EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — The New York Giants can’t catch a break.
As the Giants wrapped up their lone joint practice with the New York Jets on Thursday at their facility located outside the two teams’ shared Sunday residence, MetLife Stadium, EDGE rusher Azeez Ojulari pulled up while running post-workout sprints. After escaping from a rather low-key joint workout without injury, the Giants, given their recent training camp luck, would surely suffer an impactful injury while packing things up.
Azeez Ojulari helped off the field by Giants trainers
With first-round pick Kayvon Thibodeaux already sidelined, Ojulari took over the role of top pass rusher for the Giants. The second-year player had just come off the non-football injury list on Aug. 14.
Ojulari had taken part in joint drills. He was simply sprinting with his teammates when he pulled up and was sought out by trainers, who eventually had to assist him in getting back into the team facility. New York Daily News reporter Pat Leonard said Ojulari was having his right foot looked at by trainers on the sideline before he headed inside.
Ojulari, last year’s second-round pick, set a team rookie record with eight sacks last season. If Ojulari and Thibodeaux are sidelined into Week 1, the Giants will have an awfully underwhelming crew on the EDGE.
The Giants are hoping that Ojulari avoided something serious, as they just lost preseason standout wide receiver Collin Johnson to a torn Achilles on Wednesday.
UPDATE: According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Ojulari had an MRI and “expected to be OK.”
Jets have a pair of injury scares on defense
During the joint workout, two new Jets limped to the sideline to be examined by trainers. First-round pick Jermaine Johnson and free agent addition D.J. Reed both walked to the covered training area to be worked on during team drills.
Johnson, a pass rusher, had his left foot and ankle checked out, while Reed seemed hobbled by an undisclosed leg injury. However, Johnson eventually returned to the field with his teammates, and Reed was seen on the sideline holding his helmet.
Following practice, Jets head coach Robert Saleh said both players were fine. He also added that QB Zach Wilson (knee) is looking good in his side work.
Daniel Jones has a solid outing
The Giants’ starting QB fared well against the Jets’ defense. During 11-on-11 work, Jones regularly connected with targets over the middle. He frequently targeted wideout David Sills and Richie James, with Wan’Dale Robinson sitting out of team drills. Jones also had a nice toss over the middle to a leaping Kenny Golladay during 11-on-11 work.
There were two blips for Jones during the opening series. First, Jones would have been sacked by Jets defensive lineman John Franklin-Myers, but the defender was blocked to the ground and into Jones by right tackle Evan Neal. Jones fell backward over Franklin-Myers’ body but was okay. Jones was also picked off by cornerback Bryce Hall in red-zone team drills, according to reporters who watched the Giants’ offense on the second series.
Joe Flacco continues to lead the Jets’ offense
Joe Flacco had an up-and-down effort on Thursday. He was able to connect with first-round wideout Garrett Wilson and veteran playmaker Corey Davis on a pair of touchdowns in 11-on-11 red-zone drills. He looked accurate and efficient throughout the workout but did toss an interception in the end zone that would have been returned for a pick-six the other way. The turnover was caused by a DB that Pro Football Network was unable to identify.
The Jets will play their starters against the Giants during Sunday’s preseason finale. Flacco will get to test his merit as QB1 at MetLife Stadium.
Quick Hits from Jets vs. Giants joint practice
- NEW ITEM: The agent for Jets wideout Denzel Mims has aired out his request for a trade through various NFL Network reporters. Mims had a drop in the end zone during team drills on Thursday, but later came back with a touchdown catch on the final team rep of practice. Mims, a 2020 second-round pick, has caught 31 passes for 490 yards in 20 career games.
- Giants backup QB Tyrod Taylor had the highlight of team drills within the first set of 11-on-11 work. On the first rep, Taylor found new tight end Tanner Hudson alone down the seam. Taylor heaved the ball roughly 30 yards down the field, and Hudson caught it and ran for about a 75-yard touchdown. Taylor returned to the sideline after the play, and Davis Webb got the next rep.
- Jets defensive lineman Jabari Zuniga had a would-be sack on QB Daniel Jones after he beat Neal around the corner with relative ease in first-team 11-on-11 work.
- Wideout Darius Slayton, who could be moved during final cuts, nearly had an impressive one-handed grab in 7-on-7 drills. However, he hit the ground, and the ball came loose. He still was able to make it a positive play, as he drew a defensive pass interference penalty on Jets defensive back Isaiah Dunn.
- Following practice, Saleh explained that the workout was cut short after both head coaches decided to scrap a two-minute drill period due to various injuries for both teams.