The Giants’ first OTA is in the books. Here’s what I saw from the sideline:
*Overall, practice had a great pace and energy. In years past, it was the defense that was often the loudest encouraging their teammates, but the offense was plenty loud encouraging their teammates today.
*The pass of the day came from Daniel Jones, who hit fellow rookie Darius Slayton perfectly in stride on a flag route towards the right sideline. The wide receiver caught the perfectly placed ball over his outside shoulder. Eli Manning zipped a pass over the head of safety Jabrill Peppers and into the hands of tight end Evan Engram, who was operating behind a short zone. Manning’s first throw in one-on-ones was a perfect toss to wide receiver Sterling Shepard, who got behind cornerback Janoris Jenkins.
*There were a couple very difficult catches early in practice. During individuals, tight end Evan Engram made a spectacular one-handed jumping grab on a high pass. Wide receiver Golden Tate made a nice adjustment on a deep ball from Manning, to catch it past rookie cornerback Julian Love.
*The defense came up with some big plays throughout practice. Linebacker Tae Davis had an interception during one-on-ones. Peppers came up with an interception to close out the two- minute section of practice. On a 4th and 10, Manning tried to squeeze the ball to the sideline, but cornerback Sam Beal read the throw, got his hand on the ball and tipped it into the air. Peppers ran underneath it for the interception, and then understanding the simulated situation, he wisely got down to a knee to seal the win for the defense.
View the top images from Monday as the Giants take the field for OTAs
*In red zone drills, inside linebacker Alec Ogletree got his hand on a ball, reaching around a receiver coming across the field on a shallow cross and knocking it to Janoris Jenkins for an interception. The last takeaway for the defense came during team drills. Daniel Jones tried to get the ball to Slayton with a short pass, but Slayton bobbled it and the ball popped up in the air to Tony Lippett, who might have been able to turn it into a pick six.
*The defense was active up front. I saw multiple pressures from Marcus Golden in pass rush opportunities. Lorenzo Carter had what would have been a couple of tackles for loss in the run game. I also spotted edge rushers Kareem Martin and Oshane Ximines around the quarterback.
*It was good to see cornerback Sam Beal working for the first time since last year. I want to watch a couple more practices, but he was active on day one and showed off his length and quickness. He was a starter with the first group, along with Jenkins and Grant Haley as the slot cornerback.
*I enjoy watching Manning during the blitz portion of practice. More than once, he used a hard count to get the defense to show who was coming, which allowed him to get into a more favorable play.
*During red zone drills, Saquon Barkley beat Alec Ogletree for a touchdown. After that period of practice was over, Barkley went to talk to Ogletree about the play and why Barkley did what he did based on what Ogletree showed. It was great communication between the two players.
*I saw today why the long snapper and holder can be so important for a field goal kicker. Aldrick Rosas started the day 4 for 4, but then missed his next three from 47, 49 and 53 after the backup snapper and holder came onto the field. It is all about timing and comfort.