*After competing with a verteran kicker, Aldrick Rosas is ready and confident to kick against Dallas: *
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J.– This is Tom Quinn's 11th season as the Giants' special teams coordinator, and the first in which he will begin the year with a kicker whose first career regular-season game will be the season opener.
But Quinn is confident first-year pro Aldrick Rosas will play well when the Giants face the defending NFC East champion Cowboys in Dallas on Sunday night. Rosas signed with the Giants in January and worked with Quinn throughout the spring and summer. Quinn has been encouraged by the young kicker's progress.
"You're trying to see how he comes in in the spring and how he responds and takes coaching, and then he's gotten better and he's very coachable," Quin said. "Then you progress into training camp and more live reps and then the game. So, it was nice to see him keep getting better with that. So yeah, it's been encouraging."
Rosas competed with veteran Mike Nugent in training camp and the preseason. He put the finishing touch on securing the job in the preseason finale in New England a week ago, when he kicked four field goals, including the game-winning 48-yarder as time expired.
"I was happy," Quinn said. "It was a competitive game for a preseason game, which is nice because of the expanded roster. So, it's nice to see it on both sides. I mean, they hit one (Stephen Gostkowski's 55-yarder with 44 seconds left), we hit one. All these games are close, so it's good to at least have that experience in the preseason.
"It was good, I think, for everyone to see. He'll keep learning and progressing."
The Giants last opened a season with a kicker who had no prior regular-season experience in 2002, when Matt Bryant won the job. Bryant made 26 of 32 field goal attempts and scored 108 points that season. He is currently the kicker for the defending NFC champion Atlanta Falcons.
*The Giants' injury report did not change. Odell Beckham, Jr. (ankle) and linebacker Keenan Robinson (concussion) did not practice. Everyone else on the roster did, without limitations.
"(Beckham) was working with the trainers today, getting rehab," coach Ben McAdoo said. "Got the workout in with the trainers and he's getting treatment."
*Offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan has experience with wideouts slowed by ankle injuries. Ten years ago, he was the wide receivers coach when Plaxico Burress seldom practiced because of an ankle that caused constant discomfort. Burress still led the team with 70 receptions, 1,025 yards, and 12 touchdowns. He also set a Giants postseason record with 11 catches in the NFC Championship Game in Green Bay, and he caught the game-winning touchdown pass in Super Bowl XLII.
But Burress was not at peak efficiency in several games. Today, Sullivan was asked about the possibility of Beckham playing at less than 100 percent.
"As soon as you asked me that question, I immediately thought back to big 17, Plaxico Burress," Sullivan said. "There was a guy that through that entire year, 2007, was never able to practice, was never at 100 percent, and there were many games where he wasn't at his best. And yet because of the player he was, teams had to account for him and if they didn't, he was still good enough even though he was hobbled to hurt them. So, that certainly can be a factor."
*Second-year pro B.J. Goodson has earned the confidence of his teammates and coaches as the Giants' new starting middle linebacker.
"I'm really pleased with what he's done," defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo said. "It's not just what he's doing on the field and controlling like they all do. I watch the little things on the side and how he relates to his teammates, and how he has really taken upon the extra added responsibility of being the leader of that group. Now, there are some leaders in there – JC (Jonathan Casillas) and Snacks (Damon Harrison). But he takes control of the huddle and I think he is gaining a tremendous amount of respect from his teammates throughout this whole offseason."
*The Giants held a spirited full-pads practice today as they continue to prepare to face Dallas.
"We had to grind through today's practice," McAdoo said. "We were moving around yesterday at good speeds, but guys fought through it. It was a long practice, but a much-needed practice."
*The Giants will begin their season in Dallas for the third consecutive season. It is the first time they have opened on the road against the same team three years in a row since 1949-51 when their opponent was the Pittsburgh Steelers. The previous three years (1946-48), they opened on the road against the Boston Yankees.
*This is the first time the Giants will play five straight road openers since they started seven consecutive seasons as visitors from 1962-68.