- Dan Graziano, ESPN Staff Writer
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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- A daily review of the hot topics coming out of New York Giants training camp:
Watching the Giants' offense in practice right now is a little like watching HBO's "The Leftovers." You so badly want to believe things will get better for these poor, lost, overwhelmed people, but there's no sustained evidence on which to base that hope. Marcus Harris makes a couple of nice catches, then Eli Manning throws a pass that hits fullback Henry Hynoski in the back and pops into the arms of defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins, who rumbles the other way for a touchdown. Later, after a couple of more great catches, Harris hurts his knee. It's the occasional flare-up of hope, followed immediately by a return to confused bleakness. I'm not saying this is how it's always going to be, and I admit they looked better in Sunday's preseason game than they do out here on the field where they're installing a bunch of new stuff every day. But I'm supposed to give you my impressions of practice, and right now the offense is tough to watch.
Harris was the offensive star of the day, though, making at least six catches that I counted. Victor Cruz praised Harris earlier in the day as a standout among the young wide receivers scrapping for a roster spot, and it's easy to see why. His cuts are crisp and he's finding space in the short-range and medium-range passing game on which the Giants will rely this season. I think I'd give him the edge right now over, say, Mario Manningham for a roster spot. Also, he did return to practice after hurting the knee, so that's a positive.
Defensive tackle Kelcy Quarles did not return to practice after being carted off with a sprained ankle. Wide receiver Jerrel Jernigan also did not practice. He wore a wrap on his right lower leg. Odell Beckham Jr. is definitely making progress, running 100-yard sprints (with injured linebacker Jon Beason, by the way) on a back field and even serving as a cornerback on the scout team. He could practice next week if he keeps it up. Rookie Weston Richburg was the fill-in at first team left guard for the injured Geoff Schwartz (knee).
Cornerback Chandler Fenner of Holy Cross, signed last week in an churn-the-bottom-of-the-roster move, made two nice plays. He leaped to tip a pass away from Rueben Randle in coverage, and he intercepted Manning late in the final team period. Walter Thurmond also had one of the defense's many nightly interceptions. Thurmond is as good a player as there is in this camp, and he's dominating Cruz in the slot.
The Giants will practice from 5:40 p.m. to 7:50 p.m. ET again Thursday, though this practice will not be open to the public, due to the Jets' preseason game across the parking lot in MetLife Stadium. The Giants are off Friday and play a home preseason game Saturday night against the Steelers.
8hEric D. Williams