New York Giants tight end Evan Engram practiced in full on Friday and appears to be ready to make his return to the field after missing the last two games with a tweaked hamstring.
“He practiced throughout the week,” head coach Pat Shurmur told reporters on Friday.
Shurmur was also asked if Engram will get a full workload and how he’ll be used.
“We’ll try to use the tight ends (Engram, Rhett Ellison and Scott Simonson) like we always do, use all three of them, try to maximize the use of their strengths. We’ve done that numerous times this year, so yeah, that’s a possibility. 13 personnel – one back, three tight ends,” Shurmur added.
Someone mentioned that you don’t see that formation very often. Shurmur disagreed.
“You see it more than you think,” he said. “Everybody has it in their package, a lot of times you use it in four-minute. Again, it depends on the skill and ability of your tight ends, depending on who they are.”
Engram is a former first round pick who has yet to put his game together whether it be a case of the dropsies, like he had last year, or injuries, which have sidelined him five games this year already.
“Whatever I’m asked,” Engram told reporters when asked about his role this week. “I had a good week of practice, have a great game plan in and there’s going to be opportunities to make plays throughout the game so I’m just going to be there when my number’s called.”
With four games remaining, Engram won’t be able to match the numbers he posted last year as rookie, but he’s hoping to finish the year strong.
“That’s really important to me. Not even just for myself, but for the team,” he said. “We have a couple more opportunities left, couple more division games, big games, and it’s a couple of opportunities to go out and keep doing what we’ve been doing and that’s been working hard, that’s been playing good football. Just starting fast, accomplishing the things we want to accomplish and so it’s definitely important to me that I do my job and I have a helping hand in doing all that.”
The Giants have seen Ellison and Simonson play well as in-line tight ends, so it is suspected that Engram may be split out more as a slot receiver. He said he has no preference.
“I like both honestly, but in the slot I’m able to have more freedom like different types of releases and the DB is kind of more on an island, especially in man coverage, and in zone, it’s kind of easier to be able to read where the guys are dropping and stuff,” he said. “When you get in line and you’re at the line of scrimmage, it’s a really good mismatch out there and it’s definitely easier for a defender to kind of play man if he wants to choke you or press you up there, you got D-Linemen in the way and stuff, so it’s a lot kind of harder, but if you win that matchup in the in-line position, then it’ll be good for you as well.”
And good for the Giants.