Even coming off a bye week the 2017 Giants cannot escape controversy.
For the second time in three weeks the Giants players had to answer for why one of their teammates was suspended while also insisting that head coach Ben McAdoo has not lost the team a day after Janoris “Jackrabbit” Jenkins was suspended indefinitely after missing Monday’s practice.
The suspension only exacerbates the perception that at 1-6 the team is starting to quit on McAdoo, yet players generally agreed with the head coach’s decision and some were more critical of their teammate.
“I think the situation, (Jenkins) could have handled it better,” linebacker and defensive captain Jonathan Casillas said. “At the end of the day, some of us have kids here. If you can’t pick up your kid, you got to let somebody know. I’m not saying it’s that, but it’s kind of in that boat to have enough responsibility to let people know when you’re not going to be there and stuff like that.”
Casillas said he spoke with Jenkins this week and plans to speak with him again when he returns.
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie was suspended by the team three weeks ago after he left the facility but was welcomed back with open arms and was able to admit he made a mistake.
Casillas believes Jenkins will be welcomed back and is hopeful they can move on but hinted it may not be so easy.
“It doesn’t look too great but those guys violated team rules. DRC, he acknowledged that. I don’t know if we’re going to get the same thing from Jackrabbit,” Casillas said. “He’s just a different person. He’s not the same person as DRC. He didn’t get suspended for the same reason. You can’t put him in the same group, he’s a different person. Great dude, but when you talk to him, he handles things different when you talk to him.”
Jenkins was not the only one missing from Monday’s practice. Eli Apple and Paul Perkins also failed to show up due to “travel-related” issues, according to McAdoo, but Apple insinuated he would still face discipline.
“Something like that,” he said.
Players missing practice is unprecedented for the Giants, who did not have any of these issues under previous head coach Tom Coughlin or even last year when the team went 11-5.
The always-positive Eli Manning even slipped a bit when asked to explain why there were so many disciplinary issue.
“I think everybody knows the reasoning for why they’re occurring,” he said. “We got to, obviously, go about our business and then when guys come back, you don’t think about it and you keep going.”
Manning refused to elaborate when pressed on why these issues are occurring, but Casillas pointed to one reason in particular.
“If we were 6-1 or 1-6, I don’t think that the handling of the situation would have been differently. Who knows?” Casillas said. “Last year people weren’t missing days and time like that. Last year we were sitting with a good record at this point, but I don’t think people were doing stuff like that, missing a day, it just don’t happen.
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