Saturday, August 2, 2014
Michael Strahan still helping current Giants
By Dan Graziano ESPN.com
CANTON, Ohio -- Michael Strahan says he doesn't get to visit the New York Giants' team facility as much as he'd like to. But when he does, the newly minted Pro Football Hall of Famer likes to have an impact at the ground level. Strahan spoke Friday about the work he's done with current Giants pass-rushers Jason Pierre-Paul and Damontre Moore on some very basic football details.
"I sit with those guys and teach them how to watch film," Strahan said Friday, a few hours before receiving his gold jacket as a member of the Hall of Fame class of 2014. "They were just watching. This is your job. You have to pay more attention to the details. Where's the tackle's hand? How are his feet? How is the stripe on his helmet when he's going in a certain direction? How's the quarterback? Does he do anything special before the ball is snapped? Does the center squeeze his off-hand before he snaps the ball? All those little things you have to pay attention to if you're a student of the game."
Strahan raved about the Giants' pass-rushers who've followed him, saying they have more pure talent than he did.
"If you look at Justin Tuck, Osi Umenyiora and Jason Pierre-Paul, I'd be No. 4. Easily," Strahan said. "Talent-wise, and looking at what these guys can do on the field, I'm No. 4. Believe me."
He also singled out Moore, the Giants' second-year pass-rusher, as a player he's enjoyed trying to mentor. Moore has received praise from Giants coaches and teammates this offseason for the progress he's making with the defensive playbook, and his raw athleticism was obvious last year even if only on special teams. Strahan will make some appearances in East Rutherford this season to check in on his progress.
"I'd love to be be over there all the time, but I've never wanted to be a coach on a staff because I like having that freeness to come and go as I want," Strahan said. "But I also want to pass on a lot of the things I've learned. How to prepare, how to mentally get where you need to be to compete every week."
The Giants pay attention when Strahan shows up, and they'll be paying close attention to him Saturday. The team is flying in early and will get a private tour of the Hall of Fame. Then some members of the team, coaching staff and front office will stay and watch Strahan's enshrinement ceremony Saturday night. The Giants play the Buffalo Bills here Sunday night in the first game of the NFL preseason.