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Giants Pre-Season Game Preview, 8/9 Practice, Morse’s Morsels

Mark Morse
Mark Morse on Twitter
2 months ago at 8:00 am ET
Posted Under: Patriots News

Giants Preview – Questions more than answers

Is the Patriots’ Offense really this bad?   Is the Patriots’ Defense really this good?  I hope we get to see the first units for more than a series.  Mike Reiss thinks that Mac Jones is not going to play at all.  He made this deduction after watching practice where the Defense was given play cards simulating the Giants’ Defense.  Brian Hoyer and Bailey Zappe were the QBs, not Mac Jones.  I think the Offense needs as many reps as they can get in order to get their timing down with this new offense.

In yesterday’s practice, the Offense was able to move the ball on the ground.  Curious if that was before Christian Barmore was kicked off the field for scrapping with David Andrews.  Greg Bedard pointed out that Mac Jones passes were in the flat, check-down, and quick slants.  Nothing downfield.

I want to see if Davante Parker gets any separation.  My guess is no and that he is just a monster catching the 50/50 ball.  Tre Nixon has been showing some ability on underneath routes.  Can he get the YAC?  Has there been improvement with Jonnu Smith?

The offensive line needs the work.  Who will emerge?  They need a backup Center and right now the ancient (33) James Ferentz is it.  Who will be a starter and backup RG?  RT? The entire O-line scares me except Trent Brown.

What do we have in Bailey Zappe?  Does Hoyer have anything left or has he already started his new career as a QB coach a year early?  Hoyer very easily could be cut and then signed to the Practice Squad.

Very interested in seeing Tyquan Thornton against other competition other than teammates.

Is the Patriots’ Defense a lot better than I first thought?  They have dominated the Offense.  Barmore has been unstoppable.  Is LaBryan Ray the real deal?  The speed on defense has been better.   How will they perform against another NFL team?

Who is playing where in the secondary?  Overall they have played well this pre-season, but Meyers and Parker have trouble separating.  Is it the secondary has improved or are the Patriots receivers just this bad?  The Giants have some very good receivers.  Marcus Jones has been playing some slot corner with Jonathan Jones moved out to boundary corner.

Who is joining JuWhuan Bentley at LB?  Are Raekwon McMillan and Mack Wilson the real deal?   Will Cam McGrone and Ronnie Perkins do anything more than be scout team players?  How much progress has Afernee Jennings made?  Is Josh Uche anything more than a pass rush specialist?

We know what Barmore can do.  Godchaux got that new contract so we know how Bill Belichick feels about him.   Looking for some D-lineman to pop in this game.

Brenden Schooler is making a push as a Special Teams specialist.  Let’s see if he makes an impact on Thursday night.

I’ll be watching the coaching staff.  Who is calling the plays, but also who is on the sidelines and who is up in the box calling out what they see?

The Giants

Brian Daboll is the new head coach and he is the best offensive mind this team has had in years.  I expect a big bounce back from Saquan Barkley this year.  They have completely rebuilt the Offensive line.  Daniel Jones is a good QB that has played on bad teams.  The Receiving corps is very good.  I am very interested in seeing Wan’Dale Robinson.   He is a rookie I really liked in the Draft.  The WR out of Kentucky has all the moves and had great production in the SEC.

Another rookie I am interested in watching is TE Daniel Bellinger.  He has a clear path to being the #1 TE in NY.



8/9 Practice

The practice was moved up from 4:00 to noon in order to avoid the thunder and lightning that was scheduled in the original practice time.

The Offense showed up today and had perhaps their best showing of camp.

  • Overall smoother day for the offense
  • Sam Roberts blocked another FG in practice – Lazar
  • Barmore and Andrews had a fight and both offense and defense players joined in.  Mac Jones was in the middle of it until Nelson Agholor hauled him out of the melee.
  • Barmore and Andrews were thrown out of practice. It seems that Andrews was not taking it anymore from the Defense.  The Offensive line played with a little more attitude and it showed up in the running game as they opened some big holes
  • Cole Strange had a couple of blocks that sprung those big runs.
  • Mac Jones had a pass intercepted off a tipped ball at the LOS
  • According to Greg Bedard, there were no passes downfield in 11-on11. Passes were to the flat, check-downs and slants.
  • There were a lot of drops by the WRs today
  • Passing: Jones was 14-22, Hoyer 3-11 and Zappe 8-11.
  • Jack Jones had 2 PBUs
  • We haven’t heard this name mentioned all camp, but Lil’Jordan Humphrey had multiple targets and catches. Just in time to be featured in the Pre-season game on Thursday.
  • RB Kevin Harris has developed a case of the dropsies. He is a below-average receiver out of the backfield.
  • Wynn, Asiasi, and Keene worked in the rehab field. Inspired by David Andrews the line came out with some nastiness – Lazar
  • Full pads, No Wynn with Cajuste filling in at RT.  Herron was brutal Monday at RT.
  • The best day for offense since they have been in pads – Perry
  • Nixon has been open all practice on underneath routes. I will be interested to see what he can do with YAC against the Giants – Lazar
  • Marcus Jones continues to progress upwards, playing slot corner moving Jon Jones to one of the boundary corners.

Greg Bedard on the 98.5 Sports Hub Felger and Maz show

He had these comments:

  • He was asked if the Patriots were 2% away on Offense from getting it right – Bedard’s answer was a resounding No.
  • Bedard said he was irritable and despondent watching the Patriots’ offense.
  • Monday’s practice was the worst that he has ever seen in his career
  • The offensive line can’t block in this zone-blocking scheme
  • Ironically, the Offensive Line has actually beaten the Defensive line in 1-on-1 pass blocking.


3 UP and 3 DOWN  Bedard

3 UP                                                                       3 DOWN

LaBryan Ray                                                        Matt Patricia

Jalen Mills                                                           Cole Strange

Arlington Hambright                                       Ronnie Perkins


Cole Strange is the 2nd worst O-lineman in pass blocking (2-6-1).  The only player worst is the converted D-lineman Bill Murray.  Ronnie Perkins is running with the scout team.  He is small and getting tossed around by the O-line in drills.  Kendrick Bourne has had a quiet camp so far but Bedard is not concerned about him.   He admits that Parker is not getting separation but he is winning most of the 50/50 balls.  Not concerned about him either.  Isaiah Wynn is out again.  He does not seem to be a fit for this blocking scheme.  The Patriots would love to get his $10.5M off the salary cap, but can only do that by a trade. – Bedard


Ten Players That Are Making a Push for 53-Man Roster

This is by Evan Lazar who has just joined

  1. LB Raekwon McMillan
  2. LB Mack Wilson
  3. WR Tyquan Thornton
  4. CB Marcus Jones
  5. EDGE Afernee Jennings
  6. Joshuah Bledsoe
  7. Tre Nixon
  8. Yodny Cajuste
  9. LaBryan Ray
  10. Pierre Strong

Look for Brenden Schooler on Special Teams.  The UDFA is making a push to be the next Special Teams ace.

This is well worth the read as it expands on each player and why Lazar thinks they are possibly making the team.



Morse’s Morsels


NYJ lose starting RT

NYJ starting Right Tackle Mekhi Becton is out for the year with an Avulsion Fracture of the Right Knee.  The Jets have been courting Duane Brown to fill the spot, but Brown is weighing his options.  Could the Patriots swing a trade for Isaiah Wynn that would get them out of cap jail?


Bears LB Roquan Smith Requests a Trade

The two-time 2nd team All-Pro was taken off the PUP list by Chicago today to help facilitate a trade.   New England is one of the teams interested, but they won’t make a deal unless they can sign him long-term.   A trade of Nelson Agholor for Roquan Smith makes a lot of sense.  That would be an even trade for cap purposes.  The Patriots have some $40M available cap space next year and they could reduce some of the cap hit this year with a Smith extension.


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