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Practice report from Giants rookie minicamp (5/12)


Here are some notes and observations from Saturday's practice at Giants rookie minicamp:

Day two of rookie mini-camp is in the books with the final practice that is open to the media. It was a chilly, damp and breezy day at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center, but the Giants managed to squeeze in an outdoor practice between the rain showers. Great job by Rob Davis and his field crew to have it ready to go. No one was slipping at all during practice.

Here's what I saw from sidelines:

• I spoke yesterday about how Lorenzo Carter looked a lot more like an edge rusher than a linebacker to me in terms of his frame and skillset. I was not surprised to see him working with the defensive linemen during early drills, working on his get-off from a three-point stance. I bet he will join guys like Olivier Vernon and Avery Moss, who will be in the linebacker room on Wednesday and Thursday and then join the defensive linemen late in the week when the team works on third downs and sub-packages.

• You could see the coaches getting a little bit more vocal with the guys today, perhaps expecting them to know and understand a little more after a second day of meetings and classroom work.

• There were two new drills I hadn't noticed before. In what looked like a traditional seven-on-seven drill, only the receivers on one side of the field would go out and run their routes. Then on the next snap, the other side of the field would do the same. I've seen half-field running drills before, but I don't recall seeing it in the passing game.

• The second new drill with the quarterbacks used a familiar prop, the throwing net, but used it in a different way. Instead of the quarterbacks trying to hit a specific spot on the net, the quarterbacks had to get it over the entire apparatus (which is at least 9 feet tall) and hit a receiver standing behind it. The point was to see the quarterbacks use touch and accuracy to get it over the net and to the receiver and over the net. I would bet the point of the drill is to mimic getting the ball to receivers over the middle between the linebackers and safeties.

• First-year player Tim Scott, who was on the Giants practice squad at the end of the year, showed the rookies what a year of experience can do for you. He made a nice play stepping up on a bubble screen early in practice, which would have resulted in a tackle for loss. Later on, he intercepted a ball that was overthrown by Kyle Lauletta over the middle.

• Saquon Barkley continued to show off his route running. On one play, he was isolated on linebacker Tae Davis and quickly got behind him up the field and was wide open when he caught what would have been a big gain. In the running game, he continued to show the ability to stop on a dime and change direction. I hate the fact I have to wait until August to see him practice in full pads with contact.

• Kyle Lauletta made a couple nice adjustments on blitzes, getting the ball out quick. He had four different offensive coordinators in college and is used to learning new offenses. He is a quick study and it showed up this weekend.

Photos from Day 2 of Giants rookie minicamp

• You can't see much from B.J. Hill and Will Hernandez with the strict contact rules at practice, but while watching them, two things struck me. Hill has very quick hands and Hernandez showed powerful heavy hands when the two worked on tackling dummies. Dave Gettleman talked after the draft about how playing the interior defensive line is a "violent business" and those two seem ready for it. Hernandez also had a chance to show off his agility when he was asked to get out in front of Saquon Barkley on a screen pass.

• Nice jumping interception from linebacker Derrick Matthews, pulling it out of the air with one hand.

• Rookie tryout running back Robert Martin from Rutgers has some juice to him. He showed some nice burst getting through the line of scrimmage.

Finally some quick hits on three guys that stuck out to me during two days of practice:

  1. William Watson – The 5-11, 183-pound tryout receiver from British Columbia isn't physically impressive, but he showed good hands, route running, and the ability to adjust to the ball in the air. During Saturday's practice, he caught a nice fade over the shoulder and got both feet in before going out of bounds.
  1. Earl Okine – The 6-6, 290-pound tryout defensive lineman from Florida has been out of college for two years, but I see why he has stuck around on practice squads. He is long and has some athleticism, but I wonder what his position is. I saw him at defensive end in the 3-4 and some three-technique. I see pass rush skills there.
  1. Garrett Dickerson – The 6-2, 245-pound H-Back from Northwestern was praised by Pat Shurmur earlier in the day for his versatility to line up in a bunch of different spots. Today, he caught a nice pass down the field, showing his strong hands.
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