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Dayne looking to revise "Thunder" role - NFL Insider - 5/28/03


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Dayne looking to revise "Thunder" role

By Darrell Trimble

NFL Insider

Wednesday, May 28

Updated: May 28

11:49 AM ET

When Ron Dayne broke into the league three years ago, he did so as thunder, the complement to Tiki Barber's lightning. The Giants used both in the backfield with good results in 2000 until Dayne began to hit the rookie wall. He has yet to bounce back.

In the ensuing years, Dayne has carried the ball less and less and the questions about his future in New York have grown more and more frequent. Dayne requested a trade during the offseason, but given his low price tag and Heisman pedigree, GM Ernie Accorsi wasn't in the mood to deal his backup running back, even after he signed veteran Dorsey Levens to further crowd the backfield.

Since Dayne won't get the chance to garner playing time with another team, he has decided to stake his claim in the Giants backfield by working out for five weeks at The Sports Plant in Euclid, Ohio and coming to camp in the best shape of his life. The Giants' mandatory veteran mini-camp starts Monday and Dayne is expected to attend, minus the 16 pounds he's already lost this spring.

"He left in a whole different body," Eric Lichter, his personal trainer at The Sports Plant, told the New York Daily News. "Some of the Cleveland Browns that he knew out here saw him and they didn't even recognize him. Ron came in weighing 264 pounds. When he left he was 245. I don't think he's seen 245 since high school. There was a huge, significant change."

A change is exactly what Dayne is hoping Giants coaches will consider in how they use him. Despite his size, he's non-existent in the team's short yardage package and he carried the ball only 125 times last year. Such inactivity caused Dayne to boycott the entire off-season workout program, and he's been the only player without a legitimate excuse to not make a single appearance at Giants Stadium. But if he comes to camp in this type of shape, his absence may make the Giants hearts grow fonder of their former first-round pick.

"I'll be amazed if people don't see a difference in the way he looks, the way he moves and his mental outlook on the game," his agent Terry Lavenstein told the New York Post. "I think the Giants will be pleasantly surprised."

Even in premium shape, Dayne won't be asked to do too much. Barber proved that he is by far the team's most valuable offensive weapon and he will still be the focus of the team. But should Dayne be able to impress in his limited carries, he could earn more playing time.

That won't quite chase the word bust from the list of descriptives used on the former Wisconsin Badger, because more is expected from a first-rounder, but if he can become a backup that the team has confidence in then the Giants will go into the season with more confidence that should Barber be lost, their hopes for a productive season will remain intact.

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found this on INSIDER:

Dayne

New York Giants: Coach Jim Fassel read the stories Wednesday about RB Ron Dayne's dramatic weight loss and found them to be inaccurate. Dayne's personal trainer, Eric Lichter, said Dayne lost 19 pounds this offseason and will report to minicamp on Monday weighing 245 pounds, perhaps his lightest weight since high school. Fassel disagrees. "If his report is true that he weighs 245," Fassel told the New York Daily News, "then he's not lost one pound from last year. Ron Dayne last year played the whole year at 245-247," Fassel said. "All he is is at the weight he played at last year. If he reported to (Lichter) at 264 then he gained a tremendous amount of weight in a short period of time." Dayne was listed at 250 pounds last year.

:laugh: :laugh:

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Fassel is right. Dayne dropped to 245 last year. He hasn't lost anything. But I am not ready to call Dayne a bust. In fairness to Dayne, he doesn't get much playing time because Tiki is so good. If Dayne was a consistent starter and he played the majority of downs and was bad, than I would consider him a bust. Dayne is still very valuable to the Giants. The Giants are one Tiki injury away from desperately needing him. I can't pass judgement on Dayne until he gets a fair chance.

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I read this earlier today, also. Fassel had a comment about Dayne's trainer who said Dayne would hit the whole better this year. It seems Fassel isn't too impressed with his personal trainer's football knowledge.

http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news?slug=fanball-giantsfasselsaysthat&prov=fanball&type=lgns

Fassel did not feel fit to stop there. He went on to address comments from Dayne's personal trainer, Eric Lichter, regarding Ron's improved running style. "The guy makes a comment that [Dayne] won't stutter his feet in the hole and he won't do this and all that," Fassel said. "The guy doesn't know football. I appreciate the guy making an effort. Maybe he's a talented guy. But there's a lot of other things [to football]."

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the first article and all the BS it included made more sense when i realized some of the info touting Dayne's new physical fitness came from HIS AGENT. just a few weeks ago Dayne was screaming for a trade.... maybe he is hoping some team will take a shot, like DAL-- they could use a RB.

I would be happy if Dayne started on any team in the NFC East as it would be one less RB we would have to worry about. Hell, this guy got knocked out of a game last year by SMOOT!!! I laughed my a$$ off when I saw that happen... SMOOT!!!

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From what I understand, giants front office guys are kicking around an idea to recoup some of the money they have spent on Dayne. Apparently, they are going to set up a cannon that fires twinkies for fans to shoot at him during team workouts. In preliminary tests, team officials fired 10 twinkies at dayne from a distance of 30 yards, and he caught 8 in his mouth.

"Those are the kind of precentages we like to see" said Jim Fassell. "It may lead to us petitioning the league to cover the football with a light coating of spongecake. If they do, we feel it can give us a tremendous advantage."

~Bang

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Dayne is a prime of example of the notion that college gridiron success doesn't always translate into professional success. Whether fair or not, I dont think its a stretch to consider Dayne as being a bust at this point in his career. Whether this changes remains to be seen as he is still a relatively young player who could possibly flourish if given the right set of circumstances.

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