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Cover 3: What Giants can accomplish at OTAs


With organized team activities (OTAs) underway, the crew discusses things to look for and what the team can get out of the next few weeks of practices:

Dan Salomone: First, coach Brian Daboll gave a disclaimer following the draft: "I know I will get a lot of questions on it once we get out in OTAs, and I'll tell you right now, there are going to be a lot of guys mixing and matching. You can write the lineup down each day, but it's going to change from day to day."

So, fans should keep that in mind when consuming content over the next few weeks of OTAs and mandatory minicamp. With that said, there is still plenty to glean from the third and final phase of the off-season workout program.

Contact isn't allowed until the pads come on at training camp in a few months, so these spring practices will provide a good look at the passing game as quarterback Daniel Jones enters his fourth season with his third different head coach. Daboll and offensive coordinator Mike Kafka brought over their wealth of knowledge from Buffalo and Kansas City, two AFC juggernauts, to improve an offense that averaged 15.2 points per game last season, second-fewest in the NFL.

Although Daboll won't tip the whole playbook yet – "I think the more stuff you have in your head, the slower you play" – the installation of the offense is critical; and that way, they can hit the ground running at training camp.

Lance Medow: There are two positions to watch during off-season workouts over the next month. On the offensive side of the ball, all eyes should be on the trenches. Brian Daboll already made it clear he'll be consistently rotating linemen to give them reps at different spots, so don't read too much into where players receive work even though it may be interesting. The starting left guard position is up for grabs with Shane Lemieux, Max Garcia and rookie Joshua Ezeudu in the mix. With so many new faces in this position group, OTAs and mandatory minicamp could provide an early glance at who fits in where within the puzzle.

On the defensive side of the ball, it's all about the corners. With James Bradberry out of the picture, a great opportunity has presented itself for one of the young players on the roster to line up opposite Adoree' Jackson. Second-year defensive backs Aaron Robinson, Rodarius Williams and Jarren Williams are candidates along with rookie Cordale Flott. Given Wink Martindale's scheme relies heavily on strong cover corners, this job will play an integral role in the defense and the Spring is a great chance to see who could potentially make a strong push once training camp begins.

Matt Citak: Spring workouts are always an interesting time during the NFL off-season. Teams are holding practices, but attendance isn't mandatory. The players take the field, but there is no contact allowed; thus limiting what can actually be done. Despite all of this, there are two big things that can and should come out of OTAs.

The first is the integration of the rookie class with the rest of the team. Last weekend's rookie minicamp was the first time the first-year players stepped onto the practice field at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center. Only a few days later, OTAs kicked off with basically the entire team in attendance. The rookies are thrown right into the thick of it a mere few weeks after the NFL Draft. The Giants are going to lean on their rookie class pretty heavily this season, so it's key to get them comfortable with the speed of the NFL as quickly as possible.

The second important aspect is becoming comfortable with the playbook. The Giants brought in a new coaching staff this off-season. With Brian Daboll and Mike Kafka leading the offense and Don Martindale in charge of the defense, the Giants will run completely new schemes in 2022. It takes time to learn a new offense or defense, and these practices serve as the perfect opportunity for players to begin getting comfortable with the playbook. It helps that the Giants signed eight former Bills on the offense and four former Ravens on defense during the off-season. Having a group of players who already know the playbook should help the rest of the team get caught up rather quickly.

Catch up on all the action with photos from OTA No. 2 at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center.


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