Five moments to watch the giants’ training camp

It will be all systems on Wednesday morning as the Giants hit the field for the first time. A heat wave bringing temperatures up to 100 degrees came and went, but there’s sure to be plenty of heat and humidity to challenge the guys at this training camp as summer approaches towards August.

There are always standards and highlights during the camp period. Here are five moments we look forward to watching and analyzing:

full pillows

The first few practices often look no different than what happened during springtime – very little contact of any kind. This condensation is happening fast, and full sessions will be here by the first weekend of camp.

This is always an adjustment – believe it or not, players always talk about how awkward the pads are, at first – and the increase in intensity is easily seen once the activity starts looking like real football. Our first full-cushion workout will give us the best indication yet if the revamped offensive line has really improved as the new front desk and coaching staff believe.

There will be no direct hits or dismissals of the quarterback, but there will be physical combat at the line of scrimmage as soon as the pads appear. Given defensive coordinator Wink Martindale’s penchant for constant pressure and his enthusiasm for setting up a bully defence, early days in the pads could be a rude awakening for a new-look offensive line.

Sacon Barkley, Brian Dabol and Xavier McKinney
New York Post: Charles Wenselberg (2); AP


We already have some clarity with interior quarterback Blake Martinez and wide receiver Sterling Shepherd, two of the team’s most notable veterans, both of whom have had serious injuries.

These two highly respected players have spent their entire off-season rehab from major surgeries — Martinez’s ACL, Shepherd’s Achilles tendon rupture — and are both itching to get back into swinging things.

Martinez’s injury happened nearly three months ago, and so he’s ahead of Shepherd, which is a great sign for Martinez that he’s ready to hit the camp. Not so with Shepherd, who started his camp on a list of physically unable to perform. The coaching staff will make sure not to over-extend Martinez. Defense needs something to add to the center of the operation.

Follow the leaders

From year to year, each team is a new team and a different team, despite all the rest from year to year. Players who held one role in the past can now be invited to take on a larger (or smaller) role. Where will the new team leaders appear?

Xavier McKinney and Julian Love, the primary safety figures, to make their claims early this summer, are no longer in the shadow of Logan Ryan, a real man front and center, now with the Buccaneers.

At the forefront in defense, the newly signed Jihad Ward has a classy personality. Does he have the game to match that character and act as a torchbearer, which Leonard Williams would rather not do? Will Sacon Barkley, who is otherwise healthy, play a more vocal role?

The offensive line is built around first-round interventions by Andrew Thomas and Evan Neal, but they are more youthful.

Is one of the new veterans on the line, Mark Glowinsky or John Feliciano, using this camp to take charge of their group?

first time for everything

The pre-season opener is a necessary break from the monotony of the regular camp routine and a necessary proof ground for young players trying to make their way to roster spots. Otherwise, there is not much to love in these gallery games.

The August 11 match against the Patriots at Gillette Stadium marked not a debut, but the first for Brian Dabol, who had not previously been a head coach, at any level. Will anyone remember if Daboll won that first game before the season? is unlikely.

New Attack on Titan coordinator Mike Kafka talks to Daniel Jones during a training session in June.
New Attack on Titan coordinator Mike Kafka talks to Daniel Jones during a training session in June.
New York Post: Charles Wenselberg

This will be the first time Daboll has prepared for a full squad to play, and it will be a meaningful evening, allowing Daboll to become more comfortable leading his team from the sideline and all that goes into managing 60 minutes.

The big question: Does Daboll call the plays offensive or concede that responsibility to Mike Kafka, the offensive coordinator?

We are talking about training

The fan celebration and brawl on the night of August 5th at MetLife Stadium is sure to attract thousands of fans. Last year, nearly 30,000 people gathered and watched Joe Judge put his team through a cushioned workout that lasted nearly two hours.

The last exercise open to the public is August 14. The most interesting day in the summer may be what happens on August 25, when the planes arrive to participate in a joint training held at the giants’ facility. Beginners will get a limited number of reps in pre-season games but will get a lot of work in this combined practice.

This isn’t close to Subway Series level intrigue, however there will be more on the line than the usual joint drills with just another team. Players will downplay this throughout the week and then follow up once they start training.

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