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Giants player admits he tried to hurt Carson Wentz, gives backhanded compliment to Zach Ertz

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Cool, cool.

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

It’s Eagles-Redskins week, so excuse me for this brief detour while we turn our attention to a different NFC East rival: the New York Giants.

New York safety Landon Collins, a self-admitted “Giant baby,” had some interesting things to say in a recent interview with ESPN that caught my attention. The highlights include Collins admitting he tried to injure Carson Wentz last season.

I tried to give him it all, but he ducked. I was trying to hit [Wentz’s] ribs, I'm not going to lie to you. I didn't think he saw me. I swear I didn't think he did. JPP [Jason Pierre-Paul] was like "I'm not letting you get there before me." It was a real race (to the QB) between us two.

I mean, I can’t blame Collins in the sense that it’s a defender’s job to rough up the quarterback. But verbally admitting you were trying to be dirty is a different thing ... and an interesting choice.

Wentz wasn’t the other Eagles player Collins talked about in the interview.

Q: Let's talk about your opponents: Of the players you faced last year, who's the most challenging, competitive guy you saw?

Collins: Zach Ertz from the Eagles.

Q: Really?

Collins: He's a competitor, always going 110 percent. He's proved why he should be one of the highest-paid tight ends. Every time I lined up against him, he was giving it to me, and I had to make sure I gave it back. His route-running isn't superb, but he gets open somehow, and he has great hands. He goes up and attacks the ball, not letting it fall into his hands so that a DB can make a play on it.

Well, that’s actually some nice praise for Ertz. I’m pretty sure that’s not the player most would have expected Collins to name.

Maybe Collins didn’t mean it, but the “his route-running isn't superb, but he gets open somehow” part struck me as a back-handed compliment. I think Ertz’s route-running is probably one of the better parts of his game.

Wentz, Ertz, and the Eagles will get a chance to face Collins again in a few weeks. The Eagles and Giants are scheduled to play in Philadelphia’s home-opener at 1:00 PM ET on Sunday, September 24.

Now back to Week 1.