Giants news, 12/9: Saquon Barkley injury, more headlines

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Giants’ offensive coordinator Mike Kafka expresses confidence in skill players

When it was his turn to face the media on Thursday Kafka was, of course, asked whether or not he had confidence in the players he coaches.

“I’m very confident in the skill group, quarterback, running back,” Kafka said. “The skilled positions have done a great job, and my confidence is high on that group.”

As we detailed earlier in the week, the Giants have not been as efficient running the ball over the past five weeks as they were during their 6-1 start.

Is that purely about execution? Or, do the Giants need to do more vary the looks they give defenses when running the ball?

“I think it’s a combination of both,” Kafka said. “I think you have to, each week we go through it, go through our process. What are our favorite runs? What are our favorite looks? Personal groupings? Really detail all that stuff out. We go with what our guys do best. We go and we practice it, we detail it up, and that’s what we end up going with each week.”

From Big Blue View

Other Giant sightings

‘I don’t want a chance,’ says Kayvon Thibodeaux nj.com

“When I first came to this team, I let them know that I don’t need sympathy,” rookie outside linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux said. “We’re not really too worried about what anyone else feels we can do. The only thing people are giving us crap about is the [recent] past. You’ve got to live in the present. They’re talking about nothing essentially. They’re talking about history. When you line up against that person across from you, records and what they say won’t really matter at that point.”

Your weekly dose of Wink Wisdom: His social media preferences

Tae Crowder apologizes to Giants for ‘Free me’ tweet | New York Post

After not playing a defensive snap Sunday against the Commanders, Crowder published “#FreeMe” on his Twitter account. That message was widely interpreted as a disgruntled former starter asking for his release in the middle of a playoff race.

“I really wasn’t thinking much of it,” Crowder said. “I’ve seen a lot of fans talking about a release or whatever, but I’m all for my team. I’m a team-first player, and I just want to do anything I can to help the team win.”

Daniel Bellinger, NY Giants: Inside rookie tight end’s inspired return | The Record

“It’s scary, and the first thing you think is, ‘Is my career over? Am I going to see [properly] again?'” Bellinger recalled in a recent interview. “But that worry goes away when you take a step back, breathe and listen to the doctors. That’s what I did at the ER [in Jacksonville]and when they told me my eye was going to be fine, my mind went straight to: ‘OK, what do I have to do to get back on the field?'”

The Giants are still in position to make the playoffs for the first time since 2016 The Athletic

Although that Washington matchup is a huge game, it’s far from the only big game left on the schedule for New York. At the start of the season, the Giants’ second half of the schedule looked easier than the first. But that quickly changed as the NFL world watched the NFC East evolve into perhaps the league’s strongest division. With the Eagles and Cowboys dominating the conference, the Giants’ chances at a divisional title are all but gone, but they still have a good shot at claiming one of three wild-card spots.

Notebook: Daniel Jones, Darius Slayton strengthen bond | Giants.com

“I’ve said this before – we’re like an old married couple,” Slayton said today. “You roll over, wake up (and) see each other for 70 years. You know what every hair on her head looks like at some point. I feel like I know what every hair on his head looks like. So, it’s just familiarity .”

Darius Slayton: Giants and Eagles fans won’t be dining together | USA Today

This Sunday, Slayton — who is enjoying a resurgence in his career — will be facing a tough Eagles secondary that includes former teammate James Bradberry and another Pro Bowler in Darius Slay.

“Two veteran corners. They’re smart. They both (have) played football for a long time. They understand their games individually,” he said. “They’re kind of different. Brad is a bit of a bigger, heavier guy, physical. Slay is a little lighter, but he’s got great hips (and) good speed. I think they’ve played well this year.”

NFL offensive tackle rankings ahead of Week 14 | PFF

5. ANDREW THOMAS, NEW YORK GIANTS. Thomas has quickly become one of the best young left tackles in the NFL. He is currently the third-highest-rated offensive tackle (86.6) in the NFL, having allowed just one quarterback hit all season. He’s been fantastic in both the run and pass games as he’s developed into an elite tackle.

PFF’s 2022 NFL Third-Quarter All-Pro Team Dexter Lawrence, Sauce Gardner and more | PFF

BY DEXTER LAWRENCE, NEW YORK GIANTS Lawrence is having a career year in the middle for the Giants. He trails only Chris Jones in total pressures among interior rushers and has 28 defensive stops on the season. Lawrence is currently on track to exceed his previous best season by over 10 PFF grading points.

Eli Manning and Pete Davidson, having a catch

The remarkable NFL footprint of Brian Daboll’s high school | New York Post

From 1989-93, the hallways of tiny St. Francis Academy in Buffalo were a breeding ground for the football decision-makers today. They have produced three NFL GMs, one FBS head coach and Giants head coach Brian Daboll.

This week’s opponent

Eagles’ Jonathan Gannon on Giants’ Daniel Jones: ‘Big-time challenge’ | USA Today

Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon was asked how the Giants use Jones as a runner and the stress it puts on the defense.

“They know how to use, to maximize their quarterback skill set in a way that makes it very challenging for the defense because it challenges your rules and your structures, and they find their match-ups, their one-on-one match-ups because of the quarterback skill set,” said Gannon. “So, we’ve got a big-time challenge ahead of us, and we’ve got to be on it. It’s a game where you can’t just line up and play your stuff, or you’ll get gashed. We’ve got a big-time challenge ahead of us.”

Eagles’ James Bradberry won’t get flustered facing Giants | New York Post

Sirianni a week earlier said he cautioned receiver AJ Brown about not getting distracted getting ready to face his former team, the Titans. And Sirianni admitted he gave himself the same reminder a few weeks earlier when the Eagles were getting ready to face the Colts, the team Sirianni left to go to Philadelphia.

“I looked at [Bradberry] and said, ‘I think you’re the last person I need to say that to,”’ Sirianni said. “He’s so calm and even-keeled. He doesn’t get too up, he doesn’t get too down. He’s the last person I needed to say, ‘Hey, you’re playing this team, don’t let it affect your preparation for the week.’ I know what a great pro he is.”

How Nick Sirianni doesn’t outsmart himself Bleeding Green Nation

Nick Sirianni has done a fantastic job this season. He’s done it by basically following the philosophy of don’t do dumb stuff and good things will happen. He hasn’t tried to reinvent the wheel (with one brilliant exception, which we’ll get to), instead week in and week out he and his team simply limit the stupid stuff. It’s obviously working.

Around the league

Jason Garrett a finalist for Stanford head coach opening: Sources | The Athletic

Former Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett has emerged as a finalist for the Stanford head-coaching job, multiple sources with knowledge of the search process told The Athletic on Thursday. Garrett, who spent this season as a color analyst for NBC’s Notre Dame games after being the Giants offensive coordinator in 2020-21, almost became the head coach at Duke last season, but the job went to Mike Elko.

House Report: Dan Snyder allowed Commanders’ toxic culture, NFL aided cover-up | ESPN.com

Washington Commanders owner Daniel Snyder “permitted and participated” in the team’s long-term toxic work culture and obstructed a 14-month congressional inquiry by dodging a subpoena, working to dissuade and intimidate witnesses from cooperating, and claiming more than 100 times in testimony that he could not recall answers to basic questions, according to the final report of the US House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Reform.

The committee’s 79-page report released Thursday also comes down hard on the NFL, concluding that the league was complicit in Snyder’s efforts by not cooperating with the congressional inquiry and by burying a 2020-21 investigation of the Commanders’ workplace led by attorney Beth Wilkinson , the results of which have never been fully released.

Falcons bench Mariota, will start Ridder after Week 14 bye | CBSSports.com

Falcons coach Arthur Smith left the door open for a potential quarterback change after Atlanta’s Week 13 loss to the Steelers. Now, he’s pulled the trigger on just that, benching Marcus Mariota for rookie Desmond Ridder ahead of the team’s Week 14 bye, according to NFL Media. A third-round draft pick this April, Ridder will make his debut in Week 15 against the rival Saints.

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