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Giants Super Bowl Quotes

Posted Feb 2, 2012


QUOTES FROM NEW YORK GIANTS PRESS CONFERENCE

 

QUARTERBACK ELI MANNING

 

(on how he will manage pre-game preparation of his wide receivers) “We always have a pretty good routine with our receivers going out there a few hours before kickoff. We’re going to stick with our same routine, what we’ve been doing for the last 24 games. We’ll go out there. We’ll get a good warm-up. It won’t be any longer than normal. You want those guys to relax. You want everything to be the same routine. They have to do what they’ve always been doing all season. You don’t have to do anything special or try extra hard. You just have to go out there and compete and do your job.”

 

(on what it means to be in the Super Bowl again against the Patriots) “I’m just excited to be in the Super Bowl. That is what you work for every year. You try to get to a championship. You try to work hard to get to this position. Having been in the NFL for eight years, you realize how rare it is to get here – how special it is and what a great opportunity it is. You don’t want to let these opportunities slip away. Everybody’s in a different circumstance. You want to relay to the young guys that this may be their last one. Whether you’re in your 14th year or you’re in your first year, both of those guys have to treat that the same. In my eighth year, this might be the last one I ever get to. You want to make the most of it and make sure you don’t let it slip away.”

 

(on what he admires about quarterback Tom Brady) “Tom Brady is a terrific quarterback. He is a Hall of Famer, obviously, going into his fifth super bowl. Just saying that says enough about him and his performance and the career he has had.”

 

(on what he learned from his father about toughness at the quarterback position) “My dad retired when I was four years old. I don’t remember a whole lot about his career. I heard things and I’ve seen some old footage, and watched some old games when he was with New Orleans. My dad, you never hear him complaining or saying much about his offensive line at his time. He played the game the right way. He enjoyed it. The biggest thing I learned from my dad is the way he has conducted himself. Former players, former coaches, people around New Orleans and fans say he is a good man. That is the thing I take to heart, how people speak of him. I hope when I get to his age, people say the same about me.”

 

(on how much the routine feels like Groundhog’s Day) “It’s been fun. It’s been a fun week. The enjoyable thing is the whole journey; the whole journey through the playoffs – winning some great games. My first home playoff win against Atlanta was special. Going to Green Bay, playing against a team that was playing better than anybody in the NFL this year, and getting a big win there. Going to San Francisco again and having the opportunity to play them, a terrific team. They played great football all year; and winning one of those tough ones. A game where you gut it out and you give your all. It was just a special victory there. Now coming here to Indianapolis, just the bonding with the teammates, the bus rides, the time we’ve had this week before we got into practices, going to dinner, getting with your teammates – hanging out with them and having some laughs. The whole journey has been great. The goal is to finish it all and to finish it off strong. All season long, Tom Coughlin talked about finishing. That’s been the word of the season. How we finished games in the fourth quarter and finish the season strong. We finished our regular season very strong – winning three of our last four. We took that momentum into the playoffs. Now we have the last game of our season, which will be on Sunday, and hopefully we will finish that strong.”

 

(on whether he feels at home in Indianapolis) “The whole city of Indianapolis has been great; the environment around the city. The way everything is right here (downtown). The weather has been terrific. I’ve never seen more Colts jerseys in a town before more displayed than here. It’s great having the support of the city and the fans here. I’m just glad to be in a super bowl. That’s what it’s all about. You can enjoy those circumstances, but anything that’s outside of the realm of getting ready to play for New England, you can’t let it be a distraction whether good or bad. You just have to get prepared to play our best football game.”


(on the chemistry of the team) “We obviously have a good mix of guys who have been in this situation before, who have gone through a playoff stretch and won games, who have been to the Super Bowl. We also have a number of guys who are early on in their career. Guys who have been here, going into their third year and have never played a playoff game before this year. This is all new to them. They’ve responded well. Mario Manningham, Hakeem Nicks, Victor Cruz, those guys have not played in playoff games and they’ve come in and made big plays for us in clutch situations. You just have to keep their mindset at, ‘Don’t let this game become bigger than what it is.’ Still keep it as playing a game and going out there and doing your job and being focused on what you need to do to be prepared and enjoy it. You have to enjoy it. You have to have fun. You can’t get nervous about it. You can’t overthink things. You have to go out there and play the game you’ve been playing your whole life, the game you love, and enjoy every second of it.”

 

(on this season) “Each year is a new challenge, a new opportunity. You’re going to have different receivers. You’re going to have to go through injuries and ups and downs and find out what each guy does well, what position you want to put them in to get the best of their ability. The coaches have done a great job adjusting to that. The players have done a great job understanding the offense and the schemes that they face against on defense, and they play at a very high level. It’s been an exciting year and I’ve enjoyed every second of it.”

 

(on extending plays) “That is something you try to practice that, rep that, with more drill work with our quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan. (We) work on the off-balanced throws, throwing on the run, scrambling and moving in the pocket. Sometimes we work on the awkward throws, when your feet can’t be set. You have to get the ball out. You don’t want to make a living of throwing those, but sometimes you have to do that. We do work on that. We talk about it with our receivers. I tell them, ‘If the play gets off its normal play, its normal rhythm and I’m scrambling around, come back to me. Come back and if I pump, you turn it up field.’ It’s little things like that you talk to them. You want those guys to come back harder to the football and have the opportunity to make some plays. You’d love every play to work the way it’s designed and be on that perfect rhythm, that five-step drop, you’re hitting your fifth step and the ball’s coming out. The reality is, a lot of times you have to move around. Sometimes you have to break the pocket and scramble. Those are still opportunities to make plays, and to make big plays in the game.”

 

(on Peyton Manning) “I don’t know what’s going to happen with Peyton. I know he is rehabbing. He is going to try to get better. I know he wants to continue to play football, if that’s an option. The No. 1 priority for him is to get a 100 percent. Until he gets to that position, it’s tough to say what is going to happen.”

 

(on the run-pass balance being important) “We’ll try to keep a decent balance between the run and pass. A lot of it will be dictated upon what New England is doing. The last time we played them, they liked to keep two safeties high. They didn’t play a whole lot of single-high coverage. We’ll see if that’s their same response. They change things up some. Some of it’s dictated upon what the opponent is doing. Also, what our success is in running the ball versus throwing it. I don’t think you ever go into it saying, ‘We’re going to throw it 70 percent of the time.’ It’s a matter of seeing what’s working and how the game is going and what you’re having success with. Coach (Kevin) Gilbride does a great job of getting that feel and putting us in a situation to make plays, move the ball and hopefully score points.”

 

(on feeling like the Giants have a lot to prove) Through the playoffs we had something to prove and no one giving us a lot of chances. We’ve overcome a lot of things and that mentality has brought the best of our ability. It has brought our best performance as a team. (When we’ve) been up against the wall and things are tough, we’re going to fight. We do have something to prove. We know we’re a better team than our record. It’s important that we try to keep that mentality going into this game. We know that this is the last game of the season. We know we have to leave it all out there on the field and give it our best effort and have a great preparation this week, knowing that this is what a Super Bowl is all about.”


DEFENSIVE LINEMAN JUSTIN TUCK

 

(on how he would prepare to face the Giants defensive line) “I would be thinking I have to play my best game because coming from me, I feel like we’re going to play our best game, so whoever is facing us better play theirs.”

 

(on the attention the Giants defensive line is getting) “I think it’s overhyped. We understand that no matter how good we are up front we still need the guys on the back end to play well and vice versa. It’s always a team effort for us, and a lot of times certain positions or interviews get a lot of fanfare, but the reason why we are here is because we played well as a team.”

 

(on Head Coach Tom Coughlin) “The truth of the matter is he really hasn’t changed much, the only change I’ve seen is that he’s given us a little more freedom because of that fact he trusts us. He trusts us to prepare the way we’ve been preparing the last couple weeks, but don’t get it twisted, he still has got the reins pretty tight on this football team.”

 

(on if it is fun playing for Coughlin) “It’s fun winning, so yes.”

 

(on the Giants progression from their Super Bowl season in 2007) “I think 2007 is definitely when things started to change. Michael Strahan, AP (Antonio Pierce), Plaxico (Burress), Toom (Amani Toomer), all those guys had a lot of influence on coach Coughlin and how he changed that year. We’ve got guys that got good experience from that group. That year was the beginning of (Coughlin) delegating some of the responsibility out to some of his veteran football players.”

 

(on if he was happy with the Giants practice yesterday) “I was. I thought it was up-tempo, energy-packed, guys were excited to be back on the football field getting a chance to go back to doing what we like doing. Obviously the media days have worn us down a little bit so we were happy to get back on the football field.”

 

(on if revenge will be a factor for the Patriots) “You’d have to ask them. For past teams that we lost to we never talk about revenge because it doesn’t help you prepare. It clouds your focus. So when they say there is no revenge factor involved in their game, I kind of believe them.”

 

(on how much polishing needs to be done in practice) “Not as much if we would have had just one week but we still have a lot of work to do. The Patriots, how they play the game, they give you a lot to prepare for so I think we’re ahead of the curve but still have some work to do.”

 

(on if the Patriots will be looking to contain him) “I’m sure they are going to know where I’m at every play and make sure that they do their best to contain me, but that’s fine I’ve got three other guys that can rush and play that position just as well as I can, so if they are highlighted on me that means its opening up for somebody else.”

 

(on the biggest key to slowing down the Patriots offense) “Tom Brady. That guy is an awesome quarterback and as he goes, the offense goes. He is definitely the leader of that football team, and for us personally it has to come down to making him uncomfortable.”

 

(on playing in his second Super Bowl) “I just feel like I am a blessed individual. We are blessed as New York Giants to be back here. I’ve had the opportunity to talk to a lot of guys and Tony Gonzalez comes to mind – guys that have played this game at the highest mark and haven’t had the opportunity to be here. So for me to be here twice in five years – I’m definitely blessed.”

 

(on the importance of getting to Tom Brady) “It’s always the key when you’ve got a quarterback like him. There are a few guys you’d put in that category and I’m sure (the Patriots) are telling their D-line the same thing about Eli (Manning). For us it always remains the same – stop that run and don’t give the quarterback those options and get after him.”


OFFENSIVE LINEMAN DAVID BAAS

 

(on the Patriots defensive line) “They definitely have a very good pass rush. Their statistics – you can’t go by that. They definitely have amped things up and they’ve got more sacks. They have a great defensive front that is playing great. Everybody wants to talk about (Vince) Wilfork but they have (Mark) Anderson who is playing really well and there is plenty of them to go around. You can’t just single out a couple guys. They are playing well together and it is going to be a challenge. They are going to try to exploit things against us that they see on film and we’re going after them with things. It is going to be a battle. We’ve created a game plan to help us with matchups and to create opportunities where we saw certain things. It comes down to execution… We know we are going to get a lot of different looks and we are trying to continually go through mentally, physically any looks or changeups that we think they might throw at us.”

 

(on the problems Vince Wilfork presents) “He is a tremendous player. It depends on the team aspect. He is a dominant force inside. He can line up over the guard and that is something that we have to handle. He is a great player. We’ve gone against great players all year and it is just another challenge that we have to step up to the plate and handle.”

 

(on Wilfork’s athleticism) “He is big, strong, he can be athletic, he can move. You think you have him and all of a sudden he’ll make a move and get around you. You saw him in Baltimore just do one move one way and then go back the other way. The center kind of got thrown off and he made his way around and sacked the quarterback. He is just one of those guys that you just have to keep your hands on and you can’t let him be disruptive because he is one of those players that can be.”

 

(on waiting to play the game) “It kind of gets long initially, once you get here, but I’m sure once Saturday hits it is going to be pretty quick and the game will be here. You just have to pace yourself and stay focused and concentrate on practice and continually study to be ready.”

 

(on containing Wilfork) “He’s hard to move. He’s athletic and powerful and he can be disruptive in the pass game and run game. He’s a challenge but so is everybody else. They have a good front; they have other guys there too that are good players as well.  It is going to come down to us executing on Sunday and keeping Eli (Manning) clean and being able to establish some sort of run game.”


OFFENSIVE LINEMAN DAVID BAAS

 

(on the Patriots defensive line) “They definitely have a very good pass rush. Their statistics – you can’t go by that. They definitely have amped things up and they’ve got more sacks. They have a great defensive front that is playing great. Everybody wants to talk about (Vince) Wilfork but they have (Mark) Anderson who is playing really well and there is plenty of them to go around. You can’t just single out a couple guys. They are playing well together and it is going to be a challenge. They are going to try to exploit things against us that they see on film and we’re going after them with things. It is going to be a battle. We’ve created a game plan to help us with matchups and to create opportunities where we saw certain things. It comes down to execution… We know we are going to get a lot of different looks and we are trying to continually go through mentally, physically any looks or changeups that we think they might throw at us.”

 

(on the problems Vince Wilfork presents) “He is a tremendous player. It depends on the team aspect. He is a dominant force inside. He can line up over the guard and that is something that we have to handle. He is a great player. We’ve gone against great players all year and it is just another challenge that we have to step up to the plate and handle.”

 

(on Wilfork’s athleticism) “He is big, strong, he can be athletic, he can move. You think you have him and all of a sudden he’ll make a move and get around you. You saw him in Baltimore just do one move one way and then go back the other way. The center kind of got thrown off and he made his way around and sacked the quarterback. He is just one of those guys that you just have to keep your hands on and you can’t let him be disruptive because he is one of those players that can be.”

 

(on waiting to play the game) “It kind of gets long initially, once you get here, but I’m sure once Saturday hits it is going to be pretty quick and the game will be here. You just have to pace yourself and stay focused and concentrate on practice and continually study to be ready.”

 

(on containing Wilfork) “He’s hard to move. He’s athletic and powerful and he can be disruptive in the pass game and run game. He’s a challenge but so is everybody else. They have a good front; they have other guys there too that are good players as well.  It is going to come down to us executing on Sunday and keeping Eli (Manning) clean and being able to establish some sort of run game.”


SAFETY ANTREL ROLLE

 

(on if the defense may do things that they have not shown this season) “Definitely, this is a game of no turning back and we have to throw everything in. It’s the final stage where we have to throw everything in for this particular game right now.”

 

(on if it was a distraction that Osi Umenyiora missed his media availability yesterday) “No, it was not a distraction. It was an honest mistake.”

 

(on players following his lead and speaking their mind) “I let those guys do the talking for themselves. For me there is nothing left to be said at this point. We are at our ultimate goal, and at the ultimate final stage and there is nothing left ot be done. Just go out there and play the game and that’s it.”

 

(on playing for a team that looks average for most of the regular season and makes it to the Super Bowl) “I think it’s definitely more energizing, but at the same time it’s been draining. It took more work than I think people actually expected it took to get to this point. It started with the Jet game, then having to win the game against Dallas. Then we went to Atlanta and then to play Green bay at Green Bay and San Francisco at San Francisco. We are playing the better teams in the NFL and not only are we beating them, we are beating them on their home turf. I think people really don’t understand what it has taken for us to get to this point. It’s the mindset of the team and we understand what it has taken us to get to this point. We won’t be denied at this point.”

 

(on how they managed to turn it around after a four-game losing streak) “Getting on the same page with the coaches, coaches getting on the same page with the players and people understanding that there is no turning point. Either you win or you go home. I think the coaches have definitely brought out their best game plans and their best preparation, and the players have brought out their best preparation and mindset and best attitude towards the game. When you combine all of that this, is the result that you get.”

 

(on if there is a sense of accomplishment just making the Super Bowl) “We were 7-7 with two games to go to try to make it into the post season, and the only thing we ask each other as players is to go out there and give it your all. No matter what it is. If our best is an 8-8 record, then we took that and we run with it. Being 7-7 we weren’t playing our best football and more importantly we weren’t giving our best preparation as far as practice. That’s where that comment came from as far as need to gel, so we can have that chemistry that we need to go out there and be productive on Sunday. It’s definitely appreciated on behalf of our team and our organization because it has been a tough road. We are not done yet. We are not satisfied with just getting here. That has never been our goal, to just make it to the Super Bowl. Our goal has always been to win the Super Bowl.”

 

(on his high confidence level) “I can only speak for myself, this is just the way that I am. If I go into the game with any less confidence than I already have, then who knows what I will go out there and do. This is not a game. This is not a front. This is who I am. I feel like no matter who I go up against that I am going to win eight out of 10 battles that is just the way that I go into the game. I go in confident and you build confidence with preparation. I consider myself a student of the game. I study a lot. I work on my craft a lot. This is not just a game that I go out there and play. I go out there and I go there and I take it seriously. I make sure that I am prepared for the week that is ahead.”

 

(on how to slow down Tom Brady) “There is not one thing that you can pinpoint. When facing a guy like Brady, you have to have a team effort. The only way that you beat Brady is if you have your offense, your defense and your special teams. On the defensive side of the ball, we just have to go out there and play ball. We can’t go out there and do anything out of the ordinary and try to be someone that we are not. We are going to go out there and fly around and be the Giants’ defense.”

 

(on finally being done with the media availability and closer to game time) “We are ready. We have been anticipating this game, and we are getting prepared. I think yesterday was probably the best practice I think that we have had all year long. The practice was wild. When I left practice I was like, ‘Man, we are ready.’”


RUNNING BACK BRANDON JACOBS

 

(on how this Super Bowl feels compared to four years ago) “It’s different. All of this is different. It seems like we’re just locked in a room answering questions. I don’t remember that part of it. We had a great practice yesterday, one of the best that we’ve ever had in a couple years, actually. It was really intense. Guys were doing their jobs. Everybody was focusing. It just seems like it was a really important practice.”

 

(on the focus bringing the intensity in practice) “Yes, it’s definitely focus. No one wants to come to the Super Bowl and lose a game due to guys not being focused. You want to put every ounce of your being, what you have and every fiber of your being into making yourself better mentally and physically to be able to win a game like this. You never know when you’re going to get back here.”

 

(on the difference of confidence and cocky in regards to the game) “I think this team is confident and not overconfident. Cocky is nowhere near the equation. The guys are confident. The coaches are confident. There’s no reason why (we shouldn’t be confident). We shouldn’t have gotten on the buses if we weren’t confident. If a guy isn’t confident, they should kick him off and send him back to Jersey.”

 

(on taking good practices to the game) “That’s not necessarily always true. We’ve had practices and then go out and play terrible. I don’t think with a game of this magnitude is going to allow that to happen. We had a great practice after sitting for so long. We had a flight and you come in and they send you to media days and you just walk around. The last time we were on the field was last Friday. So it’s been a few days since we’ve had a chance to do something. We didn’t do anything on Monday. We didn’t do anything on Tuesday, which was Media Day and all the extra stuff we were doing.”

 

(on how Hakeem Nicks competes for the ball and if he has a favorite catch he’s made) “I like all of Hakeem’s catches. Hakeem does a great job. It’s not only the jump balls and the ones where he’s competing for the ball. My favorite catches are the ones where he catches it in stride and keeps trucking. That’s what I like because when you get the ball in his hands, he runs like nobody I’ve ever seen. The jump balls and all that, it shows his will and determination to get better and how hard he works. The balls that Eli (Manning) puts there and he has to run and get under it to catch it and keep trucking, I like those.”

 

(on if Hakeem Nicks play against the Packers was the defining moment of their playoff run thus far) “No, I wouldn’t say that. I wouldn’t say that was the defining moment. I would say the defining moment was when we beat Dallas and got into the playoffs.”

 

(on what he thinks about Kyle Love and Vince Wilfork as run stoppers) “I think they’re pretty good. They’re two strong guys in there that are hard to move. It’s going to be a challenge with both of those guys. It’s going to be a problem with those two.”

 

(on the biggest reason for the turnaround in the running game this year) “We knew things were going to keep going the way they were going if we didn’t run the ball. It’s something a lot of guys on our football team take pride in and to see it go down like it was would’ve been a dagger to the heart. We just knew we had to get it going to make everything else work. I thought the receivers did a really good job by going off and being as explosive as they’ve been without the run. Now, they’ve just erupted because we got the run going. I think it just helps us out as a team for everybody to contribute.”

 

(on what changed to make things different in the run game) “Well guys were playing together. A lot of them know the weaknesses and strengths of each other. They know what the guy next to him, and the guy next to him, can do. They’re used to each other and we had to be to be able to run.”


DEFENSIVE END JASON PIERRE-PAUL

 

(on the energy that the young guys bring to the team) “I just feel like being a young guy, you just want to show your potential and what you can do out on the field. People might doubt you or say that he is young, or this and that. (They) want to know if he is ready to step up and handle the job, but you never know unless you give that person a try. It’s like this year’s draft pick. There will be young guys, and you never know if they have a lot of potential to just come in and help a team get to the Super Bowl like we did. It’s just a great thing having young guys on the team. I just think that the young guys on the team – even the older guys – have the heart to just go out there and play like a 20-year old kid who just got drafted.”

 

(on how helpful the guys who played in the last Super Bowl have been) “We don’t really talk about the 2007 team. They won a Super Bowl, and they say it was a great experience. That’s good. They don’t have a bad taste in their mouth. They know how it feels to win a Super Bowl. Just having a bad taste in your mouth if you lose a Super Bowl, that’s not a good taste in your mouth. They just say it was a good experience and winning it was great. That’s all I can say about that.”

 

(on how much of a guiding force those players have been) “They just tell us, no matter what, enjoy it. But we came out here to do a job. Don’t let any discretions get in your way. We just have to take care of our job first, and when we win it, we just go back up and celebrate. That’s basically it. Don’t celebrate now – it’s too early. We have to win it first.”

 

(on going up against the no-huddle offense) “Going up against a no-huddle offense, you just have to be ready. It’s how you condition yourself for the game. You know you are going up against a no-huddle offense, so we have to condition ourselves into getting prepared for that. It’s nothing really special. We just have to get ready and get down.”

 

(on if the defensive line is in condition to go against the no-huddle offense) “Yeah, we feel like we are in great condition. Our D-line is not about who can get to the ball fast enough. What we do is we run. Even after practice, we just run. We have to understand that if you want to be great, you have to do extra things, and that’s what we do. We do extra things like just running or getting together after practice and stuff and talking about things. That’s what we do.”

 

(on if he has ever been intimidated by head coach Tom Coughlin) “Yeah, sometimes (laughs). Tom Coughlin is a great coach. Sometimes I just want to stand behind because I don’t know what he might say, but he is great coach. He understands me, and I understand him.”

 

(on what he understands about Coughlin) “I understand that he wants to do the right things. He is like a father figure to the whole team. He actually cares about his players, and he talks about things. If he feels like you are doing wrong or something, he will call you up in his office and talk to you about it and tell us to do right, basically.”

 

(on why the Giants’ confident approach has been so successful) “I just feel like, being on the stage where we were at all season long, we never (had) doubt that we could be in this position. We know we had a goal when we started, and to be here in the Super Bowl we are in – we had ups and downs throughout the season, and we had a tough schedule, but we didn’t let that stop us from going out there and playing great football and winning games. We turned on when we really needed to turn on, like when our backs were against the wall. That was the Jets game, when we needed that game to advance and go onto the Cowboys and beat them. That’s what we did, and ever since then, we have been playing together as one. It just has been helping the team out, and we have been confident.”

 

(on how Coughlin doesn’t restrict the player’s personality) “He (doesn’t). That’s not Tom Coughlin. He is only going to let us speak on what’s right. If he feels like we’re wrong, then he’ll tell us. He’ll call us up in the meeting room and tell us that that wasn’t the right thing to say or something. He’ll tell us, but other than that, we’re good. Our coach understands us, and we understand him.”

 

(on the team’s attitude at this point of the week) “I think we’re focused. We’re focused and determined. No matter what it is, we are going to go out there and just give it all we’ve got. We know this is the last game, and it’s all or nothing.”

 

(on why the team is not intimidated by the Patriots) “I think the guys on the team…being that they are the Patriots, they are a good team. They won three Super Bowls. Just looking at them, they are a great team. Tom Brady, he is a great quarterback – that doesn’t intimidate us. At the end of the day, a team can be beat. You have to just go out there and watch film and see the weaknesses on their team. That’s what we do. We find weaknesses on the team, and we just go at that. Otherwise, a team does not intimidate us. We are going to go out there and give it all we’ve got. As long as we play as one, and we do our responsibilities, I feel like we can’t be beat.”

 

(on if there is still some mentality left over from the 2007 Super Bowl winning team) “Yeah. People say they are making us the favorites to win the game, but who cares? At the end of the day, we know that we are the underdogs in this situation because nobody handed us a golden spoon and told us that we were going to be in the Super Bowl. We knew what had to be done to be in the Super Bowl. We got it done, and we kept on grinding. Our backs were against the walls. Even when the media was talking bad about us, saying, ‘We don’t think the Giants are going to make it.’ Or, ‘They don’t have a chance.’ And they were picking other teams. We were the underdogs in those situations, and that’s how we played. We don’t care if the media says we are going to win, but we are going to still play like we are the underdogs. Noting was given to us.”

 

(on Patriots QB Tom Brady not being a god) “He’s not.”

 

(on how some teams look at Brady like a god) “He’s a great quarterback. If you give him time in the pocket to pick on your secondary and throw the ball, he is going to hurt you. He is going to hurt you. Us, as a D-line, we know that the pressure is mostly going to be on us. If we don’t rush, then he has all day to throw the ball. Everybody knows that. I put it on us. I put it on the D-line to go out there and perform well. We have to perform well and get to Tom Brady quick. We just have to play all-out and give it all we’ve got. We can’t feel sorry for ourselves.”

 

(On how much putting pressure on Brady will negatively affect his performance) “I think it will have much impact on his performance because if you look at Week 9, when we played them, it’s like he felt us. When we looked back on the film, we watched the film, and we didn’t really rush like we can rush as a defense. He was throwing balls on the ground and stuff, but like I said, it’s going to be a battle. We have to get there. We have to.”

 

(on if Brady was reacting to pressure that wasn’t actually there in the regular season game) “He was. He did react to pressure that didn’t exist, and he was just throwing the ball places where there wasn’t even a receiver there. Imagine us getting there even faster and actually doing our jobs and getting hits on him.”

 

(on how the magnitude of Sunday’s game will strike him) “I don’t think I will be nervous. I think I will be excited that you have millions and millions of people watching one game. That’s how I am going to approach the game. I am just going to go out there and play, because at the end of the day, you are human. Most people on my team might be overwhelmed, but I am just going to go out there and play the game.”

 

(on if playing in a Super Bowl has always been a goal of his) “Last year, I felt like we could have made it to the Super Bowl, but like I said, people say actions speak louder than words. We didn’t make it. We got knocked in the last game of the season. We had a great opportunity to make a run for it, but we didn’t. After that game, I was like, ‘Man, if we could have done this, or if I could have done this, we probably would have went and really made a run for it.’ This year, I was like, ‘We can make it to the Super Bowl.’ Even when guys got hurt, we never had a doubt in our mind. We knew the next person had to step up and handle their job.”



TIGHT END JAKE BALLARD

 

(on if he has a theory why the recent Super Bowls including those with the Patriots in them are close until the end) “If it’s the two best teams in football, it should come down to the wire. That means they’re playing a heck of a game on all fronts, and it should come down to the last possession or two.”

 

(on his journey from the beginning of the season to now) “It’s pretty unbelievable. Like five months ago, I was just trying to make the team coming out of camp, and just trying to catch the coaches’ and everybody’s attention and make big plays. I did that. I got settled in the season and then I became part of an offense. It’s just really something special for me to be part of such a great offense. It’s exciting, and I’m very fortunate to be able to play in this game.”

 

(on what point he realized he was a real part of the offense) “I don’t know, probably the middle of the season when I was consistently getting three, four, five catches per game and catching every ball that was thrown to me. But my injury set me back a little bit. But I’m looking to continue that streak.”

 

(on if his ability has surprised himself) “Nobody’s ever surprised about what they could do. I always worked on running routes. I always worked on catching the ball. I just never got an opportunity and once I did, I took advantage of it.”

 

(on how satisfying it was for him to get that opportunity) “It’s satisfying to a point, but you’re always trying to get better. There’s always room for improvement. My game’s not perfect yet. Everybody wants to chase that perfection without really reaching it but always improving.”

 

(on if he reflects on how this season could have gone differently for him) “I could have not even made the team or be third tight end or be a special teams guy. It’s crazy to think of things like that. But Kevin (Boss) got a huge opportunity on Oakland so he took it. Nobody could blame him for that. Looking back on it now, I’m not glad he left, but if he didn’t, things wouldn’t have happened.”

 

(on if he visualizes making a big play in the Super Bowl) “I think any football player has been doing that since they were little. So, I can’t say I haven’t been. I just think about the game and what I have to do to help the team win and that involves big plays.”

 

(on his dream play for Sunday) “I haven’t thought about one play. I’ve just been thinking about running routes, catching the ball. If he throws me the ball no matter where it’s at, I’ve got to reach out and catch it.”

 

(on how he approaches the Super Bowl as any other game) “It’s tough. You want to treat it like every other game and then you don’t at the same time because you have to put in that extra work in the film room, be more precise in practice and really make sure you’re doing the right things. But at the same time, you want to enjoy it. Maybe pregame and all that stuff, maybe realize where you’re at. Then as soon as the coin toss is over, it’s going to be war and we have to win it.”

 

(on if he’s been asked about his 30-yard catch against New England in Week 9) “I’ve probably been asked 100 questions about our first Patriots game and the catches I had in that game and, ‘What do I think about the catches?’ It’s all well and great. It was good for me then. But I’m just trying to move past that. That was a great game and huge victory for the Giants this year. But we’re trying to have a bigger victory against them right now.”

 

(on the challenges he anticipates in figuring out what the Patriots’ secondary is trying to do) “Against the Steelers this year and Jason Witten of the Cowboys, they made sure they hit those guys every play when they were running out for routes. We thought that was going to be the case when they played us but they didn’t do that to me as much. They weren’t worried about me. So I’m thinking this time around they might pay a little more attention and it’s going to be harder for me to release off the ball freelFor more exclusive coverage, follow the Giants on Twitter and LIKE US the Giants on Facebook!