I'll get to my suggested 53-man roster in a bit, but first...
Preseason Game Four Notes:
Well the receivers certainly looked like, dare I say, NFL caliber receivers. It didn't hurt that they were playing against the Pats' second teamers. But they ran the routes well and made the plays they should have made, without dropping many balls.
Sinorice Moss had the huge game he needed to stick on the roster or maybe to raise his trade value. He had 35 yards and two touchdowns, as well as a dropped pass.
Derek Hagan didn't look so bad either, although most of his contributions were on special teams. He did have a key eight-yard reception on a fourth and seven, but he also dropped a pass.
Hakeem Nicks had another long touchdown reception. Coach Coughlin might not name him a starter, but it's looking more and more like he'll be the Giants' most productive receiver.
Michael Matthews had a great block on Kevin Boss' 44 yard catch and run. He is a valuable blocking tight end, which should allow him to make the team over Darcy Johnson.
Andre Woodson showed that last week's nightmare was not a fluke. I'm not sure he should even be on an NFL practice squad.
Rhett Bomar had a rough game as well, but he gets much more leeway. The rookie has seen very little playing time this preseason, and was playing with lesser receivers. Shaun Bodiford dropped a catchable pass and seemingly ran the wrong route on another play.
Bomar threw an ugly interception, but he looks like he has the makings of a very good quarterback. He has a quick release and puts some zip on his passes. He has great athleticism and mobility.
If the Giants cannot find room for him on the roster, it would be a shame to see another team steal him away from the practice squad. I have a feeling that the reason he saw the field so sparingly is because the Giants coaches don't want there to be much game film on him so no other team will want to gamble on adding him to their roster. I don't know if this will work...
Dave Tollefson is a player. Hopefully he is not a casualty of the numbers game, because he could be a very useful rotation player on a less stocked team. For the Giants, he would provide great depth, and would not be a weak spot if forced into action.
William Beatty looks more polished than I would have thought. Hopefully he will not be forced into action, as continuity is one of the most important things for an offensive line. But if he is forced into action, I'll feel a lot better than I did when Kevin Boothe was playing.
He might only make the team as a place holder for Michael Boley (who is suspended for week one), but Gerris Wilkinson was all over the place against the Patriots. He's always been athletic, and he looked like an impact player on Thursday.
The offense made it into the red-zone (or "red area" as Howard Cross calls it) late in the game, but again failed to throw a fade to red zone weapon Ramses Barden. I don't understand how they can continue to not give Barden any action in the end zone. Isn't that why he was drafted?
Allen Patrick looked very good, sprinting for 50 yards on 8 carries. Unfortunately, his chances of making the roster may be decided by other position battles. If the Giants decide to go with seven receivers or three quarterbacks, they may deem a fourth halfback unnecessary. It seems risky to go with only three half backs, but it wouldn't be the worst idea. Also, who knows what halfbacks will be available after other teams make their cuts.
Bob Papa gave a shout out to my High School, East Meadow High School! Pats rookie lineman Rich Ohrenberger, the pride of East Meadow football, recorded one holding penalty against former Penn State teammate Maurice Evans. His side of the line also gave up two sacks to the Giants' first-teamers.
Not a great day, but it was just neat to hear them call his name. Anyway, it's tough when you're a rookie going up against guys like Justin Tuck and Fred Robbins. At least I imagine it would be tough...
And now, here is how I would structure the Giants' 53-man roster:
Eli Manning, David Carr, Rhett Bomar
Brandon Jacobs, Ahmad Bradshaw, Danny Ware
Domenik Hixon, Steve Smith, Hakeem Nicks, Mario Manningham, Ramses Barden, Sinorice Moss, Derek Hagan
Kevin Boss, Travis Beckum, Michael Matthews
Shaun O’Hara, David Diehl, Kareem McKenzie, Chris Snee, Rich Seubert, William Beatty, Kevin Boothe, Tutan Reyes, Guy Whimper
Justin Tuck, Osi Umenyiora, Mathias Kiwanuka, Dave Tollefson
Fred Robbins, Barry Cofield, Chris Canty, Rocky Bernard
Antonio Pierce, Danny Clark, Chase Blackburn, Zack DeOssie, Bryan Kehl, Jonathan Goff, Clint Sintim, Gerris Wilkinson
Corey Webster, Therrell Thomas, Aaron Ross, Kevin Dockery, Bruce Johnson
Kenny Phillips, Michael Johnson, C.C. Brown, Sha'Reff Rashad
Lawrence Tynes, Jeff Feagles
Travonti Johnson, Vince Anderson, Allen Patrick, DeAndre Wright, Maurice Evans
Michael Boley is suspended for week one.
Stoney Woodson and Jay Alford are on IR
Adam Koets could make it over Reyes if healthy