NeMesiS Posted June 15, 2006 Share Posted June 15, 2006 www.northjersey.com/ Silent Plaxico not Giant concern Thursday, June 15, 2006 By VINNY DiTRANI STAFF WRITER EAST RUTHERFORD -- Jeremy Shockey's shiner provoked thoughts of wondrous story lines, like his coach, or his quarterback, or some other Giants' teammate giving him a poke for not participating in the off-season program. "Wish I could say it was from a fight," the tight end said, "but it was from a weight-room accident." So Giants' team chemistry -- or lack of it -- couldn't be blamed for that black eye. Yet, the presence of Shockey and Plaxico Burress, both of whom shunned the off-season program to work with personal trainers in Miami, did evoke memories of that gigantic black eye the Panthers hung on them in the NFC playoffs last January. Burress skipped the meeting the day after the embarrassing 23-0 defeat. Coach Tom Coughlin said he talked to the moody wide receiver about his absence, and appeared satisfied with the results. Burress apparently was scared off by the unbelievably large media contingent on hand Wednesday for the first day of the Giants' three-day minicamp. He said he would meet with what promises to be a toned-down media contingent today. Quarterback Eli Manning, who knows first-hand from brother Peyton the importance of quarterback/receiver relationships, was his usual non-flustered self discussing the dynamic. He publicly absolved Burress for his on-the-field theatrics in the playoff loss when a pass did not come his way, or came his way in a non-catchable manner. That usually resulted in the wideout's arms thrust skyward -- and not to signal a touchdown. "A lot of people get frustrated, I get upset when someone drops a pass," Manning said. "That's how he chose to express himself. I didn't think it was anything against me. He was just frustrated we lost a playoff game." Manning said he has never spoken to Burress about the demonstrations, nor did he ever feel he needed to discuss the matter. "Plax is competitive, wants to be good, he wants to win, and he gets open a lot. So he wants the ball." The never-ending question of Manning's development as a leader was broached again Wednesday and brought an interesting if not overly flattering response from Shockey. The tight end said Manning is a leader because of the position he plays. "He's done a great job of being, you know, Eli," he added. "But when the older guys like Tiki Barber and [Michael] Strahan talk, I listen because they are the leaders around here." And as far as his own condition is concerned, Shockey says he feels great and downplayed his history of physical woes with the Giants. "If you go hard, you're going to get hurt," he said. "Everybody gets hurt, if you don't get hurt, you don't play hard. I don't care how you look at it. You can write about me being fragile, and all that stuff. "I'll tell you right now: if you play hard, and play against great athletes, you're going to get nicks, bruises, sprains. It's part of the game." BRIEFS: LB LaVar Arrington practiced only in the morning because of Achilles' tendinitis. Coughlin said it started bothering him after Monday's OTA session. FS Will Demps and LB Brandon Short both are coming off knee injuries and have been limited to one of two practices both Wednesday and today. With Demps and James Butler (kidney) both out of the morning workout, rookie Charlie Peprah found himself running first team at free safety. DT William Joseph, who also spent the off-season working out in Miami, was running second team alongside newcomer Junior Ioane. The first team DTs were Fred Robbins and Jonas Seawright. E-mail: email@example.com http://www.courant.com/sports/football/ A Shiner For Shockey Claims Black Eye Result Of Weightlifting Mishap June 15, 2006 By JOHN ALTAVILLA, Courant Staff Writer EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The first day of Giants minicamp would have proceeded without as much fanfare Wednesday had Jeremy Shockey not reported to Giants Stadium with a sizeable shiner surrounding his left eye. And Shockey, a no-show at the team's offseason conditioning program, tried to defuse some of the conjecture by saying the black eye was the result of a mishap Friday in a weight room in Miami. Shockey said it involved apparatus - as opposed to weightlifters. "Just an accident," Shockey said, smiling. The comment got Shockey started on a lighthearted dialogue laced with an occasional profanity that frustrated the broadcast crews recording his comments. And so began the road to the Giants' 2006 season opener Sept. 10 against the Colts. For the second consecutive season, Shockey and Plaxico Burress, the team's leading receiver, spent the offseason working on their own in Miami while the majority of their teammates bought into coach Tom Coughlin's one-for-all, all-for-one concept. "There is no question [those who were at Giants Stadium for the offseason] know a lot more," Coughlin said. "They are more comfortable. They have worked. What I decided to do this year was schedule the mandatory camp at the end [of the offseason] program so we could just keep things going. We're not going back. Those that have been here have had a chance to practice and work with us. Those that haven't will need to pick things up on the fly." Although he didn't say when the conversation took place, Coughlin said he spoke to Burress about his conduct during the playoff loss to the Panthers - when his gestures indicated displeasure with Eli Manning - and about skipping the team's final meeting. "We have had a conversation and that will stay between the two of us," Coughlin said. Said Manning: "I think Plaxico was just upset that he didn't have a good game. We're all competitive. We're all interested in helping the team succeed. A lot of people were frustrated and that's how he expressed it." Burress did not make himself available for comment Wednesday. Giants On Roethlisberger The motorcycle accident that injured Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger on Monday was on the mind of Giants players and coaches. "I'm just glad he's OK," linebacker Brandon Short said. "I don't necessarily believe players should refrain from those types of activities solely out of obligation to their organization, but to themselves. We make money based on our healthy bodies. It's about being smart, about not putting yourself in position to jeopardize that. As for myself, I'm a city boy. I like skyscrapers and taxicabs." Said Coughlin: "I've always been very, very nervous and opinionated about motorcycles. It's not just about having rules that players are not to ride them. But in the offseason, it's very difficult to control those things. There is just so much at stake for a young man like that with all that talent and ability. We always talk to our players about that, just like a parent would their children." ... The Giants had 100 percent attendance at minicamp. Linebacker LaVar Arrington (Achilles' tendinitis) did not practice. Short (hamstring) and safety Will Demps (knee) will practice only once during each day's double session. http://www.newsday.com/sports/football/giants/ Not happy campers Shockey, Burress at three-day drills, but neither seem thrilled BY ARTHUR STAPLE Newsday Staff Writer June 15, 2006 Jeremy Shockey sported a shiner on his left eye, courtesy of a "weight-room accident," he said. Plaxico Burress didn't speak to reporters. How they looked and what they did or didn't say wasn't nearly as important as the fact that two of the keys to the Giants' offense were simply around yesterday for the start of the team's three-day minicamp at Giants Stadium. Shockey and Burress left town a couple days after the Giants' humiliating 23-0 loss to the Panthers in the NFC playoffs; in Burress' case, he left without attending a final team meeting or having his exit chat with coaches. They returned this week, as did tackle William Joseph, another of the Miami self-exiles while the rest of the Giants participated in the organized team activities at the stadium. Shockey and Burress were working out individually in the Miami area with personal trainers and Shockey doesn't feel he's fallen behind his teammates in not being present. "This is basic -- -- ," he said yesterday. "You know it. This is really for the young guys." Tom Coughlin, who already tried to fight his battle with Shockey last spring and lost -- Shockey participated in the team workouts two offseasons ago but returned to Miami last spring, saying that working out indoors during the cold weather wasn't what he wanted -- disagreed with Shockey's assessment. "There's no question [the players who have been here are further along]," Coughlin said between workouts. "They know a lot more, they're more comfortable. We're not going back to a simpler concept with practice one of the mandatory camp. We're just continuing to go. The guys that have been here, they've had a chance to practice and work with [the new information]. And those that haven't have just got to pick it up on the fly." Coughlin said he spoke with Burress before yesterday about the wide receiver's late-season sulking and disappearing act on the final day in January. Burress had only 16 catches over the final five games of the regular season after catching 60 passes through 11 games, then no catches in the playoff loss, adding to his late-season frustration that was occasionally directed at Eli Manning. "We've spoken a few times, but we don't need to talk about that," Manning said. "I've been upset when guys drop a ball. That's everybody. He never said anything to me." Shockey added: "Last year was last year. We're focused on this year now." And this year, the Giants are already trying to add some wrinkles to the offense so that Burress and Shockey aren't double-teamed the way they were over the final month of the season. Rookie Sinorice Moss ran a few "go screen" routes, quick-hit routes like the ones that the Panthers' Steve Smith used so well last season, and a few reverses yesterday. "He's going to be able to do things that, quite frankly, we got away from last year," Coughlin said of the 5-8 Moss. "He's an added dimension to our team." Notes and quotes: LB LaVar Arrington sat out the afternoon workout because of Achilles tendinitis, though Coughlin said he could participate in both workouts today. S Will Demps (knee surgery) also was limited to one workout . . . Shockey was asked about Manning's leadership and gave a typically blunt reply: "Tiki and Strahan, the guys who have been here nine, 10, 11 years, who have been around, those are the guys you listen to when they speak," he said. http://www.nj.com/giants/ Giants bump along Wednesday, June 14, 2006 BY MIKE GARAFOLO Star-Ledger Staff Session No. 2 of the Giants' veteran minicamp yesterday at Giants Stadium had a couple of hiccups and hold-your-breath moments: * LB LaVar Arrington did not practice because of Achilles' tendi nitis that has developed over the last week. Coach Tom Coughlin said Arrington might participate in both sessions tomorrow if he feels better. Third-year LB Reggie Tor bor replaced Arrington on the strong side with the starting defense. * A 1-on-1 passing drill was won handily by the defense. WR Tim Carter dropped a hook route, TE Visanthe Shiancoe couldn't hang onto a pass along the sideline and QB Eli Manning overthrew WR Plaxico Burress on a stop-and-go. CBs Brandon Williams (second- year veteran from Michigan) and Kevin Dockery (rookie free agent from Mississippi State) intercepted passes on consecutive plays. * Backup QB Rob Johnson was impressive again in a limited role until the last two plays of team drills when he threw short on a pass then had a shotgun snap slip through his fingers. His best pass was a strike to TE Wade Fletcher in between defenders about 25 yards downfield. http://newsday.typepad.com/arthur_staple_with_the_gi/ Arthur Staple: With the Giants Mini-camp Day 1 We're back on the clock and back in the painted corner of the Giants practice field where the media is penned, watching nearly 100 players go through drills. Everyone was on the field yesterday morning, including the wayward Giants -- Jeremy Shockey (sporting a shiner on his left eye), Plaxico Burress (who declined to speak to reporters) and William Joseph, who never speaks to reporters and worked as the second-unit DT with newcomer Junior Ioane, behind Jonas Seawright and Fred Robbins. See, William, that's what you get for being mean to us. Shockey said the shiner came from a "weight-room accident" on Friday in Miami, where he works out with the University of Miami strength coach, Andrew Swasey, though not at the University of Miami, where Giants rookie WR Sinorice Moss spent his pre-draft time. Burress also has a personal trainer and stayed away from UM, which really begs the question: Why can't these guys bring their personal trainers to Jersey and spend some time catching balls with Eli Manning? In any event, the on-field attraction yesterday morning was Moss, who showed where he'll fit into the offense. He caught a few "go screens" from Manning, the sort of short passes that the Panthers' Steve Smith excelled at turning into big gains last season, and Moss also ran a few reverses. He's the speed demon the Giants wanted Tim Carter or Jamaar Taylor to be. The first-unit defense included a linebacker trio of Carlos Emmons, Antonio Pierce and LaVar Arrington -- if they stay healthy (big if), that's a fearsome group, with Reggie Torbor and Brandon Short waiting in the wings. Short didn't practice yesterday; neither did safeties Will Demps (knee) or James Butler, leaving sixth-round pick Charles Peprah working with the first unit. And the quote of the day comes from Corey Webster. Plenty of players and Tom Coughlin were asked yesterday about Ben Roethlisberger's motorcycle accident and they delivered the usual supportive comments for the Steelers QB. But Webster was almost the one in everyone's prayers -- the projected starting CB was in a car accident in Gramercy, La., on May 28, his car hit by another car that ran a red light early in the morning. Webster was unhurt, but two passengers in the other car were hospitalized. "Something like that puts a lot of things in perspective," he said. "You can't just watch out for yourself, you've got to watch out around you too." http://www.realfootball365.com/nfl/ 30 sacks not impossible for Giants' DE duo By Connor J. Byrne on June 15, 2006 12:29 AM Last season, the New York Giants ' defensive end tandem dominated their opponents on an almost weekly basis. The dynamic duo consisted of Michael Strahan and Osi Umenyiora, who combined for a whopping 26 sacks in 2005. Given their tremendous effort last year, one has to wonder if Strahan and Umenyiora have what it takes to go for 30 sacks this season. With their talent, it definitely shouldn't be ruled out. Strahan has, of course, been one of the NFL's foremost pass rushing threats for years. The 13-year pro added 11 ½ sacks in '05, which gave him 129 ½ for his career. The 34-year-old has had the occasional off year in his lengthy and terrific career, but he's been outstanding for the most part. The 275-pounder is constantly in great shape, and that's why he's performed so well at what is considered an old age for football players. Although he was and still is among the league's best pass rushers, Strahan's days of piling up double-digit sacks may be winding down. However, his production likely won't wane for another couple of years, meaning he could go for big things this season in the Meadowlands. Meanwhile, Strahan's partner in crime, Umenyiora, had a breakout year in '05, accumulating an NFC-high 14 ½ sacks. The Giants' brain-trust, headed by GM Ernie Accorsi and ex-head coach Jim Fassel, spent a second-round pick on the 280-pounder in 2003 because they believed he had the potential to become a solid player. Umenyiora isn't just a solid performer; he's developing into a great one. Thanks in large part to the tutelage of Strahan, the three-year veteran is now one of pro football's most-feared rushers. Undoubtedly, it's never a treat for opposing quarterbacks when Umenyiora invades the backfield. For this incredible tandem, 26 was the number of times they tortured quarterbacks last season. They certainly have the talent and drive to better that number and go for 30, which would more than likely give them the league-lead in sacks for a pair of teammates. They accomplished the feat last year, but would unquestionably love nothing more than to do it again. The success of Strahan and Umenyiora may very well be the difference between making and missing the playoffs for the New York Giants this season. If it comes to that, the "G-Men" will have a good chance to make the postseason for the second straight time, since this twosome is rarely denied by opposing offensive linemen. http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants Plaxico gets Giant pass Jeremy Shockey made his first offseason appearance at Giants Stadium yesterday sporting a freshly blackened and slightly swollen left eye. "I think we were all wondering if coach gave it to him," center Shaun O'Hara joked. Actually, according to Shockey, it wasn't anything that exciting. It was the result of "an accident in the weight room" while he was working out in Miami. As for what happened between Tom Coughlin and Plaxico Burress yesterday, when they met face-to-face for the first time since last season, that wasn't entirely clear. Burress rejoined his team for the first time since his no-catch performance in the Giants' 23-0 playoff loss to the Carolina Panthers in January. The next day, the receiver angered Coughlin by skipping the team's season-ending meeting. And after that, he had no contact with anyone in the organization for months. Coughlin said he spoke to Burress before he arrived at minicamp, but dodged any controversy by saying, "We've had a conversation and that will stay between us." Burress was even more evasive, declining comment, though one team official did say he planned to speak at Day 2 of minicamp today. But even if the Coughlin-Burress relationship is still tense, Burress' decision to take off on his teammates didn't seem to upset his quarterback. Eli Manning said he had already spoken to his No. 1 receiver several times this offseason, and he insisted "Everything is fine." "Obviously he was upset," Manning said. "We didn't have a good game. Everybody on this team is competitive, wants to win, wants to do well and wants to help out the team. Obviously a lot of people were frustrated. That's just how he expressed it." Coughlin said that both Burress and Shockey - who have been working out separately at the University of Miami - reported in good shape. "Right away they came in and made some big plays," said Manning. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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