Good afternoon. I don’t have a lot to add from what I said last night. Last night was frustration and disappointment combined. I’m still disappointed today. The pain of regret, the remorse of opportunity missed. All those things mixed into one. We are 6-3, okay. We lost a football game we thought we could’ve won. We’ve got to re-group, go forward and do a better job of preparation this week. Get our focus back, get our game back, especially on the special teams and on the offensive side of the ball. I think what I would say was, first and goal from the four with a 17-10 lead, it could’ve been 24-10. That might not have been enough, but it might have changed the way the game was played as well. I think even though our defense gave up a lot of yardage in the running game, I think there were two series that we played very, very well. The ball on first and ten at our 35-yard line after the opening kickoff of the second half and with the first and ten from the 12-yard line after the punt return. For them to come away with no points should have been enough for us to win. We didn’t and we feel very badly about that, but it’s time to move on.
RE: The Giants’ struggles passing the ball
A: I think we can work it out. I definitely do. I think it’s got to happen relatively fast, to be honest with you. I think it can be solved, I think a lot of it is the individual. When you look at some things, like the crossing pattern that was tipped, there’s nobody on it. I mean, he’s got a chance to turn and go. The ball doesn’t get there, the ball gets tipped and that hurt us. On that third-and-one, it was a fade stop; there was a miscommunication between looking for the ball and winning deep by the rookie. That can be worked out. So, I think a lot of this can be solved.
RE: if the bye after Week 10 is too late, if the team is currently tired and in need of a break
A: No, I don’t think so. I think 7-3 will be a nice break.
Q: There were a couple of times when Eli and Victor seemed to not be on the same page. Their communication has been so great, so I’m just curious as to what has changed in the last few weeks.
A: That’s a good question. I don’t think much has changed. I just think for some reason, we’re not clicking like we were. Two weeks ago, we were the number one big-play team in the league. After two weeks of admittedly poor offensive play, we’re sitting here with not a lot to show for it. Hopefully, we can get back on the same page and deliver and be able to communicate as we have in the past. Hopefully, it’ll be this week.
Q: Some players suggested that defenses are dropping more guys into coverage and clogging things up. Has that been a factor?
A: Well, you’ve got to see some of that. We saw some of that in the first half yesterday. It doesn’t matter how many they drop, you still have to make plays. If it’s a matter of checking the ball down and making five yards, or whatever. You have to stay on schedule. If people are dropping more people off and it’s early downs, then it gives you an opportunity to run it a little bit better.
A: Well, I certainly hope so. That’s what we depend on. We haven’t seen that and it hasn’t happened in the last couple of weeks. That’s another area that we have to get going.
Q: Obviously, Eli has had two or three week stretches in his career when he’s struggled. What is it about him that makes you confident that this two or three week stretch won’t become a six-week stretch?
A: Ability. Who he is and how he works. He’s resilient. The type of person he is, the character that he has, the pride and the work ethic, all of those things. He’ll come bouncing back. He’ll be back.
Q: Finishing has been a big mantra around here. Does that make yesterday’s result even more disappointing?
A: Yeah. 14-0 in the fourth quarter. We were plus-42 in the fourth quarter versus our opposition going into this game. Yet, we failed to take advantage of the opportunities that we had and we lost the fourth quarter.
Q: Eli referring to the importance of the team having good practices
A: You’re going to play like you practice. Obviously, there are some things that aren’t getting done that need to be done. You sit there and watch and listen to the corrections every day. Sometimes, they’re the same corrections. Come on men, let’s go.
Q: It seemed like Randle had a few more opportunities in a couple critical situations. Were you guys trying to mix him in some more?
A: Based on the week before, we felt like he could contribute more. And we still do. He’s got to make the plays when he’s put in position to do so.
Q: Randle’s work ethic being questioned earlier in the season and the effort he gave in the previous game
A: I think he did. I think, technically, he was wrong on a couple of occasions. I didn’t see any reason to think that he didn’t compete.
Q: Because of this team’s past history and a loss in November happening, everybody is quick to say that this team is having its typical swoon like last season. Do you see that happening?
A: I didn’t see any problems at the end of last season. You can talk about that all you want with the second half of the season. I don’t know what the numbers are and I’m not defending anything. I’m just telling you that the facts are the facts.
Q: How about the lack of touchdowns recently?
A: It’s going on. It’s been going on for quite some time now. We passed up a couple of opportunities. We were one for two, yesterday. The second one was a huge one. We missed that opportunity. You can’t miss those opportunities. You have to make the plays when they’re there.
Q: What about some of the misreads between Eli and Cruz? Given that they’ve been so good.
A: I just answered that, didn’t I, a couple of seconds ago? Hopefully, we’ll get back on the same page. There was one, right at the end of the game yesterday. It looked like they weren’t on the same page. That’s all got to get ironed out. There’s no way you can have a lack of communication and be effective in the passing game.
Q: How does that communication just evaporate?
A: Well, that word is covering a lot of sins now when you say communication. You’re also talking about execution and efficiency and beating the guy who’s defending you. We’re using that word to cover a multitude of sins here. It doesn’t describe adequately every bit of the problem and I probably can’t explain every bit of the problems either. I may not be able to do that verbally.
Q: What did you think of the middle of the defense yesterday?
A: It was soft, no question. It was soft early. We came back and played a little bit better and then they had their breakout there at the end of the game, but that was also a third down and nine that was converted. So we got mushed a little bit up front. Their big bodies knocked us back and time-to-time we got a little bit better. We didn’t tackle well. We missed 12 tackles in the game.
A: I don’t know if you could call it that. He just didn’t feel like after a couple days of practice that he could do the things he had to do to perform in the role that we wanted him to be in.
Q: This team has been very good at turning the page quickly. Is that you or the staff or the veterans?
A: A combination of everything. That’s what we preach. There’s nothing we can do about yesterday. All we can deal with and handle is this moment right now and we have to be able to perform to the best of our ability at that present time because that’s the only thing we can control.
Q: Any injury news today?
A: Not really. Nothing that I can report on. They’re going to be treated and hopefully they’ll strengthen and by Wednesday we’ll have some kind of a feel where their practice week will be.
Q: Are you expecting to have
A: That’s another maybe. We’ll see. They’re ongoing. They’re continuing their treatment.
Q: Do you think Chase is underrated?
A: I would imagine, sure.
Q: It seemed like you missed him.
A: (He is) not (underrated) by me.
Q: Did you miss him yesterday?
A: Oh yeah, definitely.
Q: How did
A: Played okay. He can be better.
Q: Were you more angry than normal after this game?
A: No. Probably not and in a circumstance like that, I don’t think so. I may have acted it out a little bit more than… It was an emotional time.
Q: Will you activate
A: We’ll see.
Q: What happened to the special teams coverage unit?
A: People out of position. People blocked. Not making the tackle. Not positioning ourselves to trap the return man, whether it be punt return or kickoff return. A lot
of poor play with regard to that.
Q: How did
A: He did okay. He had the one false start that hurt.
Q: It looks like the line hasn’t been playing as well as it had in previous weeks. Is that a fair assessment?
A: I don’t know. The first half run game was pretty good. I think the protection was okay. I didn’t see anything really dramatically wrong with that and there was some pressure here or there, but by and large it wasn’t a huge factor.
Q: Do you think the word “slump” applies in football?
A: I don’t know what that is. This is not baseball. I think we didn’t play well. We didn’t play well for a couple weeks on offense and we’ve got to do better. We’ve got to get back to: drop back, throw it. Let’s get the game going.
Q: Are there enough guys getting open that Eli has options to throw the ball?
A: On occasion, yeah.
Q: How do you prioritize what is most important to fix right away?
A: Well, there’s a few of them. There’s a few things that have to be fixed. When I list them on Wednesday, there will be a bunch of them. You’ve got to stop the run. In our game, you’ve got to stop the run. You’ve got to run the ball and you’ve got to be able to cover. We’ve got great return men that we face every week and it’s a priority. Two weeks ago, we did pretty well against outstanding returners. Not so well… Sanders… After Brown left the game, he came in and he looked like Brown has been looking, to be honest with you. He did a nice job. Don’t take anything away from them. But we didn’t tackle, we didn’t cover. We had a bunch of guys hanging around the 25-yard line rather than penetrating, making the play on the ball, figuring someone else is going to make the tackle. No. You have to make the tackle.