Eli Apple getting kinder words from teammates this year

Giants safety Landon Collins referred to cornerback Eli Apple as a cancer last season in one of many harsh comments directed at the 2016 first-round pick during a year that saw him struggle on the field and in the locker room.

Plans for a bronze bust should probably remain on hold for a while, but a good season for Apple should put a pin in any other bust talk that cropped up as a miserable 2017 season came to an end.

He ran a 4.66 40 at the combine, but had pulled up with a hamstring injury. He has run the 100 meters in 10.37 seconds for the Trojans’ track team, so his speed is not in question. He was a more decisive runner this past season, and his 19 touchdowns in 2017 showed he can close the deal.

He played two seasons for the Demon Deacons after his redshirt year and needs to add strength and improve his tackling. His kind of range and athleticism is coveted at safety.

He played at either left or right tackle, but Mississippi State’s coaching staff believed he could have played any of the five positions on the offensive front. Some NFL evaluators believe he could be a center as a pro; he played there during spring drills in 2017.

Crosby looks more comfortable in the run game than in pass protection, so he could be looking at a move to right tackle or guard. He finishes blocks with purpose and plays with rare power.

With all the specialty packages NFL defenses are using, Reid is the kind of hybrid safety who should contribute quickly, especially with his speed. He had 99 tackles this past season with five interceptions.

So you’ll probably hear some of that coming from that camp this week. 2. Three magic letters you’ll hear from Bears minicamp: R-P-O. We know new Chicago coach Matt Nagy will be implementing run-pass option concepts for quarterback Mitch Trubisky (and that’s good, since he ran some in college). I noted a couple weeks ago in the Game Plan that Minnesota will be doing it behind new coordinator John DeFilippo.

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