NEIL CORNRICH & NC SPORTS: MANAGING THE CAREERS OF PROFESSIONALS IN THE SPORTS INDUSTRY

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Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Mario Manningham Flashes Superb Hands





By: Zac

October 28, 2010

Last week, we highlighted the training behind Chris Johnson’s extraordinary balance and core stability, which were on display during the Titans’ impressive win over Jacksonville on Oct. 18. This week, the spotlight is on wide receiver Mario Manningham who, for one play, put his game-breaking speed on hold and showed some finesse with a spectacular sideline catch.

With 36 seconds remaining in the second quarter, the Giants’ wideout eluded coverage on a 12-yard Out Route and jetted for the sideline. Eli Manning, who rarely misses his man, was slightly off target with a laser pass over the head of a fully extended Manningham. Executing a tight rope act along the sideline, Manningham snatched the ball from overhead and hauled it in. Like a catcher in baseball, he seemed to have framed the catch—both feet in bounds—before falling to the ground, ball in hands, first down secured.

Many of the skills shown to perfection by Manningham—precise route-running, footwork, body control and hand-eye coordination—were developed while training with performance coach Tim Robertson, owner of Speed Strength Systems in Cleveland.

To make plays like this possible, Robertson has Manningham perform tennis ball drills aimed at enhancing his reaction time and hand-eye coordination. The concept is simple. According to Robertson, “If you’re able to catch a tennis ball in stride properly, it’s going to be much easier to catch a football.”

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