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From Charlie H. - Please explain your comment that Solder will not be here next year. Why not sign him as an excellent swing tackle? I doubt that other teams will offer him major money.
What's good, Charlie? Solder's contract was amended before the start of this season to include a voidable year next year. If the Giants thought he'd be back, they wouldn't have done that.
Right now, I believe they want to see if Isaiah Wilson will be able to nail down that right tackle spot, though if Matt Peart continues to develop, now right tackle isn't a need.
From John L. - Why does it seem that certain NFC East opponents are consistently upgrading their rosters while the Giants seem to be "hit and then miss" throughout most of the last 4-5 drafts? Are the Giants just too "old school" to figure out who to draft within rounds 3-7?
They always seem to be a step behind the other GMs in the draft and are left to deal with whatever's left in their lap to take their selections...I think if the Bears were so desperate to go up and grab Justin Fields, why did they settle for just ONE number one draft pick in 2022? It seems like they could've bled the Bears for more.
What's up, John? A few things here in your e-mail, so let's take them one point at a time. First, the other teams do have hits and misses when upgrading their roster. I don't follow their roster-building processes as closely as I do the Giants, but I am reasonably sure that the other three teams in the division have had their share of misses.
Second, the idea is to get your first two picks on the field right away. If you can get picks three and four on the field, that's a bonus, and picks five through seven are usually depth guys. Well, this year, the Giants have their first and second-round picks contributing.
Their third and fourth-round picks have been injured, and they got one of their seventh-rounders contributing before he suffered a season-ending injury. That's not too shabby.
As for the deal with the Bears, if the Giants had been in the top-10, maybe they could have bled that deal out some more because the value would have been there. But there comes the point where you have to be reasonable, lest you blow the whole deal.
From George B. - I believe that the defense has regressed primarily because Dalvin Tomlinson was not re-signed because of cap space restrictions. What's your opinion?
George, I've been singing this song now for weeks. I think that, and the loss of Blake Martinez hurt. The other thing I always say is that when you have a new coaching staff, they can kind of catch you off guard, but once a team builds up a full season's worth of film, it's up to the coaches to put wrinkles in to stay ahead of the competition.
I think Patrick Graham did that, but I think the wrinkles he put in aren't necessarily the best fit for the talent.
From Johnny R. - I don't know if you noticed that when Daniel Jones went down and got up, NO TEAMMATE HELP HIM WHEN HE WAS STUMBLING, AND ONLY A COWBOYS PLAYER WENT TO ASSIST HIM.
Johnny, my understanding is when a player is suspected of having been dealt a blow to the head, they are supposed to wait for trained medical officials to come to the scene just in case there was any spinal cord trauma.
That said,--and this is just a guess--maybe his teammates saw him trying to get up and figured he was good, so they were walking back to the huddle. Regardless of the reason, I wouldn't go reading anything into it.
From Joe G. - It seems as if the Refs are hesitant to call the penalties on the other team as they do on the Giants, i.e., pass interference in the end zone, no call. Helmet ripped off Booker near the end zone, no call.
Joe, I don't think the officials are hesitant. I reach out to a retired official I know who always takes the time to answer questions I have about calls and non-calls. I asked this gentleman about the Daniel Jones incident and why that wasn't a penalty for helmet-to-helmet, which I thought should have been called.
Here's his response:
I believe that there are multiple parts to the equation. First, Jones was a runner, so he is not afforded the same protection as a supposed defenseless player. Second, and possibly more important, in watching the play, I felt that it was Jones who led with his head and that he was the one that had the majority of the blame for the head-to-head contact. I do not believe that the defensive player could have done anything to avoid the contact and that it was unfortunate but not worthy of a flag. The kid is trying to win games, and he is doing all that he can. Unfortunately, this causes him to try too hard at times, putting him in harm's way.
I hope this helps.
From Kevin C. - I'm surprised that I haven't read much about several bad calls by officials in the Dallas game. I suppose it's because there isn't much chance they changed the outcome, but I've been watching long enough to know the Cowboys get more than their share of favorable calls, and it makes me angry.
The officials are intimidated by the Cowboys and their obnoxious owner. I'm never surprised when the NFL refs blow a call, but you can bet your house that more bad calls will go to Dallas.
Kevin, if a team has to rely on calls by the officials to influence a game, they're in worse shape than I thought. The bottom line, and where I would direct my anger, is that the Cowboys out hustled the Giants.
The defense was abysmal, and the o-line didn't do a very good job. This isn't like the Washington game where you could make a case that a call cost them a game (though again, if they make a few more plays, then it doesn't come down to a blown call in that game).
Look, all I want to see from this Giants team is as clean a game as possible. They are averaging nine missed tackles per game. Last week they allowed the Cowboys to pressure the quarterbacks on at least 42 percent of the dropbacks.
Giants O-line Coach Rob Sale's Blunt Take on Right Tackle Situation
Giants offensive line coach Rob Sale did not mince words when asked about Matt Peart's development.
Giants' Thursday Injury Report: Shepard, Rudolph Making Progress
The arrow looks like it's pointing up for receiver Sterling Shepard and tight end Kyle Rudolph, both of whom have missed time with injuries.
New York Giants Freddie Kitchens Encouraged by Play Calling Operation Last Week
The Giants are using these last few games to see if Freddie Kitchens is the long-term answer as the offense's play caller.
You can't win football games playing that way, even if you get the calls from the officials you think you should have had.
From Charles J. - When is the owner of this disaster going to hire competent leadership? I am so tired of watching this organization get embarrassed on that football field every Sunday.
Charles, the last thing I want to do is make apologies for the organization. That said, I try to look at as many angles of a situation as possible. What are the factors involved, and how do they influence the thinking?
Let's take the building of the roster this year. I did not agree with the approach because I saw it as a high-risk, high reward proposition. I thought if the plan got derailed, it would screw this team for at least another year.
That said, I understand the reasoning behind it: the Giants, knowing that the cap won't expand until 2023, were looking to create a two-year window for this team to be good.
Look, sometimes you have to take chances and hope they pan out. Of late, some of the macro chances this team has taken haven't panned out. Some of the others have. That's how things roll.
At the end of the day, if the Giants don't win, I think you'll see a change in the front office, yes, even with the injury situation being as it is.
From Henry H. - No way will Jones be ready in 2 weeks--maybe 3 or 4 weeks. The Giants should sign Kaepernick for one year with options. He's ready, and between the two, we have a position of strength. Going forward, we have a mentor and a future QB. Any thoughts?
It looks like this is a moot point, Henry since Jones is ready. But to your point, this Giants team has $2,438,325 in cap space. They cannot afford to spend on any position that might be a short-term solution for an area where they think they might get guys back.
From Pat R. - Even if Daniel Jones is cleared to play Sunday, I hope Judge holds him out. Why risk DJ's health and the team's future for maybe winning one game? If Judge does play Daniel Jones and gets hurt, will anyone GM and or/and Ownership hold Judge accountable?
Pat, you're preaching to the choir on this one. Years ago, I had a mild concussion from being rear-ended in a car accident, and I remember how that affected me for weeks after, even though I was cleared to resume my normal activities.
That said, I'm not a doctor. I don't know how Daniel is feeling. And it's his body, so if he feels comfortable going out there and the medical staff is okay with it, it is what it is.
But you know how I said above how I try to look at all sides of the story? From the Giants' perspective, they're trying to save their season. If there is any chance of having their best players available, they're going to play them. And I hope in Daniel's case it works out, and that offensive line is a lot better than it was last week.
From Nick G. - Who do you think was the best GM in Giants history? If Gentlemen is no longer GM in 2022, who would you like to see take his place?
What's up, Nick? The Giants have only had four general managers in their history, and I'd rank them in the order in which they came: George Young, Ernie Accorsi, Jerry Reese, and Dave Gettleman.
I'm basing that on accomplishment--George pulled that team out of its "15 years of lousy football" period and turned them into a contender using the draft.
Ernie fixed the team when it fell on hard times after Simms retired and built a championship team (not to mention that Eli trade was a game-changer.)
Despite the issues I have with his drafting toward the end of his tenure, Jerry made some smart moves early on in his stint.
Dave? I think the world of him, but when you have two head coaching changes in your tenure that end up making your first draft class almost irrelevant, that's a problem. I liked how he initially cleaned up the cap, but I wouldn't say I like how it's all mucked up again. And while I have agreed with several of his decisions, I'm still trying to figure out some.
As for who would succeed him if the team goes in another direction, I don't have a name to give you. The only thing I think I'd like to see is someone from outside the organization.
From RMRgiants10 (via the message boards): To me, it appears that our base D is now two D tackles, 4 LBs, and 5 D backs. Teams this year are running more when we are in this D and overpowering our front 7.
Add this to the cushion we are giving receivers even on short-yardage downs, it is amazing that we ever force a punt. I don’t know how this approach is playing to the strengths of our players. He seems to be forcing his concept on the players. Am I missing something?
Good observations, and no, you're not missing something. Earlier in this mailbag, I was asked about Dalvin Tomlinson and if they are missing him, and I wonder if that, coupled with the injury to Martinez, has led to the change in thinking. It's frustrating because I think the players are better than what they've shown. That said, they also need to hang onto balls that come their way.
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