Camp is over, but work just begins
The Giants' most important work the next three days will not be on the football field but in offices and meetings rooms in the Quest Diagnostics Training Center.
While the players will be off for the three-day Labor Day Weekend – except for their daily Covid-19 test – Dave Gettleman and Joe Judge must decide which players will comprise the team's initial 53-man roster and 16-player practice squad. They must remove 27 players from their roster to reach the limit by 4 p.m. Saturday (28 if defensive back Logan Ryan is added). The practice squad will be composed on Sunday.
"It'll be busy," Judge said today. "It's our responsibility as we've been working throughout camp, it's not the first time we're going to talk personnel. It's not going to be the first time we will have the specific conversations we're going to have over the next 48 hours. We just want to make sure we do all of our diligence to get every player the right evaluation, to think long-term in terms of what this team is going to be like throughout the season, what meets our needs, where our depth is.
"Ultimately, we're looking to keep as many good players in our program as possible. That's true for our 53-man roster, the practice squad, and whatever other means we have. It's going to be busy, but we've done a lot of leg work on the front end, giving everybody a fair opportunity every day. We just want to make sure we take our time to review everything and make sure we make the right decisions."
View photos of the Giants' active roster as it currently stands.
Giants' expectations remain same in 'unusual year'
John Mara is attending his 60th Giants training camp and admits, "I've never experienced anything like this before." He concedes this will be "an unusual year" in the NFL.
It is certainly that and more for everybody, including someone who has been associated with the league since birth and is now one of the league's most influential owners. The pandemic forced all NFL teams to have an offseason with no practices, training camps with daily Covid-19 testing, and a season in which games will be played in stadiums that are empty or sparsely populated.
But while so much has changed for Mara, his hopes for the Giants have not. He held his annual camp news conference yesterday – via Zoom – and as always declined to target how many victories he expects or hopes for. But with a new coach, a restructured roster and questions regarding whether a full season can even be played, Mara's expectations remain consistent.
"I want to feel like when we walk off the field after the last game that we play, whenever that is, that we're moving in the right direction," Mara said. "That we have the pieces in place to compete for a Super Bowl, and that the combination of people that we have here is going to work going forward. … I think we give the same answer every year because that's truly what it is. You can't pin it to a certain win-loss total, but you just want to feel like this group that we have together right now is building something that's going to compete for a championship.
"It's pretty hard to sit here and say, 'We need to win X number of games, we need to be in the playoffs this year.' We made some big changes over the last few years, and I think we're starting to build a foundation that can last over the long haul. That's what (team chairman) Steve (Tisch) and I want to see at the end of the year. Are we moving in the right direction? I know that's not going to satisfy a lot of our fans, but I just think it's the right philosophy to have."
Coach Joe Judge recaps summer as Giants break camp
Check out the video below to see Coach Joe Judge recap his first training camp as a head coach in the NFL and look ahead to final roster decisions and, of course, Week 1.