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Sterling Shepard Blog: Fourth and Shep


Throughout the season, Rookie WR Sterling Shepard will check in with and provide an inside look at his journey of making it in the NFL:

*Wide receiver Sterling Shepard was born to play football. The son of a Super Bowl and NCAA champion, he followed in his father's footsteps to a standout career at the University of Oklahoma before being selected by the New York Giants in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft. We pick up with him after the Giants' fifth win a row, a game in which Shepard caught his fifth touchdown of the season and led the team in receiving yards… *

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Another W. Another fourth-down play. It was just kind of like the same route that I ran with that game-winning touchdown the week before. It was just a shallow, and you've got to make one miss and then you can pick up a lot of yards. Eli found me on the second read, and I tried to get as much as I could. These fourth downs have been huge for us. They can be pretty bad for the other team because I look out and see our defense and the offense thinks they're about to go on the field, they've got their helmets on, and they're ready to go. And then it's just like a deflator when you give it up. That's our objective, though. We've got to convert on fourth downs. But whenever we get a chance, we've got to convert on third downs.

Of course, Landon Collins came up big again. He's a straight-up baller. But I've been seeing that from him throughout camp and everything. So I knew he was going to have a big season, and he's just got to keep doing what he's doing. I knew him before because we were in the same class. He just came out early for the draft. But we went to the All-American Game together, and we played against each other our junior year when I was at Oklahoma. We played 'Bama, and we beat them in the Sugar Bowl.

I know our pregame handshakes between the wideouts kind of blew up this week, so let me explain it a little bit. You pretty much have your own handshake with everybody, like I have about three with everybody pretty much. You've got little quick ones that you do, like if you're in a hurry. Then you have more elaborate ones for when you have time. You don't have a name for them. Just as they come, like if you see O (Odell Beckham) come up to me, I know what handshake he's going to do. If he goes a certain way to me, then we do three claps. We practice all the time. You've got to practice.

Dancing like we're on a five-game winning streak! #GiantsPride

— New York Giants (@Giants) November 21, 2016

It's an exciting time to be a Giant around here. Last night, I got to sit courtside for the Knicks game. It was dope. I love Madison Square Garden. The Knicks did a great job and got a W. I'm trying to make it to the Thunder game on Monday, too. That would be pretty exciting.

Now it's Thanksgiving, and I'm having the family over. Everybody is flying in. So I'll have people over at my house and we're going to eat there. I'll probably have Roger (Lewis) over there and have some other teammates stop in. My mom's a good cook. She's good at what she does, and my sisters will help her out. Her signature dish is sweet potatoes. I love the sweet potatoes. I'm a sweets guy, so the caramel cake is a must-have for me as well.

And then we're off to Cleveland for our first road trip in what feels like a long time. We've been here at home for a while. We've just got to get used to being back on the road with a lot more crowd noise when we're on the field as an offense. So we've got to start working our silent count. We've got to work on some of that stuff, but we're excited. We're up for the challenge. Everybody is calling it a trap game, but we just need to focus on us. They've got some good DBs over there and a good front seven. We've got to get the ball out. We've got to protect the QB. If we just keep doing the little things we've been doing, I feel like we'll come out good.

Stay tuned to for more from Sterling, and don't forget to follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @sterl_shep3.

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