The path to the draft is over, but the journey is just beginning.
With the lights turned down and carpets all rolled up in Chicago, the New York Giants' 2015 NFL Draft Class, among others, will report Thursday to the Quest Diagnostics Training Center for rookie minicamp.
Centered around two days of practices, the camp is an initiation for players into team concepts, as well as an opportunity to wear their new colors for the first time. According to the collective bargaining agreement, clubs are allowed one rookie minicamp that may be conducted on either the first or second weekend following the draft.
Here is a snapshot of what to expect in the coming days:
The six-member 2015 draft class, in addition to roughly 60 free-agent rookies and "first-year" players (anyone who has not completed a season of credited service), most of whom are participating on a tryout basis.
2015 New York Giants Post-Draft Rookie Minicamp
Quest Diagnostics Training Center, East Rutherford, N.J.
May 8-10 (players report on May 7 for check-in and physicals)
To introduce players to the organization, including meetings with coaches and coordinators, on-field work, film study and strength and conditioning.
Now that you know what to expect, here are three things to look forward to during rookie minicamp:
1. Coughlin begins to mold newest draft class.
Because of an unusually late draft, the Giants did not hold a rookie minicamp last year. Rather, the newest members of the team were thrown right into the middle of the offseason program with veterans. Although no one can argue with the early results of the 2014 class, Coughlin still prefers the minicamp.
"We have done minicamps forever, so that is probably how I would prefer it," the head coach said. "Sometimes it doesn't fall that way. Sometimes where you are with your team, they just roll right in anyways, regardless. This gives a chance to introduce the fundamental concepts, the terminology etc., on a little bit lesser scale in terms of the intensity of it, then take them on the field, and I think that will help some of these guys be introduced to where we are."
2. Spags is back in town.
For the first time since 2008, Steve Spagnuolo will man the sidelines as defensive coordinator of the New York Giants. Beginning his second stint with the team that he helped win a Super Bowl, Spagnuolo will be fired up to set the tone with the newcomers, including safety Landon Collins and defensive end Owamagbe Odighizuwa.
"He's the same guy," Coughlin said about Spagnuolo during a radio interview this week on ESPN New York 98.7 FM. "He's somersaulting around the office. He's downstairs talking to people. He's excited. He's excited about the draft. We were on the field this morning. So there's no doubt about that. We've got to come together as a football team, and some of these people that we've been relying on to show with their best foot forward, it's going to have to happen. And it's going to have to happen right now."
- Finding the diamonds in the rough.**
The dream of one day playing in the NFL doesn't end with the draft. From Hall of Fame defensive back Emlen Tunnell to wide receiver Victor Cruz
and most recently defensive end Kerry Wynn, the Giants have seen plenty of success from players who did not receive a call on draft day. This year will be no different around the league.
"Hopefully, we will do well there," Coughlin said about the rookie free agents. "Because, to be honest with you, there are always opportunities for people to make your team that come out of that collegiate free agency."
Other offseason dates to know:
OTA Offseason Workouts:
May 27-29, June 1-2, June 4, June 8-9, June 11-12
Photos of notable Giants undrafted free agents