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Ex-Rutgers Quarterback Has a Shot With The New York Giants

Gary Nova has participated in rookie mini-camp with Giants.

QB Gary Nova takes a snap during Giants rookie camp (Amanda Marzullo | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com)

QB Gary Nova takes a snap during Giants rookie camp (Amanda Marzullo | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com)

After an up-and-down career “On the Banks”, former Rutgers quarterback Gary Nova had a handful of invitations by a number of teams to attend their rookie minicamp tryouts. He settled down and chose the home state’s New York Giants.

Although Nova wasn’t one of the 256 players selected in the 2015 NFL draft, he was upbeat about the chance that is in front of him.

“Obviously, you want to hear your name called in the draft, but as soon as that doesn’t happen, you have to get your mind ready for whatever comes next”, Nova said Friday. “This is it right here. I am blessed to be a part of this organization right now, for the opportunity, and I have to make the most of it.”

During minicamp, a lot of new plays and mechanics are thrown at the players, but for Nova, adjusting is something he is used to by now. Having a new offensive coordinator every one of his four year at Rutgers, and two different ones his junior and senior years at Don Bosco Prep, may have helped him.

After wearing No. 10 the past two seasons at Rutgers, he was given No. 15 with the Giants, the same number he wore his freshman and sophomore years as a Scarlet Knight. And coincidentally, some of the pro-style formations and sets he did at Rutgers were similar to what he did this weekend.

“Yeah, it is funny when you go through the playbook, a lot of the stuff goes back to freshman year,” Nova said. “That was more West Coast pro style. (Quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan) has lineage through [Packers head coach] Mike McCarthy, who [offensive coordinator] Coach (Ben) McAdoo was just with. A lot of the verbiage from freshman year is coming back. It feels good to be in this system and having stuff click like that.

“There was a lot of stuff thrown at us, but I think for all of the quarterbacks, we handled it well. We went out there and helped each other out,” Nova said. “The first day install at Rutgers was always a brand new offense and a lot of stuff thrown at us and I am used to that. Coaches are doing a great job.”

Sullivan coached under ex-Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

A year ago, New York kept only two quarterbacks on the roster in starter Eli Manning and backup Ryan Nassib. The Giants have a third currently on the roster in Ricky Stanzi. However, head coach Tom Coughlin said he wanted to bring four quarterbacks into the summer. This is where Nova has a shot to stick along with two other quarterbacks at rookie camp – Louisiana-Monroe’s Pete Thomas and Hawaii’s Taylor Graham.

With camp closing out this morning, it will be known sooner than later the fate of Nova and the Giants. No matter what, Nova is thankful for the chance to compete.

“This is a first-class organization,” Nova said. “You walk in here and see the four Lombardi trophies and it is special to be here and I am grateful for the opportunity. It was great to go out there and put the helmet on and throw the ball around.”

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