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|Posted: Sun Oct 07, 2018 2:24 pm Post subject: starts on Monday in the opener
|EAST RUTHERFORD Authentic Joe Pavelski Jersey , N.J. (AP) — Jonathan Stewart has been involved in 11 training camps during his NFL career, so the 31-year-old veteran running back knows the drill.
Regardless that Stewart signed a reported two-year, $6.9 million contract with the New York Giants as a free agent, he knows that nothing in the NFL is guaranteed.
“Every year, I feel like I’m fighting for a spot,” Stewart said after Sunday’s practice as the Giants prepare for their final preseason game Thursday night against New England. “I think everyone is battling. Every time I step onto the field, I’m trying to put my best foot forward.”
So far, the Giants have yet to see any of the ability that enabled Stewart to stay in the league so long. He had amassed 7,318 yards rushing and 51 touchdowns in 10 years with the Carolina Panthers.
Stewart’s preseason performance of a total of minus-5 yards on 10 rushing attempts should be cause for concern to some — but not Stewart.
“I think the preseason is a time to work on our craft,” Stewart said. “I’m still trying to jell with the first team. I’m trying not to dwell on certain things.”
One of those things was a fumble on one of his carries against the New York Jets on Friday night.
“I didn’t hold on to the ball like I should,” Stewart said. “I have to learn to bounce back from my mistakes. Not everything can go your way. I had a good offseason in terms of training. I think it has been a good preseason for me. I’ve been getting a good amount of practice reps.”
That number will decrease now that rookie Saquon Barkley, the team’s No. 1 draft pick out of Penn State and the No. 2 overall pick in the draft John Gibson Jersey , returned to practice full time Sunday. Barkley has been held out most of the past two weeks after tweaking a hamstring in practice.
“He’s a very talented guy,” Stewart said of Barkley. “He’s a physical specimen. You don’t see many running backs of that caliber. He’s like nothing I’ve ever seen. It’s a great sign that he’s back. He’s a workaholic. When he got hurt, he was looking to get back as quick as possible.”
Barkley is back and projected to be the starting tailback. Second-year player Wayne Gallman Jr., the team’s fourth-round selection in the 2017 draft who rushed for 476 yards and caught 34 passes as a rookie, has been impressive in the preseason and is probably ahead of Stewart on the depth chart.
Giants’ first-year head coach Pat Shurmur isn’t too concerned about Stewart’s preseason and doesn’t sound like a coach who is ready to give up on Stewart.
“Jonathan is a pro,” Shurmur said. “I know how his offseason training has gone for him. I trust Jonathan and I trust that he will be productive for us.”
Shurmur also knows that the Giants have not run the ball effectively in the preseason.
“When you don’t run the ball well, it’s the whole team’s fault,” Shurmur said. “When you don’t run the ball well early in the game, that sets the tone for the rest of the game. It’s a team thing to work on the running game. It’s not just one person. “
The Giants might have lost a key player during practice Sunday when starting outside linebacker Olivier Vernon went down with an apparent left ankle injury and had to be taken off the practice field on a cart.
“He just went inside the block and went over on his ankle,” Shurmur said. “He’s being evaluated right now.”
The Giants also welcomed back starting tight end Evan Engram, who left Friday night’s preseason game with the Jets with what was initially diagnosed as a concussion.
The second-year pass catcher, who had 64 receptions and six touchdowns as a rookie Frederik Andersen Jersey , was on the field running and riding the stationary bicycle Sunday, but was not involved with any contact, because he’s still in the NFL’s concussion protocol.
NOTES: The Giants traded center Brett Jones to the Vikings for a 2019 draft pick. … WR Odell Beckham, Jr. has not seen any action yet in the preseason, but he looks healthy in practice and was actually joking around Sunday returning punts in some drills. … With the trade of Jones, Jon Halapio is entrenched as the team’s starter at center, but John Greco slides in as the No. 2 center on the depth chart. … Linebacker Ray-Ray Armstrong continues to impress in the preseason and looks as if he has earned a spot on the roster. If Armstrong makes the cut, it means that three of the Giants linebackers this season were members of the Los Angeles Rams a year ago, joining Alec Ogletree and Connor Barwin.
Matt Kemp wasn’t supposed to last long in his return to Los Angeles. He was tabbed as trade bait after arriving from Atlanta in exchange for a salary dump by the Dodgers.
The 33-year-old slugger has made himself at home again in a hurry.
Kemp got three hits and drove in four runs, including a go-ahead homer leading off the eighth inning that rallied the Dodgers past the Colorado Rockies 6-4 on Sunday to prevent a sweep and end a three-game skid.
Kemp is on track to earn his third All-Star nod and first since 2012. He’s the second-leading vote-getter, ahead of Washington’s Bryce Harper, among NL outfielders.
”That’s what the All-Star Game is Brock McGinn Jersey Kids , having a good first half,” Kemp said. ”My real focus is trying to get to the playoffs and win a championship, something I’ve never done.”
Kemp was 1 for 6 in the first two games of the series, which the Dodgers lost by identical scores of 3-1. He has been solid in his last 14 games against Colorado, batting .438 with 11 RBIs.
”He showed in spring training he was in shape and was hitting from the start,” Dodgers starter Ross Stripling said.
Kemp sent his 14th homer of the season over the center-field wall off Adam Ottavino (4-2) to put Los Angeles ahead 5-4. It was the Dodgers’ first homer of July after they hit a major league-leading and franchise-record 55 in June.
One out later, Yasiel Puig doubled. Joc Pederson followed and reached on an infield single to second that DJ LeMahieu dived to stop. Puig made a heads-up baserunning play when he scored an insurance run after taking an extra base on Pederson’s hit.
Puig took advantage of LeMahieu’s soft throw from his knees to first baseman Ian Desmond.
”DJ slipped,” Rockies manager Bud Black said. ”If DJ wanted to do it over again he would probably give a firmer throw to Desmond to get it back in.”
Puig hopped back and forth before taking off for the plate, sliding belly first. He got up and swung his arms in wild celebration with the Dodgers ahead 6-4.
”I do my crazy move and score,” Puig said. ”I said in my mind, `He’s not going to throw me out, I’m going home.’ Not too many players who score from third base in that situation.”
Kemp agreed Womens Dak Prescott Jersey , saying, ”Everyone is living right.”
Kemp drove in the Dodgers’ first three runs with an RBI groundout in the first, a double in the third and a single in the fifth.
Daniel Hudson (3-2) went one inning. Kenley Jansen pitched a perfect ninth for his 22nd save.
Nolan Arenado hit his team-leading 21st homer and had an RBI grounder, helping the Rockies take a 4-2 lead in the fifth.
Rockies starter Chad Bettis was pulled after three innings because of fluid underneath a callus on his right middle finger. The right-hander allowed two runs and three hits, struck out two and walked two in his shortest outing of the season.
”It is really painful,” Bettis said. ”It is kind of something that is a little bit of a mental block trying to battle through that pain. I felt like it got to the point where I really needed to say something.”
Stripling gave up four runs and a season-high nine hits in six innings. The right-hander struck out seven and walked one.
Rockies: RHP Bryan Shaw (right calf strain) will throw a bullpen session on Monday and simulated game on Wednesday. He is working on mechanics with his delivery and more consistent pitch locations.
Rockies: LHP Kyle Freeland (7-6, 3.29 ERA) makes his second straight start against the Giants on Monday in the home opener of a three-game set. He is 3-1 with a 2.91 ERA at Coors Field in his career against them.
Dodgers: LHP Alex Wood (4-5, 4.00) starts on Monday in the opener of a three-game series against the Pirates. In eight games (seven starts) against them, Wood is 2-2 with a 2.86 ERA.