Thursday, September 2, 2010

So Long, But Not Farewell

When I started this blog, five days short of a year ago, I always knew this day would come. And now that it has, I find myself torn between excitement and sadness.

This is the last entry on Ernie Palladino's Giants Beat. Yep, we're closing down. But we're not out of business. A couple of weeks ago, I was approached by, which recently became a affiliate, to handle their Giants website. After much thought, I decided it was a professional move worth making. So, starting at some point over the weekend, you'll find me at, where I plan to do much of the same stuff I do here and more. They have something I don't -- resources -- and that will make a world of difference.

They've got the site laid out right now and, I have to tell you, it's kinda snazzy looking. Got my name right up there. It's called Ernie Palladino's The Giants Beat. Sound familiar? We had to add the "the" for legal purposes, but it's close enough. I asked for it so there would be no confusion about where you landed, and the folks at were more than happy to oblige.

As far as content goes, it's going to be a lot of the same stuff you've seen here. Stories, opinion, analysis. As soon as I learn the ins and outs of their software, I plan to continue with the videos that were so well received here.

The Big Blue Wrecking Crew runs its message board there, and I know a number of you participate in it already. I'll chime in once in a while. In addition, I'll take direct questions on my own message board as soon as they set it up. And we'll be having regular, hour-long chats.

I hope you'll all come over there with me. Sounds like they have a good, enthusiastic group there, and I'm going to encourage them to welcome your thoughts.

As for Ernie Palladino's Giants Beat, well, let's say it will now recede into the footnoted footnotes of cyberspace history. We were an intimate group, topping out at around 1,000 visitors per day and 57,000 hits per month. Those aren't big numbers. Actually, they're miniscule when put up against the successful blogs and websites. Still, I heard a lot of good things about what we did here, even from people who never responded to the entries. Our conversations were lively, to say the least, but for the most part we managed to have civil, courteous discourse about the Giants. I'm proud of that. And I'm proud of what we all did here at this blog.

Things end, though. Opportunity doesn't knock very often in this economy, so when it does you'd better answer it. That's what I'm doing.

I hope you'll all follow me over to and help me build something special there, something just as special as we had over here. For those who do, I'll be waiting. For those who take a pass, I'll miss you.

Thanks for everything.


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Leinart, Anyone?

Word from NFL Network indicates Arizona quarterback and all-world caliber head case Matt Leinart is on the trading block, having ticked off coach Ken Whisenhunt sufficiently.

The Giants are said to be among the teams inquiring about a trade, but I suspect it's only Jerry Reese doing what they call due diligence, so don't expect a trade announcement. But does anybody want to see him actually pull the trigger on this guy?


Tuesday, August 31, 2010

No Release For Plax

For all those who thought the Giants might re-sign Plaxico Burress to shore up this year's receiving game upon his participation in a prison work-release program, well, sometimes plans just don't work out. Burress was denied work release today, and cannot re-apply until he becomes eligible for parole on June 6, 2011. His two-year sentence runs until September, 2011, and by the way his rejection letter sounded, he might be staying the whole term.

Burress, you may remember, helped wreck the 2008 season by shooting himself in the thigh with an illegal handgun during an evening of partying at the Latin Quarter nightclub in Manhattan.

"The serious and negative impact illegal guns have on the community coupled with dangerous nature of the weapon discharging in a public place renders him unsuitable for work release participation," according to the denial letter sent to Burress. Burress has served 10 months of his two-year sentence.

Here's the whole story.


Bomar For Now

Tom Coughlin said the Giants have been looking at potential backup quarterbacks since Jim Sorgi went down with a shoulder capsule injury that will most likely require surgery. But the decision on bringing in somebody from the outside hasn't been made yet, and may not be finalized either way until after Thursday's preseason finale.

"Well, it depends on what the availability and what the cost is," Coughlin said. "I’m not saying we’re doing that, but our people are not caught by surprise by this. Our guys have been working on this for a couple of weeks.

"I just think that we’re investigating all of our options, whatever those options are. If it comes that the decision is made after the game, fine. If it comes that the decision is made before that, fine, but all of the options are open, of course. Depending on if (Bomar) goes in there and plays well on Thursday night, we’ll certainly have good evidence to think that he can do it."

Whatever the future holds, Bomar is going to get plenty of playing time Thursday. He won't get the whole game, as he did against Pittsburgh, since Eli Manning will take the first couple of series. But he'll likely play into the fourth quarter.

Bomar hasn't had a bad preseason, actually. He's 29-of-53 for 374 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. And he's also scrambled six times for 43 yard, which gives the Giants a nice run dimension should Manning go down.

But even the second-year player knows he has much to learn. So it's a matter of taking advantage of every bit of playing time the Giants throw his way.

"I'm way more comfortable since camp started," Bomar said. "I just gotta work on some things, cut down on a few mistakes. Nothing specific. Just work on things and be perfect."

He seems to have lost little sleep over the possibilities of being replaced by an outsider before the Sept. 12 opener.

"It's not scary," Bomar said. "I've said it a million times, I can only control what I can control. My job on Thursday is to go out there and play to the best of my ability. Help the team whenever I get my opportunity."


TE Travis Beckum had come back for a practice Monday, but was out again yesterday with a sore neck. He'll undergo further tests. But T Kareem McKenzie, who sat out yesterday with migraines, received some medication and was out there for the whole practice today.

The same couldn't be said for DE Jason Pierre-Paul, who spent the latter part of the pass rush drills taking a knee with director of medical services Ronnie Barnes with a heat-related issue. After resting and drinking some Gatorade, he rejoined his linemates for some handwork drills.



For anybody thinking about bringing David Carr back here as a backup, well, he's still in San Francisco. But it sounds like he's only holding on by a hair.

The San Jose Mercury News reported that Mike Singletary was none too happy with Carr's 7-for-17, 53-yard passing effort against the Raiders Saturday night. Whether he's on his way out, though, is another story. And it's unlikely he'd be cut before Saturday's deadline, if even then. But if he does get whacked, he'd be an ideal choice to bring back here, since he's the only guy out there who knows the system.

He'd probably come in as a third-stringer, though, since Bomar has done the work to become the primary backup. And let's face it, if Manning goes down early, the Giants' season will be basically wrecked, anyway.


Down To 75

To get to today's 75-man limit, the Giants placed WR Sinorice Moss (groin), QB Jim Sorgi (shoulder), and LB Adrian Tracy (elbow) on injured reserve, and placed G Kevin Boothe (pectoral) on the reserved/PUP list. They also waived rookie receiver Nyan Boateng.

Boothe will have to miss the first six weeks of the season because of the move.

Next stop is the cut to 53, which must be done by 6 p.m. Saturday.

Moss, who went to Philadelphia for a second opinion on his groin injury yesterday, underwent surgery for a sports hernia this morning. Dr. William Meyers at the Hahnemann University Hospital in Philadelphia performed the surgery.

The loss of Sorgi means that, at least for now, second-year player Rhett Bomar will serve as Eli Manning's backup. Bomar has had a good preseason with a maximum of playing time, having played most of the Pittsburgh game while Manning recovered from his 12-stitch gash in his forehead. Having Sorgi would have been better, simply because of his seven years of experience. But Bomar showed a strong arm and times and far more mobility than either Manning or Sorgi possess.

Tracy underwent surgery yesterday to repair ligament damage sustained when he dislocated his right elbow last week in Baltimore. Dr. Robert Hotchkiss performed the operation at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan.

The loss of Tracy marks the second of the Giants' seven draft picks to go down with injuries, though only one of them came on the playing field. Third-round safety Chad Jones sustained serious injuries to his legs in a June 25 car crash in New Orleans, and wound up on the reserve/non-football injury list.

As for Boothe, the guard can begin practicing for 21 days beginning Tuesday, Oct. 19. During that period, the Giants can evaluate where his rehab stands, and either activate him, release him, or place him on IR. That decision must be made by Nov. 9.


Monday, August 30, 2010

Happy Absence

Guard Chris Snee's absence at practice today wasn't because he incurred any swelling in his knee. He had permission. It would have been news if he didn't, as his reason for skipping practice was to attend the birth of his father-in-law, Tom Coughlin's, 10th grandchild. The child is Snee's third.

Meanwhile, Sinorice Moss was getting his second opinion on his groin/pelvic/abdominal injury in Philadelphia. No update on him yet, but I wouldn't be surprised if the parties come to an injury settlement if the injury is deemed serious enough. As it is, Moss is hanging onto a roster spot by a thread.


Manning And Sorgi

Eli Manning said he's over his head injury, but backup Jim Sorgi said he's not sure how long it will be before his injured shoulder capsule allows him to get back to practice.

That means, for the time being, that the Giants had better be very comfortable with Rhett Bomar as Manning's primary backup. That, or go out and get a veteran quarterback. But that would make for a tough go, since that player would have to come in and learn an entire offense in short order. He'd probably need a few weeks to absorb everything, anyway, in which case the Giants would have to use Bomar anyway as Manning's backup.

When asked today if the shoulder felt any better, Sorgi said, "A little. Very slow. I have never had it so I don’t know how it’s supposed to feel or how quickly it’s supposed to get better. I know it’s different in a quarterback, a thrower, than it is in other positions. We’re trying to keep that in mind and it’s just the timing of when it happened and the timing of when it’s supposed to get better by is bad timing for both sides."

Sorgi said he plans to see the doctors for a re-evaluation in the next few days, as he's been on a regimen of anti-inflammatories and ice. He said he was hopeful the injury is not as serious as a similar one that ended Former Jets quarterback Chad Pennington's season in late September of last season.

"I don’t know exactly what his was," Sorgi said. "I don’t know if his came out or what not. I don’t think mine tore enough to dislocate the shoulder or it come out of the socket at all. I know you need time for it to get down and the scar tissue to heal and stuff like that. I’m assuming that if it doesn’t get better over however much time, four or six weeks, then I’ll have to get it taken care of."

Until then, the Giants had better get ready to live with Bomar as backup.

Meanwhile, WR Ramses Barden returned to practice and appeared to be doing more than individual drills. But G Chris Snee (knee), C Shaun O'Hara (ankle), T Kareem McKenzie (migraine), WR Sinorice Moss (groin), and CB Aaron Ross (foot) remained out.


Sunday, August 29, 2010

A Bad "Effort"

Tom Coughlin made some comments after last night's game about a lack of effort, which sort of brought back some bad memories from the end of last season. But today, he backpedaled a bit.

"I expected more," Coughlin said. "You know, I did. I can give you page after page about effort. But what I’m going to say is there’s effort and then there’s the kind of intensity that a guy brings to the table when you’re playing the game to solidify your team and your circumstance and your own individual position. So I just think that, yeah there was effort. I’m not going to challenge or say there wasn’t that."

To be honest, I didn't see a lackadaisical form of play last night. What I noticed was a lack of execution and the cropping up of some of the problems that undermined last season, like the linebackers' inability to cover a tight end. None of that was due, for the most part last season, to lack of effort. Lack of talent? Maybe.

Still, the fact that no less than Justin Tuck also hinted at a lack of effort by some individuals, indicated that heart problems were, at least, considered as a reason for the horrible showing.

"There was an awful lot of importance attached to the game for a lot of players, so I’m not going to say that (effort) wasn’t there," Coughlin said. "I am going to say that it can be better. And that I hope there was an experience of learning here, and that those that are well aware of the difference between what happens in a regular season game and a preseason game and why there’s so much significance attached to the third game, I hope they’re able to share their feelings with their teammates."

Anybody here think the Giants played without effort, or that the effort was substandard?


Some Stuff

The Giants probably won't make their cut to 75 until tomorrow, but there was still some interesting personnel news to come out today.

WR Sinorice Moss is having a second opinion on that strained groin/abdomen to try to figure out exactly what's ailing him. That simply doesn't sound like good news for the fifth-year veteran, and I can easily see the Giants going the IR or waived/injured route with him in the next day or two. That said, there was nothing on special teams last night that warranted jettisoning him. With Aaron Ross out, he may still be the team's best overall kick return option despite having done nothing concrete in the preseason to warrant such praise.

Also, DE Adrian Tracy, who went out with a dislocated right elbow, is having an MRI and could miss two to three weeks. And QB Jim Sorgi, still recovering from that shoulder capsule injury, will not practice tomorrow.

LB Gerris Wilkinson (groin) is having tests, and his status is undetermined. DE Jason Pierre-Paul, who sat out the game, will return to practice tomorrow on a limited basis.


Some Observations

Just looked at the tape and have some initial observations.

* The offensive line was horrible, especially Will Beatty at right tackle for migraine-inflicted Kareem McKenzie. Also, Rich Seubert got badly pushed back at center on that fourth-and-1. The good news is that, God willing and the creek don't rise, this is not the offensive line that will start against Carolina. With any luck, Shaun O'Hara will be back at center by then, and McKenzie will be back at right tackle. Understanding the need for interchangeability among offensive linemen, you can overdo it at times. All the injuries up front have created a hodgepodge up there, which has translated to bad communication, missed assignments, and soft play.

* Justin Tuck looks to be all the way back from his shoulder issues of last year, which is good news. He was active, and came up with two sacks. Osi Umenyiora was also active, though he didn't really show up in the stats. And it was interesting to see Linval Joseph in there with the starters, in place of Chris Canty. Thought the second-rounder held up fairly well.

* The linebackers were a different story. Same old story from last year. Nobody seems to know how to cover a tight end. Todd Heap ran right past Jonathan Goff a couple of times. On virtually every tight end catch over the middle, Goff was so far from the tight end that he had no chance of breaking up the pass. The fact that Antrel Rolle had a horrible game didn't help matters, either. But Rolle, a proven veteran, presents far fewer worries than the linebackers. He'll be there when it counts. Can't say the same about Goff or Michael Boley or, certainly, Clint Sintim, who didn't appear to figure in much of anything.

* Courtney Brown? No. But again, he was only out there because Terrell Thomas and Aaron Ross weren't there. Worry about Ross' heel. Don't worry about Thomas' calf. Thomas will be there on opening day, and he won't be schooled as easily as Brown. Corey Webster had a very nice game with several breakups and an interception.

* Somebody find a kickoff returner. Andre Brown fumbled one, and Tim Brown was a non-factor. And punt coverage needs a lot of work.

*Eli? Rusty. Off-target. But the interception at the end of the half wasn't his fault. Steve Smith has to reel that thing in. Both players will be fine, though, although Manning can use better protection.

*That new personal foul for hitting a defenseless receiver needs revision. Can't be calling that stuff on bang-bang plays like that. What's the remedy? Perhaps giving the DB a one-step grace area, something like the safe area around a punt returner? If they're going to call it like that the whole season, we're going to see millions of penalty yards and countless drives extended. Bad rule the way it's called now.


That Was Special

Just sitting down to watch the tape of last night's fiasco, but can say this right off the top. When the sole offensive highlight is an undrafted hopeful like Victor Cruz -- as dynamic as the kid seems to be -- catching a touchdown pass with the second unit, a team has problems.

Looking forward to hearing what Tom Coughlin has to say today. Meanwhile, what say you? Anybody out there feeling comfortable about that Sept. 12 opener against Carolina?


Saturday, August 28, 2010

Dress Rehearsal

It's dress rehearsal time in Baltimore tonight. First off, no live blog because I'll be addressing some other issues. But you guys don't need me to tell you how important this one is, especially with some of the injury stuff the Giants have been going through.

As we noted yesterday, there's a small battalion of Giants who won't play in this game. But who will play, and where, is just as important. Starters go three quarters tonight and, aside from perhaps two series against New England in Thursday's finale, wrap up their preseason. Also, five guys as yet unknown to us will be cut after this game.

Some things to watch:

* Eli Manning makes his return after missing the Pittsburgh game with that Grand Canyon-sized gouge in his head. He's got a new helmet, seemed comfortable during the practice week, and should have no problems taking the whole three quarters. He needs it. He'll want to work out his timing with Steve Smith, Hakeem Nicks, Mario Manningham, and Derek Hagan, something that has been limited to one quarter of play so far. Don't be surprised, either, if outstanding rookie prospect Victor Cruz gets a shot with Manning. As long as Eli tells everybody what his plans are -- it was his decision to change the play without advising his teammates that caused Week 1's collision -- he should get everything accomplished.

* Chris Snee is back at right guard. Rich Seubert is back, but not at left guard. He'll start at center for injured Shaun O'Hara. The bet here is that the game Seubert will do a credible job, but it will still be interesting to see how the inside blocking holds up. It shouldn't be too bad, since David Diehl has played at left guard before. Guy Whimper and Mitch Petrus will rotate in there if Diehl switches out to left tackle for Will Beatty.

* Tim Brown of Rutgers is only 5-foot-8, but Tom Coughlin likes his kickoff return potential. He'll probably get a good shot tonight after Andre Brown finishes his work. The little guy had better point himself upfield and go, since this is virtually his only shot at making the team.

* Punter Matt Dodge must show the consistency he has been lacking throughout the preseason. It's getting to the point where the coaches will get awful worried if he shanks one, especially if that one comes from behind his own goal line. They have made no moves to bring in a punter, but the funny thing about those guys is that punters come a dime a dozen. You can bring one in anytime and put him right to work. Dodge should keep that in mind as he thinks hangtime and direction rather than line-drive distance. A bad showing here could force the Giants to pull the trigger on him.

* Keith Bulluck played outside linebacker all week after taking the beginning of training camp in the middle. That could mean they've lost faith in Clint Sintim. Or it could be just a move to increase versatility and interchangeability. As a matter of fact, stay alert for any and all substitution patterns. Perry Fewell has put everybody everywhere, playing defensive ends inside, defensive tackles outside, and standing up defensive ends as linebackers. Osi Umenyiora took a couple of plays at linebacker Wednesday. DE Dave Tollefson played inside part of the same practice, and CB Corey Webster looked to be playing a safety position for a couple of plays. Fewell has experimented with having three defensive tackles on the front as well as three defensive ends. This could be a first, good look at a true mix-and-match, situation-based defense.

Interesting stuff all around.


Friday, August 27, 2010


These players, as previously noted, are not expected to play in Baltimore: WRs Ramses Barden (back) and Sinorice Moss (groin), DT Chris Canty (groin), C Shaun O’Hara (ankle/Achilles), OL Kevin Boothe (pex/PUP), RB D.J. Ware (concussion), TE Travis Beckum (neck), QB Jim Sorgi (shoulder), S Michael Johnson (back), CBs Aaron Ross (foot) and Terrell Thomas (calf) and LB Chase Blackburn (knee). Also, DE Jason Pierre-Paul is questionable with a groin, but will make the trip.


WR Hakeem Nicks got fined $10,000 by the league for his fight with Pittsburgh DB Ike Taylor last week, an action that had Nicks' agent fuming.

Mikey G. tells us that Peter Shaffer was appalled by the fine, and plans to appeal.

"Every player I've talked to has said Hakeem was just blocking downfield and then Taylor starts throwing haymakers. How can you get fined for defending yourself?" Schaffer said. "We will appeal this to the full extent of the collective bargaining agreement. Hakeem did not throw a punch. He was merely defending himself."

Ten grand is a pretty healthy fine, considering players make just less than $1,500 per game in the preseason. Mike also notes that the two fines together don't equal the $25,000 the league hit Chad Ochocinco for tweeting during the Bengals game. Loads of mixed messages there on either end.


Ramses and Sinorice

The first cut to 75 comes Tuesday, which doesn't mean much in terms of the eight wide receivers who will be in uniform tomorrow night in Baltimore. With undrafted UMass free agent Victor Cruz having ostensibly made the squad, and Steve Smith, Mario Manningham, Hakeem Nicks and Derek Hagan assured of spots, the guys who must show something are Nyan Boateng, Tim Brown, and Duke Calhoun. They'll probably get that chance, too, since Ramses Barden and Sinorice Moss are sidelined with respective back and groin problems.

While Barden's and Moss' issues may be a godsend to the three rookie roster hopefuls, they certainly aren't doing the two receivers much good. Barden was expected to make a major leap this camp, but the fractured transverse process in his back has stopped what, in most respects, has been an inconsistent camp, anyway. At 6-foot-6, 227, he should be a threat in the Red Zone, but he hasn't been anything close to that this camp.

And Moss, heading into his fifth season, may be at the end of the line here. Tom Coughlin sounded slightly exasperated when informing the press that Moss would undergo tests to determine the exact extent of his nagging injury. One has to think that unless Moss gets back quickly -- a longshot at this point -- he might just find himself among the final cuts the Sunday after next Thursday's preseason finale.

But you'd have a hard time convincing Moss of that.

"Why would this jeopardize my chances?" Moss said. "They know me. They know what I can do. But I want to show them more. That's the competitive spirit in me. I want to make plays for them on a consistent basis."

That would be something fans haven't seen out of the oft-injured Moss the past four seasons. And that's exactly the reason he may be headed out if he doesn't get back on the field in short order.

Barden may be a slightly different story. The question is whether the Giants want to give up on the 2009 third-rounder so quickly. They knew when they picked him out of Cal Poly that he'd be a project. The fact that he did nothing in the Jets game, due partially to the fact that he had already hurt his back in practice, could doom him to another year on the gameday inactive list. But it seems as though the Giants are willing to stick with him for another year at least.

He said the pain is improving every day. Once it's gone, that's the signal to return to the field. In the meantime, trainers have him working in the pool and doing an exercise regimen to build up the muscles around the fractured process.

While Brown, Boateng, and Calhoun get their opportunities to hang on, Moss and Barden wait. The question is how long will the coaching staff wait on them?