A changing of the guard was set in motion last month when the Giants released running back Ahmad Bradshaw. The six-year vet’s departure jumpstarted the competition for the lead role, and David Wilson, last year’s first-round draft choice by the Giants, has set his eyes on it.
“I mean that’s definitely my intention,” Wilson said Thursday on ESPN NY 98.7FM. “But you’ve got to go in and come into camp and definitely lock the spot down. So I’ve been working hard this offseason so I can give myself the best chance to do that.”
Among others, Andre Brown shares that intention and will also vie for more time out of the backfield. But Wilson believes turning the corner after the bye in Week 11 of his rookie season will give him an edge heading into 2013.
“After that bye week, I took that time to really stay in the meeting rooms extra and definitely catch up,” said Wilson, who had just 18 carries before the break and three games with none. “So after that bye week, I think that’s when I really had a good grasp of what was going on, and I was able to go out there and perform and have some good games and some good moments.”
Wilson went on to finish the year with 71 carries for 358 yards (5.0 average) and four touchdowns, and averaged more than 10 rushes for 60 yards per game in the final four weeks of the season. The increased load was partly due to his role in the blocking schemes, which had been a question mark early on.
“It was pretty fair,” Wilson said of people critiquing him. “When the game’s on the line, the ball is going to be in Eli [Manning’s] hands for him to make the decisions. So in order for him to make decisions accurately, he’s got to be able to stand in the pocket. But as well, it was a part of just bringing me along slow. The coaches weren’t really in a rush. Ahmad was definitely doing his part in making plays for the team, and I guess they didn’t feel like they were going to rush to really get me on the field.”
Of course, the final question remains his role as a kick returner.
Wilson became the first player in NFL history to record 200 kick return yards and 100 rushing yards in the same game with his performance against New Orleans in Week 14. But if he plans on being an every-down back, can he still return kicks?
“That’s definitely one of my passions,” he said. “So I would definitely enjoy being back there and helping in that aspect too.”
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» QB David Carr returns to backup Eli & prep D
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Tags: Andre Brown, David Wilson
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14:23 — Chase Blackburn breaks up a pass in the end zone on fourth-and-5. Giants take over on downs.
11:28 — Andre Brown rips off a 16-yard run into Packers territory.
5:03 — Manning’s incomplete pass on fourth-and-goal turns the ball over on downs. Packers take over on their own 2.
*Packers pull Rodgers on the ensuing drive.
0:00 — GIANTS 38, PACKERS 10
Tags: Andre Brown, Chase Blackburn
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The Giants and Green Bay Packers meet for the 51st time in the regular season, with the Packers holding a 27-21-2 lead in the series. The two teams have met seven times in the postseason, with the Packers leading, 4-3. In their last meeting, the Giants defeated the Packers, 37-20, in a 2011 NFC Divisional Playoff Game at Lambeau Field.
Kickoff: 8:20 PM ET
Location: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J.
Weather: Fair. 37°F. Winds WSW at 10 to 15 mph.
New York Lineup Changes
Green Bay Lineup Changes
» 54 Dezman Moses for 52 Clay Matthews at ROLB
» 29 Casey Hayward for 37 Sam Shields at RCB
15:00 — Game Day Captains: Chris Snee and Chris Canty along with season captains Eli Manning, Justin Tuck, and Zak DeOssie. Giants win the coin toss and elect to receive. The Packers defend the west goal.
12:43 — TOUCHDOWN GIANTS. Andre Brown runs in for a 2-yard score. XP is GOOD. NEW YORK 7, GREEN BAY 0 (Drive: 6 plays, 74 yards in 2:22)
*That was Brown’s eighth rushing touchdown of the year.
12:33 — On his first play back from a six-game absence, Kenny Phillips wraps up Starks on a three-yard run.
10:58 — TOUCHDOWN PACKERS. Aaron Rodgers hits Jordy Nelson for a 61-yard score down the right sideline. The Replay Assistant challenged the runner was in bounds, and the play was Upheld. XP is GOOD. NEW YORK 7, GREEN BAY 7 (Drive: 4 plays, 77 yards in 1:54)
7:51 — Chris Canty trips up Rodgers for his second sack of the season. Giants were using a four-safety look on the third-down play.
7:21 — Packers’ Crosby misses a 55-yard field goal attempt, wide left.
4:08 — Manning lowers his shoulder and scrambles for a gain of 13 yards and a first down.
2:44 — TOUCHDOWN GIANTS. Rueben Randle catches his first career touchdown on a 16-yard pass in the back of the end zone. XP is GOOD. NEW YORK 14, GREEN BAY 7 (Drive: 8 plays, 55 yards in 4:37)
2:29 — On the first play of the ensuing drive, Corey Webster intercepts Rodgers and returns it down to the 8-yard line. Play is reviewed and ruled Webster was down by contact on the Packers’ 33.
0:29 — FIELD GOAL GIANTS. Lawrence Tynes makes a 43-yard attempt. NEW YORK 17, GREEN BAY 7 (Drive: 4 plays, 8 yards in 2:03)
0:16 — Chase Blackburn sacks Rodgers for a loss of 8.
0:00 — GIANTS 17, PACKERS 7
Tags: Ahmad Bradshaw, Andre Brown, Chase Blackburn, Chris Canty, Chris Snee, Corey Webster, Eli Manning, Justin Tuck, Kenny Phillips, Lawrence Tynes, Rueben Randle, Zak DeOssie
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During the assistant coaches’ usual bye week availability to the media, Jerald Ingram stood in the hallway of the Timex Performance Center last year talking about his running backs. Andre Brown’s name eventually came up.
At that time, Brown was a member of the practice squad with the primary responsibility of preparing the defense for its next opponent. It’s an integral role on the team, but Brown was waiting for more. Ingram, a 21-year assistant to Tom Coughlin, knew he had to keep him motivated.
So he laid out the example of Ryan Grant, a former scout teamer for the Giants who went on to have back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons and win a Super Bowl with Green Bay.
Fast-forward to Monday and there Ingram stood in the same corridor in between the weight room and locker room with his pupil tied for second in the NFL in rushing touchdowns. The other NFL backs with seven scores: Adrian Peterson, Ray Rice, and Doug Martin.
Not bad for a 25-year-old who has been waived eight times by five teams.
“We’ve seen him develop in our program for the last three years or so,” Ingram said. “And that’s the reason we drafted Andre because when he came out of N.C. State, we thought he could be an every-down kind of guy. He caught the ball well there. He has the great size. He’s got good speed. He just had to have time to learn our offense, and he’s a young rookie out there that’s developing.”
While he’s technically a third-year player, Brown, the Giants’ fourth-round draft choice in 2009, had played in just four games with minus-one rushing yard heading into the season. Through 10 weeks this season, Brown has 60 carries for 321 yards (5.4) and 12 receptions for another 86.
Like all backs in the system, he had to first earn the trust of the coaches. He learned how to do that from Ahmad Bradshaw, who learned from Brandon Jacobs, who learned from Tiki Barber and so on.
“He’s a little brother to Ahmad Bradshaw,” Ingram said of Brown. “Ahmad has taken him underneath his wing, and he’s learning the game now as opposed to just cards in practice and situations and how to help the offensive line and little techniques that Ahmad uses. There are subtleties that never get spelled out that you see that Ahmad does that defenses are like, ‘I don’t want to get cut by him, I don’t want to get chipped by him.’ There are little things as a pro that these guys are learning through Ahmad.”
Tags: Andre Brown, Jerald Ingram
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14:19 — Giants are unable to convert a fourth-and-4, turning the ball over on downs.
11:39 — Andre Brown rushes up the left sideline for 17 yards, the Giants’ longest play of the game.
10:55 — Manning gets strip-sacked and Cincinnati recovers on New York’s 41.
8:08 — Ramses Barden hauls in his second catch for 10 yards. Before today, Barden hadn’t caught a pass since Week 4.
2:50 — TOUCHDOWN GIANTS. Andre Brown leaps in for his seventh touchdown of the season. XP is GOOD. CINCINNATI 31, NEW YORK 13 (Drive: 13 plays, 98 yards in 5:22)
*Brown has 65 yards on seven attempts.
FINAL: BENGALS 31, GIANTS 13
Tags: Andre Brown, Ramses Barden
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15:00 — Pittsburgh begins the quarter third-and-4 on New York’s 23.
12:20 — TOUCHDOWN STEELERS. After three straight Isaac Redman carries, Roethlisberger throws a four-yard touchdown to Emmanuel Sanders. XP is GOOD. PITTSBURGH 7, NEW YORK 0 (Drive: 11 plays, 58 yards in 5:54)
10:50 — Pittsburgh is called for passing interference for 41 yards on a pass intended for Hakeem Nicks.
7:06 — TOUCHDOWN GIANTS. Andre Brown moves the pile for a one-yard score. The play is challenged by the Replay Assistant and the play was upheld. XP is GOOD. NEW YORK 7, PITTSBURGH 7 (Drive: 8 plays, 72 yards in 5:08)
5:29 — TOUCHDOWN GIANTS. Osi Umenyiora strip-sacks Roethlisberger for a loss of six yards. Michael Boley recovers the fumble and returns it 70 yards for the score. The play was challenged by the Replay Assistant and the call was upheld. XP is GOOD. NEW YORK 14, PITTSBURGH 7
1:26 — On third-and-7, Jason Pierre-Paul sacks Roethlisberger for a loss of 12. That’s three on the day from the big three — JPP, Umenyiora and Tuck.
1:02 — Pittsburgh is called for passing interference on a pass intended for Domenik Hixon, moving the ball 46 yards into Steelers territory.
0:36 — Falling short, Lawrence Tynes misses a 51-yard field goal attempt.
0:05 — FIELD GOAL STEELERS. Shaun Suishman makes a 30-yard attempt. NEW YORK 14, PITTSBURGH 10 (Drive: 4 plays, 47 yards in 0:31)
0:00 — GIANTS 14, STEELERS 10
Tags: Andre Brown, Domenik Hixon, Hakeem Nicks, Jason Pierre-Paul, Lawrence Tynes, Michael Boley, Osi Umenyiora
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Every week, we’re asking a handful of Giants players what’s playing in their headphones before a game. This is what they had to say as they take on the Pittsburgh Steelers this Sunday:
S Tyler Sash
Meek Mill – ‘Young and Gettin’ It’
RB Andre Brown
2 Chainz – ‘I’m DIfferent’
CB Jayron Hosley
Curren$y, Kendrick Lamar, Dom Kennedy
“Before the game, I like to listen to more calm, mellow songs. Right before the game, though, I turn it up to get turned up. But early on, I like to focus in on the bus ride so I listen to more mellow stuff.”
Tags: Andre Brown, Jayron Hosley, Spencer Paysinger, Tyler Sash
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This week’s game is the 101st regular season meeting between the two teams, with the Cowboys leading the series, 57-41-2. The two teams have met once in the postseason, when the Giants defeated the Cowboys, 21-17, in the 2007 NFC Divisional Playoff Game. In their last meeting, the Cowboys defeated the Giants, 24-17, in Week 1 in MetLife Stadium.
Kickoff: 4:25 PM ET
Location: Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, Texas
Weather: Sunny. 59°F. Wind: From N 14mph, gusting to 19 mph
» Felix Jones for DeMarco Murray at RB
» Ryan Cook for Phil Costa at C
15:00 — Game Day Captains: Osi Umenyiora and Chris Snee along with season captains Eli Manning, Justin Tuck, and Zak DeOssie. Giants win the coin toss and will receive.
13:38 — Manning completes a deep ball to rookie wide receiver Rueben Randle for a 56-yard gain. Randle entered Sunday’s contest with seven catches for 86 yards.
11:58 — FIELD GOAL GIANTS. Lawrence Tynes makes a 41-yard attempt on the opening drive. GIANTS 3, COWBOYS 0 (Drive: 7 plays, 57 yards in 3:07)
9:23 — S Stevie Brown jumps a pass intended for Dez Bryant and intercepts Tony Romo, returning it 37 yards down to the Dallas 27-yard line. Brown now leads the team with four interceptions.
7:17 — FIELD GOAL GIANTS. Lawrence Tynes makes a 37-yard attempt. GIANTS 6, COWBOYS 0 (Drive: 4 plays, 8 yards in 2:00)
5:57 — Two possessions and two interceptions for the Cowboys. Corey Webster grabs his second of the year and returns it 38 yards down to the Dallas 31.
3:46 — TOUCHDOWN GIANTS. Set up by a pass to Martellus Bennett and two Ahmad Bradshaw runs taking it down to the one-yard line, Andre Brown takes it in for the score around the left end. XP is GOOD. GIANTS 13, COWBOYS 0 (Drive: 4 plays, 31 yards in 2:01)
2:17 — David Wilson’s number is called for the second time of the game, but the rookie loses a yard on the carry.
0:51 — The Giants are forced to punt after a three-and-out, but Dez Bryant muffs the return and Michael Coe recovers the fumble in Dallas territory.
Tags: Ahmad Bradshaw, Andre Brown, Chris Snee, Corey Webster, David Wilson, Eli Manning, Justin Tuck, Lawrence Tynes, Osi Umenyiora, Rueben Randle, Stevie Brown, Zak DeOssie
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Every week, we’re asking a handful of Giants players what’s playing in their headphones. This is what they had to say before they take on the Dallas Cowboys this Sunday on the road:
CB Prince Amukamara
Hillsong United – ‘Aftermath’
RB Andre Brown
Drake – ‘Forever’
DE Adrian Tracy
KB – ‘Zone Out’
Giants Music Playlist vs. Redskins
Giants Music Playlist vs. 49ers
Tags: Adrian Tracy, Andre Brown, Keith Rivers, Prince Amukamara
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15:00 — The Giants begin the second quarter with the ball on Washington’s 21.
14:52 — Ahmad Bradshaw picks up the first down with a 10-yard run-and-catch that was nearly stopped at the line of scrimmage.
12:46 — TOUCHDOWN GIANTS. Back from a concussion that held him out of last week’s game, Andre Brown powers in for a one-yard touchdown set up by Hakeem Nicks’ seven-yard catch that gave the Giants a first-and-goal at the one-yard line. XP is GOOD. GIANTS 7, REDSKINS 3 (Drive: 12 plays, 80 yards in 4:32)
12:00 — Linval Joseph suffers a knee sprain. His return is probable.
8:52 — TOUCHDOWN REDSKINS. Santana Moss catches a short pass from Griffin III and takes it 26 yards into the end zone. XP is GOOD. REDSKINS 10, GIANTS 7 (Drive 8 plays, 80 yards in 3:56)
*The Redskins are 4 of 5 on third-down conversions (The Giants are 3 of 4 themselves).
6:10 — Eli Manning scrambles for five yards, sliding for a first down deep in Washington territory.
3:57 — FIELD GOAL GIANTS. Lawrence Tynes makes a 27-yard attempt after Manning misses an open Victor Cruz in the end zone on third down. GIANTS 10, REDSKINS 10 (Drive: 10 plays, 63 yards in 4:52)
3:53 — Griffin III runs for 28 yards and is eventually pushed out of bounds by Stevie Brown. Alfred Morris follows up with a 30-yard gain of his own.
2:00 — Justin Tuck notches his first sack of the season for a nine-yard loss on third down.
1:54 — FIELD GOAL REDSKINS. Forbath makes a 43-yard attempt. REDSKINS 13, GIANTS 10 (Drive: 6 plays, 55 yards in 2:04)
*Taking over at the 20, Eli Manning runs the two-minute drill and marches the d Giants down the field on 6 of 9 passing.
0:07 — FIELD GOAL GIANTS. Tynes makes a 39-yard field goal. GIANTS 13, REDSKINS 13 (Drive: 10 plays, 59 yards in 1:47)
0:00 — GIANTS 13, REDSKINS 13
Tags: Ahmad Bradshaw, Andre Brown, Eli Manning, Justin Tuck, Lawrence Tynes
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