ALBANY - As expected, Mathias Kiwanuka early in training camp has struggled in his new strong side linebacker position trying to keep up with Jeremy Shockey in pass coverage. Kiwanuka, though, did not anticipate getting burned by guard Rich Seubert.
But he did.
"That's a tough one to swallow, but it happens, apparently,'' Kiwanuka said sheepishly. "It will not happen again.''
The Giants yesterday did not practice but Kiwanuka was still smarting about what transpired in Sunday's afternoon session. Lining up for a field goal, holder Jeff Feagles put on a "Fire'' call, which simulates a bad snap. Feagles took the ball, rolled to his right and fired a perfect pass to Seubert, who once played some tight end at Western Illinois and lined up there quite frequently last season. The burly Seubert went airborne (slightly) to make the catch, with Kiwanuka trailing the play and unable to prevent the reception.
"I think I got both feet off the ground,'' Seubert deadpanned. "I watched it on tape and it looks like my left foot might be off the ground. I don't think [Kiwanuka] saw the ball. I guess I can jump a little higher as he can. They should honor me as a receiver now. Jeremy or me, there's no difference.''
It was Seubert who in the playoffs following the 2002 season alertly went out in a pass pattern before he was dragged down in the end zone on a botched field goal in the closing seconds of a 39-38 playoff loss in San Francisco. That memory surfaced after Seubert made his play in practice.
"That's what Jeremy said to me, 'You couldn't catch that five years ago?' '' Seubert said. "I said 'I got pulled down.' ''
The Giants hierarchy was saddened to hear of the death of Bill Walsh, the Hall of Fame former 49ers coach, who died yesterday at the age of 75 after a battle with leukemia. "Bill Walsh was one of the greatest coaches in the history of this game,'' said John Mara, the Giants president and chief executive officer. "I am not sure that anyone has had as much influence on the way the game has been played over the past 25 years as Bill Walsh. His record on the field was matched only by his brilliance in developing other successful NFL and college coaches.'' Former Giants coach Bill Parcells, who engaged in many memorable battles with Walsh and the 49ers, said "I was saddened by the news of the passing of Bill Walsh. He was one of our fiercest rivals, and we had some very memorable games in the '80s. He was an innovative guy who brought his philosophy to the NFL, and he integrated the right people into it and allowed it to flourish. He is one of the very few people who really helped make the NFL what it is today, and his coaching tree is evidence of that.'' ... The Giants annual training camp autograph session takes place today at the conclusion of the evening practice (approximately 8 p.m.).
Practice Notes: 7-30-07
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