The Giants opened up their Organized Training Activities (OTA’s) the week of May 20th and there were, not surprisingly, few surprises. After all, not much happens during these two days of optional workouts despite it being the official kick-off of 2013 Giants football. For starters, Victor Cruz was a no-show and that should come as a shock to no one. Cruz is still negotiating his contract, and while he will undoubtedly be wearing Giant Blue come the fall, it would not exactly be wise for him to risk what is sure to be a lucrative deal by attending. Perhaps a bit more confusing was the absence of WR Hakeem Nicks, who is entering the fifth and final year of his rookie contract. This is certainly the year for Nicks to play for the big contract so his lack of attendance was indeed a bit perplexing. However, sources state that his actions, or lack thereof, were not intended to be a contract power play. Regardless, the MIA wide receiver duo has awoken the never dormant ire of Head Coach Tom Coughlin. But it is after all only OTA’s, not training camp, so not too much should be read into these activities. But as is always the case with football, when slots open up so do opportunities. Rueben Randle and Jerrel Jernigan saw plenty of action as did newly signed speed demon Louis Murphy. And let’s not forget the recent signing of Ramses Barden. So there will be a healthy stable of wide outs to keep QB Eli Manning busy, but there is little doubt the slots are merely being kept warm for the return of Nicks and Cruz.
Unlike the receiving corps, the Giants are not exactly deep at the Fullback position so it was alarming indeed to see FB Henry Hynoski injure his knee during the sessions. Hynoski has already undergone surgery for the injury and is aiming to return for week one of the 2013 season. Bear Pascoe will be the starting FB until big Henry returns.
With the departure of RB Ahmad Bradshaw, David Wilson will be the number one runner so it was a bit surprising to see him fielding punts alongside Randle, Jernigan, and the re-acquired Aaron Ross. True that Wilson’s league leading kick-off return yardage during the 2012 campaign coupled with the Giants dead last ranking in punt returns warrant him getting looks here, but the last thing the Giants need is a revolving door of injured running backs, especially considering the status of talented yet oft-injured RB Andre Brown.
CB Terrell Thomas attended the OTA’s but did not participate in any drills. The Giants are not looking to rush Thomas back from his third ACL injury and are taking a one day at a time approach. Luckily for the Giants their defensive backfield is deep with Corey Webster, Prince Amukamara, Jayron Hosley, and Aaron Ross set to return, as is their four deep Safety platoon.
WR Ramses Barden signed a one year deal worth approximately $715,000 with a $65,000 signing bonus. It is likely Barden will earn a slot on the Giants as a reserve receiver but his inconsistent play offers no guarantees.
FB Henry Hynoski suffered an injury to his medial collateral ligament (MCL) and a chip fracture to the lateral plateau. He underwent surgery on Friday May 27th at Manhattan’s Hospital for Special Surgery with the operation performed by Dr. Russell Warren.