Archive for the ‘James Butler’ Category

Butler – Brown = $1.9M; Tisch the con artist (PSL Part 6)

March 13, 2009

Butler’s 4 year deal is $3.5M/year. Considering that we signed CC Brown for $1.6M for 1 year, this is far better than spending $3.5M for Butler. Is Butler that much better than Brown? Doubtful, considering how slow Butler is.

This one is 3 days old: Tisch says that the PSLs are well-received by Giants fans. Tisch was there in September at halftime when he was roundly BOOED in reaction to the PSL. So for him to say that the Giants fans are supportive of them is either

(a) delusional or
(b) an outright lie

Since I do not believe that Tisch was born yesterday, I’ll pick (b).

TISCH IS A LIAR. Sure, he is trying to push his product, and he has every right to do that. But please do not take Giants fans for being stupid, gullible, vacuous patsies that are ready to be brainwashed by any public relations that you inject into the media. If you would be kind of enough to at least show your customers a modicum of respect and admit the truth, then perhaps there would be a little less resentment about the situation.

Tisch says there has not been a “backlash.” This is his proof. Does he mean no marches through East Rutherford? Giants fans are too busy trying to earn a living (SO THAT THEY HAVE THE MONEY TO PAY YOU FOR YOUR TICKETS AND PSLs) to have time to organize ‘backlashes’ against an entertainment entity.

No backlash? So what was the halftime booing all about? Be so bold, Mr. No Backlash, and try showing your face for some other halftime promotion this September and see what kind of response you get then, and then tell Ralph Vacchiano and the rest of the media that there is no backlash. There were tons of comments off of the Daily News piece. I read the first 30 of them and of the ones that were positive or negative, it was 21 NAY, 0 YAY. 100% against and negative, spewing their ire at Tisch.

No backlash? Go try walking the corridors of your stadium (hint: NOT the club seats) at intermission… I suspect the reception will be somewhat akin to wearing a Giants jersey at the old Vet or Linc.

It cannot be stated enough times that Tisch and Mara have a right to do anything they want with their franchise. We as fans have plenty of choices. This is not bread or water they are selling us. We may all be emotionally tied to this team, but we can also live without them. It could be a lot worse. That $1K big screen hdtv never looked so good. The beer is reasonably priced, and the only thing I will regret is not being able to boo Tisch. But somehow I suspect that there will be a few people at the game who will want to do that for the rest of us.

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Free Agency Update

March 7, 2009

Courtesy of Garafolo, C.C. Brown’s contract. $1.6M cap for 2009.

Also note the ex-Giants free agents with 4+ years still not signed. James Butler, S; John Carney, K; Jerome McDougle, DE; R.W. McQuarters, CB/KR; Grey Ruegamer, G/C; Rich Scanlon, LB; Amani Toomer, WR; Anthony Wright, QB; Renaldo Wynn, DL.

from the St. Louis Dispatch:
The lack of space (in the Rams’ salary cap) could be one reason nothing has happened with free agent safety James Butler of the New York Giants, who visited Rams Park last week. The other reason could simply be that Butler’s agents, Kevin and Carl Poston, aren’t known for striking deals quickly.
The early deals signed by safeties Gibril Wilson and Yeremiah Bell came in at about $5 million a year or more. The Rams are believed to be offering significantly less to Butler. To date, Butler is not known to have taken any other trips.

Pre Free Agency moves, and a little reality check from Phil Mushnick

February 20, 2009

1) Giants tell Butler to check out free agency and keep them posted.

2) The Browns, Texans and Cardinals are rumored to be interested in Derrick Ward, who is asking for $4M/yr when he turns free agent next week.

3) ESPN’s rumor central has decent buzz.

4) You hear it on this New York Giants football blog all the time, but it is so much more than a lesson in the business world: CONFRONT THE BRUTAL FACTS. So how many of you are surprised when we learn that Shockey will be attending the New Orleans Saints’ off-season program? Brees is the boss down there, and Shockey is finally getting the discipline he needed, something the Giants coaches/players were unable to give him.

4a) On a separate note, at the end of the previous link, they mention the Vilma signing possibility wrt the deadline and the Giants draft pick. If you recall, we mentioned this many moons ago that it would NEVER EVER happen because even if Vilma got all the snaps and needed to be re-signed, the Saints would simply post-date the deal and negate the clause. Shady, yes, but it is done all the time, and there is nothing you can do about it. We’re getting the #2.

5) One of the core themes this blog highlights whenever given the opportunity: protect the integrity of the game or else you have no game. So we get a reminder from Phil Mushnick of the NY Post about what that means. He exposes the blatant hypocrisy of baseball in its simplest form. We are supposed to believe that Donald Fehr held the sport of baseball hostage, that the Union would never let Selig and the owners get steroids tested for in any contract. Bullbrown. BULLBROWN. Take the low road. Do you like the view?

Cinc 13 NYG 10 Halftime

September 21, 2008

Sloppy first half. We could EASILY be getting beat badly in this game, as the score could be 21-10 if not for a few stops inside the red zone. Sure, in those stops we had a pretty good example of Ross releasing his man and making the open field tackle and a Kiwi 3rd down sack. But let’s get right to the problems:

1) Dockery and Butler looked bad this half. The Bengals are clearly attacking these guys. Chatman has 5 receptions in the first half for a reason.

2) Gilbride’s game plan has been terrible. The Bengals have injuries and are depleted in the secondary, and yet we run the ball despite consistent effort on the part of the Bengals to have 8-9 men in the box. Eli does not have the time to be audibling every play at scrimmage (there are enough penalties as it is by our team this half). WHEN WE PASS WE WIN AND WHEN WE RUN (A LOT) WE LOSE. We moved the ball easily when the ball was aloft.

3) Gilbride’s playcalling has been utterly predictable. When we have been in 2nd and short after a first down pass, the chances of the gemn running is like 103%. They pile the men in the box too.

4) Plax had a bad drop early but I believe he was in bounds for the TD. Dierdorf and everyone are looking at the WRONG foot. Everyone in looking at Foot 3. Yes, foot 3 was out of bounds… Foot 2 was in AND foot 1 was already in with the ball in possession.

5) If Coughlin calls another timeout in the 2 min warning of the first half while he does NOT have the ball waiting for the opposing team to get stopped a down or two later, I am going to scream. He did the same bonehead mistake in the Super Bowl, and thank goodness for the Tuck strip and Osi fumble recovery before the end of the half. This time it gives the Bengals an extra 30 seconds and all that time to march down the field. It probably did not matter, as the same 3 goes up, but it could have easily cost us 4 more and who knows if the Robbins block of the FG makes them miss it from just a little further out.

Summary: Beware of Dockery and Butler as the un-dynamic duo. PASS TO WIN this game.
(btw, Boss has the hands, get him the ball more. Ahmad Bradshaw against this defense with pass catching out of the backfield could be lethal. So far he has played zero except specials. kudos to Fred Robbins, Boss, Cofield sack. Hixon and Smith should be ahead of Toomer on the depth chart.)

New York Giants Training Camp Day #2

July 27, 2008

New York Giants Training Camp Report Day #2

items of note>
1) competition at Safety going exactly as anticipated with Johnson and Butler fending off Phillips and Knight early on because of their familiarity with the system, but the latter doing well and projecting a very tight race for starting jobs
2) Manning threw a lot of picks
3) McQuarters, Pierce, Tollefson, Webster and Thomas all mentioned for individual plays
4) Kiwinuka mentioned for sliding in at DE. Can you say 5-1-5 nickel? Now that is a TRUE double nickel. Coughlin went out of his way to praise his attitude and work ethic.
5) Hixon played well on offense. He is taking advantage of the extra time coming from Burress being inactive.
6) With Clark and Wilkinson limited, Kehl and Blackburn getting a lot of work.

ALSO:
Moss on the bubble… this time for real
Coughlin says Burress IS hurting, ankle is sore
Nate Robinson was cut
Jessie Armstead is a volunteer coach
Derek Brown (!) sighting
Asante Samuel strained his hamstring in Eagles camp

Pre-camp ideas and things to watch for

July 24, 2008

1) Safety? Butler. Johnson. Knight. Phillips. Pick 2. At this point people are saying that Knight and Phillips have the best shot to be the starters this season, but this position is WIDE OPEN. I hope there is enough depth so that Butler is cut. But in a strange way, I would not be surprised if he started! This is because all 4 are imperfect. They each have strengths and weaknesses.

Butler (see previous post’s remarks from Spags) is a good tackler who knows the system but is freaking slow.

Johnson is entering his sophomore year and he should rate to grow with a nice jump in comfort in Spags’ system. He has the starts (5) from last year to put him incontention for a lot of playing time.

Knight is the veteran with experience, intelligence and strong run stopping skills in the box. But he is weak in coverage and is new to the system.

Phillips is the classic wild card. Rookie #1 pick who everyone will be watching. The level of his play in camp and this season will not only dictate how strong we are at this position but how strong the entire defense is and by that comclusion how well the entire team plays. Remember that when rookie #1 Aaron Ross got inserted into the starting lineup (literally H2 of the Redksins game in W3), the tone of the defense accelerated and the team never looked back. So if Phillips hits the ground running, his presence can be felt QUICKLY.

2) ELI MANNING. Weakest link? Star QB who overshadowed the performances of 4 straight Pro Bowl QBs en route to the Super Bowl? If new Eli is with us in 2008 this team will be a bear. Eli has been talking exactly like what you want to be hearing this offseason- knowing full well about the games where he was weakest link and that he can do a lot to improve to get the team to be ultracompetitive this year. Eli never got too high and that works to his advantage in not coming crashing down to earth. Eli is not resting on his laurels.

3) Do we have any speed at LB?

4) Does Diehl’s play at LT improve? We cannot afford to have the 2nd highest sacks allowed and expect (playoff) competitiveness this season again.

5) Can we get Woodson or Carr to become a credible backup? If I know the Giants they will probably cut Wright in deference to the promise/pedgiree of newest arrivals. Otherwise it would mean an immediate admission of error in the draft pick or reclamation project.

6) Do the rookies of 2007 ascend and make the dramatic impact in 2008 we are hoping for? This holds so much promise for the team.

7) How does the team shut down the run w/o Strahan?

Spags

July 24, 2008

Giants coaches spoke to the media yesterday.

Spags:
1) Linebacker is (parsing his words) the biggest weakness on the defense
2) he likes the secondary now because as a group there are a lot of bodies and a lot of competition
3) he singled out Butler’s solid play from the end of last season, doing a lot of quiet/unnoticed things during games that were very important to helping the team win
4) happy he has all his positional coaches back in all the same spots
5) the elephant in the room- how will the run defense make up for losing Strahan?

Defensive Coaches outtakes

May 23, 2008

Waufle on Strahan: “I called him last week and I told him, ‘I’ve been doing these cutups and I have made this phone call to you already and I have said that you had one heck of a season.’ And I said, ‘I’m going to tell you again’ Because he really did, he played really well, especially at the end. What a way to finish it.”

Waufle on Umenyiora: “Osi has really improved on is his run defense. He is very consistent at it. In fact, I was showing the rookies a particular alignment today which Osi plays. He is playing really well.”

Q: How do you feel about the potential replacements for (weakside linebacker) Kawika Mitchell (who signed with Buffalo as a free agent)? Is Gerris Wilkinson the number one prospect?

Sheridan: “I think going into the spring practices he will be, just because he is coming back and Danny Clark (signed on March 13) is coming from outside. I think both of them understand that the position is wide open and (fourth-round draft choice) Bryan Kehl would be considered in the mix, too. We are not going to necessarily pigeonhole Bryan as a SAM or a WILL, so I think he will do some of both in the spring and if he can make a splash he will be considered as well.”

Q: How is Mathias Kiwanuka (who fractured his left fibula in Detroit on Nov. 18) coming along?

Sheridan: “I anticipate him taking all of the reps in the spring. I think he is fully ready to go and very anxious to do it.

Re Kiwanuka at LB: “I think he will be much, much further along. I think when he got hurt he had showed so much improvement every week and I think he would have continued to go and get better had he not gotten hurt and been able to play for the rest of the season. I think he is a lot more confident in the schemes and the Xs and Os. He will continue to just get better with becoming familiar with playing the position and the pass coverages. I anticipate him being an excellent player.”

Sheridan on Goff and Kehl: “I did like both of them going into the draft. I had evaluated both guys and I had gone to Jon Goff’s senior workout at Vanderbilt. They are both big. They are all of 6-2 plus, almost 6-3, they are both 240 lbs. So just walking in the door they are great size guys and both of them are really smart. Maybe you hear that all the time and you think it is trite, but it is so much easier to win with guys that are really smart, and they are. We interviewed them both at the combine and watching film with them, and they know football, they can talk football, they can explain football, and in the short time that I have had to visit with them and meet them here they understand exactly what we are installing. They can reiterate back to me what I just told them five minutes ago, they understand when we go and do some walk-thrus and jog-thrus, and even in the rookie mini camp they did a great job. They are really smart guys.”

Giunta on Webster: “Yes, very confident, very confident that he will continue to develop and get better and better.

Giunta on another year for McQuarters and Madison: “Oh yeah, absolutely. Those guys both have stuff left in the tank.”

Q: Is Kenny Phillips a guy who is as NFL ready as one can be?

Merritt: “Yes. Kenny came out early as a junior. But this kid, in the classroom, has shown unbelievable recall for the defense. We put in things early in the mini-camp and he is able to recall it back to me a week or two later. Safeties are the quarterbacks of the defense, they control all the coverage, they get them in and out of checks, and this kid was able to recall a lot of the information and things that we had spoken about weeks before. As far as his smarts and his intellect I am very, very excited about that. Now there is some stuff as far as on the field that I will work with him with as far as understanding angles and how he approaches certain routes and things like that, but that is my job as a coach. As far as his God-given ability mentally the kid is very good.”

Q: In a perfect world does Sammy Knight play the strong safety and Kenny Phillips play the free?

Merritt: “Don’t disregard Michael Johnson and James Butler because Michael Johnson started for us last year a couple of games and James Butler started for us a majority of the season. Other than his hamstring injury James Butler came out of the Super Bowl as the starting strong safety, and that is what is going to happen this year. Right now no matter what happens (going into the OTA’s and mini-camp) James Butler is the starting strong safety with Michael Johnson right now being the starting free safety. What I am doing with the guys here this spring is I am playing left and right safety. Sammy Knight is going to have to learn how to play free safety just as well as strong safety. That way they are able to learn the entire defense. Once the season comes along we will start to weed it out and put the guys in their position, but right now we would like for these guys to learn it all; both positions.”

Do you start in your first game as a rookie?

May 5, 2008

With the exception of QB, ultimatenyg believes that the question a franchise should ask itself when picking that first rounder is- WILL THIS PLAYER START GAME ONE AS A ROOKIE? Some players are shot out like a cannon. They enter into the league and instead of fighting for a roster spot or playing time, they start game 1. And then they never leave. If it takes time to get settled into the league and a rookie takes a few games or a full season to break into the starting rotation, that is not a stain. No shame. But your #1 pick is different. This is one of the ~32 best players in the country by your own evaluation. Considering there are almost 1700 players on the roster for NFL teams, if you cannot find a player that can break in as a starter, then something is probably wrong. (DE is a second position next to QB that is extremely difficult for 22 year olds to physically manage, thereby making drafting one in the first round a true test of whether the choice is merited.)

This is not an ironclad rule. Matthias Kiwanuka is a good example of a very good pick at #32 in the first round. At DE, he was not expected to supplant two players (Umenyiora and Strahan) who went to the Pro Bowl the preceding year.

Here is a list of starters in Game 1 of their rookie season for the New York Giants in the past ten years.
2006 Cofield
2004 Wilson
2003 Diehl
2002 Shockey
(If you can comment on a player I may have missed, appreciated. My database does not give granularity, so a mistake is possible here.)

The point is that guys like Ronnie Lott and Lawrence Taylor, two notables who started their first game as a Pro and never left, cannot be held back. They move at a different speed and the pro game almost adjusts to them and not the other way around. Shockey was the same way, knocking over bodies in 2002’s preseason like bowling pins en route to an easy Pro Bowl selection. (…which is why I still maintain to this day that he is a resource which is woefully mismanaged.)

Will Kenny Phillips start for the Giants in Game 1? This will go a long way to determining whether he is a good pick for the Giants. The Giants have the following coming to camp at this position:
1) Butler- a starter noted for his efficient tackling but slow speed
2) Johnson- a #7 rounder who started a handful of games as a rookie after others got hurt, plays with aggressiveness (a polite way of saying that he is playing hard but does not necessarily make all the right decisions yet)
3) Knight- a smart veteran who plays strong up at the line yet (because of age) can get beat by a TE in coverage

The logic is that this is not a particularly deep set of incumbents. If Phillips is any good he should be starting against Washington on Thursday night in the Meadowlands.

New York Giants draft: where is the competition ABSENT?

April 30, 2008

This morning Paul Schwartz of the Post writes about how Sinorice Moss, Jared Lorenzen and James Butler are going to feel some heat this summer from draft picks made this past weekend (Manningham, Woodson and Phillips respectively). Reese is always preaching competition in camp to make players better and make the team better.

Why do I continue to complain and ask for a LT? Because Diehl gave up the second most sacks in the league last year.

The Giants did not draft ANY Offensive Linemen. None. Add that no (veteran) free agents were signed either (the Giants only signed two), and essentially there is no competition here. The Giants will talk about how Guy Whimper will be in the mix, but how many of you think that is going to shake any trees? How many of you have the Super Bowl on tape, DVR or Tivo? Do yourself a favor and watch the game again. Watch the second quarter when Manning gets sacked and fumbles the ball. Watch the last drive. It is scary. Diehl is going to get Manning killed.

Reese says that Diehl is improving all the time. I agree. Diehl has improved. But not enough to play one of the most elite positions on the field, LT. Yes, Diehl did play LT well enough for us to win the Super Bowl. But you can bet your bottom dollar that the tapes of the Super Bowl Champion are being dissected right now and the competition sees a huge opening. You can make a Tackle into a Guard but you cannot make a Guard into a Tackle. Reese is betting that Diehl will improve some more during training camp. Granted, this will be his second camp at LT and he will be able to get incrementally a little more efficient. But David Diehl is the weakest link on this offense and his weakness in pass protection is a major liability.