David Wilson waits and imagines


David Wilson made it clear last week that he didn't want to answer any "neck questions." The New York Giants' third-year running back is hoping a July 21 exam of his surgically repaired neck will clear him for contact in time for training camp, and until that does or doesn't happen, he's right. There's not a lot more to say about it. He hopes and believes it will happen and he'll be on the field with his teammates the next day, practicing like everyone else.

Wilson was on the field for OTA and minicamp practices. He took some reps. These were all non-contact practices, but things do happen, and so the team held him out of anything it believed might expose him to any potential contact, just to be safe. As he worked, and watched, Wilson liked what he saw of the new Giants' offense and what it means for him assuming he gets cleared to play in it.

"I just like the schemes, personally," Wilson said. "I like the options I have and the way I can use my athletic ability. I think I really could play a role in this offense."

New coordinator Ben McAdoo's offense is likely to lean on the ability of its athletic playmakers to get the ball close to (or behind) the line of scrimmage and make plays once they have the ball in their hands. Wilson said portions of it are designed to get him (or whoever is playing running back) the ball in space, and to limit what can go wrong after that.

"Space and also no decisions," Wilson said. "It's kind of me finding the hole and finding the crease. Also, the running backs have the ability to be able to create flow in the defense and create certain plays and get out there and be athletes."

It sounds like fun, and Wilson enjoyed the learning part of it during May and June.

"Yeah, I've been getting a lot of mental reps, and I think that helps," Wilson said. "I learn better when I'm watching and I have a visual in front of me. I see guys running. I see their mistakes, and I see what they do right. I feel like I could tweak things that they do excellent and I think I need to pick up. I've been very observant in practice, asking a lot of questions."

The Giants are still waiting for the return on the first-round draft pick they used to select Wilson in 2012. He was a brilliant kick returner but a small part of the offense as a rookie. Last year, he was benched after fumbling twice in Week 1 and suffered the season-ending neck injury in Week 5. This offseason, the Giants signed Rashad Jennings to be their starting running back, in part because they didn't know whether they could count on Wilson being cleared to play. Assuming he is, they'll find a use for his game-breaking ability. He just wants to make sure he's ready when that happens.