Saturday, May 11, 2013
Geno impresses with smarts, accuracy
By Rich Cimini
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Geno Smith's best moment on the second day of rookie minicamp occurred on a running play. Yes, really.
When he got to the line of scrimmage, the much-maligned quarterback noticed that an outside linebacker was lined up in the wrong place, leaving an open edge. He audibled at the line of scrimmage, changing it from a strong-side run to the open weak side.
And here's the interesting part: He still hadn't been taught that particular audible.
"We didn't have a check play in, but he checked it anyway," Rex Ryan said after Saturday's practice. "Obviously, he's got some awareness. That was impressive."
Overall, it was a good day for Smith, who completed seven of eight passes in team drills and 11 of 12 in 7-on-7 drills. There were some glitches in the team portion -- a sack and three false-start penalties -- but that sort of thing is expected in a rookie camp.
Smith was satisfied with his day, but he abstained from grading his performance. On Friday, he gave himself an overly-harsh 'F'.
"I'll leave the grading to the coaches," he said. "I think today was another good day. I got better again today. That's something I'll try to do daily, trying to improve even if it's the smallest amount. I think I did that today."
Many of Smith's completions came on screen passes. At West Virginia, he threw a lot of screens, so there probably was a comfort level. He threw most of his passes to tight ends and backs, showing excellent velocity and decent ball placement. There weren't many chances for him to show his touch and timing.
So, if you're scoring at home, Smith went 13-for-18 in his first two days, committing no turnovers. That's a pretty good start, but it'll get tougher when the veterans join the fray. Not only will the competition be better, but he'll be exposed to defensive looks he's never seen before. In rookie camp, everything is vanilla. For a quarterback, the expectations are modest -- communicate the play in the huddle, get everyone lined up and use a proper cadence.
"Overall, as an offense, we had some good moments and we had some not-so-good moments," Smith said. "It's still a work in progress."
PRACTICE NOTES: First-round DT Sheldon Richardson continued to impress. He moved exceptionally well for a 298-pound man, displaying a quick first step. It'll be interesting to see how he's used, because he looks like a classic 3-technique tackle in a 4-3. ... Seventh-round FB Tommy Bohanon enjoyed another good day catching the ball out of the backfield. That skill will be useful in Marty Mornhinweg's West Coast system. ... TE Mike Shanahan, an undrafted free agent from Pitt, outjumped S Brendan Melanophy (tryout from Fordham) on an intermediate route. Shanahan bounced back after a shaky first day. ... WR Zach Rogers, an undrafted free agent from Tennessee, continued to make plays in the slot. ... Free-agent CB Mike Edwards (Hawaii) dropped a would-be interception. ... In a QB drill, Smith had two bad overthrows on deep sideline routes. Mornhinweg told Smith, "Let's talk" -- and they huddled for a few moments. ... Owner Woody Johnson attended practice.