Giants Insider: Perseverance pays off for Preston Parker

Bill Kostroun/AP Preston Parker (r.) gets the nod to start at WR for the Giants in Sunday’s game against the Texans.

Corey Washington was the preseason phenom, and Odell Beckham Jr. is the touted first-round pick. But on Sunday against Houston, expect another wideout to get first crack at replacing Jerrel Jernigan.

Jernigan, on injured reserve with a mid-foot sprain, was the Giants’ starting receiver in three-wide sets. Tom Coughlin said Wednesday that veteran Preston Parker will replace Jernigan.

“He will have that opportunity,” Coughlin said. “He’s been in the league, yeah. He’s very quick. He’s played before, he’s got a good attitude about it. He is a tough guy and hopefully, he’ll make a strong contribution.”

For Parker, the chance to start is a special opportunity. Before he emerged as the Giants’ punt returner this year, he’d been out of football for the last two years. He caught 40 passes for Tampa Bay in 2011, but was cut in 2012.

What was Parker doing September?

“Begging for money, that’s all,” he said. “Trying to find a job.”

For now, Parker has one. Beckham, the rookie who has battled a hamstring injury since the spring, continued to progress, but he was still running by himself during practice, and Coughlin said he will not see any snaps this week. And Washington, who made the team after a monster preseason and brings a tantalizing 6-4 frame, may see some time, Coughlin said, but mostly on special teams.

“He’s got to continue to improve as a special teamer as well,” Coughlin said. “That’s where he can really help us right now, I think. And then of course in the green zone, he’s an excellent target.”


Trumaine McBride has been here before.

A season ago, the corner replaced injured veteran Corey Webster as a starter. And now, McBride will replace Walter Thurmond III, who was signed specifically to handle slot receivers.

“It’s not a good thing that Walter’s hurt, but then again, on the flip side for me, I have to make sure I’m prepared and make sure I’m ready to go,” McBride said. “Just like last year, we got Webby hurt, (Aaron) Ross went down and then me, I had to come in and play. It’s basically the same thing for me this year.”

But McBride must play a new role. Last season, he played on the outside, but the Giants seem set to use him against slot receivers. He said he is ready for the new challenge.

The NFL's updated drug policy allows suspended Eric Herman (62) to return to the Giants.Howard Simmons/New York Daily News The NFL’s updated drug policy allows suspended Eric Herman (62) to return to the Giants.

“I mean, I’m just a football player,” he said. “Inside, outside, I will play anywhere.”


Offensive lineman Eric Herman, who was suspended for the first four games for violating the league’s policy against performance-enhancing drugs, had his suspension voided as part of the revised policy. He is eligible to return to the team.

The Giants have applied for a roster exemption for Herman. Such an exemption would give the team a week to decide how to handle the roster spot, although the player cannot practice or play. The Giants would have to cut a player to open a spot for Herman, or, if they want to place him on the practice squad, they must waive him and hope he is not picked up by another team.


Linebacker Jon Beason (foot) did not practice, but Coughlin said he has not been ruled out for Sunday yet. “I wouldn’t put it past him anything,” Coughlin said . . . OL James Brewer (back) and OL Charles Brown (shoulder) were limited. LB Devon Kennard (hamstring) and punter Steve Weatherford (ankle) did not practice. DT Markus Kuhn (ankle) was a full participant.


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