Asked later to clarify the location of the injury, Coughlin said, “I don’t know, bottom, top or middle. Foot. I probably said (bottom) but … who knows?”
Beason was one of the most valuable Giants after joining the team last Oct. 4 in a trade with the Carolina Panthers. He instantly became a team leader and finished second on the team with 98 tackles.
How important is Beason to the defense?
“Very,” Coughlin said. “Very important because of the nature of the player, the man, his attitude, what he brings to the table, his leadership skills. Very important.”
- In Beason’s absence, Mark Herzlich, free agent pickup Jameel McClain and Devon Kennard, the second of the Giants’ two fifth-round draft choices, took reps at middle linebacker.
“I think just with the process, they’re trusting me more,” Kennard said. “We’ll see where it goes from there.”
Kennard said his current responsibilities here differ from what he was asked to do playing linebacker at USC.
“When I was at USC our middle linebacker came out of the box a lot more than we do now,” he said. “I actually like that the middle linebacker stays in the box the majority of the time. We ran a lot more Cover 2 at USC, Monte Kiffin’s Cover 2 scheme. I like the Cover 3s and the different things that we’re doing, different packages, so it’s good.”
“He’s picked things up very well,” Coughlin said of Kennard. “He’s very smart, very good on the board. He’s done a nice job on the field, a good job on special teams. We’re excited about him. A nice big kid, strong kid.”
- Left tackle Will Beatty, who fractured his leg in the season finale last Dec. 29, hasn’t participated in the OTAs and will sit out the minicamp next week. Coughlin said, “He seems like he’s making progress.” Asked if Beatty will be ready for training camp next month, the coach said, “That’s what we’re hoping for, yeah. … He’s doing all the rehab, but on paper he wasn’t scheduled to go until training camp.”