Perry Fewell said that Devon Kennard’s future is at linebacker.
“I think after the season and over the next training period, if he works on his burst and his explosion, that he can be an ideal linebacker,” the defensive coordinator said on Thursday.
“He’s a powerful man that can play at defensive end and rush and do that type of thing,” Fewell said. “He’s also skillful enough to play a linebacker position. He’s not as fleet-footed as you would like for him to be and so we put that in the term of a tweener.”
Of course, Fewell may not be around to see the Giants’ next offseason, so Kennard’s future may be up in the air.
John Fennelly, Lead Writer
I say the Giants continue to groom Kennard as a pass rusher. It is something he has shown that he can do and the Giants do not have enough pass rushers going forward. Mathias Kiwanuka is unlikely to return and JPP may not either, depending on his price.
That leaves Damontre Moore, Kerry Wynn and Robert Ayers as the only edge pass rushing options the team will take into 2015. Kennard gives them a fourth, should they go in that direction.
LB Jameel McClain (knee) returned fully to practice on Thursday. He did not practice earlier in the week.
RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) was listed as a non-participant in practice for the second day in a row.
Safety Antrel Rolle said Wednesday, on his weekly spot on WFAN, that he wants to finish his career as a Giant (CBSNewYork Dec 18).
John Fennelly, Lead Writer
“This is a great fit,” he said. “I would love to finish my career here. I want to be with JPP and (Odell) Beckham, and I can’t wait to see (Victor) Cruz come back. These are my brothers. This is where I want to be.”
The 32 year-old Pro Bowler is in the final season of a five-year, $37 million deal he signed back in March 2010, which, at the time, was the richest deal ever given to an NFL safety.
To his credit, Rolle has not missed a game since signing that deal — 77 games in all. In fact, he has missed only one game since 2005, when he was with the Arizona Cardinals.
Rolle wants to return to the Giants, but the team may not want to pay him what he believes he’s worth. All of those games, all of those snaps may be catching up to him. As per sportingcharts.com, Rolle has played 913 of the Giants’ 918 defensive snaps (99.5%) this season. Only six players in the league have played more. At 32, that’s saying something. To read more of this story, click here
This past summer, a rookie WR was creating a buzz at Giants’ training camp. No, it wasn’t first round pick Odell Beckham, Jr., who is now a legitimate ROY candidate, but rather Corey Washington, an unknown UDFA out of small Newberry College.
John Fennelly, Lead Writer
While Beckham’s tricky hamstring relegated him to watching the entire preseason (and first quarter of the regular season) from the sidelines, Washington was electrifying Giant fans with his late-game heroics.
During the preseason, Washington caught 10 passes for 155 yards and four touchdowns en route to being named NFL.com’s “Preseason MVP”. The Giants got caught up in the frenzy and the 6’4″, 215lb, 23 year-old out of nowhere was placed on the team’s final roster.
The Giants had struck gold with UDFA receivers in the past, most notably Victor Cruz, and Giant fans were expecting Cruz-like results from Washington right out of the gate. It hasn’t happened.
Head coach Tom Coughlin is reluctant to thrust green rookies into the lineup, and no rookie is greener than Washington. He has been used sporadically on offense during the season late in games, but he’s been basically assigned to the special teams thus far.
Washington is buried behind Beckham, Rueben Randle and Preston Parker on the depth chart. There really isn’t any room for him in the offense right now. Coughlin was asked what Washington has to do to get more snaps during games. To read more of this story, click here
Sunday will be the 19th head-to-head meeting for Tom Coughlin and Ram’s coach Jeff Fisher. The two coaches have a lot in common — separated by one win, ranked 13th and 14th, respectively, on the all-time list of regular season wins by a coach (Newsday, Dec. 17).
But one number isn’t quite as close: 28 — the number of times Fisher has called a fake punt in his career, including three this season. Coughlin hasn’t even called three in his career. In fact, he’s never called one.
Giants punter Steve Weatherford said he might be more valuable exhibiting his heptathlete skills than executing a fake punt.
“Maybe if they need me to pole vault on fourth down,” Weatherford said. “You’re kind of better off keeping a quarterback that’s making $20 million a year out there, going for it on fourth down, than you are having your punter run or something like that . . . If it’s fourth-and-6, you let Eli do his thing.”
That doesn’t mean the Giants don’t have fake punts in their arsenal of plays – they just might not be running them anytime soon.
“It’s always in your pocket,” Weatherford said, “but it’s deep, deep down in your pocket.”
Giants rookie wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has been playing at a Pro Bowl level this season, and a few of his teammates have quickly taken notice.
The only two players on the injury report did not practice on Wednesday.
RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) and LB Jameel McClain (knee) were held out of practice.
“I feel great,” Jennings said. “We’ve got two more games and I’m putting myself in position to finish strong in both of them and that’s kind of my attitude.”