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Former Giants DB Brian Witherspoon Qualifies for US Track & Field Nationals in 100M & 200M

June 10th, 2013 at 10:45 AM
By Dan Benton

Former New York Giants defensive back Brian Witherspoon, who is coming off of two consecutive ACL tears, remains a free agent, but is doing anything other than sitting on his couch waiting for a call. Instead, Witherspoon tackled another sport and has found significant success there, qualifying for the US Track & Field Nationals in both the 100m (10.22) and 200m (20.66).

There had been some hope that Witherspoon would be able to return to the Giants late last season, but that never materialized and he remained on Injured Reserve (IR) throughout the duration of the year. Now a free agent, it would appear as if teams across the league are concerned with the multiple ACL tears, and perhaps rightfully so. However, qualifying for the US Track & Field Nationals is one emphatic way of saying: "Hey! Over here! My knee is perfectly fine."

Prior to his initial ACL tear in August of 2011, Witherspoon had begun to turn some heads at Giants' training camp. He was rapidly propelling himself up the depth chart and appeared poised for a spot on the 53-man roster before going down with the aforementioned ACL injury. His comeback was then cut short when he re-injured his ACL in May of 2012.

Always a friend to Giants 101, we certainly wish Witherspoon the best of luck at the US Track & Field Nationals, and hope to see him on an NFL field again very soon.

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Tags: Brian Witherspoon, Football, New York, New York Giants, NFL

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24 Responses to “Former Giants DB Brian Witherspoon Qualifies for US Track & Field Nationals in 100M & 200M”

  1.  GOAT56 says:

    Wow! Considering how Witherspoon looked when healthy and our depth at CB I definitely want him back since he’s healthy enough to run that fast. Maybe football cuts will be an issue but it’s worth finding out.

    •  fanfor55years says:

      Running a straight-line race is VERY different from the kind of running a corner needs to do every day. But yeah, a tryout would seem to make sense.

      •  GOAT56 says:

        I’m saying Witherspoon at his best can help us in our top 3 CBs. Most of the CBs on this roster after TT don’t have that upside. He’s worth a look. Plus look at how Hixon played after 2 ACLs.

  2.  kujo says:

    He’s really close friends with a coworker of mine. Saw him recently and he looks fantastic.

  3.  rlhjr says:

    REPOST: And for the record, most here were fond of Spoon. Kid flashed real talent if memory serves.

    Although a stronger defensive line is partly the cause for issues vs. the run, the hairy ugly truth is lack of linebacking skill. It’s easy to say the position is not valued. Especially when playing in an 43 alignment.

    However, you cannot expect the defensive line to perform overarching run support and pass rushing duties for 16 games and maybe playoffs. Any issues with depth and/or injury will not feed the bull dog.

    Linebacker is a position for a reason. They are typically the heart and soul of your defense. And they have to function at a high level in order for defenses to be formidable.

    That said, the reason the Giants under value linebacking is simply the cost that would be involved in having three guys who can control the run and guard against the pass. There is no room in the budget to pay three guys who have the speed power and agility required to do the job.

    The lions share of Giant dollars are devoted to DL, DB WR, QB and (now) OL.
    Linebacker has been catch as catch can for well over a decade.
    So yes, its a passing league except when you play vs the Giants. Then you can run and pass because you do not have to deal with linebackers.

    But that approach has produced two chamionships over a five year period.
    So maybe it will work over another five years.

    •  fanfor55years says:

      You need to remember that the kinds of linebackers you’d like are absolute freaks and very rare. The ability to defend the pass by getting in passing lanes quickly and also trying to blanket tight ends (as well as the emerging need to be able to deal with mobile quarterbacks in the open field) dictate against body types that can stand up to a 300-pound offensive lineman or even a big tight end or fullback out ahead of a good runner. Add a desire to find LBers who can rush the quarterback and you’re talking about humans who for the most part don’t exist.

      Yeah, if you find a 255-pound guy who runs 4.55, reads plays in a nanosecond, and has swivel hips but can also explode into a gap past a blocker and blow up the ballcarrier, by all means try to get him (and try to afford him after his rookie deal expires). But you’re not finding three of them, nor could you afford them in any case. Soon the Niners will lose part of their elite group and we’ll be in a league where no team has excellence across the entire second level of defense.

      Teams have to make tough decisions about where to allocate resources. I think most will move toward a “big” safety, lots of nickel looks, one “stud” at linebacker who will be as close to the ideal noted above as possible, and one who will be more a cover linebacker who can also rush the passer. The Competition Committee has practically dictated that approach, and the advent of QBs like RGIII and Wilson and Kaepernick has reinforced it.

      Linebackers are still important, but I think the Giants are smart to weigh the position a bit more lightly than others. And FWIW, I think we’re going to get pretty solid play from that position this season. I think there’s more talent there than many recognize.

      •  BigBlueGiant says:

        This will be the year where JR will realize that neglecting the LB position and inserting these whatever guys just won’t cut it anymore.

        •  fanfor55years says:

          And just where do you propose Reese find these top-grade linebackers, and what other positions are you prepared to downgrade as compensation for the money to be spent on the linebackers?

          I’m serious? I’m very curious as to what your answers will be.

  4.  GeezUp says:

    Interesting article on Spoony, I wish both he and Chad Jones all the best. Just had a thought that if the Skins and Bob Griffin push for a Week 1 start this season, ole Bob will be running track in 2015 full time. Book it.

  5.  GOAT56 says:

    RG3 is still a QB and not a position player. Rivers tore his ACL deeper in the playoffs and played week 1 in 2008. In some ways the injury could be a blessing for RG3′s development because he will know he just can’t run the ball all the time. He has the talent as a pocket passer and now will rely on that more that before.

    •  kujo says:

      Not sure what the argument here is (because I haven’t kept up with the site much since the draft), but I think the lesson here is simple–Keith Rivers isn’t half the athletic specimen that RG3, and Adrian Peterson, are. He’s not alone–almost no one can come back from an ACL as quickly as these cats are. They’re freaks.

      •  Krow says:

        RG3 is a running QB. He had some instances of effective passing, but only because of the run threat. All last year he was a one-read option QB.

        There’s no evidence he can operate as a traditional drop back passer. In fact in the few instances during our two contests when he had to throw from the pocket he was not very good.

        Now he’s got 2 bad knees … yes, two … because they took parts from the good one to repair the other. And while miracles do happen I find it highly doubtful that he’s going to see a very long career.

        •  GOAT56 says:

          I’m not as high on RG3 is some but saying he’s just a running QB is way underselling him. That throw to Moss that almost beat us was a throw not every QB can make. He has pocket ability but the used his legs more because they could and it was easier. This year we will see him more as a pocket passer which will probably make him less effective this year but better long term.

  6.  BigBlueGiant says:

    Good for him! finally found a purpose athletically!

  7.  Nosh.0 says:

    Fast don’t lie. Unless you’re Tim Carter.

  8.  GOAT56 says:

    Two years ago before he got injured it looked like Witherspoon was possibly playing Ross off the roster. Most of his work was preseason. But I think he showed more than some of our other backup CBs over the last few years. We clearly are not deep at CB and Witherspoon can provide help. If healthy he also adds value as a PR. Witherspoon was hurt so early that he could be 100% by not much like Hixon last yeat. Also, I believe his ACL was only a partial tear which is which there was some believe he could return in November. I didn’t think Witherspoon was healthy but if he is then he’s worth a 90 man roster spot.

    •  BigBlueGiant says:

      WHAT? No. stop. You’re reachin’ broski.

      •  BigBlueGiant says:

        Let me elaborate. I know he’s a friend of G101, But this kid isn’t a good CB by any stretch. And even if Ross hasn’t panned out the way JR planned, he’s not even in the same category as him.

        If Anything, Witherspoon woulda been a 4th or 5th Cb on the roster and a ST’er.

    •  kujo says:

      When have we seen him as a PR?

  9.  Eric S says:

    GOAT56 says:
    June 10, 2013 at 10:22 AM
    Chase Clement reminding New York Giants of Jake Ballard

    “When I first looked at him I had visions of Jake Ballard. Just because he was a good blocker on the goal line. They (LSU) seldom ever threw him the ball. But when the ball was snapped he had kind of that tough-guy mentality – old school,” Pope said.

    When the Giants signed Clement head coach Tom Coughlin said the organization believes Clement can play both tight end and possibly work some at fullback. Pope also said that Clement “can rifle the deep snap” and might have an NFL future doing that.

    http://www.bigblueview.com/2013/6/10/4412810/chase-clement-new-york-giants-jake-ballard-mike-pope-minicamp

    GOAT56 says:
    June 10, 2013 at 10:26 AM
    DeOssie is getting older so a replacement LS that can play another position is possible. DeOssie is probably safe for this year but I guy like Clement who makes the roster or serves on PS for a year can really be a threat to DeOssie next year. Being a TE, FB and LS really give Clement a chance especially with the Hynopski injury.

    ———————————————————————-

    Goat, I don’t understand why people want to keep getting rid of Deossie. Hes a special teams captain and terrific special teams player. He’s not old, he just turned 29 and Clement is actually old for a rookie as he turns 27 tomorrow. Clement has never been a long snapper despite the Giants thoughts that he might have a future doing it and he’s also never played any fullback either. With how complicated our offense is asking this kid to master two new positions in addition to TE is being really optimistic. Also, he would be no better than 3rd on the TE depth chart and in your scenario he replaces Pascoe not Deossie.

    •  kujo says:

      A-freakin-men!

    •  fanfor55years says:

      DeOssie no longer “wastes” a roster spot. The guy is the best long-snapper in the league and always one of the first down the field in coverage, and has had a strong ability to disrupt blocking schemes by opponents.

      Clement is certainly NOT going to push DeOssie off the roster. He also isn’t going to push Bear off. They may “like” him, but probably not enough to give him a roster spot. He’s much more likely camp fodder and insurance. He’ll play plenty in the preseason while they protect Robinson and Myers, but once Hynoski returns and Bear can return to #3 on the TE depth chart it’s all over for Clement

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