New York Giants
Inside Slant | Notes, Quotes | Strategy and Personnel |
The Giants terminated the contract of running back Peyton Hillis on Wednesday (Feb. 25) as they continued clearing out roster and salary cap space. Hillis was released with the designation failed physical.
With Hillis' release, the Giants save $945,000 in 2015.
Hillis was a seven-year veteran who joined the Giants on Oct. 16, 2013 after David Wilson suffered a season-ending neck injury.
In 2014, Hillis played in the season's first nine games. He left the game on Nov. 9 in Seattle with a concussion and was placed on injured reserve six days later. Hillis finished third on the team with 115 rushing yards on 26 carries. He also caught 10 passes for another 87 yards.
Hillis, 28, played for Denver, Cleveland and Kansas City before joining the Giants. His career totals include 696 rushing attempts for 2,832 yards and 23 touchdowns and 134 receptions for 1,050 yards and three scores.
Head coach Tom Coughlin said that receiver Victor Cruz, who is recovering from a torn patellar tendon, is progressing on schedule.
"He has worked very hard. He looks good. It is a very regimented rehabilitation program," Coughlin said. "He has done a good job with it. He is where he should be. I think very shortly he is going to start running."
Cruz has expressed optimism that he will be ready for training camp, but until he actually begins running and cutting on turf, he still might be a while before he is ready to return to action.
At the end of the 2014 season, co-owner John Mara said he wasn't ruling out breaking with team tradition and letting head coach Tom Coughlin enter the final year of his deal this season without an extension.
Mara might have changed his stance on that, however.
When asked if he had any news on a new contract, Coughlin didn't come right out and say that talks were ongoing, but did say, "I think that part of it is underway," Coughlin said. "Hopefully shortly you'll have some information about that."
The Giants re-signed offensive lineman Dallas Reynolds to a one-year minimum deal.
Reynolds, 6-4, 320 pounds, was scheduled to be the team's only restricted free agent. The 30 year old out of BYU has been with the Giants since October 2013, providing depth at guard and center.
The Giants made a couple of tweaks among their position coaches.
Mike Sullivan, who left the team a few years ago to become the Bucs' offensive coordinator, is back as the new quarterbacks coach, replacing Danny Langsdorf, who left the Giants after one year to return to the college ranks.
Also, Tim Walton has replaced Peter Giunta as the team's cornerbacks coach.
Head coach Tom Coughlin said that defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo, who is in his second go-round with the team in that position, isn't that much different now than he was when he first was with the Giants in 2007 and 2008.
"I don't know if he is a different coach at all. I think he is a very personable young man. He is very sincere. He is very interested in the people that he works with, the players and the coaches. He is sincere about that," Coughlin said.
Coughlin noted that Spagnuolo's experiences in between his stints with the Giants-stints that include head coach of the Rams, defensive coordinator with the Saints and defensive assistant with the Ravens-have increased Spagnuolo's knowledge in how to plan defenses.
Coughlin said, "(It) widened his knowledge, his capacity, the broadening of his own thoughts in terms of how he would defend. He has definitely really learned from his experiences, and that is going to benefit our football team."
Speaking of how Spagnuolo's defense will benefit the Giants, Coughlin said any changes made probably won't be that much different to the naked eye.
"There are areas on our football team, situationally, that have to improve. I don't know to the naked eye if you will see a whole lot of difference in that regard. I am hoping the production will be a lot different," he said.