New York Giants Mailbag: Post OTA Edition

The New York Giants’ OTAs are in the books and the mandatory minicamp is on deck for next week. As we wait for the start of the three-day affair, lets’ check to see what’s on the minds of Giants fans this week.

From Rich B:
Hi, Patricia, Love the way you’re out front in coverage of the OTAs, especially the Offense, as in #10. One question: Any standouts at QB?

Thanks for the question Rich. I’ve been very impressed with Davis Webb so far and I’m really looking forward to seeing how he does in the preseason. The sense I’m getting is he’s developing rapidly, though I don’t think they’re looking to move him into the No. 2 position this year.

I’ve had mixed notes on Geno Smith and Josh Johnson. I don’t think either of those two has pulled ahead in the competition, so I’m really looking forward to seeing them with the pads on when the pass rush comes and reeceivers start to get bumped.

From Ben N.
I have been hearing a lot about Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram lately but I have not heard anything about Brandon Marshall in a long time. It seems like he started out real strong and it is almost like he disappeared (For example it seems like he has not been a stand-out player of the day in quite some time). How is he doing?

Thanks for the question Ben. Brandon Marshall was sidelined for the sixth OTA as a precautionary, but was able to work for the last OTA.

From what I could tell, his snaps were limited, perhaps due to a combination where they wanted to give younger guys a chance plus continue to take things easy with Marshall. I’m sure we’ll get a more in-depth picture this coming week at minicamp.

From Charlie:
I read your reports more faithfully than anyone else’s because you seem to value substance over style. You always look past the hype. Perhaps you’ve covered this before, but I feel like there’s a myth about Ereck Flowers’ penalties (especially holding penalties) coming late in a game when he’s tired.

If you can believe this website, here is the data from 2016:
* of his 14 penalties, only 1 came in the 4th quarter: a false start
* of the 9 holding penalties, this is the breakdown by quarter: 2 – 4 – 3 – 1
* of the false starts: 2-1-0-1
* one face mask: 0-1-0-0 His overall penalties, by quarter: 4-6-3-1

(This website might have some credibility problems, because it lists 9 holding penalties yet the total on the bottom says 8.)

According to the same source, in 2015 Flowers’ only 4th quarter penalty (of 10 total) was for an illegal formation.

There’s no question that his stamina looked mediocre at best and his sacks or pressures allowed may skew towards the end of a game, but he did NOT commit a disproportionate amount holds late in the game.

What’s up Charlie? Thanks for being a loyal reader, and excellent job on the research.

While I do admire your initiative,  I don’t think anyone was suggesting that Flowers commits more penalties as the game goes on due to fatigue. I think the concern was he gets sloppy in his technique to where he gets beaten by his man.

With that said, I think if we truly want to measure what kind of effect Flowers offseason weight training program has, what we need to look at is  how many backfield disruptions—pressures, sacks, and hurries—he allows by quarters to draw any kind of conclusion potentially related to his past stamina issues.

I’m not sure if I’ll be able to go through all 16 games last season, but what I might try to do is take a look at the first two games from last year and then compare the breakdown to his first two of this year.   Sound like a plan?

From N.W.
I haven’t seen much about how Chad Wheeler and Jessamen Dunker have looked in camp. Any chance that either or both make the team from what you’ve seen? How might they contribute year 1?

Thanks for the question. I think unless there’s a rash of injuries on the offensive line, both of those guys are practice squad candidates if they perform this summer.

Wheeler, to my eyes, seems a bit raw, but it’s not hard to see the potential. I haven’t made any notations about Dunker just yet, but to be fair, sometimes I can’t always get a complete and good look at the entire offensive line given the location of where the media is kept during these practices.

I hope to be able to get a better look at the entire line play in training camp, assuming the media gets the freedom to move up and down the sidelines to view things.

From Emil S.
My question is about UDFA Jarron Jones. I was wondering how he’s looking in defensive drills at his natural position (albeit without pads). Is he underperforming, prompting the switch offensive line? And how is he looking on the o-line as well? Do you think he is the most likely contributor from this years UDFA class, considering his flashes of dominance? Thanks!

Thanks for the question, Emil. I’ll be honest with you—I haven’t written Jones’ number down at all other than for the position switch. If I don’t have a guy’s jersey number in my notebook, that usually means he didn’t do anything to jump out.

Now with that said—and this is only a guess on my part—when a team moves a guy to a different position, that means that he a) isn’t cutting it at the original position due to lack of skill or not being a fit or 2) they need depth because they’re short on bodies (and even then they’re going to usually take the guy who’s quite cutting it and move him over to that spot.

I hate to sound like a broken record, but you cannot get a complete picture on offensive and defensive linemen until the pads go on. I can’t say for sure he’s going to be the most likely contributing member of the UDFA class. I would guess that if he’s making the permanent switch to OL, the answer is no because that process doesn’t happen overnight.

From Jimmy S.
I have a strange feeling that B.J. Goodson, Jerrell Adams and Darian Thompson are going to have more than a solid sophomore campaign. That being the case would indicate the Giants going 6 for 6 with their 2016 draft selections. when was the last time you can see that about a GIANT draft class? Better yet, when was the last time you can say that about any NFL draft year?

Thanks for the question, Jimmy. You forgot the Giants 2007 draft class, which I still say is the best of the Jerry Reese era and it’s not even close because that class helped them win a Super Bowl.

If last year’s Giants draft class helps them win a Super Bowl this year, then I’d move that class ahead of 2007’s, but just by a hair.

From Eric B.
Would you agree that our QB situation from top to bottom is the best it’s ever been in the Eli era (probably even longer than that)? Potential HOF QB as a starter who hopefully still has “it.”

Backup “with potential,” former 2nd rd pick, who has starting experience (and some success) and wouldn’t be at all intimidated if he has to play (I’m assuming here that Geno Smith beats out Josh Johnson as backup.)

And then Davis Webb as the 3rd developmental QB who has the pedigree, work ethic, and potential to someday replace Eli. I can’t remember when the Giants had a better situation at the QB position.

Eric, based on potential, yes, the quarterback situation looks promising. If we’re talking all-time great Giants QB situations, I think the Simms-Hostetler, Simms-Rutledge duos rank up there among the best in this franchise’s history. More recently, I’d put the Manning-Carr duo as a top combination.

Thanks for the question, Rob. We’ve seen more two-TE sets this spring than I can recall—whether that continues into the summer remains to be seen, but I like the look from what I’ve seen so far. I didn’t see “Draft Day” (the movie). I’ve lived through Draft Day every year for the last 20+ years, know what I mean?


Something tells me that Manning is just fine being with the Giants, especially given the two Super Bowl rings he owns came at the Patriots’ expense.


What’s happening Ben? Damon Harrison is the funniest Giant on the current roster, and it’s not even remotely close. Harrison is witty, and engaging. Just a joy to hear from.

You can’t help but walk out of a Snacks press gathering with a smile on your face—whether he intends that to be the case of that’s just Snacks being Snacks, OI think a lot of people will say that he has the ability to keep you in stitches.

Thanks for the question James. Yes, the cap does rise every year. I’m not sure I understand the rest of your question, though. Odell Beckham Jr.’s 5th-year option is next year, but after that the Giants can franchise him for two years if they so choose.