Tag:

Orleans Darkwa

New England Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount (29) during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium. (Reinhold Matay)
New England Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount (29) during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium. (Reinhold Matay)

There is mutual interest between the Giants and free agent running back LeGarrette Blount, and a deal could be made before this weekend's NFL Draft, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.

Blount appeared in 16 games for the Patriots last season and carried the ball 299 times for 1,161 yards, averaging 3.9 yards per carry, and a league-leading 18 rushing touchdowns (the highest rushing touchdown total for any NFL player since Adrian Peterson in 2011).

With New England's recent signings of RB Mike Gillislee and RB Rex Burkheard this offseason, it seems likely that Blount's career with the Patriots is over.

Tags: Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Shane Vereen
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Nov 20, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants head coach Ben McAdoo coaches against the Chicago Bears during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 20, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants head coach Ben McAdoo coaches against the Chicago Bears during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

Click here to read Part I of the Giants Notebook.

One of the biggest criticisms of the Ben McAdoo offense last year - besides his play-calling - was the fact that they used "11 personnel" (three receivers, one tight end, one running back) on more than 90 percent of their plays. It led to cries that the Giants were too predictable and not nearly imaginative enough.

Tags: B.J. Goodson, Devon Kennard, J.T. Thomas, Jonathan Casillas, Keenan Robinson, Nikita Whitlock, Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Shane Vereen, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Andrew Weber)
(Andrew Weber)

RB Orleans Darkwa has agreed to a one-year deal with the Giants, reports Kimberly A. Martin of Newsday.

The Giants didn't initially tender a contract to the 25-year-old Darkwa, who was a restricted free agent. He had been set to become an unrestricted free agent today at 4 p.m. 

There had been some discussions about Darkwa returning at a lesser price, SNY's Ralph Vacchiano reported last week, but a source recently indicated he was planning to test the free agent market first...

Tags: Orleans Darkwa
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The Giants have tendered a contract to restricted free agent DE Kerry Wynnreports Jordan Raanan of ESPN.

The tender is worth $1.797 million.

Wynn, 26, had 12 tackles and 0.5 sacks in 14 games for the Giants last season...

Tags: Kerry Wynn, Orleans Darkwa
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Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith tackles New York Giants running back Orleans Darkwa during the third quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. (Brace Hemmelgarn/USA Today Sports Images)
Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith tackles New York Giants running back Orleans Darkwa during the third quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. (Brace Hemmelgarn/USA Today Sports Images)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv:

The Giants have always been intrigued by the potential of running back Orleans Darkwa -- just not enough to pay him $1.797 million.

An NFL source confirmed that the Giants will not be tendering the 25-year-old restricted free agent, making him an unrestricted free agent as of 4 p.m. on Thursday. There have been some discussions about Darkwa returning at a lesser price, but a source indicated he will test the free agent market first.

Tags: Kerry Wynn, Orleans Darkwa, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports Images)
(Kim Klement/USA Today Sports Images)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY:

The Giants could have somewhere near $40 million in salary cap space to play with this offseason if the cap rises all the way to $168 million, as some in the NFL project. They might even end up with more, depending on what contracts they restructure and which players they decide to cut.

And while that may not be enough to turn them into big spenders in free agency the way they were a year ago, it certainly is enough for them to re-sign some of their own unrestricted free agents. They have 17 UFAs to deal with, and several other free agents who are restricted. And a few of them could demand and command big money from someone -- particularly the two free agents on the Giants' defensive line.

Tags: Darian Thompson, Eli Manning, Jason Pierre-Paul, John Jerry, Johnathan Hankins, Keenan Robinson, Kerry Wynn, Larry Donnell, Mark Herzlich, Marshall Newhouse, Nikita Whitlock, Olivier Vernon, Orleans Darkwa, Ryan Nassib, Shane Vereen, Trevin Wade, Will Beatty, Will Tye, Zak DeOssie, Ralph Vacchiano
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Seattle Seahawks linebacker Eric Pinkins (47) runs during the first quarter against the Oakland Raiders at Oakland Coliseum. (Kyle Terada)
Seattle Seahawks linebacker Eric Pinkins (47) runs during the first quarter against the Oakland Raiders at Oakland Coliseum. (Kyle Terada)

The Giants have promoted S/LB Eric Pinkins from the practice squad, while RB Orleans Darkwa has been placed on the injured reserve list, the Giants announced Tuesday evening.

Darkwa has been dealing with lower leg soreness, and has not recorded a carry since New York's 23-16 loss to the Packers on Oct. 9. The running back has only appeared on special teams in the last four games. 

On the season, Darkwa has carried the ball 30 times for 111 yards and two touchdowns.

Tags: Orleans Darkwa
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The Giants released their injury report Friday...

The following players will be OUT for Sunday's game against the Bears

  • Justin Pugh (knee)
  • Brett Jones (calf)
Tags: Adam Gettis, Brett Jones, Justin Pugh, Orleans Darkwa
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New York Giants receiver Victor Cruz (80) is defended by Los Angeles Rams strong safety T.J. McDonald (25) on a 25-yard reception during game 16 of the NFL International Series at Twickenham Stadium. (Kirby Lee)
New York Giants receiver Victor Cruz (80) is defended by Los Angeles Rams strong safety T.J. McDonald (25) on a 25-yard reception during game 16 of the NFL International Series at Twickenham Stadium. (Kirby Lee)

The Giants released their injury report after Thursday's practice. The following players were listed...

Did Not Participate in Practice

  • RB Orleans Darkwa (lower leg)
  • Justin Pugh (knee)
  • Brett Jones (calf)
Tags: Adam Gettis, Brett Jones, Dwayne Harris, Justin Pugh, Orleans Darkwa, Victor Cruz
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Nov 14, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Dwayne Harris (17) runs the ball against Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap (96) during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 14, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Dwayne Harris (17) runs the ball against Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap (96) during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants released their injury report after Wednesday's practice. The following players were listed...

Did Not Participate in Practice

  • Adam Gettis (calf)
  • WR Dwayne Harris (toe)
  • Justin Pugh (knee)
  • Brett Jones (calf)
Tags: Adam Gettis, Brett Jones, Dwayne Harris, Justin Pugh, Orleans Darkwa, Victor Cruz
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New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings (23) runs with the ball during the first half of their game against the New Orleans Saints at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland)
New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings (23) runs with the ball during the first half of their game against the New Orleans Saints at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland)

While Eli Manning exploded for over 400 yards in Sunday's win over the Baltimore Ravens, the offense was once again unable to get the run game going.The Giants' struggles in the run game have been consistent throughout the season. As a team, the Giants have run the ball 127 times for a total of 456 yards this year, good for 27th best in the NFL. New York's 3.6 yards per carry is 25th in the league, while the team's 76.0 rushing yards per game is 30th.

Tags: Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Will Beatty
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The Giants defeated the Baltimore Ravens, 27-23, on Sunday to even their record to 3-3 and keep them afloat in the suddenly competitive NFC East. The win was the 700th in franchise history, making them the third NFL team to reach the milestone, after the Bears and Packers.Big Blue continues to play cliffhanger-type games. Of the six games played this year, Sunday was the fifth game decided by seven points or less. The Giants' other victories were by one and three points over Dallas and New Orleans respectively. They lost a two-point game to Washington and by seven last week in Green Bay.Two big plays made by Odell Beckham, Jr. led the Giants to victory in a game that saw them on the raw end of several poor calls by the officials.

Tags: Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Eli Manning, Janoris Jenkins, Jonathan Casillas, Landon Collins, Orleans Darkwa, John Fennelly
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Vacc's 3 Keys: Ravens-Giants 00:03:21
SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano identifies 3 keys for the Giants for their matchup against the Ravens on Sunday.

THE GAME: The Baltimore Ravens (3-2) at the Giants (2-3) at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, N.J. on Sunday, Oct. 16, 1 p.m. ET.THE WEATHER: It's supposed to be so nice that I'm almost sad that the press box is indoors. The temperature is supposed to hover around 70 with plenty of sun, no rain and only the usual light Meadowlands winds.WHAT IT MEANS: If you step back and look at the big picture, the back-to-back losses in Minnesota and Green Bay aren't a huge deal. Those are tough places to win under any circumstances. They just look worse in consecutive weeks, coming off a terrible loss to the Redskins. This, though, is a perfect spot for the Giants to get back on track, at home against a mediocre team with plenty of its own issues. We're still a long ways from must-win territory, but these are the types of games teams are supposed to win if they really want to be considered contenders.PLAYER TO WATCH: WR Victor Cruz. The zero catches from Sunday night is alarming enough, but I can't really get over the two passes thrown his direction. The Giants did a decent job of trying to get the ball to Odell Beckham Jr. (12 targets) and Sterling Shepard (seven), but the beauty of their passing attack is that they're supposed to be three-deep at receiver. No, Cruz wasn't open a ton, but he was open more than twice and they've got to get more creative about finding ways to get the ball in his hands. He's taking most of his snaps on the outside now. No, he's not the same player he was pre-injury, but he still looks pretty good and he might be able to do some damage out of the slot. If the Giants can get him going it's only going to make things easier on Shepard and on Beckham, who has been absolutely swarmed by defenses the last few weeks. So they should try to get the ball to Cruz early. And I think they will.

Tags: Darian Thompson, Devon Kennard, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Dwayne Harris, Eli Apple, Eli Manning, Jason Pierre-Paul, Marshall Newhouse, Nat Berhe, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Sterling Shepard, Trevin Wade, Victor Cruz, Ralph Vacchiano
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Vacc's 3 Keys: Giants-Packers 00:03:00
SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano mentions that the Giants must limit big plays and use a strong running attack against the Packers on Sunday.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

THE GAME: The Giants (2-2) at the Green Bay Packers (2-1) at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis., on Sunday, Oct. 9, 8:30 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER: Call it the not-so-frozen tundra this time. It'll actually be a nice day in Green Bay with the temperature getting all the way up to 60, but when the sun goes down the temperatures will drop to the mid-40s.

Tags: Darian Thompson, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Eli Apple, Eli Manning, Larry Donnell, Marshall Newhouse, Nat Berhe, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Will Tye, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

John Fennelly, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr | | Archive Posts

The Giants will likely be without RB Rashad Jennings (thumb) again this Sunday against the Packers, leaving the running game in the hands of Orleans Darkwa, Bobby Rainey and rookie Paul Perkins.

Darkwa is the top candidate to get carries in Jennings' absence. Last week, Darkwa carried the ball 12 times for 48 yards and a TD. Rainey had 22 yards on four carries and Perkins ran for eight yards on two carries for a team average of 4.3 YPC. Their average for the season is an unsatisfactory 3.9 YPC.

Tags: Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, John Fennelly
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New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) reacts after a failed fourth down conversion during the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium. The Vikings defeated the Giants 24-10. (Brace Hemmelgarn)
New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) reacts after a failed fourth down conversion during the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium. The Vikings defeated the Giants 24-10. (Brace Hemmelgarn)

Ralph Vacchiano, NFL Insider | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

This was going to be a tough spot for the Giants right from the start. Going on the road to pick up the pieces from their sloppy loss to the Redskins was going to be hard enough. But in always-loud Minnesota, against one of the NFL's best defenses, and one that has haunted Eli Manning throughout his career?

All things considered, it could've been a lot worse.

Tags: Brad Wing, Darian Thompson, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Dwayne Harris, Eli Apple, Eli Manning, John Jerry, Nat Berhe, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Trevin Wade, Victor Cruz, Weston Richburg
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GEICO SportsNite: Giants lose 00:00:49
Giants head coach Ben McAdoo discusses Big Blue's loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

Minnesota's defense denied Odell Beckham Jr. all night and forced two turnovers that led to 10 points, and the Vikings mystified Eli Manning yet again during a 24-10 victory Monday over the New York Giants.

Sam Bradford threw a touchdown pass to tight end Kyle Rudolph for the third straight game and kept his turnover-free streak intact, helping the Vikings (4-0) lead from start to finish after falling behind in each of their first three wins.

Beckham, who has yet to score this season, was smothered by cornerback Xavier Rhodes and had 23 yards on three catches. Victor Cruz and Sterling Shepard were quiet, too, and Manning was erratic as ever while finishing 25 for 45 for just 261 yards. Rhodes picked him off in the third quarter, the 15th interception for Manning in eight career starts against the Vikings. He's 2-6 with only five touchdown passes.

Tags: Darian Thompson, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Dwayne Harris, Eli Apple, Eli Manning, Larry Donnell, Minnesota Vikings, Nat Berhe, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Sterling Shepard, Trevin Wade, Victor Cruz
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New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (Robert Deutsch/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (Robert Deutsch/USA Today Sports Images)

John Fennelly, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr | | Archive Posts

Looking at this week's matchup between the New York Giants and the Minnesota Vikings on Monday, it looks pretty simple to the naked eye. With their running game hit by injuries to RBs Rashad Jennings and Shane Vereen, the Giants will have to pass the ball to win against the ninth-ranked pass defense in the NFL.

That won't be easy.

Tags: Bobby Hart, Eli Manning, Ereck Flowers, Marshall Newhouse, Minnesota Vikings, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Sterling Shepard, Victor Cruz, John Fennelly
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Vacc's 3 Keys: Giants-Vikings 00:03:23
SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano believes the Giants need to hold off the Vikings' ferocious defense to earn a victory Monday night.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

THE GAME: The Giants (2-1) at Minnesota Vikings (3-0) at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, on Monday, Oct. 3 at 8:30 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER: It looks like it'll be a really nice fall night in Minnesota with temperatures in the mid-60s … but none of that will matter because the game will be played in a dome.

Tags: Bobby Hart, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Eli Apple, Eli Manning, Ereck Flowers, Marshall Newhouse, Nat Berhe, Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Giants cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie defends against Washington Redskins wide receiver DeSean Jackson. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Giants cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie defends against Washington Redskins wide receiver DeSean Jackson. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

John Fennelly, SNY.TV Facebook | Twitter | Tumblr | | Archive Posts

The New York Giants needed to come out in 2016 healthy and hearty, but instead may be poised for another season besieged by key injuries. It may be too soon to tell, but at this rate, they could be headed for another year at the top of the "adjusted games lost" column.

New York led the NFL in adjusted games lost, a metric to evaluate how teams were affected by injuries, for the third straight season in 2015, according to Football Outsiders.

Tags: Darian Thompson, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Eli Apple, Landon Collins, Mykkele Thompson, Nat Berhe, Nikita Whitlock, Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, John Fennelly
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 (Robert Deutsch)
(Robert Deutsch)

Giants RB Shane Vereen suffered a triceps injury that will keep him out for at least the next two months, and might turn out to be season-ending.

Vereen will need surgery, the team announced, and will likely be placed on injured reserve later this week. And while the team initially announced the injury as a "season-ending" one, several sources indicate the Giants have hope that Vereen can return in late November.

That's possible due to the NFL's short-term injured reserve rule, which was amended slightly this year. Teams no longer need to declare a player as being on short-term IR. They can simply reactive the player whenever he's eligible. Players can return to practice six weeks after they are placed on IR and play in a game eight weeks after.

Tags: Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Justin Pugh was right when he said "Everything you can do to lose a game today, we did." And the Giants (2-1) certainly did lose it. They were in control at the start before a plague of penalties and turnovers helped them throw their game against the Redskins (1-2) away.

And that could be costly because not only did it knock them out of first place in the NFC East -- behind the stunning, 3-0 Philadelphia Eagles -- but it robbed them of their momentum and blew a chance to really bury the defending division champions. In what is still basically a rebuilding season, every positive step matters.

Tags: Damon Harrison, Eli Manning, Ereck Flowers, Jason Pierre-Paul, Johnathan Hankins, Justin Pugh, Odell Beckham Jr., Olivier Vernon, Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Will Tye, Ralph Vacchiano
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Brad Wing (9) was the holder on Josh Brown's winning field goal in Sunday's game. (Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports) (Robert Deutsch)
Brad Wing (9) was the holder on Josh Brown's winning field goal in Sunday's game. (Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports) (Robert Deutsch)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Down on the field at MetLife Stadium, it sounded like there were nothing but cheers as Josh Brown's game-winning, 23-yard field goal sailed through the uprights as time expired. Everything felt back to normal for him.

He was a football hero, once again.

Tags: Bobby Hart, Eli Manning, Josh Brown, Marshall Newhouse, New Orleans Saints, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Shane Vereen, Sterling Shepard, Victor Cruz, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (William Hauser/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (William Hauser/USA Today Sports Images)

The 53-man roster is set (for now), and the New York Giants believe they will be back on the road to success after missing the postseason the past four years. Their roster has been upgraded in many key areas, with the exception of the offensive line and a blocking tight end.

But who will be the stars and the face of this club in 2016? It's clear QB Eli Manning and WR Odell Beckham Jr. will be among the top players in the league at their positions, but who else will garner Pro Bowl interest this year?

On offense, no one can possibly expect any of the linemen to get any type of recognition. Center Weston Richburg is considered one of the best players at his position, but the negative advance reviews on the Giants' offensive line is going to hurt his chances. The rest of the group has either struggled or was injured this summer, so the offense would have to play lights out for them to get any consideration.

Tags: B.J. Goodson, Brad Wing, Damon Harrison, Darian Thompson, Devon Kennard, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Eli Apple, Eli Manning, Janoris Jenkins, Jason Pierre-Paul, Johnathan Hankins, Josh Brown, Kerry Wynn, Landon Collins, Larry Donnell, Nat Berhe, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Owa Odighizuwa, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Sterling Shepard, Trevin Wade, Victor Cruz, Weston Richburg, Will Tye, John Fennelly
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 (Vincent Carchietta)
(Vincent Carchietta)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - It's a good bet that Eli Manning and Odell Beckham will spend all of Thursday night standing on the sidelines. Victor Cruz and most of the starting offensive line figure to play, though only for a series or two. Same goes for much of the starting defense.

In other words, if you want to see anything that matters, don't blink.

Tags: Andre Williams, Dwayne Harris, Eli Manning, Geremy Davis, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Sterling Shepard, Victor Cruz, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Giants quarterback Ryan Nassib (12) passes against the New York Jets during the second half at MetLife Stadium. The Giants won 21-20. (Vincent Carchietta)
New York Giants quarterback Ryan Nassib (12) passes against the New York Jets during the second half at MetLife Stadium. The Giants won 21-20. (Vincent Carchietta)

Ralph Vacchiano, NFL Insider | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Like Shane Vereen said, everybody "Relax", OK? Sure, the Giants have been awful this preseason, especially on offense. Yeah, the offensive line has major issues. OK, they're paper thin at pretty much every position. And yes, the regular season is now just 11 days away.

Wait. What was I saying? Oh, right. Relax and stop panicking. There's still another preseason game to go. Yeah, maybe the starters won't play much. And the Giants do have a bunch of nagging injuries already.

Tags: Andre Williams, Bobby Hart, Dwayne Harris, Eli Manning, Geremy Davis, Justin Pugh, Mark Herzlich, Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Ryan Nassib, Shane Vereen, Victor Cruz, Will Beatty, Ralph Vacchiano
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Jennings to be lead back in 2016 00:03:27
New York Giants running backs coach Craig Johnson talks about last year's RB rotation and Rashad Jennings being the lead back in 2016.

Ralph Vacchiano, NFL Insider | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Giants have no intention of continuing the ill-conceived four-man running back rotation that doomed their rushing attack for most of last season. At least at the start, they plan to hand Rashad Jennings the ball.

It won't be all him, of course, but it looks like he'll be the workhorse in the Giants' backfield - at least as long as he's productive and healthy. That's the ideal scenario, running backs coach Craig Johnson said. They want to ride Jennings like they did over the final four games last year.

Tags: Andre Williams, Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (William Hauser)
(William Hauser)

The long summer break is making the clubhouse turn and is heading down the stretch. NFL training camps will open next week, ending a six-week drought of non-football activities for most teams. The Giants will report next Thursday, July 28, to the Quest Diagnotics Training Center for physicals and conditioning.

Unfortunately, that means we have one more week of prognostication and conjecture before there is any actual news to report.

The Giants head into camp in pretty good shape. All players are under contract for at least the upcoming season and the injuries are at a bare minimum.

Tags: Eli Manning, Josh Brown, Orleans Darkwa, Zak DeOssie, John Fennelly
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New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings runs the ball during mini camp at Quest Diagnostics Training Center. (William Hauser/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings runs the ball during mini camp at Quest Diagnostics Training Center. (William Hauser/USA Today Sports Images)

The New York Giants' running backs were relegated to spectators last season with the team throwing the ball 61.7 percent of the time, leading to an inconsistent rushing attack amid their four-player running back-by-committee rotation.

The Giants gained 1,609 rushing yards on 403 attempts (a 4.0 YPC average) in 2015, averaging 100.6 yards per game, which ranked 18th in the NFL.

But the real issues were not production-based. Then-offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo, who has been promoted to head coach, was quick to pull the plug on the running game early in games and rarely stuck with one back for any length of time.

Tags: Andre Williams, Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, John Fennelly
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New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard during rookie minicamp at Quest Diagnostics Training Center. (William Hauser/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard during rookie minicamp at Quest Diagnostics Training Center. (William Hauser/USA Today Sports Images)

The New York Giants' major focus this past offseason was to rebuild their decimated defense, and they made major moves to do so, but they also added some significant pieces to their already powerful offense.

The club has one of the league's top passing attacks, led by WR Odell Beckham Jr., but were searching for some depth behind their superstar. Since Victor Cruz has missed the team's last 26 games with multiple leg injuries, the Giants wanted to bring in some insurance, courting several veteran free agents but falling short in signing them.

Instead, they snared Oklahoma playmaker Sterling Shepard in the second round of April's NFL Draft. Pundits and draftniks began praising the pick immediately. The Giants may have gotten the biggest steal of the draft, they said.

Tags: Andre Williams, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, Victor Cruz, John Fennelly
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New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham before a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. (Derick E. Hingle/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham before a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. (Derick E. Hingle/USA Today Sports Images)

The Giants had a historic offseason, signing big-ticket free agents and drafting six versatile and explosive players, three of whom may help their already powerful offense become more dynamic.

GM Jerry Reese came into the offseason with a long "to-do" list to try to rebuild the Giants' league-worst defense, and they added as many as six new starters through free agency and the draft.

But what about the offense? Here's a look at what's new and different this summer.

Tags: Andre Williams, Bobby Hart, Dwayne Harris, Eli Manning, Ereck Flowers, Geremy Davis, John Jerry, Justin Pugh, Larry Donnell, Marshall Newhouse, Nikita Whitlock, Odell Beckham Jr., Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Ryan Nassib, Shane Vereen, Victor Cruz, Weston Richburg, Will Tye, John Fennelly
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New York Giants running back Orleans Darkwa (26) in a preseason NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. (Andrew Weber)
New York Giants running back Orleans Darkwa (26) in a preseason NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. (Andrew Weber)

Running back Orleans Darkwa has a small fracture in his leg, which is preventing him from participating in mini-camp, according to Jordan Raanan of NJ.com.

Darkwa is expected to miss a month.

The Giants have RBs Rashad Jennings, Andre Williams and Shane Vereen on the roster from last season. They also signed Bobby Rainey.

Tags: Orleans Darkwa

New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings finds a hole during the second quarter against the Carolina Panthers at MetLife Stadium. (Jim O'Connor/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings finds a hole during the second quarter against the Carolina Panthers at MetLife Stadium. (Jim O'Connor/USA Today Sports Images)

The Giants' rushing game is considered one of the league's least-used and least-productive in the NFL. That perception is probably generated due to the fact they don't have that "bell cow" runner to carry the mail like some other team.

Rashad Jennings, whom GM Jerry Reese described as that type of back two years ago, led the team in attempts (195), yards (863) and yards per carry (4.4) last season. The numbers aren't bad considering he had to share carries with three other backs.

The Giants' second back is Andre Williams, who seems to be stuck in neutral. He averaged 2.9 yards per attempt. Then there is Shane Vereen, who is more of a receiver than scrimmage runner, especially considering he finished second on the club in receptions behind WR Odell Beckham Jr. last year. Orleans Darkwa is the fourth back who seems to inject life into the offense every time he steps on the field.

Tags: Andre Williams, Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, John Fennelly
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The Giants have tendered contracts to all six of their exclusive rights free agents, reports Tom Pelissero of USA Today (Mar. 4).

The exclusive rights free agents are RB Orleans Darkwa, TE Jerome Cunningham, S Bennett Jackson, TE Will Tye, WR Myles White, and P Brad Wing.

Tags: Bennett Jackson, Brad Wing, Jerome Cunningham, Myles White, Orleans Darkwa, Will Tye

New York Giants outside linebacker Devon Kennard (59) rushes as Tampa Bay Buccaneers lineman Joe Hawley (68) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers center Evan Smith (62) blocks during the second quarter at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement)
New York Giants outside linebacker Devon Kennard (59) rushes as Tampa Bay Buccaneers lineman Joe Hawley (68) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers center Evan Smith (62) blocks during the second quarter at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement)

The New York Giants released the following injury report following practice on Thursday:

Did not practice

  • OT - Ereck Flowers (Ankle)
  • WR - Dwayne Harris (Shoulder)
  • LB - Devon Kennard (Foot)
  • DT - Markus Kuhn (Knee)
  • S - Cooper Taylor (Concussion)

Limited practice

  • RB - Orleans Darkwa (Illness)
  • DE - George Selvie (Concussion)
  • LB - James Morris (Quad) 

New York travels to Minnesota to play the Vikings on Sunday night at 8:30. 

Tags: Dwayne Harris, Ereck Flowers, George Selvie, Markus Kuhn, Orleans Darkwa, Tim Reilly

New York Giants wide receiver Dwayne Harris (17) breaks away from New England Patriots middle linebacker Jonathan Freeny (55) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Jim O'Connor)
New York Giants wide receiver Dwayne Harris (17) breaks away from New England Patriots middle linebacker Jonathan Freeny (55) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Jim O'Connor)

The New York Giants released the following pre-practice injury report on Wednesday:

Will not practice

  • WR - Dwayne Harris (Shoulder)
  • LB - Devon Kennard (Foot)
  • DT - Markus Kuhn (Knee)
  • S - Cooper Taylor (concussion)

Limited practice

Tags: Cooper Taylor, Devon Kennard, Dwayne Harris, George Selvie, Markus Kuhn, Minnesota Vikings, Orleans Darkwa
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New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings (23) runs the ball against the New York Jets during overtime at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)
New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings (23) runs the ball against the New York Jets during overtime at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)

The New York Giants' running game has been somewhat of a four-headed monster this season.

The only problem is the monster hasn't been very scary. Tame might be more accurate.

The weekly plan of alternating Rashad JenningsShane VereenAndre Williams and Orleans Darkwa just hasn't worked.

Tags: Andre Williams, Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen
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New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings jumps over Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive back Jude Adjei-Barimah during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement/USATSI)
New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings jumps over Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive back Jude Adjei-Barimah during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement/USATSI)

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- The New York Giants' running game has been somewhat of a four-headed monster this season.

The only problem is the monster hasn't been very scary. Tame might be more accurate.

The weekly plan of alternating Rashad JenningsShane VereenAndre Williams and Orleans Darkwa just hasn't worked.

Tags: Andre Williams, Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen
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Nov 8, 2015; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings (23) runs with the ball against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Nov 8, 2015; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Giants running back Rashad Jennings (23) runs with the ball against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

The Giants' running game is lost right now. Gaining only 3.8 yards per carry, it is the thing the Giants do when they need a rest from passing. Using four different backs, the Giants have only scored three touchdowns on the ground this season. Conversely, they've only fumbled once and did not lose it.

Offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo told reporters on Friday the running game is set to take off. They just haven't been able to get going, but it's not too late. In evaluating what has been happening over the bye week, McAdoo revealed what he saw on tape these past two weeks.

"In the run game, we were winning the down at a fairly decent clip," he said. "We need to eliminate the zero and negative yardage runs that hurt you. The other thing we do is when we get a chance to have a one-on-one, we need to break an arm tackle and take it to the house, that's something we haven't done."

Tags: Andre Williams, Orleans Darkwa, Rashad Jennings, Shane Vereen, John Fennelly
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New York Giants wide receiver Rueben Randle (82) gives New England Patriots free safety Devin McCourty (32) stiff arm after pass reception during the second half at MetLife Stadium. (Jim O'Connor)
New York Giants wide receiver Rueben Randle (82) gives New England Patriots free safety Devin McCourty (32) stiff arm after pass reception during the second half at MetLife Stadium. (Jim O'Connor)

At 5-5,the New York Giants still control their own fate as they enter the stretch run of the season.
 
Still leading the NFC East, the Giants return from the bye week with a game at Washington before a difficult four-game stretch that leads the team to its regular-season finale against Philadelphia. 
 
After the Week 11 bye, the Giants had a chance to retool and get healthy.
 
Here are five things we'd like to see from the Giants following the bye week:
 
A pass rush
 
The Giants enter Week 12 tied for last place in the NFL with 12.0 sacks. But in Week 10, the Giants seemingly pieced together their best pass rush of the season, sacking Tom Brady three times in a close loss. 
 
Jason Pierre-Paul also had a sack, but it was wiped away by a penalty. Nonetheless, it's an encouraging sign that Pierre-Paul is already making strides despite playing in two games, and the rest of the Giants' defensive line is stepping up to the challenge as well.
 
The Giants need a pass rush to win the NFC East and make noise in the playoffs. It's a blueprint that led the team to two Super Bowls over the past decade. As we saw early on in this season, a lack of a pass rush made the team wildly inconsistent and an easy stepping stone against superior teams.
 
Defensive reinforcements
 
The Giants opened the season with one of the better defenses in the league. However, as injuries began to force players out of the lineup, this rag-tag group began to falter.
 
This week, the Giants had a chance to make room for defensive reinforcements at multiple levels of the defense. Cornerback Prince Amukamara is back opposite of Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. Amukamara had been dealing with a pectoral tear and missed five games. He'll take over for Jayron Hosley in the starting lineup and be an upgrade against teams' No. 2 wideouts.
 
Additionally, J.T. Thomas (ankle) and Uani 'Unga (neck) should be back in the mix, too. Thomas has missed the last three games and Unga has missed the past two. 
 
In other words, nearly the Giants' entire starting linebacking corps was sidelined. With Thomas and Unga back, the front seven is again solidified and should help improve a rush defense that has struggled in recent weeks, allowing more than 100 yards in five of the last six games.
 
More Darkwa
 
The Giants have rushed for more than 100 yards twice in eight games, and no Giants running back has eclipsed 100 yards in a single game to date.
 
That needs to change if the Giants are going to find balance in their offense down the stretch. 
 
With a backfield comprised of Rashad Jennings, Andre Williams, Shane Vereen and Orleans Darkwa, Tom Coughlin must configure a plan in which the team has more success on the ground to set up play-action pass and control the time of possession. Otherwise, the Giants are going to continue to be predictable and inconsistent running the ball. 
 
Darkwa leads the team with a 4.7 yard per carry average, which is more than the Giants' team averages per carry (3.8), which is 27th in the NFL. The 23-year-old back has proven he's deserving of more carries as he fits what the Giants are trying to do offensively. 
 
Ereck Flowers' strong second half
 
The Giants' rookie left tackle is going to remain right where he has been all season since incumbent Will Beatty will not be returning to the field in 2015.
 
Thus far, Flowers has had a very … rookie type of season, with bright spots and blemished all alike. 
 
With some injuries nagging the Giants along the offensive line to Justin Pugh and Weston Richburg, the team needs stability from other areas. One of those areas needs to be at left tackle.
 
Flowers needs to come out strong for the stretch run and protect Eli Manning from some talented edge rushers that the Giants are going to face over the final six games. 
 
Offensive line coach Pat Flaherty said Flowers' technique is improving at practice, but it needs to translates to the games. After a week to continue to perfect his technique, Flowers needs to step up and play a pivotal role on this offensive line.
 
Rueben Randle being a true No. 2
 
Odell Beckham Jr. has enjoyed continued success his sophomore seasons. He ranks seventh in the NFL with 863 receiving yards on 63 receptions to go along with eight touchdowns.
 
And he might not be the most important receiver on the Giants.
 
We know what to expect out of Beckham - playmaking ability, outstanding catch-and-runs and a consistent threat to opposing defenses.
 
However, Beckham is susceptible to struggles when defenses blanket him.
 
Those defenses are unable to do so when Randle is at his best.
 
When Randle catches a touchdown, the Giants are 3-0. He's a perfect complement to Beckham's skillset, and with Dwayne Harris now the full-time starter in the slot and perhaps Hakeem Nicks finding a niche role in the offense, Randle needs to step up and be a true No. 2 option for Manning.
 
Randle has seen an uptick in targets. Six seems to be a magic number of sorts. When Randle is targeted six or more times, the Giants are 3-2. Not too shabby.

 

Tags: Ereck Flowers, Jason Pierre-Paul, Orleans Darkwa, Prince Amukamara, Rueben Randle, Uani' Unga, Sam Spiegelman

Each day this summer, SNYGiants will profile a lesser-known member of the New York Giants football team. The order will rotate offensive and defensive players.

Name:?Orleans Darkwa

Tags: 2015 New York Giants, Orleans Darkwa, John Fennelly
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