The Giants have high expectations for a big, bounce-back season, which means they'll head to training camp this summer with plenty of optimism. Camp begins on July 25 when the full team reports, though rookies, quarterbacks, and injured players will come in a few days earlier, on July 22.
Here is Part 2 of what to look forward to when Giants training camp begins...
An aggressive, happy defense
There have been a lot of smiles from defensive players this offseason because they love what they've seen from the James Bettcher playbook. They are expecting to blitz a lot, and to send pass rushers from all over the field. Bettcher believes his reworked defense has a lot of speed and he apparently plans to use it.
Defensive players love that. It's why they loved Steve Spagnuolo's defense at first, though it became far less aggressive last season (in large part due to injuries and personnel problems). The Giants' defense was Top 10 two years ago. The feeling in the building is even if they struggle early in their switch to a 3-4, they have the talent and scheme to push the edges of the Top 10 again.
Less drama from the secondary
It's remarkable how friendly, cooperative, and well-behaved the Giants' secondary seems to suddenly be now. Last year, three cornerbacks were suspended for violating team rules. They all seemed to hate Eli Apple, and safety Landon Collins even called him "a cancer."
Now? It's all in the past. Collins and Apple are acting like besties and the rest of them are all acting like professionals. Why? Pat Shurmur and GM Dave Gettleman gave them all a "clean slate" but also laid down the law on what is expected. The players seem to have gotten on board -- including, most notably, Apple -- and that should go a long way towards making this summer drama-free.
Less tension from, and more confidence in the head coach
Even when things were going good for the Giants (2016), Ben McAdoo's public persona made people wince. He was tense and terse with the press (and therefore the public) and didn't reveal even the tiniest details. It didn't inspire confidence and yes, that translated to his players, too.
But Pat Shurmur, as Dave Gettleman famously said, is an "adult." He is much more relaxed and confident and that is oozing through the organization. They even like how he handles controversies, such as the Beckham drama. Just last week he made his point when he said Beckham was "cleared to practice" without getting testy or throwing his player under the bus.
That's big. Because if you don't think a calm, confident presence as the face of the organization isn't important … well, then you weren't paying attention last year.