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Giants support Nate Ebner's Olympic rugby training

United States' Nate Ebner during the men's rugby sevens match at the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Aug. 9, 2016.

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Safety and special teams standout Nate Ebner is trying out for one of the 12 spots on the United States National Rugby Team that will compete in Tokyo Olympics this summers. Ebner participated in the Games in Rio in 2016.

"Technically Nate is a free agent right now, but we fully intend for him to be a member of the Giants," Coach Joe Judge said. "He has to go through Olympic rugby training and we're supporting him with that."

When Ebner was an Olympian five years ago, he played for the New England Patriots and Judge was the team's special teams coordinator.

"That's an experience I've been through with him before," Judge said. "Actually, he returned from the Olympics in 2016 and had a tremendous year for us. So, I've gone through this before with him. I understand exactly how his training applies, rugby and can lead into football, and look, honestly it was one of his most productive years ever.

"He's a guy that's very locked in and focused. He was a captain last year and is a great team leader. This team, what he's helping build is very important for him and while I don't speak for anyone else, I don't mind echoing that for Nate because I know I can speak very directly and honestly. But look, he's a very important part of this team and we look forward to getting him back."

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