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New York Giants WR Louis Murphy Developing Early Chemistry with QB Eli Manning

May 31st, 2013 at 2:45 PM
By Douglas Rush

During the first week of the New York Giants OTA's, leading receivers Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz have been missing in action. While everyone knows that Cruz is in the middle of contract negotiations, nobody is quite sure why Nicks is missing, and his agent won't go public with the reasoning.

Despite their absences, one person who is developing an early chemistry and connection with Giants' starting quarterback Eli Manning is Louis Murphy, who was brought in on a one-year deal to replace Domenik Hixon, who left via free agency to the Carolina Panthers.

In the Giants OTA's, Murphy has been impressing Giants coaches, players and media all over by showing off his speed and ability to read what the other is doing. It's something that Murphy told Sean Folger of Inside Football that he prefers being able to do on the field.

“He said to me ‘Hey, I saw your body language, I saw what you were doing,’ so as long as I define my movements he can read off of it,” Murphy recalled. He later said, “It’s a plus being able to be on the same page as him.”

In Murphy's first OTA with the Giants, he beat veteran cornerback Corey Webster down the field and hauled in a 50-yard touchdown pass; which caught the attention of everyone in attendance, especially all of the media who were there because they all proceeded to plaster that all over Twitter.

Murphy also said he attributes developing that early bond and chemistry with Manning when he, Cruz and Nicks went down to Duke University to work out with his quarterback, just as how his older brother Peyton Manning brought his receivers from the Denver Broncos to work on timing patterns and pass plays.

Aside from the tremendous speed that Murphy is going to be able to show off in 2013, Manning told Folger that he loved his new wide receiver's work ethic and ability.

 “Louis has come in and worked really hard. He’s got the desire and commitment to come in and bring another threat to his offense,” Manning noted.

Murphy was a former fourth-round pick of the Oakland Raiders back in 2009 and spent the 2012 season with the one Hixon left the Giants for, the Panthers. In his first two seasons in the league, Murphy showed the kind of ability he could possess by being a 500-600 yard receiver; in 2010, Murphy had 41 catches for 609 yards and two touchdowns.

With Manning though, Murphy may see an expanded role in the Giants offense, one that might see Manning go deep down the field for home run-type pass plays. If Murphy can hang onto the ball more often, Manning will surely continue to truth throwing the ball in Murphy's direction, maybe even late in games and give the Giants already high-octane offense another weapon.

Lots of people saw Murphy's potential in Hixon over the years especially because he was really quick, but two ACL injuries in 2010 and 2011 really hampered his progress. Murphy might be able to do what Hixon wasn't in the Giants offense.


Tags: Eli Manning, Football, Hakeem Nicks, Louis Murphy, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Victor Cruz

8 Responses to “New York Giants WR Louis Murphy Developing Early Chemistry with QB Eli Manning”

  1.  GOAT56 says:


    norm says:
    May 31, 2013 at 2:31 PM
    No doubt the Giants would sorely miss either Cruz or Nicks were one to bolt town. But I’d also argue that history teaches us that neither one is wholly indispensable, either… not so long as #10 remains under center.

    How many times have we seen supposedly “indispensable” pass catchers leave town?

    When Plax left, we said Eli would surely suffer without any other tall receiver to catch his high passes.

    When Smith and Boss left, we wondered how Eli would cope without his “security blankets.”

    When Mario left, we fretted over Eli’s ability to function without a reliable #3 WR.

    In every case, Eli endured. Hell, once he got up to speed with the “next man up,” the offense hardly skipped a beat.

    Granted, both Cruz and Nicks are more talented than any of those guys. They’re likely more talented than any of the other receivers currently on the roster. But should it come to pass that they leave for greener pastures, Eli will similarly endure.

    As an unapologetic Eli homer, I’ll even take it one step further: Eli makes receivers, not the other way around. In fact, we could be seeing the beginnings of another one being “made” right now, Louis Murphy. Per Pat Traina:

    …Manning and Murphy connected on several intermediate routes, one over the middle and one on the outside, that had impeccable timing. This is after they teamed up for a seamless, deep touchdown on a post route in last week’s OTA.

    On one play specifically, Murphy recalled Manning’s innate ability to read a receiver’s body language on a route. The defender played him to the inside, so Murphy had no other option but to come back to Manning, which was not the original route. Nevertheless, when he turned around, the ball was right in his hands

    “He said to me ‘Hey, I saw your body language, I saw what you were doing,’ so as long as I define my movements he can read off of it,” Murphy recalled. He later said, “It’s a plus being able to be on the same page as him.”

    Murphy also attributes their chemistry to the few days of workouts that Eli and his brother Peyton held on the campus of Duke University in April, in which Murphy attended along side a few other receivers, including Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz…

    Again, I’m not suggesting that Louis Murphy is the next Nicks or Cruz. But I will say that he will be a far more productive receiver than he was when playing with the likes of Jamarcus Russell, Bruce Gradkowski, Jason Campbell, Carson Palmer and Cam Newton. Eli will make him a much better player than anyone currently thinks he is. And Murphy won’t be the last receiver we say that about, either.

    To repeat: receivers come, receivers go… but so long as Eli stays, the Giants passing game will be fine.

    fanfor55years says:
    May 31, 2013 at 2:43 PM
    To a large extent I agree, but I think Nicks is an exceptional combination of football speed, great hands, strength, and ability to get the ball at the highest point possible when battling with a defender. He definitely makes Eli better.

    I said when we signed him that I really like Murphy. He looked great to me at Florida and I was shocked that he did very little in the league until he flashed a bit last season.

    I’d go so far as to say that if the O-line plays a bit better than last season that this team could make the playoffs with Murphy, Randle and Jernigan playing but cannot go all the way without Nicks. And I sure don’t want to be without Cruz either.

    GOAT56 says:
    May 31, 2013 at 2:57 PM
    I agree completely with what you said. Simply put the cost of replacing a true #1 like Nicks is just more than a great slot WR like Cruz. We still had to invest a 1st rounder to replace Plax. We invested a 3rd rounder to replace Smith.

    I said months ago I think the best way to construct the roster is to keep only one of these WRs and my choice is Nicks. Not because Cruz isn’t a great player who adds to the offense but because we can allocate the funds we would use to keep him better elsewhere. Part of the reason we have Eli is to make receivers look better. I don’t think we should use 16-20 mil to lock up 2 WRs long term. The offense can be nearly as effective without Cruz in 2014. It’s even possible we lock up Cruz and let Nicks walk. But I think that’s a mistake because we then probably have to invest a 1st round pick in replacing a #1 or just a WR opposite Randle. Whereas replacing a slot WR can be done in the middle rounds. Keeping both WRs appears the way we are going which the fan in me likes because I like both Nicks and Cruz. The JR in me just thinks we need to keep Nicks by signing him now at a semi discount and let Cruz walk after the season because keeping both WRs is too pricey.


  2.  fanfor55years says:

    Again, I loved this signing and I expect Murphy to contribute a lot this season.

    It won’t happen, but if I were Reese I’d be thinking about approaching him and tying him up for an extra year or two, perhaps by structuring something like they did with Myers where they have him for four years but loaded the guarantees into the first year and have almost no cost if they cut him loose after that. I would think just doing this would result in some savings when finalizing things with Cruz and Nicks (because Murphy and Randle would be available in a pinch) and having Murphy with a net cost of very little.

    You know who has to already be happy that Murphy is here? Myers and Robinson. Safeties are not going to be able to help with the tight ends when Murphy can take the top of the defense off.

    •  GOAT56 says:

      I agree about Murphy. I felt the same way about Bennett and Rivers last year. But The player has to want it too. He’s probably willing to take less for one year and hoping to cash in rather than a deal like 2 years, 2.5-3 mil.

  3.  NOLAGiant says:

    “In Murphy’s first OTA with the Giants, he beat veteran cornerback Corey Webster down the field and hauled in a 50-yard touchdown pass; which caught the attention of everyone in attendance”

    What I want to know is did Murphy beat Webster or is Webster back to giving up big plays.

    •  BillyS says:

      I think it’s a bit of both, but I do think that Murphy’s fast enough to get past any CB in the league. He is the definition of a blazer. Not every fast guy can actually use the speed while playing, though. There are tons of track stars who never amount to anything because they’re “just fast guys”, but add in the ability to have good hands and actually have a capable QB…it makes a world of difference. I’m not expecting Murphy to be amazing by any chance, but I think there is some untapped potential there. It’s not like he’s really had a capable QB to throw to him either so maybe that was holding him back and now he’s got the ability to finally show what he’s capable of.

  4.  Samardzija says:

    This is Murphys MO. Hes always been a good player, but once its game time. Not so much. Ill get excited when he hauls in a 50 yard TD when it actually matters.

  5.  GOAT56 says:

    Murphy can provide a lot of what Jacoby Jones did as a WR for Bmore last year. He probably won’t play as much so his numbers may be lower. But Jones game them an explosive WR that kill 3rd, 4th CBs deep. I think Murphy provides similar WR skills. He may drop a few balls but his presence with Nicks, Cruz and Randle will be tough for a defense to handle.

  6.  Krow says:

    TBH … I think there’s a very distinct possibility that Nicks is gone after this year.

    And I am a big Hakeem fan. Wanted us to draft him. I think there are many games where he was the difference. Instrumental in a storied SB run. When he’s right he’s all you can ask for in a #1 WR.

    Of course that’s the rub. He’s not always ‘right’. And as a result he hasn’t posted up the career numbers to warrant the mega-contract he’s going to want.

    If he has anything short of a dominant 2013 then Reese is going to be reluctant to lay that sort of money on the table.

    However … as Mike Wallace has proven … there’s always some team that will roll the dice. Some team that will make him the offer he can’t … or won’t … refuse.

    Like I said, I’m a huge fan of his … but objectively speaking I can easily see a scenario develop where he leaves. And right now the negotiations the team is having with Cruz … they’re going to look like a ‘love fest’ next to the one they’re going to experience with Nicks.

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