EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. –- The Giants’ exuberant first practice in the New Meadowlands Stadium was dampened by an injury when wide receiver Domenik Hixon crumpled to the turf untouched on Tuesday.
Hixon was returning a punt and got his right knee caught in the new turf. The returner remained on the turf for several minutes clutching his knee before eventually walking off the field and into the locker room under his own power. Hixon later watched practice from the bench with his knee wrapped.
Several teammates came over to see how he was and Hixon often shook his head as a gesture of his bad luck. More information likely will be revealed tomorrow.
“We will see,” head coach Tom Coughlin said after the practice. “This turf kind of snagged his foot. He didn’t get it up out of the turf. We are hoping that it is nothing serious. I think he will be sore tomorrow. The extent of it I am not sure. Domenik is a tough guy now. He has fought his way through some things in the past and hopefully this is not something serious.”
THE NEW HOME
The Giants tried to get acclimated to their new surroundings. There was the new turf which was soft, something the Jets might want to take notice when they take the field on Wednesday for their open practice in the stadium.
“This is a new field,” defensive end Justin Tuck said. “It has not been broken in yet. It is still kind of soft so you got to wear the right cleat size right now.”
There also is a wind factor here as well as players took the field on a breezy day.
“The Meadowlands is always going to be a little windy and it gets worse when it gets colder and you get further into October, November and December,” quarterback Eli Manning said. “You can’t worry about it. All you can do is play your game and see what happens.”
Tuck thinks the wind and the conditions will play to the Giants’ advantage since they will learn all the nuances while opponents will have to deal.
“As we get out here more and get more comfortable we will make memories like we did in old Giants Stadium,” Tuck said.
- The Giants had their first practice scuffle of the offseason in front of the media. Veteran Rich Seubert and rookie Jason Pierre-Paul got tangled up and a pile quickly formed as defensive players pulled Pierre-Paul away and Seubert was held back by offensive players.
- The Giants estimated that 10,000 fans attended the open practice after 25,000 fans signed up for access to the practice. Fans were boisterous though and they cheered when Brandon Jacobs ran through a hole and scored inside the red zone. Also, wide receivers Derek Hagan and Hixon drew cheers when they beat their man in one-on-one drills for deep catches. TE Travis Beckum also drew a roar on a catch as well.
- DB Aaron Ross made a nice play when he knocked down a deep pass intended for WR Mario Manningham.
- WR Ramses Barden ended practice by catching a touchdown pass in the right corner of the end zone after he slipped between two defenders.