NFL: Rookie wide receivers are impressing Giants
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Darius Powe knows he isn’t going to make the Giants by trying to be Bills star wide receiver Sammy Watkins.
But playing Watkins in practice this past week — and doing it well – represented another step for the undrafted receiver from California toward achieving that goal.
“I don’t want to be Sammy,” Powe said with a smile. “I have to be Darius Powe.”
Powe and Roger Lewis, another undrafted receiver with the Giants, have impressed with their chances in the competition for roster spots at the position.
Might seem a bit premature for the Giants to be installing a game plan to prepare to play the Bills today in Buffalo in Week 2, considering most game-planning in the preseason does not take place until the third game. And that remains the case for the Giants under Ben McAdoo, who explained the decision to use the scout teams as a way to jump-start the preparation not necessarily for the opponent, but for the routine.
So Lewis and Powe wore a red No. 14 jersey as part of the scout team in drills.
“We wanted to transition. It’s a dress rehearsal for the dress rehearsal, so to speak,” McAdoo said. “We’ll have a dress rehearsal next week [in advance of the Giants’ third preseason game against the Jets]. This week we will dust it off and teach them how to use the cards [on scout team] a little bit. We’re still in training camp mode, still competing and we still have to get our work done. There’s still jobs to be earned, but we’re out there just going through the process right now.”
Powe and Lewis were relatively quiet in Week 1 against the Dolphins, in part because the passing game was non-existent without Eli Manning and with Ryan Nassib struggling – save for a sliding catch by rookie Sterling Shepard.
McAdoo has promised those chances will increase against the Bills, and not just for Powe and Lewis, but for Myles White, Tavarres King and Anthony Dable, all of whom are part of the competition. Victor Cruz is expected to travel to Buffalo, but is unlikely to play.
“I need to do a better job of getting those guys an opportunity. That’s my responsibility,” McAdoo said. “We didn’t get enough balls in the air to them … We need to give those guys a chance to make plays.”