Warner gets Giants starting QB assignment

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 12, 2004

The Associated Press

Kurt Warner will start ahead of Eli Manning in the New York Giants exhibition opener.

Coach Tom Coughlin made that announcement Wednesday, but added that the competition for the starting job between the two-time MVP and the No. 1 pick in last April's draft remains tight.

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''Are they even? I would say 'Yes,''' Coughlin said is designating Warner to start Friday night against Kansas City at Giants Stadium.

''Whoever has the opportunity to play with the starters, that's who usually has his better practices. From that standpoint, they are. Now we will see how they separate out.''

Warner will play into the second quarter, with Manning running the offense until at least the middle of the third quarter. Jesse Palmer, television's ''The Bachelor,'' will finish, meaning the Giants will put three celebrity QBs on the field against the Chiefs.

''I've been a backup before so it won't be hard,'' said Manning, who signed a six-year, $45 million contract last month. ''Kurt's already played a bunch of games, and he knows what it's like. It's my job to watch and learn from him and just try to get a feel of the game.''

The last time Manning didn't start was at Mississippi as a redshirt freshman in 2001. He played six games as a reserve.

Warner was signed after being released by St. Louis to give the team a veteran to help Manning break in. Kerry Collins, the team's quarterback since 1999, was released after Manning was drafted and signed with Oakland.

In other news from the Giants camp, tight end Jeremy Shockey practiced for the first time since surgery on his right foot June 22.

''We're on schedule,'' Shockey said. ''We're doing good. If we keep being smart about it and don't push it, there's no reason why next week I can't go full speed.''



Wide receiver Anquan Boldin, last season's offensive rookie of the year, had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee Wednesday and is expected to miss at least eight weeks.

Coach Dennis Green initially said an MRI found ''a slight tear'' in the cartilage and thought Boldin would be able to return within two weeks. But during the procedure, doctors found and repaired a more significant tear, Green said.

That means Boldin, Arizona's only Pro Bowl player last year after setting an NFL rookie record with 101 catches, may not be back until at least early October - a severe blow to Green's plan to juice up the offense.

Another wide receiver, Bryant Johnson, had a boot removed which he wore for more than a month to protect the stress fracture in his right foot. Last year's first-round draft pick planned to return soon.



Left tackle Tarik Glenn returned to the practice field Wednesday after missing more than a week of workouts because he was overweight.

Glenn, a starter for six seasons, had missed nine workouts since Aug. 2. Glenn, listed at 6-foot-5, 332 pounds, has been quarterback Peyton Manning's trusted security blanket on the blind side.

Coach Tony Dungy has said Glenn's weight limit had been agreed upon with trainers as a precaution for the long, hot days of training camp. Dungy, however, has not publicly said how much Glenn weighed and the tackle has declined to comment.

Glenn was the Colts' first round pick in 1997 and had a streak of 101 consecutive starts that ended last season when he missed six games with a sprained left knee.



Chris Perry practiced Wednesday, a day after signing a five-year, $7 million contract to end an 11-day holdout.

But the running back from Michigan, the team's first-round draft pick, was told by coach Marvin Lewis he won't play Saturday night in the Bengals' preseason opener at Tampa Bay.

Following the morning workout, Perry ran eight ''gassers'' - sprints from one sideline to the other - to help with his conditioning. He was the only player running them.



Linebacker Boss Bailey will miss much of the season while recovering from knee surgery.

Bailey injured his right knee in an Aug. 3 practice. He underwent arthroscopic surgery Wednesday in Athens, Ga., where doctors discovered torn cartilage that had not shown up in previous tests.

''The damage was worse than anyone had realized from the tests,'' Lions coach Steve Mariucci said. ''The doctor immediately repaired it, but Boss will be off the knee for several weeks, and then will be looking at a rehab period on top of that.''

Mariucci declined to put a timetable on Bailey's return, but said the Lions hope to have him back this season.

As a rookie in 2003, Bailey won a starting job at outside linebacker and was among the team's leaders in defensive snaps played. He finished with one interception and 1.5 sacks.

Donte Curry is expected to replace Bailey in the lineup.



Quarterbacks Brett Favre and Doug Pederson split the reps in team segments Wednesday as top backup Tim Couch was given a day off from throwing because of tightness in his right arm.

''He's thrown a bunch of balls, probably more than all of our quarterbacks,'' head coach Mike Sherman said. ''So, we decided to hold him back. I don't think it will be an issue. We have enough quarterbacks who can get the work.''

Halfback Ahman Green (sore foot) and tight end David Martin (swollen knee) also sat out practice.

Cornerback Al Harris, safety/cornerback James Whitley, linebacker Paris Lenon and the rookie duo of defensive lineman Corey Williams and center Scott Wells all returned to practice after a variety of injuries.



Chargers quarterbacks' coach Brian Schottenheimer, son of head coach Marty Schottenheimer, underwent surgery this week for thyroid cancer but is expected to rejoin the club for Saturday's exhibition game against the Colts.

Marty Schottenheimer said his son had his thyroid gland and some lymph nodes removed.

''It went extremely well and the prognosis is excellent. We're anxious to get him back here,'' the elder Schottenheimer said Wednesday.



Miami Dolphins safety Chris Akins will miss the season after having knee surgery Wednesday. Akins tore the anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments in his right knee last Saturday during a workout against Houston.

One of the top special teams players for the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots last season, Akins signed a three-year contract with the Dolphins in March.



Center Jeremy Newberry had damaged cartilage removed from his right knee and is expected to return to practice in two weeks, coach Dennis Erickson said. Newberry had the surgery on Tuesday.

The 49ers had 42 players listed on their injury report and Erickson has determined that several won't play against in the team's exhibition opener Saturday against Oakland.

Newberry, quarterback Tim Rattay (forearm, groin) and defensive tackle Anthony Adams (ankle) are among the regular starters who have been ruled out.



Down to just two healthy quarterbacks, the Seattle Seahawks brought in rookie Bryson Spinner for a workout Wednesday.

Spinner had signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars as a free agent in May out of the University of Richmond, but was released. He was put through a series of throws by Seahawks quarterback coach Jim Zorn, but the team made no decision on whether to sign him.

The Seahawks are without backups Trent Dilfer and Brock Huard, both sidelined with back injuries. Starting quarterback Matt Hasselbeck and backup Seneca Wallace have been taking all the snaps in practice.

Cornerback Bobby Taylor participated in his first full practice in eight days on Wednesday.The veteran injured his knee during practice on Aug. 3 and had been held out of contact drills for the past week.