Now that the Eagles have moved on from S Malcolm Jenkins, someone else will be expected to take a leadership role in the defensive backfield. That responsibility will seemingly fall upon the shoulder of S Rodney McLeod.
“I’m looking to fill those shoes but do it in my own way because I am my own person,” McLeod said, via Jeff McLane of The Philadelphia Inquirer. “We lead very differently. I was always considered a leader in a different facet before … but I found a different way to lead, more about actions, and playing my role as needed. I think now with the absence of Malcolm, I will be needed to be a lot more vocal, particularly in the defensive [backfield] and on the team.”
McCleod mentioned that the Eagles’ secondary had their shortcomings last season, and is excited about the addition of Pro Bowl CB Darius Slay.
“It makes my job a lot easier as a safety, I’ll tell you that,” McLeod said of Slay joining the team. “When we have guys of his caliber that can cover and get up in front of the receiver’s face, throw off timing for the quarterback, and allow me to go sideline to sideline. As a secondary, I felt that we were a little disrespected at times. And I think now it’s time to live up to that standard, a standard that’s been set by people that played way before us. When you think of guys who have put on the jersey before, we owe them that. We want to get back to this secondary taking over this defense and winning the game and putting the game on our back.”
- Ralph Vacchiano has several questions surrounding the Giants entering training camp, the first of which is whether rookie T Andrew Thomas will start on the right or left side following an opt-out from LT Nate Solder.
- According to Vacchiano, it is unclear whether veteran Spencer Pulley will start at center, or whether rookie Shane Lemieux will earn the starting job.
- Vacchiano also wonders whether two key players, TE Evan Engram and S Jabrill Peppers, are fully recovered from their respective injuries heading into the 2020 season.
- With CB Deandre Baker likely gone for the season and CB Sam Beal choosing to opt-out, Vacchiano believes the second cornerback spot opposite James Bradberry could be a revolving door this year, including appearances from CB Corey Ballentine, CB Grant Haley, rookie Darnay Holmes, or even converted safety Julian Love.
- Vacchiano also ponders whether the tandem of linebackers Markus Golden and Kyler Fackrell can provide enough pass rushing for the team and if new DC Patrick Graham can increase the effectiveness of DL Leonard Williams.
- As for their starting kicker, Vacchiano theorizes that the Giants may attempt to bring K Graham Gano on board or could look at someone like former Patriots’ K Stephen Gostkowski to replace K Chandler Catanzaro, who has come out of retirement to join the team.
- Vacchiano also lists cornerbacks Logan Ryan, Dre Kirkpatrick, and Morris Claiborne as some potential free-agent additions who could help the team recover from their losses.
- Washington WR coach Jim Hostler says fourth-round WR Antonio Gandy-Golden plays faster than his 4.6 second 40-yard dash time. (Rhiannon Walker)
- Hostler noted Washington third-round RB Antonio Gibson has been comfortable at wide receiver so far, which is where he played a big chunk of snaps in college. (Walker)
- Hostler told reporters he has “no idea” what he has at receiver outside of Terry McLaurin. (Ben Standig)
- He added the team plans to move McLaurin around a lot more and expand his route tree as their No. 1 receiver. (Walker)