Monday will be cornerback Sam Beal's 481st day as a member of the Giants, but everyone is curious when his first game day will come. The 2018 supplemental draft choice has yet to suit up for live action, not even in the preseason.
So what better time to make his debut than Monday Night Football at home against the rival Dallas Cowboys?
"I have so much aggression," Beal said today, "that's the perfect team."
Seven days before the Giants opened the season in Dallas, Beal was placed on injured for the second consecutive year. In 2018, he underwent shoulder surgery soon after his arrival. He returned to the field this spring, but missed much of training camp and all four preseason games with groin and hamstring injuries.
The Giants designated him to return from injured reserve two weeks ago, which meant they have until next Wednesday to activate him. If they do, the team would need to release somebody to free up a spot on the active roster.
"They know I want to be out there," Beal said. "I'm not even thinking about it because I know it's coming, I am just waiting for my moment, I'm waiting for that text or call, just ready for that moment."
Beal said his main objective in this three-week window is to show he has a grasp of the playbook and can play fast.
"The Cowboys, they are not an easy team, so I can't go out there 50 percent or 80 percent," Beal said. "I have to come out there 100 percent. They want to see the real me. I'll get there though, only a couple more days."
Beal said that with good reason. Dallas enters Week 9 with an offense ranked first in yards per game (437.9), third down conversion rate (51.9), and yards per play (6.71).
To get his sea legs back, Beal has spent time on the scout team, where he frequently lines up against savvy veteran receiver Golden Tate.
"Going against those guys just gets your feet right back," Beal said. "They aren't taking it easy on you. Golden told me, 'You are going to get your feet wet again, we aren't going to take it easy on you just because you are on scout team.' And I appreciated that. Every time I go out there I try to work on my technique, my feet. I'm feeling good though, honestly, I'm feeling really good."
Shurmur said this week that Beal is "making good progress" and there could be a roster decision made by the end of the week. Whether or not Beal will move up to one of the 53 active players remains to be seen. Of those, 46 dress for game day.
"As an athlete, when you love this game, when you have a passion for it and you sit out and just watch, it's not the most fun, it takes a toll on you," Beal said. "Just having the injury last year, but I'm in a better spot because last year helped me. It was kind of tough for me last year, but this year I'm like, OK, I have tunnel, I have a light, so I can be more calm and take my time."
The Monday night countdown clock is ticking.
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