EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — Joe Judge took somewhat of a back seat as the New York Giants scrimmaged for the first time since he took over as head coach.
The 38-year-old Judge stood behind the huddle and listened as coordinators Jason Garrett, Pat Graham and Thomas McGaughey called in plays for the offense, defense and special teams on Friday during the roughly two-hour training camp workout at the team’s headquarters.
Judge said the scrimmage was similar to one that two teams would have before playing a preseason game. With no preseason games in this year altered by the coronavirus, teams are having to find ways to simulate play on their own.
Next Friday night, Judge plans to simulate a preseason game during a scrimmage in MetLife Stadium. The bottom line is the level of hitting and tackling will increase in preparation for the opener against Pittsburgh on Sept. 14.
“I kind of sat back today and wanted to observe,” Judge said after practice. “I watched the players up close and I wanted to hear the play being called in the huddle. I wanted to see the players and how they competed during the scrimmage.”
This was the first time quarterback Daniel Jones was able to test out Garrett’s new offense under simulated game conditions.
“I was very pleased with the tone he sets in the huddle,” Judge said of Jones. “He does it every day in practice. But he went out there today in a competitive situation and really stepped up. He has good command. He knows how to use some of the variety of calls and checks within our offense. I thought he really showed up a lot at the end of the scrimmage.”
The offense, which was running plays it had worked on during the week along with some new installations, struggled early against the defense.
“Overall I was encouraged by what we were able to do,” said Jones, who threw touchdowns to wide receiver David Sills and tight end Kaden Smith. “We were able to move the ball down the field and execute. Like any day at practice, like any situation like that in camp, we will have opportunities to learn, and we are going to attack those opportunities.”
NOTES: Cornerback Darney Holmes made the play of the day, a leaping interception of a deep pass by Jones to Golden Tate. The fourth-round draft pick from UCLA fumbled during the return after being hit by tackle Andrew Thomas, the first-round pick. … CB Julian Love knocked a pass out of Tate’s hands near the end zone. … New PK Graham Gano made every attempt. … LB Ryan Connelly, S Xavier McKinney, the second-round pick, and WR Corey Coleman had the day off because they had enough work during the week. … NBC 4 New York will air a videotape of next week’s scrimmage on Saturday, Aug. 29. Judge will wear a microphone during the scrimmage. … The players have off this Saturday after a week in pads. … Jones is going to rest instead of going out for a movie, food and drink. “We are all adjusting to these times, so sacrificing not being able to do some of those things is worth it to us,” the sixth pick in the 2019 draft said of the COVID-19 pandemic.