New York Giants QB Tommy DeVito still has a chip on his shoulder


New York Giants QB Tommy DeVito still has a chip on his shoulder


New York Giants quarterback Tommy DeVito threw for 1,101 yards and eight touchdowns in nine games last season after signing as an undrafted free agent.

CEDAR GROVE, N.J. — The small, rectangular room on the second floor of the Cedar Grove municipal building was packed with 100 chairs, only half of them filled. It served as the site of a ceremony honoring New York Giants quarterback Tommy DeVito.


Those in attendance, aside from the few there for the public hearing on this comfortable spring evening, were primarily DeVito’s family and friends. They watched the five-minute session in which DeVito was presented a proclamation and a key to the township where he grew up and where his family still lives

“It means a lot,” DeVito told ESPN afterward. “Everyone has heard me talk about Cedar Grove for a long time, for a while, to have this honor where I was born and raised, played my little league football games, it means a lot.”


The undrafted free agent out of Illinois won three straight starts late last season as a rookie. He captured the attention of the fan base and nation because of his play and pride in his Italian heritage. He still lives with his parents, in Cedar Grove, where he plans to put the plaque with the key to the town on the wall.


The Giants signed quarterback Drew Lock to a one-year deal that guarantees him $5 million this offseason. They also attempted to trade up in the draft to target who most believe was quarterback Drake Maye, according to multiple sources. They even recently claimed quarterback Nathan Rourke off waivers from the New England Patriots.


It has DeVito, 25, back at square one, even if he threw for eight touchdown passes and just three interceptions in nine games.

“Yeah, we’re not having this conversation for sure [if I was a third-round pick]. But at the end of the day, like I said, control what you can control, keep the chip on my shoulder, keep working,” DeVito said. “Everyone has always been overlooked and it’s kind of the same deal I was in last year. I know the offense now and I’ve been in some situations before. Looking forward to doing it again.”


The Giants still seem to view DeVito as a developmental prospect. They were intent on adding a veteran backup this offseason after Tyrod Taylor signed with the New York Jets. They were looking hard at quarterback options at the top of the draft.


“I was never worried,” he said. “Everything happens for a reason. I showed what I can do on the field. Obviously, there are highs and lows. But to be a rookie thrown into it, it’s a tough deal. I tried to make the most of it and then control what I can control.”


Clearly, the Giants still need to see more before they can start making plans around DeVito in a major role. There is no denying he made progress, though.


“What Tommy did last year, another year in the system, Tommy has come a long way,” general manager Joe Schoen said this offseason.


DeVito spent his offseason in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, training alongside a group that included last year’s first-round pick, Deonte Banks. DeVito said one of his goals was to add weight and muscle to his lower body.


DeVito has also dived back into his playbook. He believes a second year in the same system will allow him to build on past success. He’s rewatched and dissected every play and snap from last season.


“Taking what the defense gives me,” he said of his biggest takeaway. “I think I was a little too aggressive sometimes. Got me in trouble a couple games. There were two interceptions like back-to-back. It was the same exact thing back-to-back. But looking back I was like, ‘Why the hell did I do that?'”


Coach Brian Daboll talked during the draft about having honest conversations with players. Not only about their play, but their roles and future.


“That I held my composure well. I played well,” he said. “Obviously there is a ton to clean up, whether it’s learning more intricacies of the offense, the deeper meaning of everything versus knowing my job, knowing every person’s job regardless of it’s just a pass or in the run game — helping any way, shape or form between the ears.


“My growth will be through the roof now that I have a whole OTAs and training camp, this whole thing I didn’t have last year. So that is really what it was. All mental.”


And now he has to prove it all again.

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