New York Giants seventh-round draft pick T.J. Brunson comments on the virtual workout program from the eyes of a rookie.
Back in April, the New York Giants used one of their multiple seventh-round selections (No. 238 overall) on T.J. Brunson, a versatile inside linebacker from South Carolina who’s expected to compete for a spot on the active roster. If he does make the team, he’ll likely provide depth behind Blake Martinez, Ryan Connelly, and David Mayo.
But what’s tough right now for Brunson, and any first-year player for that matter, is the fact that NFL teams are undergoing virtual workouts amid the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s a different feel for everyone but makes it that much tougher for rookies to learn the playbook and really adapt to the speed of the pros.
“I think it’s a disadvantage for rookies not to see where they are going to be and be there in person,” Brunson said, per Paul Schwartz of the New York Post. “We’re also expected to come in and pick up what’s going on and play fast. I think this will help us when we get there. Hopefully it’s before August. If we don’t get there until August, we’re supposed to hit the ground and be able to pick up everything that’s going on. I think this gives us a chance to really understand the calls and the defense and get out there and play fast.”
It’s really unclear when the players and coaches will be able to take part in on-field, in-person workouts. No one truly knows when this pandemic’s eventual conclusion will occur. Fans are optimistic the preseason and regular-season schedules won’t succumb to drastic alterations, but we’re still in May, and none of us can predict the legitimate future.
Brunson seemingly doesn’t believe the virtual format is ideal, but ultimately knows it’s what needs to be done during these difficult times.
“Because of everything going on right now, I think this is the best option we have,” he said. “I personally don’t have an issue with it. I’d rather be up there in person. If this is how we have to get our football in, then there’s no problem with that.”
In 2019 (his senior season), Brunson recorded 77 total tackles (44 solo) with six tackles for loss, one interception, and five passes defended for the Gamecocks.