For the first time, someone enjoyed their visit to Revis Island.
New Giants defensive back Dravon Askew-Henry, a distant cousin of Darrelle Revis who most recently played with the XFL’s New York Guardians, is confident he’s prepared for the jump to NFL play after spending four months living in Florida with the legendary Jets cornerback, prior to the 2019 NFL combine.
“We’d just sit on the beach for hours talking football,” Askew-Henry told NJ Advance Media. “Out of nowhere, he’d say, ‘Let’s go run,’ or ‘Let’s go watch this game, I want you to tell me what you think of this player right here and how he moves.’ It was all mental and he was helping to take my game to the next level. Darrelle’s mentality is similar to Kobe [Bryant] in a way. How he approached the game. I really want to copy that from him. That’s the majority of the battle. That mentality is something I’ll take with me forever.
“He had ‘Revis Island.’ Hopefully, if this continues, we can get an ‘Askew-Henry Island.’”
Askew-Henry, 24, landed a two-year deal with the Giants on Tuesday, and is one of two players from the second incarnation of the XFL to sign with an NFL team. Though he played safety while starting a school-record 51 games at West Virginia, Askew-Henry shifted to cornerback during his five games with the Guardians, recording six pass breakups. The Aliquippa, Pa. native — also, Revis’ hometown — went undrafted and spent last year’s training camp with the Steelers.
“Waking up with a chip on my shoulder, being thankful for where I was [with the XFL] but knowing it was not where I wanted to be, made me humble every day,” Askew-Henry said. “I wanted to go in and dominate anyone I came across. I know going into this [with the Giants], I’m not going to take anything for granted, not one workout, not one rep in practice, not one game.”
Askew-Henry said he’s open to playing either position with the Giants, who have needs at safety and cornerback. Less than three weeks removed from his most recent game, Askew-Henry is currently working out on his own, in preparation for an opportunity likely to be postponed, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’m not going to worry about the outcome,” Askew-Henry said. “I’m just going to control what I can control. I can come in and play safety, nickel or corner, and I feel like I’ll be a very valuable piece to them.
“I’m in full football mode. I can’t just let coronavirus keep me on the couch all day, because I know I have a lot at stake.”