Giants training camp recap, August 7, 2012: Will Hill getting a lot of reps, and more on Wilson, Hosley, Osi, Austin and Herzlich

It’s time to start paying attention to Will Hill if you’re a Giants fan.  He has been getting a ton of reps with the 1′s, and extra reps with the 2′s.  It’s clear that the coaching staff really likes him.  And how do I know that?  Because they yell at him a lot.  Before the play, during the play, after the play, you name it.  ”Be physical Will!  Jam him up Will!  Jam him up!”  If they didn’t like him, he’d be running with the 3′s.  They’ve been using him a lot in the box, and today he covered the slot receivers and TEs quite a bit.  He may very well play a big role for the Giants’ defense this year,  especially with the uncertainty of Terrell Thomas’ knee.  At all 32 camps, reporters are prefacing questions by first saying “The NFL is changing with the usage of more athletic tight ends like Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez…” and then they finish their question, usually asking how you stop those two TE sets.  If there hasn’t already been that question posed with Will Hill in mind already, there will be soon.  Here’s some tape of Hill in college at Florida against Georgia.  He had himself a game:

It’s impossible not to notice David Wilson.  He’s so fast, but there are things about his game that annoy the Giants.  Today he muffed a kick return.  That earned a “Catch the ball David!” from Tom Coughlin.  He also dropped an easy one in the flat.  But then later he got a crease, exploded through it, then made a devastating cut in between two defenders.  After practice, Coughlin was asked about Wilson and Reuben Randle, and what he needs to see from them against Jacksonville this week.  ”We need to see ball security, we’d like to see David’s big play potential, and Reuben has been a guy that has caught the ball consistently all throughout camp.  Very smooth, got himself open, caught the football, and I wouldn’t think that there’d be any reason not to expect him to continue to do that, but we’ll see how they do competing against someone else, other than our own people.”  No surprise that “ball security” is the first thing Coughlin noted.  Wilson is currently running with the 3′s behind Ahmad Bradshaw and DJ Ware, and you can kind of see why.  Ware had a really nice blitz pickup on Chase Blackburn today.  He’s a known, trustworthy commodity at this point.  Wilson is not.  I think that’s smart to have Wilson running with the 3′s.  Make him earn a jump up the ladder when he does all the little things correctly.  But again… obvious bigtime talent.

Much more after the jump…

Speaking of rookies, Jayron Hosley had a big day.  Early in practice he had a nice PBU.  Then later he picked off a pass in the red zone for pick 6.  All the Giants players not in the play were lined up at the 40 yard line, so that’s where Hosley stopped on his pick 6, but Perry Fewell yelled at him to return it the entire way, and even ran with him.  High comedy.  Then, when Hosley got back with the rest of the team, they put him right back in on the next play.  No rest for the kid.

Adrien Robinson has impressive size, and looks like a good blocker, but we kind of already know that from his college scouting reports.  However, I thought he looked a little awkward running routes.  Not a lot of confidence there.

Martellus Bennett has been good the last 2 days.  Effort is far better than it was at OTAs.  He made a nice fingertip grab in the red zone on an out route, and is blocking well.  Bear Pascoe is running with the 1′s.

UDFA WR David Douglass (from the University of Arizona) is getting a lot of pub for his play up here.  I don’t really see it.  He’s making some plays, but I don’t really see anything special.  If Victor Cruz were making the same plays that Douglass is making, it would be met with a “meh.”  It’s the unexpected nature of a guy like Douglass playing well that messes with perception.  I see it every year at Eagles camp.  Some young WR makes a play here and there, and the fans get excited.  But when you put that player’s body of work in camp up against a guy like Jason Avant, who destroys in camp every year, it’s not even close. You don’t hear a peep about Avant’s play, but you hear a ton about the new kid.  It’s nice that Douglass is making a play here and there, but he is not a threat to make the team, in my opinion.  (And this is where I should note that I’ve only been at Giants TC for just 2 days, so take my analysis on the kid for what it’s worth).

You know how in baseball when an inning is over and guys in the dugout throw baseballs to the defense coming off the field?  The Giants do their own version of that.  When DBs are coming off the field in between 11 on 11 or 7 on 7 reps, they get balls thrown to them by kicker Lawrence Tynes.  It’s all about repetition.  Smart.  And it keeps Tynes involved in the practice.  Remember last year when Eagles punter Chas Henry had a wide open, uncovered Colt Anderson against the Bears, and he babied a pass to him that fell incomplete?  I wonder if that result had been different if Henry had been throwing passes every day in practice like the Giants’ kickers do.

Osi Umenyiora had himself a big day.  Yesterday I noted that LT fill-in Sean Locklear did a good job on him.  Not so much today.  Osi burned him with ease around the edge on at least 3 occasions for a sack.  If you’re an optimist, you’re glad that Osi is happy and making plays in training camp instead of riding a stationary bike.  If you’re a pessimist, you’re worried about your OL depth.  I think it’s a little of both.  Osi also had the play of the day, in my opinion.  The Giants ran a a play they have been running a lot of in which they roll the entire offense to the right, then throw a screen all the way back to the left.  They’ve been doing that with RBs an TEs.  They tried it again today.  At first Osi didn’t recognize it, but he recovered in time got back in a hurry and picked off Eli for a TD going the other way.  Pure athleticism.

I mentioned Jerrel Jernigan yesterday for his improved handling of punts.  Today I took a few notes on his as a receiver.  He had a deep ball thrown to him today.  It was a patented Eli jump ball.  Jernigan had great position, but Prince Amukamara was able to go up and knock it away.  That’s where Jernigan is not going to be as effective as a guy like Mario Manningham, simply because of his size (or lack thereof).  However, it appears that the Giants are trying to manufacture ways to get the ball in his hands.  They ran one end around to him that didn’t go anywhere because it was played nicely by Adrian Tracy, but it was deserving enough of a mention, in my opinion.

Marvin Austin was drawn offsides for the second time in two days.  He’s right over the ball.  That’s unacceptable.

Mark Herlich had a nice day.  He got himself a PBU, but of more interest to Giants coached, he got a batted pass at the line.  Giants coaches love batted passes.  Last year, Justin Tuck did a weekly interview with WFAN’s Mike Francesa, and Francesa asked Tuck about a TD pass from Vince Young to Riley Cooper late in the 4th quarter last night.  Without mentioning Herzlich by name, Tuck was surprisingly honest and pointed in his criticism of his teammate.

It’s a case of a guy doing a little too much instead of just doing their job.  We had a guy underneath it, went to jam a receiver, kinda took him out of his zone, and Vince Young made one of those throws that went between two guys.  If our guy does what he’s supposed to do, without doing too much, he’s standing right in that throwing lane.  But what happened is the guy a came around underneath, he’s trying to jam the receiver, takes him out of his lane, and (Young) throws it right behind him.

Here’s what Tuck is taking about:

Herzlich proceeded to have another bad showing in New Orleans the following week, and he never saw the field again.  The Giants are very deep at LB, but they would love to see Herzlich take that next step mentally.  Again, good day for him.

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21 Comments

  1. ratware says:

    i hope he re opens his twitter account

  2. [...] pretty much exactly what I’ve been saying about him.  Here’s what I wrote about Wilson after watching him at Giants training camp: It’s impossible not to notice David Wilson.  He’s so fast, but there are things about his [...]

  3. [...] pretty much exactly what I’ve been saying about him.  Here’s what I wrote about Wilson after watching him at Giants training camp: It’s impossible not to notice David Wilson.  He’s so fast, but there are things about his [...]

  4. The Colts drafted two TEs early, but that’s about all I got. I agree it’s a thoroughly annoying theme this offseason.

  5. Tracer Bullet says:

    “The NFL is changing with the usage of more athletic tight ends like Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez…”

    People keep saying this but is anyone doing it outside of New England? Jimmy Graham didn’t work in a two TE set most of the time, nor did the other big names you hear at TE like Davis, Finley, Gates or Gonzalez. The Panthers had a lot of success with Olsen and Shockey, but a lot of that could be the effect of Cam Newton. And considering that NE has had success in a bunch of different offenses in the past decade, doesn’t it make more sense to give the credit to Brady and the Grumblelord? Gronk makes great copy but it’s not like he’s carrying a crap team like the Browns on his back.

    1. Trueblue63 says:

      Isn’t it also a by-product of the Pats failed attempts to find quality WRs? I’m just thinking that if they had dug up a Vivtor Cruz, Miles Austin type, they don’t go 2TEs. Also, shouldn’t we wait to see how that offense fares year 2?

  6. Joe D says:

    Everyone LOVES to hate on Chris Collinsworth, but he is by far and large the best TV analyst. Knows what he’s talking about and the reason why fans hate him so much is BECAUSE he tells it like it is and fans NEVER want to hear anything remotely negative about their team.. He picked up that play in .023 seconds.

    In any event, I hope David Wilson turns out to be a bust, we don’t need the Giants to have a good rushing attack again. Luckily, I don’t their current O-line is as good as their old one.

  7. WeNeedLinemen says:

    As a ‘Skins fan I can tell you that Sean Locklear was epically awful last year. He looked like someone on a steep downslope towards the end of his career. Maybe this year he will be better, he should be more suited to the Giants blocking system, but 30+ and beat up tackles don’t often bounce back.

    Bear in mind how worried Skins fans are about right tackle. I doubt you could find one that felt getting rid of Locklear wasn’t the right move. I doubt many would argue that it shouldn’t have happened sooner.

    1. ct17 says:

      This is what I keep saying. Seattle fans did not like him either. But PFF conjured up some mythical positive grade for him last year.

      1. -7.6, -1.2, 0.9 and -6.4 are Locklear’s PFF rates over the last 4 years.

        He add a pretty awesome +14 in pass protection in 2010 though.

        1. ct17 says:

          Those are good grades for a tackle. Beats McKenzie and Diehl by a mile. And Jammal Brown.

  8. I would never have blame Herzlich for this TD from film … Rolle and Grant both get beat pretty bad, aren’t they supposed to break passes to WR ?

    Looks like Collinsworth is blaming 58 too so it must be pretty obvious.

    1. They were in a zone D.

      1. That part I got.

        What I don’t get is why a MLB is blamed for a 20 yard completion when Rolle & Grant are 2 on 1 and both get beaten.

        1. Joe D says:

          By trying to get the extra jam on Celek he left a perfect throwing lane to Cooper

  9. [...] (more) Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. [...]

  10. Trueblue63 says:

    Thanks for an excellent write up.

    Will Hill has been the surprise of camp. They brought in at least 4 guys to compete, so you know they wanted someone to earn it. But especially with Sash suspended for 4 the Giants desperately needed a S to step up and win some playing time.

    Interesting observations on Douglas and Jernigan. I’m curious if you saw much of Barden, he’s such a lightning rod around Giants fans (and Giants media) its often very hard to get a sense of how well or poorly he is playing. The Wilson observations fit in with what I expected. Coach is notoriously tough on offensive skill guys. I just didn’t see Wilson cracking the second team before game 8 if at all

  11. thedtrain12 says:

    You need a website indicator…like where the security lock is. Make it an eagle

  12. NYG_slater says:

    Will Hill is a definite physical talent, no question. If anyone wants to know why he went undrafted enjoy:
    http://www.everydayshouldbesaturday.com/2011/1/19/1943956/the-happy-football-life-of-will-hill

    ….what a great way of killing your draft stock. Although, based on what is being reported, he seems to have matured a lot (having a bunch of young babies/kids to feed can do that). Good luck to him.

  13. Balagast says:

    Good writeup as always. I really enjoy hearing more about the Giants, as being an Eagles fan, I am not as familiar with them. Also, in that video at the end, it once again demonstrates how Chris Collinsworth is so much better than all the other NFL commentators. He basically points out the exact same thing.

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