NEW YORK (WFAN) — Giants safety Kenny Phillips is entering his fifth year with the franchise, and he has a specific goal for next season that will make him more of a impact player.
“Just get the ball,” he told reporters at training camp. “I had four interceptions last year. I feel like this year if I’m more involved in the defense, that number can go up. That’s really my goal.”
Phillips expressed that he wants to play closer to the line of scrimmage on defense, allowing him to be more active and to be around the ball more.
“For the most part, I’m usually always back deep,” the 25-year-old said. “It looks like I’m catching punts. But I would like for that to change, to be more involved, just in the box, just around the ball more. I think with Antrel (Rolle) going back to safety, (defensive coordinator) Perry (Fewell) will allow me to do that.”
Last season, the Giants’ secondary lost Terrell Thomas, Prince Amukamara, Bruce Johnson and Brian Witherspoon to injuries before the season even started. That forced Rolle to step up and play the third corner position, breaking apart the planned safety tandem of Rolle and Phillips. Now with Thomas re-injuring his ACL on Monday, the Giants may have to juggle their defense again.
Phillips, however, seems confident that Fewell will play him more alongside Rolle in the upcoming season.
“Just having another playmaker back there is going to allow me to … (be) in a better position to make plays and not have to always be the deep safety and try to play hero,” he said.
The first-round draft pick was a hero in last year’s Super Bowl win when he successfully swatted away the Patriots’ desperation Hail Mary attempt.
Phillips will be a free agent after this season, so it makes sense that he wants to make a bigger impact so he can be worth more, but he hasn’t thought that far into the future.
“I don’t even think about (free agency). Money is not an issue to me right now,” the Super Bowl champ said. “I’m just trying to finish the season healthy and make plays.”
What do you expect from Phillips this year? Be heard in the comments below!