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Giants Now: What Bill Belichick saw in Joe Judge

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Bill Belichick says Joe Judge has 'a good understanding of the game'

The Giants are in New England for joint practices this week as they prepare for the preseason finale against the Patriots at MetLife Stadium this Sunday at 6pm.

As we know, Joe Judge spent eight seasons working under Bill Belichick, first as a special teams assistant before being elevated to special teams coordinator. While both coaches are focused on the present and not the past, the Patriots head coach spoke to the media about what he saw from Judge when he was his special teams coordinator and what makes him a good head coach.

"Joe's a good football coach," Belichick said earlier this week. "Period. All the things that a good coach needs to do, Joe does. And he did a great job here for me in a number of different capacities. Most importantly, special teams, but he had a lot of other responsibilities as well. When I gave him something to do, he did a good job of it, and so that led to other things. I know he's like a very, just accomplished football coach. He has a good understanding of the game and how to coach it."

The 39-year-old head coach won three Super Bowls during his time in New England, including two while serving as coordinator. While this will be his first trip back to the Patriots' headquarters since he was named head coach of the Giants 18 months ago, Judge made it clear that he is not getting hung up on the past.

"I'm sure it'll be a little bit different coaching against a lot of those players for the first time, but to be honest with you, I'm a New York Giant," Judge said this week. "I'm focused on getting our team developed and ready for the season. This is a great opportunity to work against a good opponent, very well-coached, and to go up there and make sure that we hit some specific situations and focuses that both teams need in the regular season. This is really just a great opportunity for us to go up there and work against a quality opponent.

"This isn't some kind of trip down memory lane. I wouldn't bring the team up there for any kind of personal reasons, just the team we're going to play anyway in the preseason (Sunday in MetLife Stadium). We know we can get quality work in with them and it should be a week to help our team progress like last week did (when the Giants practiced with the Cleveland Browns), and we benefitted."

Rare photos from the storied history between the New York Giants and New England Patriots.

Giants reach NFL's roster limit of 80 players

Two players were waived/injured, two were placed on injured reserve and one had his contract terminated as the Giants today reached the NFL's roster limit of 80 players.

Defensive back Montre Hartage (shoulder) and Cole Hikutini (hip) were waived.

Tight end Rysen John (ankle) and Quincy Wilson (ankle) increased to six the number of Giants to go on I.R. since the start of training camp.

Long-snapper Carson Tinker's contract was terminated.

View photos of the New York Giants' active 53-man roster as it currently stands heading into Week 1.

Daniel Jones expected to play first half vs. Patriots

Joe Judge has said all summer that the Giants' final preseason game would be the team's dress rehearsal for the regular season.

Under that premise, the players who start against the New England Patriots Sunday night in MetLife Stadium would also be first on the field in the Sept. 12 opener against the Denver Broncos in the same venue. But Judge cautioned anyone making that leap.

"I wouldn't assume any of that," said Judge, whose reserves lost to the Cleveland Browns' backups, 17-13, in a preseason game on Sunday. "Obviously, when we get out there on Sunday, it will directly reflect based on how people have performed to this point and where the depth chart has indicated. However, there's going to be a lot of guys that we'll be getting one final look at and we have final cuts after that game. We're going to have to take a look at certain guys in certain situations, see how they mesh within certain units and the chemistry and impact they can bring. But in terms of having a set depth chart, nothing is ever concrete. The best players will always play. If somebody is outperforming somebody in practice, then they'll play that Sunday.

"So, just because you see something in game three, I wouldn't assume that that's what it's going to be against Denver in Week One. We'll make the decisions as we get closer. One thing about this year is it's a tough part of the year for players and coaches. There's necessary cuts you have to make by league rules that allow the roster to turn over, and that means losing players and it also means adding new players at times. So, there's a lot of change that happens over these next few weeks, so we're going to go ahead and adjust as we need to and make the best decision for the team."

Quarterback Daniel Jones and many more of Judge's frontline players will make their 2021 preseason debuts against the Patriots, with whom the Giants will practice on Wednesday and Thursday. Backup Mike Glennon started each of the first two games.

"My expectation at this point would be for Daniel to play at least the first half," Judge said. "We'll decide on what we're going to do in terms of coming out of halftime later in the week."

View photos of Giants quarterback Daniel Jones