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Giants Now: Eli Penny to have jersey retired by Norwalk High School


Norwalk High School to retire Eli & Rashaad Penny's number

This past season was Eli Penny's fourth year with the Giants and easily his most productive.

Penny carried the ball 24 times for 99 yards (4.1 avg.) and a touchdown, all of which were the highest totals since he joined the Giants in 2018, while catching nine passes for 30 yards and the first receiving touchdown of his NFL career.

The success achieved by the Giants fullback in 2021 went beyond the box score. Penny's 73.1 receiving grade ranked second-highest among all fullbacks, while his 70.3 rushing grade was tied for the third-best mark.

Penny recently received some exciting news, as both he and his brother, Rashaad, will have their No. 22 jersey retired by Norwalk High School tonight at Lancer Stadium.

Eli put together quite an impressive career while at Norwalk, where he played running back, defensive end and linebacker.

As a senior, he earned all-state honors and was named all-area each of his last 2 seasons. Penny was a two-time winner of the Suburban League MVP and was the Wave Newspaper East Region Player of the Year after gaining 2,005 yards and scoring 18 touchdowns as a senior. He also added 29 tackles and 1.5 sacks on defense. During his junior season, he ran for 1,569 yards and 22 touchdowns while totaling 62 tackles, 8 sacks and 4 interceptions.

Penny would go on to play two seasons at the University of Idaho after transferring from Cerritos College, where he was named first-team All-America and the Northern Conference Offensive Player of the Year as a sophomore. At Idaho, he played in 23 games with 14 starts in 2 seasons and finished his career with 385 carries for 1,748 yards and 22 touchdowns, adding 39 catches for 346 yards and 3 scores.

Fact or Fiction: Future of Giants' defense; best all-time nicknames

"Aggressive" is the best word to describe Brian Daboll's new coordinators.

John Schmeelk: Fact – I suggest fans go and listen to Bob Papa's interviews with defensive coordinator Don "Wink" Martindale and offensive coordinator Mike Kafka on the Giants Huddle Podcast. Martindale spoke openly about how he likes his defense to dictate terms to the offense when they generate pressure. Kafka's first answer about what a good offense needs to do well was "make explosive plays." Those are answers of aggressive coordinators. Now the Giants need the personnel to pull it off.

Dan Salomone: Fiction – The shoe certainly fits, but "fresh" describes the new regime. Team president John Mara said at the end of the season that it was time to hit the reset button, which the Giants did with bringing in outside perspectives at high levels of the organization. That trickled down to the new coordinators.

Lance Medow: Fact – New defensive coordinator Don "Wink" Martindale certainly fits that bill. During his tenure with the Ravens, Baltimore was consistently among the league leaders in blitz percentage. Case in point, last season, the Ravens blitzed 31% of the time, the sixth-highest rate in the NFL. In the three previous years, they led the league in that category at 44% (2020), 55% (2019) and 40% (2018). That trend is clearly synonymous with being aggressive. Mike Kafka has never been an offensive coordinator before, and it's still uncertain who will call plays this season. At this point, it's hard to get a read on Kafka's style and philosophy. With that being said, he spent the last five seasons with the Chiefs, who consistently ranked as one of the best offenses in the league. That alone puts him under the same umbrella as Martindale.

Matt Citak: Fact – Aggressive is definitely the word one would use to describe Don Martindale's style of defense. Martindale wants to get after opposing quarterbacks and is known for scheming new and creative ways to do this. But the defense is not the only side of the ball that will be looking to make those big plays. Offensive coordinator Mike Kafka said he wants to generate explosive plays downfield in his first interview with Between more blitzes on defense and more shots down the field on offense, the 2022 Giants will be described as aggressive.

Full list of Giants' 2022 pending free agents

Check out the gallery below to view photos of all Giants players set to become free agents when the new league year begins March 16.

View the players set to become free agents when the new league year begins March 16.


2022 Season Tickets on sale now

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