


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Part of Ben McAdoo's message to the Giants this week was "doing simple better." From coaches teaching to players studying, simplicity is a point of emphasis as the Giants embark on the second half of their schedule, which begins with a trip to San Francisco.

"It's very important," safety Landon Collins said. "I think they made a push towards it because last year was very simple. We pushed the issue about just playing and doing what we do best and knowing what we do and working at what we do best, you know, and that's what we did last year. So, we're getting back to that issue and we feel like we're playing better and practicing better in that category."


Did not practice: LB B.J. Goodson (ankle), LB Devon Kennard (quad), LB Keenan Robinson (quad)

Limited: LB Jonathan Casillas (neck), CB Donte Deayon (ankle), LB Calvin Munson (quad), OL Justin Pugh (back), DT Dalvin Tomlinson (ankle), DE Olivier Vernon (ankle), DE Kerry Wynn (knee)


Pugh, whose versatility has come in handy over the years, intends to play on Sunday after missing last week's game with a back injury. The Giants also played without center Weston Richburg (injured reserve), causing them to use their sixth offensive line combination in eight games. From left to right, the starting five were Ereck Flowers, John Jerry, Brett Jones, D.J. Fluker and Bobby Hart. Pugh has started four games at right tackle and three at left guard this season.

"Every intention that I have is playing," Pugh said. "Barring a setback, I'll be out there on Sunday."


Coach Kyle Shanahan has maintained that rookie C.J. Beathard will continue to serve as the starting quarterback for the 49ers, a situation he will look at on a week-to-week basis after the team recently traded a 2018 second-round draft pick to the Patriots for Tom Brady's protégé, Jimmy Garoppolo. While Shanahan said Garoppolo will only get in if there is an injury, the Giants will have a plan for both. In a preseason game against the Giants as a rookie in 2014, Garoppolo went 22 of 42 for 284 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

"I think that when you're preparing for two players that are pocket passers, they're both good athletes, but they're both pocket passers, in Shanahan's system – I don't think he's going to deviate too far from their system, especially with two similar-type players that play the position in the pocket," McAdoo said. "So you're going to get the system. You have to prepare for what you're going to see in the system. They challenge you many ways in the system and the system really can fit any quarterback."


McAdoo begins every Wednesday press conference with a scouting report of the Giants' upcoming opponent. The following is a look at the 49ers, who despite being winless have played in five games decided by a field goal or less, including two that went to overtime.

Offense: "They're very multiple, effective at moving the ball in the open field. They generate a lot of big play production there. They have a good one-two punch out of the backfield and (Marquise) Goodwin is a speedster who can blow the top off the coverage. (Aldrick) Robinson is a Shanahan favorite at the receiver spot and has an 18.3 yard career-catch average. (Garrett) Celek is an experienced throwback tight end. He's a good player for them."

Defense: "They're coordinated by Robert Saleh on defense. He's a Pete Carroll disciple. So, we'll have a chance to take a look at that defensive structure again. They're a talented, ascending defense that features a bunch of key guys and contributors in their first and second year. They have a lot of speed and size."

Special teams: "We all know Robbie Gould. He was here last year for us handling the kicking duties and Victor Bolden was forced into return duty from last week and he's a whirling dervish, has a lot of speed. He's very tenacious at the position. They have a couple guys in the mix that are among the league leaders. (Bradley) Pinion does a nice job for them in the punt game and the third running back, 31 (Raheem Mostert), does a good job in coverage teams for them as well as Watson. They're among the league leaders in net punting average."

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