Training camp begins today.
1) On Saturday, the Giants signed their first and second round draft selections. When the first practice begins at 3pm, first round pick DE Jason Pierre-Paul and second round pick DT Linval Joseph will be on the field.
As per Vacchiano's blog entry, JPP's contract is worth $20,050,000, including $11,629,807 guaranteed. That’s right in line with the first-round slotting for a player taken with the 15th overall pick of the NFL draft.
Additionally, Linval Joseph's deal, according to Vacchiano but told via an NFL source, $4.1 million with $2.5 million guaranteed is “pretty close” to what Joseph got over four years.
Since Kenny Phillips is on the PUP list and Chad Jones is out indefinitely, the Giants added safety John Busing.
Hooray! Football begins.
Other noteworthy items:
2) On the New York Times' Fifth Down blog, there is an interesting Q and A with Michael Strahan.
Here is the meaty part of the interview.
Q. The Giants failed to make the playoffs last season. What went wrong?
MS . I think leadership is the key. They fell at the end of the season. They need somebody on the team now or from another team to keep everyone motivated and going. (Bulluck and Grant will step in as leaders.) Last year, they did not have a leader or leaders to step up and say, hey, let’s go and pick it up. After Antonio Pierce got hurt, they suffered from lack of leadership.
Q. What do you think about the Giants’ top draft choice, defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul?
MS. I know he can do some back flips. I’m interested in seeing him on the field. We’ll see if he can play pretty soon.
So Strahan has suspended judgment about JPP. Hmmmm. His remarks sound skeptical. Besides being a pass rusher, can JPP play sound run defense?
3) Cowboys rookie wide receiver Dez Bryant is out 4-6 weeks with a high ankle sprain. As a result, Cowboys owner/GM/know it all is fuming. He told ESPN's Chris Mortensen he didn't like that Bryant was out so late in practice after a long first week of training camp.
"I'm not being critical ... what I'm being is analytical, or trying to be analytical.
"This is when you all sit down and look at everything you're doing and see if there's some things you can do to help protect your team better, especially during this time five to six weeks away from the opening game."
Yes, Jerry, you are being critical. Please keep this up! For Giants fans, this is good news. If Jones continues to carp about his coaches especially head coach Wade Phillips, the press will focus on the Cowboys. Therefore, the Giants can slip under the radar.
4) Fat Albert can not get into playing shape. Embattled Redskins DT Albert Haynesworth cannot pass a conditioning test.
Apparently, Albert has pulled a JaMarcus Russell. Take the money and run. A disgusted Mike Shanahan said this about Fat Albert, “Here’s a setback already.”
Wow. Shanahan is irate with Haynesworth's behavior. This looks like it is not going to end well for Albert in Washingon.