By Paul Dottino
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The cornerbacks cornered the market as the topic of conversation this time.
Terrell Thomas (right ACL) returned to training camp to begin the injury rehabilitation that he hopes allows him to avoid a third surgery on his leg. For now, the Giants know they have to do without him – and there were several reasons to think they’ve got enough to hold down the fort.
Rookie corner Jayron Hosley’s two interceptions were simply the tip of the iceberg Tuesday and why coach Tom Coughlin ought to be pleased with the team’s progress at the position as it gets ready for Friday’s preseason opener at Jacksonville.
It wasn’t so much that Hosley came up with the ball, it was how he did it.
On the first theft as part of a 1-on-1 drill, Hosley read an under-thrown David Carr pass on the right side (intended for David Douglas), adjusted while looking over his shoulder and tipped the ball to himself in the end zone. He intercepted Carr later during a team drill, this time glancing over his shoulder and adjusting to pass thrown to Jerrel Jernigan, reaching out and hauling in the ball in the end zone.
Hosley’s athletic ability is obvious from the first time you watch him play. But these thefts also allowed him to show off his instincts for the ball, his mental awareness and the anticipation that the play might be coming his way.
Coughlin admitted to being impressed, saying Hosley appears to be doing a good job with the mental aspect of the game as camp progresses.
Second-year pro Prince Amukamara also had a stellar day and continued his strong play throughout camp. His best play came when knocking down an Eli Manning throw intended for Jernigan. It was typical of what Amukamara has shown this summer – blanket coverage.
Amukamara and Hosley are two of the most important players in the equation as the Giants move along with Thomas on the sideline.
ODDS AND ENDS: Second-year running back Da’Rel Scott is not helping himself. Coughlin did not appear pleased with Scott, who missed practice with a bruised thigh – and the coach made specific mention that it’s the second time Scott’s been sidelined at camp. … Wide receiver Hakeem Nicks (foot) continued to pick up the pace at practice and Coughlin hinted at a much more accelerated pace next week – that sounds in line with Nicks’ hope that he can be ready before the end of the preseason. … Defensive end Osi Umenyiora made one of his patented athletic plays, reaching up on a Manning screen (for RB DJ Ware) and pulled down the ball for an interception that would have gone for a TD. … Fellow lineman Jason Pierre-Paul rejected a pass at the line of scrimmage, proving once again that his wingspan can be very useful when rushing from the inside as a defensive tackle.
What do you think of Hosley’s game? Let us know in the comments below!