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New York Giants’ Ryan Mundy: I’m Ready to Fill in for Antrel Rolle as a Starter

August 14th, 2013 at 8:30 AM
By Doug Rush

The New York Giants got extremely good news on the ankle injury suffered by starting safety Antrel Rolle, as it was revealed on Tuesday that he did not suffer a high ankle sprain, but it was enough of a sprain that it will keep him on the sidelines for a bit.

In the meantime, the Giants have bumped up backup safety Ryan Mundy to play on the first-team defense and is playing in place of Rolle while he is in a walking boot and recovering from the injury he suffered in practice on Monday; an injury that happened when he got tangled up with Bear Pascoe and landed on his foot the wrong way.

Before coming to the Giants, Mundy was the backup safety behind one of the league's best in Steelers' Troy Polamalu and backed up their other safety in Ryan Clark and made occasional starts whenever Polamalu or Clark would be out with an injury. Now on the Giants, Mundy told David Satriano of the New York Post that he is ready to step up and step in as a starter if needed with Rolle recovering.

“From Day 1, [safeties] Coach [Dave] Merritt came in the room and said we all have to prepare as if we are going to start the game and that really sets the tempo, sets the attitude for our room,” Mundy said yesterday. “Because you never know who can go down or when they could go down, but you know our job as professional athletes is to be ready. I’m no stranger to stepping in and holding it down while a starter is out or being a starter … because that’s what I have prepared for the last five years playing behind Troy [Polamalu] and Ryan [Clark], so this situation is nothing new to me.”

When asked if Mundy could do the job that Rolle has done on defense over the last three seasons, Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell thinks that the former Steelers veteran will do just fine in the Giants system despite his lack of starting time in the NFL.

“He is very knowledgeable as far as the defense is concerned,” Fewell said. “He does not have the experience and the background that Antrel has because he hasn’t been in the system as long, but he’s very conscientious, and working with Stevie Brown, he’ll be fine.”

The former sixth-round draft pick of the 2009 NFL Draft has played in 64 total games, but has only started five in his career, three of which came back in the 2012 season. With Rolle recovering from the ankle sprain, Mundy has a golden opportunity to move up on the depth chart and use the next couple of weeks to impress the coaches and teammates by playing well, despite the fact that Rolle is expecting to be back before the Giants' Week 1 game against the Dallas Cowboys on September 8.

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Photo credit: BigBlueCowboy / Photobucket / CC BY-NC-SA

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Tags: Antrel Rolle, Football, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Perry Fewell, Ryan Mundy

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29 Responses to “New York Giants’ Ryan Mundy: I’m Ready to Fill in for Antrel Rolle as a Starter”

  1.  JimStoll says:

    hopefully Mundy will get tested by Luck this weekend
    Lord knows the following week will be quiet in terms of downfield pass defense
    if we need Mundy come Week 1, this weekend is really the dress rehearsal

  2.  Krow says:

    I don’t share any of this enthusiasm over Ryan Mundy. His ceiling is JAG. The Steelers fan base hated him. Truth be told I’d rather go with Sash.

    •  JimStoll says:

      all the more reason to see him tested by Luck

      •  Krow says:

        The NFL is full of JAGs … I’m not trashing the guy for just being a depth player. But he has no future. He’s a stopgap. Whereas Sash and Cooper and Hill may actually have bright futures. I’d rather find out about them.

        •  fanfor55years says:

          Mundy’s okay. Nothing special, but solid. And “solid” safeties are valuable in the NFL. They don’t make many “game-costing” mistakes. Of course Mundy made one that cost the Steelers that playoff game that Tebow won, and fans will never forgive him for that.

          The thing to remember though is that with this screwed up preseason practice schedule the team cannot afford too much “finding out” about guys and has to really prepare for the season in the games. Given that they plan on having Mundy in there until Rolle’s return, which might not be until after Week 1, they HAVE to see Mundy. Only if he fails will someone else start getting his snaps.

        •  JimStoll says:

          looking at our safeties right now, this could really be an incredibly weak unit this year

          Rolle, our best safety, may be playing on a weakened ankle all season

          Brown, who was the quintessential JAG until last season, has to prove that he can do more than be in the right place when a ball is thrown poorly; his cover skills last year were scary bad

          Mundy, Sash, Taylor are all no. 3 guys in an ideal world

          and then there are the long shot UDFA’s

          I’m not saying these guys will be bad; they might be very good; but the resume looks a little precarious as of now

        •  GOAT56 says:

          I don’t share any hope that Sash is anything but a JAG. Mundy is similar but with better athletic ability and thus he can be a better player. Grant was old when he came here and was effective so it’s very possible Mundy can be just as effective in the 3rd safety role. Though Hill still have the more promise in that role.

          •  Krow says:

            Well Grant had a much better resume than Mundy. But it’s not about his age in any event … it’s about his level of ability. Can he be effective ? Sure. JAGs are often effective. But don’t we want to do better ? Why settle ? Especially with Rolle in his contract year and Brown still with a lot to prove.

  3.  fanfor55years says:

    Now, not to be negative, but all these shiny toys in the backfield won’t mean much if we cannot stop the run. If not, even the best secondary in the NFL would be abused because the safeties have to cheat up and the linebackers have to read run-first, opening space between them and the corners.

    This defense has done a poor job of stopping the run for two consecutive seasons. last year was embarrassing. Reese brought in some muscle in the middle, and that should help. Will it be enough?

    I feel very strongly that they need to keep Shaun Rogers. He and Hankins are the real run-stoppers up front and they need them both as part of the rotation. I love Cullen Jenkins, and think he will be a fundamental part of the defense, but he is more an “athletic” type than a boulder who stops runs cold.

    The guy who still concerns me is everyone’s favorite Linval Joseph. I know the coaches speak highly of him. I know Jenkins was quoted as saying he has “Pro Bowl talent”. But I know what I’ve seen has been quite unimpressive, and that he has been playing in the middle with a variety of others over the past two years while opposing offenses slash through that middle regularly and force our defense to respond to what the offense wants to do rather than ever dictate the reverse. I hope this is the year he breaks out, but I’ll believe it when I see it. I’m not saying he won’t, but I think he has been highly overrated so far and is sailing on reputation and hope more than what he has actually done. At this point I am not convinced he should be on the roster ahead of Mike Patterson. he will be, but I’m not convinced that’s fair or intelligent. I hope to change my mind over the next few preseason games.

    And then there’s the linebackers. Someone has to be able to get into the right gaps and hit the runner before the runner hits him, and stone a few people. We have a lot of very mobile, but light, backers. Asking Williams, Rivers and Paysinger to be stout against the run is asking them to do what they may not be physically capable of doing no matter how well they play. Physics dictates that a 300-pound blocker, a 260-pound tight end helping, and a 210-pound runner are going to gain an advantage against a 270-pound outside defender and a 230-pound linebacker. We clearly need Herzlich or Connor to step up. We also need the safeties making quick, accurate reads and racing up to assist. But I am starting to think that we are really in need of three things at that level of the defense: Tracy being used as a SAM; a lot more 3-4 with guys like Tuck and JPP and Kiwi outside; and Curry proving he can play because he is the “big backer” who can stone the run if he gets to the right gap.

    If Joseph shows up this season, and some of what I’ve noted above as necessary at the second level occurs, then I think this defense will surprise a lot of people and be something between pretty good and very good. But who knows if those things will prove to be the case?

    •  Krow says:

      I think you pretty much nailed it. If anything we have too many bodies at DT. One or two have to go, and they won’t be the worst players on the team. Sad reality of life in the NFL.

      Our LBs are a baffling bunch. They seem to possess the physical tools. But constantly make gap mistakes that keep the defense on the field. Edge containment is largely a rumor. Only NASCAR sees the corner turned more often.

      No secondary can hold up against large bodies making it to the second level. And as you point out … if they cheat up then they’ll get burned deep. And to the average fan it will look like their fault.

      No one should draw too many conclusions from the first pre-season game. However the troubles that plagued us in run defense all 2012 were on stark display once again.

  4.  fanfor55years says:

    I’m going to the game Sunday (I don’t regularly go to the preseason games) because I cannot wait to see Andrew Luck live. I saw him a lot at Stanford, but that was obviously different (and part of long weekends when the game wasn’t always my main focus since my kids were occupying me).

    I’m also really looking forward to seeing how all of the new players fit the Giants and whether these various schemes look decent.

    Should be a lot of fun. I cannot remember a season in which I was excited to get to preseason games, but I absolutely am excited this time around. Things are in flux, and seeing them come together (or not) is one of the wonderful parts of being a fan.

    •  JimStoll says:

      Agree 100% on the need to stop the run. For all the talk about QBs and how this is a video game passing league, the surest way to keep a defense on its heels is to be able to run, especially on 1st down.

      I’m not as high on Rogers as you. He is old, really really old for a 330+ pound DT
      The last time he was any good I believe was 2008
      he was out all of last season and I can’t see him giving us significant snaps as the year rolls on

      I do agree with you about LJ. He was really soft last year and I question whether he is anything more than a compliment to a stud DT
      Hankins is the guy to foot that bill, but that is likely next year and beyond. If history be our guide, this will likely be mostly a red-shirt year for him

      that leaves Jenkins, Patterson and Austin. Thus far Austin has been all disappointment. Can the Giants afford a roster spot on him if he does anything other than dominate these next 2 weeks?
      Jenkins looks like a reliable pick-up and the likely starter at one spot come Week 1. Patterson worries me along the lines of Rogers — aging and able to give limited snaps.

      We know LJ, Jenkins and Hankins are on the roster. Given the balance of guys it looks like we’ll have to keep 5 overall. My guess is Patterson is axed and Austin is given one last chance to justify his lofty draft status, but draft status is all that argues in his favor at the moment

      Overall, the only thing that commends this group right now is that it is not entirely the same as last year’s group

      they have tons to prove and if they don’t we’ll be fielding a lousy defense for the 3d year running

  5.  GOAT56 says:

    Looking at the way the numbers seem on defense at DL and DB plus with Nassib not doing enough so far it looks more likely we keep 3 QBs. But I think we keep 19-20 players between DL & DB. I have expressed why I feel like we need 4 RBs. It looks like the position most likely to carry a lower number than the past few years is WR. It just doesn’t make sense to carry Barden over any of the othe players at the end of the roster discussion because the other players either had long term upside or special teams value. It makes sense to keep a guy like hardy on PS. RB I think Cox is going to continue to prove himself enough to be even in the mix for a few carries. It seems hard to believe that assuming we keep Cox that we would trust those 3 inexperienced RBs as our only 3 RBs but the way the roster looks its not impossible. If we keep TT it becomes interesting to see if we keep any young CB or Sash. I think Taylor will be on the 53 or IR, it’s feeling like Mosley last year. Taylor had a seemingly minor injury with no update as of yet. I think 10 DBs is possible with Rolle being banged up and the age and health of our CBs. We definitely have some real roster fights.

    •  Krow says:

      Yes, it’s time for some of those phantom injuries that land raw talent on the IR. Taylor is a good bet … I think Nassib might be too. Eric Herman wouldn’t be a surprise either.

      •  GOAT56 says:

        I don’t think the injuries are ever phantom. I think they are exaggerated which is why I mentioned Taylor because he has a legit injury. Mosley had a legit injury as did Cruz. Now the time frame of recovery is what I will agree on was stretched and I think could end up the case with Taylor if he isn’t ready very soon. Nassib needs the practice time. With Mosley last year and maybe Taylor this year they got injured at a time that makes it hard for them to get meaningful regular season snaps because this is there chance to emerge.

  6.  GOAT56 says:

    Defensive Coordinator Perry Fewell

    Q: How has Marvin Austin been performing?

    A: I thought Marvin performed well this past Saturday. He’s progressed each week in practice. He’s had a full offseason with the OTAs, which he didn’t have in the past. I look for good things from him this Sunday in the football game. This will be a really good opportunity for him to showcase his quickness and his abilities. I think Pittsburgh is really a big massive offensive line. Indy, they’ll play more to the strengths of Marvin and so it will be exciting to see him in this game Sunday.

    http://www.giants.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Quotes-Fewell-Rolle–Mundy/33c383ce-e2ff-4496-b6a2-19b36ac7f0db

    •  GOAT56 says:

      People have to realize that unlike fans the brass isn’t going the last 2 years against Austin, it’s about what he brings now. It seems like universally from the coaches that his play has improved. He’s still a young player so he should continue to get better. It’s hard for me to see a vet like Patterson making the roster over him even if Patterson plays a little better. Austin is under contract for 2 more years, could be a long term answer at DT and could be just scratching the surface. I think if he stays healthy and plays on the level he did in preseason game one Austin is a lock to be on this roster. He’s still only 24 so he has a lot of football in front of him.

    •  Krow says:

      OK, but you know coaches are not keen on saying anything negative to the media.

      •  GOAT56 says:

        The coaches version of negative is to not say much positive. The guy I noticed who gets very few props from coaches is Ojomo. The coaches barely mention him. Now they don’t rip him or say negative stuff but the not talking him up says something.

        Also I think that some underestimate what PF is saying. This is the first year he went through a full offseason and training camp healthy. That makes a big difference for a young player.

        •  JimStoll says:

          it does
          but it has been something like 4 or 5 years since he played a full season and it is impossible to ignore that

          I agree that his draft status gives him the edge over Patterson, but if he doesn’t do something impressive over these next 2 game and Patterson looks capable, does he really stick?

  7.  JimStoll says:

    When you look critically at the defensive unit you come away with the sense that if the DE’s do not play lights out this year, the unit will be one of the worst in the league

    Fewell is notorious for poorly disguising his fronts, for being an ineffective blitz caller and for relying entirely on his DE’s getting enough pressure to disrupt opposing QBs

    we know our LBs are horrible until they prove otherwise
    our DTs appear only slightly more competent, again until proven otherwise
    our safety unit is filled mostly with Jags (3), a drug problem, an potentially hobbled all pro, and a possible 1 year wonder

    our CBs look very uncertain beyond Prince — Webster off a season so dreadful his salary was dropped from $7M to $1M to avoid being cut; TT attempting to reutrn after his 3d ACL and 2 years removed from the game; Holesly hopefully growing into the No. 2 CB, but for this year maybe still the nickel guy, and then a bunch of others

    so it appears to all come down to the DE’s
    JPP – back surgery and no preseason — when he does return, when will he be in game shape and will he be 100% of his 2011 self?
    Tuck — can he return to 2010 form?
    Kiwi – I’m a DE/I’m a LB/I’m a DE — what am I
    Moore — will the rookie be able to step up once things get real?
    Tracy – will he ever do anything?
    Ojomo, Trattaou, Broha — anything here?

    There are so many questions for this defense and at least from one vantage point it seems to all fall on a questionable group of DEs

    •  Krow says:

      Quick. Someone get this poor fellow the koolaid.

    •  BigBlueGiant says:

      good post. I actually couldn’t agree more.

      We saw first hand last year that the backbone of this team is the d-line. and when they didn’t play well, the whole team suffered greatly.

      I’m not sold on our LB’s or DB’s either.

      and to you guys who actually think that TT will be fine going foward after 3 ACL tears….. you guys have lost your minds.

  8.  Andiamo P says:

    I think Rolle is a good player. I think he’s better in the box though. Having Mundy play in the Cover 2 doesn’t bother me one big.

    I’m actually a bit concerned about how Rolle will do back deep considering he really hasn’t done much of it that last 2 years….and even when he did do it…well, there were some issues.

    Hope Trel gets healthy and Fewell grows a pair and plays single high. Let Rolle play in the box and closer to the LOS. Hopefully more pressure on the QB helps Brown back deep.

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