Monday, June 17, 2013
Coach talk: Pope on tight ends
By Ohm Youngmisuk
Now that the Giants are off until training camp, we're taking a look at what the coaches are saying about how their positions looked this offseason in OTAs.
Today, we start with what coach Mike Pope thinks about the tight ends.
The JPP of tight ends: The tight end people are most curious about is Adrien Robinson, the "JPP of tight ends." Robinson has been a project, but Pope likes what he has seen this offseason.
"Adrien Robinson appears to have gone into the land of the believers," Pope said recently. "And yes he has been making some good progress. He is doing a lot of the assignment things correctly. Now we have to get him to adjust to the way the defense is playing on each particular play and to make the best decisions based on how the defense is playing. But he is running well and he has his weight down some.
"The quarterback is starting to find him," Pope continued. "He is hard to miss –- he is the tallest tree in the forest out there. So he is a good target. But we are more than mildly pleased with the progress that he has made from an assignment standpoint."
The Giants are hoping for big things from free-agent acquisition Brandon Myers.
"When we can put Bear in (at fullback) with one of these other guys, now we can do a lot more things as far as open formations," Pope said. "A little more difficult for the defense to predict where they can’t just key on one of those guys and say the ball is going there. So that helps us."
Vertical threat: Pope is eager to see what Myers will do in training camp. He believes the former Raiders tight end could be an option in the vertical game. Myers, who had 79 receptions for 806 yards and four touchdowns last season, was signed to replace Martellus Bennett.
"I think at the Raiders he was more of an intermediate receiver," Pope said. "And now our passing game does allow the tight end to get more vertically down the field -– flag routes, double seam routes, post routes. And he appears to have the skills to get those balls. He has a little bit of a jet that can accelerate and go get a ball that is a little deeper. You may not think he is going to reach it, but he has that little bit. So we are very interested to see him in pads."
A new Ballard: Pope is also eager to see what Chase Clement, a 6-foot-5 rookie from LSU, can do in camp.
"When I first looked at him, I had visions of Jake Ballard," Pope said. "Just because he was a good blocker on the goal line. They seldom ever threw him the ball. But when the ball was snapped, he had kind of that tough-guy mentality -– old school."
"He is not going to be an all-world receiver way down the field," Pope added. "But as far as being explosive and flexible, and he has pretty good football savvy. There was a little concern about a back injury. We got that looked at and there doesn’t appear to be a problem."
How do you feel about the Giants' tight ends and what Pope had to say?