The New York Giants have position battles ensuing during across the depth chart, but the quarterback position is not one of them. With Eli Manning securing the job under center, rookie signal-caller Ryan Nassib will make his pro debut on Saturday against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The former Syracuse Orangeman admits to some nerves in advance of Big Blue's preseason opener in the Steel City, but Nassib has played at Heinz Field on several occasions during his collegiate career.
"One good thing is I've played in that stadium a couple times already so the atmosphere, it's going to be a little different, but the field is going to be a little familiar," noted Nassib. "But yeah, going into your first game, there's always going to be some nerves."
Nassib, 23, was widely regarded by NFL draft experts as the crown jewel of a weak 2013 rookie quarterback class. It came as a shock to many when he dropped into the fifth round and the Giants nabbed him off the draft board with the No.110 overall pick. The Giants are treating Nassib as a viable insurance policy for Manning and potentially a valuable trading chip down the road. While the rookie understands his role on the team, it hasn't affected his preparation for the season.
"Well, not as much because, regardless of where I am on the depth chart or my chances of playing, I'm always going to prepare like I'm a starter, that's just how I've always been, ever since I was back at college," noted Nassib. "That's just what I do because on any given day something can happen so you've got to be ready. "
Nassib has learned under the tuteledge of Manning and veteran David Carr, who have been instrumental in getting the first year pro acclimated to life on and off the field in the NFL.
"They give me advice every day," admitted Nassib. "They've been extremely helpful, what to expect, certain things to do when you're in doubt, if you're not sure about something, just giving me little tips like that. They were rookies at one point and they had to go through the same thing, so they've been extremely helpful."
With the final countdown to Big Blue's preseason opener underway, Nassib is chomping at the bit to get his first taste of pro football.
"First off, it's a dream to be able to play in an NFL game, regardless of its preseason or regular season. I'm excited, ready to get out there and play somebody else," noted Nassib. "It's going to be a fun week."