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Practice Notes (8/12): Eli rests, backup QB competition heats up

The Giants hit the practice field on Sunday three days after their 2018 preseason opener against the Cleveland Browns. The team was in full pads and outside on a sunny and sticky day at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center. As always, check out my item on the standouts from practice.

-       Before beginning with what happened on the field, credit should be heaped upon the grounds crew who take care of the team's practice fields. Groundskeeper Rob Davis and his assistant Greg Oxnard did a wonderful job getting the outdoor grass fields ready to go today after the virtual monsoon that New Jersey dealt with on Saturday. The drainage was fantastic and the fields were dry and ready to go.

-       Defensive Coordinator James Bettcher missed practice today, and will again tomorrow, as he attends to his family after the passing of his mother last week. He will meet the team in Detroit for the joint practices there. Defensive backs coach Lou Anarumo was spotted with a walkie talkie, getting the plays in to the defense. Thoughts and prayers to coach Bettcher and his family.

-       Quarterback Eli Manning was given a much lighter workload during practice today, allowing the majority of snaps to be split between the three younger quarterbacks on the roster: Davis Webb, Kyle Lauletta and Alex Tanney.

-       Webb had an up and down day. He started practice with a nice deep pass to wide receiver Alonzo Russell and closed practice with two on target rockets to Odell Beckham Jr. on a flag and a slant route. In between those plays, he threw an interception to defensive lineman Kerry Wynn on a screen pass to Evan Engram, and overthrew a couple of receivers. It was good to see Webb get more reps with the first team line and receiver group.

-       The second half of practice featured three long "move the ball" segments. They are unique because they are unscripted. Neither the players nor the play callers know the down and distances they will face during these periods, so everybody has to improvise. It will more accurately reflect what everyone has to do on game days. 

-       Cornerback B.W. Webb built on his strong preseason game on Thursday and continued to make plays on the ball. He knocked away a Davis Webb pass intended for Russell Shepard during red zone drills and another to Hunter Sharp during the "move the ball" portion of practice.

-       The Giants worked on a lot of screen passes to running backs, tight ends and wide receivers. Coaches are always looking for blocking from their skill position players, and both wide receiver Amba Etta-Tawo and Garrett Dickerson did a nice job during those plays.

-       Edge rusher Kareem Martin showed excellent awareness on a shovel pass from Davis Webb. He read it all the way and would have dropped the running back for a loss on the play.

-       Two good reps from offensive tackle Ereck Flowers in the one-on-one pass protection drill between the offensive and defensive lines. He rode Kareem Martin and threw him down to the ground on his first rep. On his second, Lorenzo Carter didn't get a great jump off the line, and Flowers shut down his rush.

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