Position battles


The second practice is over and Day 2 is in the books. Here are some observations from the second practice:

Defensive end rotation? DE Osi Umenyiora worked with the starters at right defensive end. Mathias Kiwanuka, who has been the starter, rotated in. The two are competing to start opposite Justin Tuck. Umenyiora did light work in the morning practice while he manages a hip issue.

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WR Hakeem Nicks worked with the first team opposite Steve Smith. Nicks did drop two passes at first but later caught most that came his way. He also ran a reverse.

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Smith beat CB Corey Webster and made a nice 40-yard reception while falling down after being unable to catch a similar pass in the morning 7-on-7 drill. Smith showed today that he isn't just an underneath guy, he can be a deep target for Eli Manning.

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MLB Keith Bulluck (knee) was back on field, running middle for the second team. Jonathan Goff continues to work with the first team while Bulluck learns the new defense and comes back from his ACL surgery from seven months ago.

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C Shaun O'Hara (ankle), G Kevin Boothe (pectoral) and S Kenny Phillips all sat out afternoon practice.

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Defensive coordinator Perry Fewell lit into his defense at one point during the second practice, imploring his team to amp up the energy and tempo. Let's just say it was more like a tirade than a message of inspiration.

The defense played pretty strong in the second practice, blowing up a lot of plays in the backfield and stopping the run. Fewell and safeties coach Dave Merritt were often pleased with the coverage.

Rookie Jason Pierre-Paul got by OL Jacob Bender today in the second practice. Rook is raw but athletic.