Pat Shurmur won’t spill plan for playing Beckham

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, more takeaways The New York Giants
concluded their week of joint practices with the Detroit Lions Thursdaymorning.
Unlike previous practices, these were not hard-fought or fast paced — both
because of weather concerns as well as making sure the players “have their legs”
for Friday night’s preseason game. After practice, head coach Pat Shurmur spoke
to the media about topics ranging from injured players, to situational football,
to Davis Webb. On situational footballRather than having an off day before
Friday night’s game, the Giants and Lions engaged in a two-thirds speed “jog
through” practice — or at least tried to, as the weather permitted. “Good
situational work today,” Shurmur said. “We got some special teams, we actually
shortened what we planned to train a little bit, but we got through some good
situational work really to cap off what I think was a really, really good week.
Very competitive. As I mentioned all week, it’s always good to go against
another team and now we’ll try to get their legs back, get them ready to go and
get after it tomorrow night.”But just because the last practice was over,
doesn’t mean that the work is done until kick-off Friday night. Shurmur and the
Giants still had work to do, namely identifying and correcting errors from the
day’s practice.Shurmur said, “We’re going to go back and we’re going to dig into
it and make sure that we’re ready for all the situations. We were really good
with what we did today, but there’s a couple errors in there that we need to
fix.”Pointedly, he referenced a mental mistake made by Davis Webb at the end of
the first half against the Cleveland Browns.“I don’t know if I’ve ever spoken
about it in this setting, but there needs to be a shared situational awareness
among our coaches and players so that when we have 10 seconds left and no
timeouts, these are the types of plays we’re going to call and if we’re on the
flip side of it, this is the type of situation and are these the types of plays
the other team is going to call. So, that can help you at the end of a game.” On
injured playersWith players like Saquon Barkley, Darian Thompson ,
and Connor Barwin on the side dealing with injury, Shurmur was asked whether or
not those players wasted their time in Detroit. “No, not at all,” he said.
“That’s a good question, but no. Anything you see, you can learn from, and this
isn’t the first time a guy tweaked a hamstring. So, no, it’s very important to
watch. There were a lot of things that happened out there on the field today.
We’re going to go back and we’re going to dig into it and make sure that we’re
ready for all the situations.”It seems likely that the players who spent the
time in Detroit working on the side won’t play Friday night, but Shurmur
wouldn’t commit to saying one way or the other.“We’ll have to see,” Shurmur
said. “You guys can all guess and surmise as to who’s going to be in the game.
As we go along here, I’m just not going to talk about it. I have ideas and
plans, and certainly the health of a player may affect that at some
point.”Likewise, he wouldn’t commit to whether or not Odell Beckham Jr. would
play, saying, “I’ve got a plan, so it will get revealed tomorrow night.”On
roster building “We want to keep the best 53 guys. Dave (Gettleman) teases me
that I’m a body collector. I like having lots of players around, and certainly I
think the quarterback position is important, and they’re hard to develop, so if
you’ve got a guy worthy of being on the 53, we’ll keep him,” Shurmur said. “If
for some reason there’s a player in another position that’s more valuable at
that time, then you keep two.” As happened last year New York Giants
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, the league will have one massive cut-down day
after the fourth preseason game, instead of first cutting down to 75 players
between the third and fourth games.“Personnel is a daily, constant
conversation,” he added, when asked when the personnel decision is made. “We’re
always kind of in our mind thinking, we ask the question frequently during
training camp, ‘if we had to play tomorrow, who are our guys?’ But you put it in
pencil and we’re allowed to change our minds, because guys either perform better
or worse than we thought as we go through the preseason, and then you pick it
based on that.”On Davis WebbThe Giants, and their fans, were dismayed to see
Davis Webb have a terrible game against the Cleveland Browns. He settled down to
complete six of his last eight passes, but overall he had one of the worst
performances of any quarterback in the first week of the preseason. However,
Shurmur has faith that he will improve in his second game out.“Yeah,” he said,
“I think young players tend to improve. It was his first time in our system,
playing really in a new system. So yeah, I certainly hope he’s better.”After the
game, Webb and Shurmur both blamed high emotion and excitement for his lack of
control with the football. Part of being a coach is recognizing that different
players respond differently.“As coaches, we try to do that, and the fact that he
cares is a good thing”, Shurmur said. “It’s just like steering a ship, we’ve
just got to guide him through and part of that is helping him New York Giants
, just reminding him, ‘hey listen, just settle down, it’s all
good’. Nothing more complicated than that.”Reporters noted that Webb got a
number of reps with the starting offense in joint practices, and asked if that
was part of his game plan for the week. “We’ll see,” Shurmur said. “You’re
backing into my thoughts game-wise. I appreciate the question, but we’ll see.”
The Washington Redskins could not have picked a better time to play the New York
Giants.The NFC East-leading Redskins (4-2) have won two straight, are coming off
a big win over Dallas, and now face a team that's seen its management trade
cornerback Eli Apple and defensive tackle Damon Harrison — two starters — for
late-round draft picks in the week leading to Tuesday's NFL trading
deadline.It's clearly a housecleaning as the Giants (1-6) struggle through a
second straight dismal season.How the Giants react remains to be seen.The bottom
line is the Redskins should be licking their chops heading into Sunday's game at
MetLife Stadium. New York has lost four in a row and won four times in 23 games
over the last two seasons.Washington left tackle Trent Williams is wary,
insisting the so-called easy game might be a distraction."You're going through
so much that football is your sanctuary," Williams said of the Giants. "Football
is where you kind of go to let off frustration. We can go in there and look at
them from an outside perspective and say, 'All right, they're going through a
lot. They should easily lay down and let us win this game.'"In reality, no
matter what they're going through, playing on Sunday can fix everything. When
your building is on fire and you win, it kind of puts it off for a second."The
Giants were adamant in saying they will show up Sunday."We're not throwing in
the towel at all," said B.W. Webb, who will probably replace Apple. "That's
disrespectful to us players. We don't go into any game thinking we are just
going to throw it away. We fight every week for our families, our kids and each
other. It's disrespectful when we hear that, that someone says we are tanking or
something like that."Some things to watch on Sunday:ALL DAY, NOT EVERY DAYAdrian
Peterson still is producing at age 33, with four games of at least 95 yards
rushing, and 10th in the NFL with 438 yards despite dealing with shoulder and
knee injuries. With a career total of 12 New York Giants
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,714 entering Sunday, the guy nicknamed "AD" — as in
"All Day" — needs only 26 to surpass Tony Dorsett and move into ninth in league
history.In a nod to Peterson's age and health, coach Jay Gruden is giving his
starting running back Wednesdays off. "The crazy thing is, I don't like it. I'd
rather be out there, practicing with those guys. But (I'm) being smart: I've
been around for a long time. I think I've paid my dues," Peterson said.TRADE
AFTERMATHThe trades of Apple to the Saints and Harrison to the Lions create
opportunities for Webb and tackle Dalvin Tomlinson. Webb has been the Giants'
nickel back. He probably will start at cornerback, like he did when Apple missed
a game in Houston with a groin injury. Coincidently, the Giants won. Tomlinson
has been in the rotation at tackle. He probably will start with rookie B.J.
Hill.With Harrison gone, the Skins are sure to test them with Peterson.WATCHING
SAQUONJust like everyone else who watches football, Peterson has been impressed
by Giants rookie RB Saquon Barkley. "From what I've seen so far, he shows some
God-given ability. Great patience. His lower-body strength and balance is
amazing. He flows," Peterson said. "I always sit back and watch young guys when
they come in, and he's one of those guys that really excites me."O LINEThe
Giants thought they solved their offensive line problems signing left tackle
Nate Solder and guard Pat Omameh as free agents and drafting guard Will
Hernandez in the second round. Despite having Barkley in the backfield, the
Giants rank 30th in rushing and Eli Manning has been sacked 24 times. Solder and
Hernandez have struggled on the left side the past two weeks. Expect the
Redskins to probe there.Giants coach Pat Shurmur expects to use the same
combination as last week, with Spencer Pulley starting at center and John Greco
at right guard. Chad Wheeler is the right tackle.ALABAMA WALLSafety D.J.
Swearinger has nicknamed defensive linemen Jonathan Allen and Daron Payne "the
Alabama Wall," and that duo — first-round draft picks the past two years after
starring for the Crimson Tide — is a big part of Washington's sudden ability to
stop the run. The Redskins are giving up 87.3 yards on the ground each game,
third in the NFL.One key: Washington is one of two clubs (Minnesota is the
other) not to allow a 20-yard run this season. Last season, Washington owned the
worst run defense in the NFL, allowing 134.1 yards per game.AP Pro Football
Writer Howard Fendrich contributed to this report.
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