W2W4: A final chance to shine
August, 29, 2012
By Ohm Youngmisuk | ESPNNewYork.com
The final preseason game is upon us and the starters will play for a little bit before making way for the backups.
There are spots up for grabs as the Giants must trim their roster down to 53 on Friday. Here’s my breakdown of the offensive side -– position-by-position -- heading into tonight’s game.
And here’s five things to watch for tonight against New England:
In the Nicks of time: Hakeem Nicks said he has been told he will get some snaps tonight with the first team as a quick tune-up before next Wednesday’s season opener against the Cowboys.
He looked good in practice on Sunday, showing nice burst. He doesn’t really need to show much. Just stay healthy.
Around the corner: With the season opener right around the corner, the Giants need to figure out what they got at cornerback.
Prince Amukamara has a high ankle sprain and Terrell Thomas is strengthening his surgically-repaired right ACL. Michael Coe is the next man up at corner but the Giants should get a longer look at Justin Tryon and Bruce Johnson tonight. Recently-signed Laron Scott should also get snaps as well.
Impressive rookie Jayron Hosley just shed the walking boot on his right foot and is making his way back so the Giants likely will keep him out of tonight’s game.
The linebackers: The Giants will have some tough decisions to make on Friday, especially at linebacker. They have been starting Mathias Kiwanuka, Chase Blackburn and Keith Rivers with Michael Boley (hamstring) injured. Jacquian Williams and Mark Herzlich are going to be on the final 53. That leaves Greg Jones, Spencer Paysinger and Jake Muasau. The Giants like all three but how many linebackers will they keep?
Keep an eye on the linebackers tonight and on how they do on special teams as well.
The running backs: David Wilson showed everybody what he can do last weekend against the Bears. But who will the Giants keep after Ahmad Bradshaw and Wilson?
Fullback Henry Hynoski has a spot so that leaves D.J. Ware, Andre Brown and Da’Rel Scott. The coaching staff trusts Ware as the third-down back to protect Manning and his ability to catch balls out of the backfield and run on draws.
Running backs coach Jerald Ingram has praised Andre Brown repeatedly as a Derrick Ward-type back who can run and catch. And Scott had a big play last weekend when he blocked a punt and drew praise from Tom Coughlin for a couple of hard runs last weekend.
A nice performance from one of those guys could be a difference maker on Friday.
Get defensive: A couple of positions could be up for grabs on the defensive line. Defensive end Adewale Ojomo has been impressive as of late with a team-leading three sacks in the last two games. With Adrian Tracy nursing a hamstring injury, the Giants have to figure out what to do with their fourth defensive end spot. Tracy says he will be ready for the season opener but another big game from Ojomo will make the team’s decision a bit tougher.
Also, the Giants need depth at defensive tackle with Chris Canty going on PUP and Marvin Austin’s back a big question mark. Marcus Thomas, Dwayne Hendricks and Markus Kuhn are in the mix at backup defensive tackle.
Tell us what you want to see tonight below.