EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — The New York Giants might be welcoming more than Osi Umenyiora to training camp on Monday. They could be getting a new kicker, too.
Lawrence Tynes bruised his right thigh in Saturday night’s preseason loss to the Carolina Panthers, and coach Tom Coughlin said Sunday that the veteran kicker will be spending a lot of time with the team’s medical personnel this week.
“I’m not going to predict how long he’ll be out,” Coughlin said. “He’ll be a fulltime participant in the training room. That’s for sure.”
Coughlin was not sure whether the Giants would sign a kicker this week but it seems unlikely that Tynes will be able to play a week from Monday against Chicago. He was on crutches after the game, the result of being run into on a blocked second-half field goal.
“We have one solid option if we decide not to do that, but if we decide (that) then it will be relatively early in the week, obviously,” said Coughlin, who indicated he didn’t want to burden punter Matt Dodge with kickoff duties because the second-year player is competing with Steve Weatherofrd for a job.
The update on Tynes came a little more than an hour before Umenyiora told The Associated Press that he will return to work on Monday despite not getting a new contract.
Umenyiora said the Giants offered to put incentives in his deal, which will pay him $7.1 million over the next two seasons, but he rejected them.
“No deal has been reworked,” Umenyiora told the AP. “What has been offered has been unacceptable and shows they don’t really respect the fact I sacrifice my health for the franchise. I will play under my current deal because I love and respect my coaches, my teammates, the fans, and myself. Not for those incentives.”
The nine-year NFL veteran hasn’t practiced since reporting to training camp on July 30, a day late. He failed to report on time because he alleged that general manager Jerry Reese told him after last season that the team would rework his contract.
The 29-year-old Umenyiora shared the team lead with 11.5 sacks last season and he had a league-high 10 forced fumbles.
The return of Umenyiora comes two days after second-year pro Jason Pierre-Paul recorded two sacks and played well filling in at right end for Umenyiora.
“JPP obviously played well,” Coughlin said. “He was a force with two sacks and he missed another one. He made some tackles and was a force against a good left tackle, so I was pleased with the way he played.”
For the most part, Coughlin was disappointed in the Giants’ play, particularly on offense. The unit failed to register a touchdown, and Tynes missed three field goals. One was blocked and another just missed from 56 yards.
While the defense played well, it gave up a couple of big plays and there were way too many missed tackles on defense and special teams.
Coughlin said the team lacked a sense of urgency in its preseason opener. Linebacker Michael Boley gave New York a 7-0 lead with an interception return, but didn’t build on it.
“You’re up 7-0, why can’t it be 14-0?” Coughlin said. “Why isn’t it 10-0. The ability to recognize and capitalize on the circumstance as it presents itself to you. That’s more of what I’m talking about. There was energy. There was effort. There is a ton of people playing in their first professional game. You don’t think they were excited and a lot of times they don’t really know how to express themselves or even express it in a team way. That’s what I’m after.”
With no games until Monday, Coughlin believes this week will be an important time for the team to focus, communicate and to start executing.
Coughlin feels new center David Baas is going to be good once he gets settled. He said that Will Beatty played well at left tackle, and that second-year defensive tackle Linval Joseph can be a force in the middle. He was impressed by Domenik Hixon’s first game in more than a year since a major knee injury.