Panthers vs. Giants Preseason Blogger Q & A

If you've been a member of CSR since last season you'll recall SBN bloggers have a tradition of sorts prior to on-the-field throw downs. We call it Blogger Q & A and its pretty simple. For those members just joining this offseason we pass five questions to the other blogger and provide answers. So I sent 5 questions to Ed Valentine over at our Giants blog Big Blue View and he was kind enough to give some candid answers. So here we go:

Question 1: The Panthers were able to keep their Steve Smith but the G-Men weren’t so fortunate with their Steve Smith leaving for…the Eagles!! What happened?

Ed: What happened is that the Eagles threw $2 million of guaranteed money at a guy who might not play until halfway thru the season and, as the Giants found out last year with Kenny Phillips, probably won't be the same guy he was prior to microfracture surgery. This is a huge PR disaster for the Giants because Smith went to the Eagles. Truth is, though, I'm not sure it hurts the Giants on the field -- or really helps the Eagles. I just don't know how much SS12 can contribute this season, and the Giants have a lot of young receivers just begging for an opportunity.

 It does make me wonder how the Eagles have not busted their cap. More after the jump...

Question 2: With the loss of Smith, the WR position looks to be Nicks at #1 WR and then who at #2 and 3? Are you concerned?

Ed: Don't forget about Mario Manningham. The guy caught 60 balls last season as the No. 3 and 57 the year before, and averaged 15.7 yards per catch in 2010. He's a tremendous player. As for No. 3, the Giants have veteran Domenik Hixon, third-round pick Jerrel Jernigan, 2009 third-round pick Ramses Barden and last year's camp sensation, Victor Cruz. They have talent, it's just mostly unproven.

That's a group to keep an eye on this Saturday.

Question 3: So does this mean the re-signing of RB Ahmad Bradshaw was the Giants best move of the offseason or did the front office make some better moves?

Ed: Bradshaw was the splashiest move, and a necessary one. I believe they made good moves -- although unpopular ones -- by letting offensive linemen Rich Seubert and Shaun O'Hara go and re-structuring that aging group. Getting Mathias Kiwanuka to come back was huge, as well.

I guess cutting the o-linemen is a good move provided their replacements play well. Our young DT's might likewise be matched up on some young players.

Question 4: I saw ESPN Power ranks the Giants at #11. Do you think that’s a fair assessment or is it too high or low and why?

Ed: That's fine. Behind the Eagles. Ahead of the Cowboys. Right around the other 10-6, 9-7 teams from a year ago. Probably right about where I would put them.

So it sounds like the jury is still out on whether the Giants improved themselves this offseason.

Question 5: Do you have any training camp unknowns we should keep an eye on this Saturday? Who’s the camp surprise so far?

Ed: Fullback Henry Hynoski. This guy might play more than any of the guys the Giants actually drafted. He's a stud and has become a bit of a cult hero. The #hynoceros has a nickname, and his own Twitter hashtag.

A fullback...That's interesting.

Bonus Question: Are you buying into the Eagles ‘Dream Team’ hype?

Ed: You know what happens to 'Dream Teams,' right? They get their dreams shattered. How often does the team that wins the offseason actually win the big prize at the end? If that was the case the Redskins would have won about 20 Super Bowls in a row. The Eagles are good, but once the hysteria does down Giants fans will remember that their team is also pretty darn good. We'll just see what happens on the field.




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