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2024 Spring Practices

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Practice Report (6/3): Sideline view of OTA No. 7


The Giants hosted OTA #7 at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center on Monday after a weekend off.

*We've seen special teams coordinator Michael Ghobrial really lean into teaching the coverage and return aspect of the new kickoff rule. It's a very different look in practice seeing players lining up five yards from each other and basically frozen in place until the ball is caught by the returner or the kickoff hits the ground. Then all the players explode out of their stances and using pads, work on their blocking and coverage techniques. It's a matter of training the players eyes for what to watch, and then all of them moving together in sync to fulfill their assignments. I think there are going to be a lot of explosive plays early in the season on kick return as teams figure out what they're doing and surprise their opponents by doing things no one expects. One player I noticed during these drills was Dante "Little Turbo" Miller, whose speed lives up to his monicker.

*New running backs coach Joel Thomas has been working with his group on catching the ball throughout the spring. They've developed a series of drills to mimic the pass getting on them quickly and reacting to make the catch. A focus is on catching a vertical pass coming in over their head and behind them. The running backs are not allowed to look back and need to get their hands up and make the catch when the ball appears in their field of vision in front of them.

*Monday's practice was a strong one for the defense that got kick-started by the linebackers. On the first play of the team portion of practice, Bobby Okereke forced Wan'Dale Robinson to make a difficult catch over the middle with strong coverage. On the next play, Micah McFadden sniffed out a screen that would have been limited to no gain.

*The secondary got into the act next, starting with Deonte Banks using his length to prevent a completion to Darius Slayton. Tre Hawkins nearly came up with an interception on a pass in the middle of the field, forcing an incompletion. Cor'Dale Flott ran with Slayton on a deep route and knocked the ball away. Earlier in practice, defensive back Alex Johnson nearly came up with a pick when he knocked a pass away.

*The defensive front made some noise again. A defensive pressure package gave Brian Burns the opportunity to be a free runner to the quarterback, forcing a play to be blown dead. Tyler Nubin and Jalen Mills came free on a blitz that forced the ball to come out of the quarterback's hand. Dexter Lawrence got through the middle to pressure a quick pass to Wan'Dale Robinson in the flat. Tomon Fox created a pressure late in practice that could have been a sack in a game situation.

*Offensively, Wan'Dale Robinson caught a few slants, Darius Slayton was targeted frequently by the quarterbacks, Jashaun Corbin caught a couple of passes in the flat, and rookie Theo Johnson caught a pass from Drew Lock.

*There are three more OTA's this week before two days of mandatory minicamp on June 11th and 12th.

See all the action from spring practices at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center.


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