- Mike Mazzeo, ESPN Staff Writer
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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Giants rookie defensive end Damontre Moore doesn’t just want to be known as a pass rusher.
“That’s all I’ve been labeled as,” Moore, the team’s third-round pick out of Texas A&M said Monday. “So I’m just trying to go out there and just prove a lot of people wrong.”
Moore, 20, had 12.5 sacks and 85 tackles for the Aggies as a junior last season.
“I wanted to just be well-rounded and try to just add a lot of things to my arsenal, so that way I can’t be just like a one-trick pony,” Moore said.
“You have to have that one good trick up your sleeve (the ability to rush the passer), the ace in the hole. So I’ve tried to keep that and then just improve my game each and every day.”
Giants defensive line coach Robert Nunn raved about Moore Monday, saying his rookie defensive end is off to an “outstanding start.”
“I don’t know. It’s up to him. If he says I’m doing good, I’m doing good,” Moore said when told of Nunn’s praise. “If he says I’m doing bad, I’m doing bad. So I’m just trying to learn from him.”
Moore said he’s pleased with how he’s fared early in training camp, but he’s trying not to focus on it.
Some teams saw Moore as a 3-4 outside linebacker, but the Giants selected him as a 4-3 defensive end.
“Number one, why we thought he could do it was when we saw him on tape against SEC opponents, he showed up every time he did have his hand down. He’d show up and pass rush,” Nunn said. “He’s always close to the quarterback, he’s always a physical player, he came in here in the OTAs and minicamp, he showed that again.
“He’s got some rookie in him, there’s no doubt, but it’s the good kind of rookie. He’s someone you have to tell to slow down, you never have to tell him to speed up. He’s off to an outstanding start and, like I said, I really believe the guy is going to contribute early.”
“Everybody is always giving advice,” Moore said. “It’s not like one guy is helping too much or one guy is not helping. They’re all just helping a lot.”
Moore says he’s looking forward to Thursday, when the team will have its first padded practice. He wants to work on his run-stopping skills.
“I feel like I have to work on that just as much as anything else in my game,” Moore said. “This is a whole different level, a whole new league. The competition is bigger, faster and stronger and at the same time I have to get bigger, faster and stronger and just improve my game so I can be well-rounded.”
Moore, who is working with the second group, is eager to go up against the ones.
“More so than ever, but I’m just going out there and just trying to work and wherever they put me at, I’m going to just go do my job,” he said.
2dDan Graziano and Adam Caplan