Terrell Thomas and Prince Amukamara were expected to be the Giants' top right cornerbacks this season, but Michael Coe has probably taken more snaps at the position with the first team than any player in training camp.
Coe was back with the starters today as Thomas remained sidelined with a knee injury and Amukamara sat out with what Tom Coughlin called, "a little bit of a hamstring."
With 11 cornerbacks, including Thomas, on the roster, Coe will take any advantage he can get.
"It's a good thing the coaches and the team has the confidence in you to keep putting you out there," Coe said after practice at the University at Albany. "I have to stay focused and keep making plays."
Coe knows he is being closely scrutinized when he lines up with the starters.
"When you're out there running with the ones, it gives you that confidence," he said. "The starters like Osi (Umenyiora) and (Justin) Tuck and Mathias (Kiwanuka) and Antrel (Rolle) see you consistently out there with them, you build a confidence with them and you build a confidence with the coaching staff. That's important in that way, but every time you get out there and you get a rep, you got to play your best and try to be great on the details and execute."
Coe joined the Giants late in the 2010 season. Last year, he played in 10 games before suffering a shoulder injury against Philadelphia on Nov. 20 that forced him to go on injured reserve. Coe is trying to stand out in a crowded field of cornerbacks that in addition to Thomas and Amukamara includes starter Corey Webster and veterans Antwaun Molden, Justin Tryon, Bruce Johnson and Dante Hughes and third-round draft choice Jayron Hosley.
"We have an enormous amount of talent back there," Coe said. "The differential between guys is very, very minimal. I feel like I've been doing pretty well. I've been executing the calls out here. Certain things, I like to tweak. At first, I felt I was going out too fast and the last couple of practices, I've been a little bit more patient and trust in myself. I think that's a getting back into the groove and trusting in your abilities type thing. As it goes along, I feel like I'm getting back to that. The more plays you can go out there, the more plays you can get to separate yourself from the group, it's going to help you."