Henry Hynoski is Ready for a Bigger Role in the Giants’ Offense
By many accounts, Giants fullback Henry Hynoski had an impressive NFL debut which included becoming the only rookie on offense last season to win and hold a starting job throughout the season, a job in which he laid several key blocks in the running game and in which he caught 12 passes for 83 yards (6.9 average) in the regular season to boot.
But for as good as he was last year, Hynoski, now entering his sophomore year as a Giant, knows he can get better, and that’s exactly what he’s been focusing on this off-season as he prepares for what will hopefully be a larger role in the offense.
“This off-season I really put an emphasis on building up my upper body,” he said, adding that he also managed to reduce his overall body fat while maintaining his weight of 266. “You can always work on speed, but the big thing with me especially with my mid-season injury last year was developing my upper body, and that’s what I did.”
Indeed, without any sort of pads on during the Giants’ first OTA practice this spring, Hynoski was among the Giants who clearly looked as though he had reaped the benefits of his off-season training. The change in his body and strength, combined with the confidence he has following his successful rookie season had him turning in a solid showing in the opening practice.
“I feel fast. I feel quick, I feel athletic, I feel like I have a good change of direction just today running through the hole, making quick cuts on my read, turning back in and ‘hitting’ linebackers,” he said. “I feel very quick and athletic also, so I feel that my off-season program, since I got back here really took off.”
He’s also wiser when it comes to the playbook. Not one to make many mistakes in executing his assignments, Hynoski was flying around the field looking as though he drew up the plays himself. He correctly identified a linebacker trying to fill a hole on a David Wilson run; he blocked a “blitzing” linebacker” on a pass in 7-on-7 drills, and he managed to get out into the flat with little to no effort, catching everything thrown his way.
“I felt so confident,” he said about his knowledge of the Giants’ playbook. “I was reviewing the script before practice, and everything just came like second nature, and it’s so ingrained in my system now.
“When I first went out there, I thought I would struggle a bit, just getting back into the swing. But I feel like I picked up where I left off – maybe even a bit ahead of things.”
In addition to improving himself physically, Hynoski, an avid student of the game, spent a lot of time this off-season studying film.
“I was watching film (of myself) closely, and I noticed that a some of the time, I would false-step out of my stance, which would cause me a delay of just a split second,” he said. “That’s something I’m really emphasizing working on. I’m in the two-point stance, so a lot of times, I would take a false step if I need to go forward real quick.”
Once he gets that corrected, he said, he’ll get to where he needs to be a lot quicker.
By the end of summer camp, Hynoski is hoping that his hard work leads to an increased role in the Giants offense. While he will still be called upon to be the battering ran in the running game, Hynoski, who was a prolific running back at Southern Columbia High School, is hoping to get his hands on the ball a little more this season.
“I kind of see how things are developing (and) I think I’m going to touch the ball a little more this year,” he said. “Obviously, I’ll have to be the hammer like I was last year, and lead block.
“I think eventually (the coaches) are going to look to expand my personnel packages and use me in different ways, especially in the passing game.”
If he can excel in an expanded role, the Giants will have something they haven’t had in quite some time – a versatile fullback who, when he steps onto the field, will have to be accounted for by opposing defenses in both the run and pass games.
“I just want to go in and be in the best possible shape I can be in,” he said about his plan for the rest of the off-season. “I don’t want to have to take a second wind and I don’t want to be tired. I want to go out there every play and feel 100 percent.”
If he can accomplish that, he could be pretty hard to stop this season .