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Kenny Phillips Returns To His Role As The Giants' Starting Safety

Mr. P

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Kenny Phillips believed he was back to form after the third preseason game against the Ravens.


On Wednesday, he was truly back … as a starter, that is.


The Giants’ third year safety, almost a full year removed from microfracture surgery on his knee, was the starting safety opposite Antrel Rolle in the first practice to prepare for Sunday’s regular-season opener against the Panthers.


"It's been my goal. It was my goal when I first came in here,” Phillips said in the locker room after practice. “I knew it was going to take some time. I knew we got a schedule that we'd have to keep up with. … For them to already have me listed as a starter, I must be doing something right. I need to go out there and continue to get more reps and work on my technique."


Deon Grant, the starting safety all through training camp and the preseason as Phillips rehabbed from a knee injury, was supportive of Phillips but admitted he might not handle being a backup very well.


“On this level, it’s about establishing yourself, winning that ring and any personal goals you have,” Grant said. “My goal was to come into the league and to play and to start, and to start, and to start until it gets to the point where I can’t start anymore. I’ve been doing that up to this point. If it doesn’t happen, yeah, it’s going to be hard to swallow.”


Still, Grant knew the deal when he signed with the Giants in the spring: if Phillips showed he was recovered from surgery and fit to be a starter once again, he would be the guy. Once Phillips returned to practice about a week into training camp, he showed immediate and steady progress. With each preseason game, he looked more comfortable and rangy.


In the preseason finale against the Patriots, Phillips covered good ground and was able to deliver a few hits. After doing so, his body language indicated he was pleased with those plays and the way his knee was responding.


“I had a few preseason games to get ready for that – running into people, tackling, falling on the ground,” Phillips said. “So I'm not worried at all."


Wednesday morning, coach Tom Coughlin indicated the reins had been taken off Phillips. When the team went out to practice, Phillips was told to work with the first team in place of Grant.


"Me and him talk, and there's no problem between me and him,” Phillips said. “He's still coaching me up today, and we're still the best of friends."


Grant, who has started 144 consective regular-season games, vowed to continue to coach up Phillips and provide a veteran knowledge of the game both on the sideline and in the meeting room. But Grant has yet to resolve his own issues with being a backup.


Grant said he would gladly accept such a scenario only if he believed his skills had diminished to the point of being a backup. In fact, he said he’d rather retire than to play as a shell of his former self.


“If I was a backup, it wouldn’t be hard to swallow because I know, ‘Okay, I have a leg problem, I got a groin problem, I lost a step, I can’t run with the guys no more, I can’t cover no more…’” Grant said.


Asked if he’s healthy and in top form, Grant replied, “Oh yeah. All you have to do is look at the preseason tape.”


The regular season tape apparently will show Grant playing behind Phillips. The 10-year veteran said he’s not sure how he’ll handle that situation if things stay on track for Phillips to start on Sunday.


“All I can tell you is I’ll support my man,” Grant said. “I’m going to make sure he’s out there getting the best look he can. But as far as me personally, we’ll see. I’m real. I’m 100 percent a … I can’t say I can give you a genuine answer because I’ve never been in that position. I can sit here and lie to you and make it sound good, but that ain’t me.”



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I like the secondary a lot..especially if Ross can play at a high level at some point. Our safties look good with nice depth in Grant.


the CB's should be solids as well.


Webster Island


Well.......Let me tell you something fuckface this is Rex Ryan and your fucking fuckity fuck thats our term and we are going bowling with fucking Revis hes a goddamn asshole we have him back, so fuck you and what you guys thought you were has kings of fucking new york we are the fucking Jets we are gonna be bowling just cause we fucking exist motherfucker fuck off.

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