Andre Williams was a Heisman finalist in 2013. Credit: Getty Images
First-round pick Odell Beckham Jr. isn’t the only rookie angling for immediate playing time.
Running back Andre Williams also believes he can get on the field quickly — or at least share the load with incumbent starter David Wilson and free-agent signee Rashad Jennings.
“I think the opportunity is there [to play right away],” Williams said. “But all I want to do is just come in, compete and get better. Being around the guys in my circle, the running back group, and the whole offense as a whole, everybody’s really together. There’s a good feeling in the locker room about the offense. ... I can’t really say how they’re going to build that three-headed monster. I’m just getting here and learning as much as I can. But I think that each running back brings a lot of different specialties to the table and I’m just excited to see what we’ll be able to do on the field.”
Backup quarterback Ryan Nassib is not a rookie, but he did not get much of a look last season. Nassib took no snaps during the regular season, but also threw just 17 passes in the preseason.
He said he’s improved by leaps and bounds during this offseason though.
“I think my progress from this offseason compared to last year is like night and day,” Nassib said Tuesday. “I didn’t have to deal with the draft and all of those workouts and stuff like that like I had last year. Now all I have to do is focus in on what we have to do here.”
But Nassib was diplomatic about who should be the No. 2 signal caller behind Eli Manning, as the team also has longtime veteran backup Curtis Painter and added free-agent veteran Josh Freeman.
“I don’t really see it as anything,” Nassib said of the signing. “It’s the same reason why they bring in guys for other positions. It’s just trying to create competition, trying to make guys better [and] trying to make guys play at their best at all times.”
Big Blue notes ...
» All of the Giants’ draft picks have signed their rookie deals, except third-round defensive tackle Jay Bromley of Syracuse.
» Free-agent cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie said he was heavily influenced by safety Antrel Rolle in his decision to choose the Giants. Rodgers-Cromartie, who played in Denver last season, also played alongside Rolle during their time on the Cardinals. Rodgers-Cromartie noted he’s happy he chose the Giants, but added the “terminology is very hard. It’s very difficult.”
» Rookie linebacker Devon Kennard has been learning the middle and strongside positions during team activities, but noted his primary focus has been on the middle.
» Team owner John Mara added his thoughts on the possible playoff expansion: “I’m in the minority. I’m against it.”
» Free-agent center J.D. Walton said he’s all for competition and looks forward to the camp battles with rookie Weston Richburg — although he does expect to win the starting position despite not playing much the last two seasons due to injuries.
“Nothing wrong with competition,” Walton said. “He’s a good kid.”
Richburg said he’s been told he’ll get long looks at guard at times, too.
» Many players on offense said they have immersed themselves in plenty of tape from the Packers — McAdoo’s former team. Tight end Adrien Robinson said he “loves” the new offense, as tight ends in McAdoo’s system will be “doing more moving around in different spots.” Robinson added he feels he can be the “JPP of tight ends this season,” a famous Jerry Reese quote from when the Giants drafted Robinson.
Follow Giants beat writer Tony Williams on Twitter@TBone8.