In this edition, the topics include biggest concerns before training camp, the fullback situation, and the most likely rookie on the rise in his first year.
Q: What do you think is the biggest concern the Giants have going into training camp?
A: I think at or near the top of the list is the status of defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, who may or may not be ready for the start of the regular season. We probably won't know where Pierre-Paul is in is rehab until the team reports to training camp on July 26.
While the Giants appear to have candidates who can step in for Pierre-Paul, such as Mathias Kiwanuka and Adrian Tracy, what will be interesting to watch, should Pierre-Paul not be available for the start of the season, is how teams block the Giants' front four.
A healthy Pierre-Paul is probably the best candidate to draw double-team blocks; with him out of the lineup, though, the front four will see a much different look which will make it all the more important for the defensive interior to occupy multiple blockers where ever possible in order to free up the ends.
Of course, someone could always step up while Pierre-Paul is sidelined. However, right now, that would be the biggest concern I'd have as we approach training camp.
Q: Hey, what's going on at fullback? Is (Henry) Hynoski's injury bad or will he be back this season?
A: The short answer is that Hynoski should be back at some point this season. Remember, the team announced his injury as a fractured tibia and a MCL - there was no mention of him injuring his ACL or any other ligament. So if we look at the glass as being half-full, the lack of any follow up announcement involving his ACL or anything else in his knee, that likely means there was nothing additional to be concerned about.
Will he be ready for the start of the season? My guess is he will not be on the field for opening day, As for when we might see him on the field, that will depend on when he is cleared to begin practicing and how long it takes to get back into "football shape" as far as running, cutting, and absorbing the beating that fullbacks typically deal with.
I do believe that Hynoski will start training camp on active PUP, where if he is able to pass a physical before the start of the season, he will be allowed to practice. And yes, he will count against the 90-man training camp roster; if he is still on PUP when the final 53-man roster is announced, ten he will be moved to a reserve list where he will not be eligible to return to practice until the seventh week of the season.
Q: Which rookie do you think will make the biggest impact this year?
AL: This one is always tough to gauge because injuries could influence snaps and/or numbers at each position. My inclination is to say Johnathan Hanks will be a heavy (no pun intended) contributor as part of the defensive tackle rotation. I think safety Cooper Taylor could also be someone to watch.
As for first rounder Justin Pugh, it looks like they want him in the starting lineup as quickly as possible, but where that spot will be remains to be seen as Pugh revealed that the coaches told him to be prepared to spend some time at left guard in addition to right tackle.
Have a Giants football question? Post it below in the comments or tweet it to me @Patricia_Traina, and I'll use some of the best ones in upcoming mailbags. Thanks!
Patricia Traina is a New Jersey-based, accredited sportswriter who covers the New York Giants for Inside Football. She is also a member of the Professional Football Writers of America. Follow her on Twitter @Patricia_Traina.
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