Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NFL [Print without images]

Thursday, May 1, 2014
Eli Manning to miss spring workouts

By Dan Graziano
ESPN.com

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Giants general manager Jerry Reese said Thursday he doesn't expect quarterback Eli Manning, recovering from ankle surgery in April, to participate in any spring activities.

Reese did say Manning should be ready when the Giants report to training camp in July.

He also said that 2012 first-round running back David Wilson, who is recovering from neck surgery, is on track to return and add depth at running back for the Giants.

Speaking at his annual pre-draft news conference, Reese covered a variety of topics. But one of the most pressing continues to be the quarterback situation with Manning sidelined following the debridement of his left ankle a few weeks ago.

Eli Manning
Eli Manning, recovering from ankle surgery, is expected to be ready for training camp in July.

Manning injured the ankle in the final game of the 2013 season and said last week that they decided to do the offseason surgery because he wasn't comfortable with the way it was healing. The original prognosis had Manning starting to run again in late May, but obviously that doesn't mean he'd be able to practice in full when OTAs start or during the team's mid-June minicamp.

"Obviously, he's coming off an ankle injury and he's going to be out of spring ball," Reese said. "He's going to get back when he gets back, but we're not going to rush him back. We want him for the summer. We know he'll be back in the summer, so that's important to us. So if he can do something in the spring, we'd obviously have him out there, but we're not going to rush him back."

In the meantime, Reese said, Manning's injury would offer the team a chance for a better look at Ryan Nassib, a fourth-round pick a year ago who did not suit up for a game as a rookie. Reese said Nassib would be expected to compete for the No. 2 quarterback spot with newly signed Josh Freeman and incumbent backup Curtis Painter. Of course, Painter recently had knee surgery himself, which prompted the team to add Rusty Smith to its stable of backup candidates.

As for running back, the Giants signed former Jaguars and Raiders back Rashad Jennings early in free agency with the expectation that he would be the starter. But the Giants see value in Wilson as a big-time playmaker and would work him into the offense as well if he can get healthy.

"Obviously, if we have him, that gives us more depth at the position," Reese said. "We brought Jennings in, and we have Michael Cox from last year who we're hoping is developing. But David Wilson really is kind of a bonus for us if we can get him back. We expect him back. He's on schedule to be back, and we're hopeful that he will. But it's not going to affect us in the draft. If we find a running back at some point we feel can help us, we'll take him."

The Giants also re-signed Peyton Hillis as a backup running back this offseason.