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Practice Notes (8/15): Defense features many standouts

View the best photos from the Giants' joint practice with the Lions.

It was a second day of practice for the Giants in Detroit against the Lions. As always, please check out my standouts. I'm going to save some overarching impressions for tomorrow's notes, since Thursday's practice will feature less contact work.

-       We had a second day of practice with no extra-curricular activities. The practice seemed slightly more physical than Tuesday's, but nobody went too far. Towards the end of practice, there was a little trash talking and sniping between the Lions defensive backfield and the Giants sideline, but afterwards the guys high-fived and laughed about it. It is clear that both coaches got through to their teams what they expected at practice this week.

-       There was a lot of situational, featuring third down plays, red zone work, and even two-point conversion attempts.

  • Center Evan Brown had a great block on a running play, knocking defensive end Cornelius Washington to the ground in the open field.
  • The Giants offense wasn't nearly as sharp as it was during Tuesday's practice, but that doesn't mean there weren't a handful of impressive individual plays. Tight end Rhett Ellison did well during red zone drills, catching three touchdowns. Wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. had a nice leaping catch in the back of the end zone for a touchdown, as did fellow receiver Hunter Sharp. Wide Receiver Sterling Shepard make an acrobatic juggling catch during two-minute, where he had to tip a high pass from quarterback Davis Webb to himself that resulted in a big first down on a 3rd and 3. Webb also made a great throw to tight end Scott Simonson on a boot leg during half-line drills, fitting it into a tight spot. Wide receiver Roger Lewis Jr. made a couple nice catches as well. Finally, wide receiver Cody Latimer almost had a beautiful catch, going up to get a corner fade in the back corner of the end zone, but he couldn't get his feet down.
  • It was an interesting series of plays for cornerback Eli Apple during the Lions' two-minute period. On a 2nd and 10 at the Detroit 40-yard line, quarterback Jake Rudock threw a skinny post to wide receiver Kenny Golladay. Apple was a little too aggressive and went through Golladay's back to get to the ball and was called for pass interference. The penalty put the ball at the Giants' 36-yard line, nearly in field goal range, with plenty of time on the clock. On the very next play, Apple came down from off coverage and jumped in front of a Rudock pass intended for wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. He picked it off for what would have been a touchdown heading the other way. It was good to see Apple bounce back so quickly after a bad play.
  • I featured three defensive players -- Olivier Vernon, Robert Thomas and Alec Ogletree -- in my standouts, but there were a couple other players that shined on that side of the ball. Dalvin Tomlinson got into the backfield a couple of times during the team potions of practice. His first play on a run would have been good for a tackle for loss, and he had what should have been a sack during the Lions' first two-minute period. B.J. Goodson also made a good play in coverage on an out-route intended for Golden Tate, knocking the ball away. I also want to give some credit to edge rusher Lorenzo Carter, who punished the Lions whenever they tried to block him with a tight end. He had a sack and two pressures during team portions of practice.
  • Each team had the chance to convert a two-point conversion with each of their groups during team practice and the Lions got the best of the competitions. The Lions were three for three, with three touchdown passes. The Giants went 0-3, with two failures on fade routes (Eli Manning to Evan Engram, Davis Webb to Hunter Sharp) and an overthrow on a slant from Kyle Lauletta to Marquis Bundy.
  • Each team had the same two-minute scenario. They started on their own 40-yard line with 58 seconds and one timeout, needing a field goal to win. I already detailed the Lions' first two-minute period that ended with an Eli Apple interception. On their second possession, Matt Cassel moved the ball down to the Giants' 28-yard line, but Matt Prater missed a 46-yard field goal.
  • As for the Giants, both Davis Webb and Kyle Lauletta got their groups just inside the 30-yard line and into field goal range, setting up Marshall Koehn for potential game-winning field goals. Koehn went one for two on those chances. There were two missed opportunities during two-minute. On one play, Hunter Sharp's defender fell down, but quarterback Davis Webb was looking elsewhere. On another, wide receiver Kalif Raymond got behind the defense, but Lauletta was scanning the other side of the field. Odell Beckham Jr. also made a spectacular catch on a pass from Davis Webb. The pass was just inches off the ground, but Beckham went down and plucked it out of the air before it hit the turf.

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