Head Coach Tom Coughlin
Q: How’s Prince?
A: He’s getting tested right now, but hopefully he’s going to be okay. He seems to be fine. I can’t get him to tell me he’s had any issues, but he did the same thing the night of the game. We’ll see.
Q: If he had one day of practice, would that be sufficient?
A: I would say if he works tomorrow and gets a good day’s work, then we would have a good chance. Barring setbacks, you know how that goes.
Q: How about
A: Yeah. He’s had a couple of them.
Q: They can kind of be cumulative too?
A: Makes it very difficult. Guy’s playing linebacker.
Q: Did David Wilson show you enough in the past couple of days?
A: Will he get a suit? Yeah, he’ll get a suit. We have a bunch of guys that can trot out there first, but they’re all going to see action.
Q: What about
A: He’s actually looked pretty good. From a standpoint of conditioning and running, he’s looking quick and picking things up right where he left off. I think he’s done well with it.
Q: Coach, one of the players said that the mistakes that were made in Dallas were correctable.
A: I was the one that first put that particular quote out there for our players, because they are correctable. They are mistakes that are correctable. Unfortunately, it was an avalanche. I’m hoping that if we can completely reverse that, get back to playing, I’d rather be very careful the other way than let the other guy have the ball. Practice has been good along those lines, but unfortunately, we don’t have tackling, can’t knock anybody down.
Q: How would you assess how your offensive line played in Dallas?
A: I would say inconsistent. I think, like every other position, we did some good things and we did some bad.
Q: What about
A: He’s had a couple of days of practice time and he wants more every day. That’s a good sign.
Q: Did you get a look at
A: Talking about the game again? Are we going back to that game again? When do we get over that game and can we move into the new game? Justin played well. He ran to the ball, showed outstanding effort, good hustle and played hard. I thought he had a good game.
Q: Coach, how big is each day of preparation and what does it mean that Denver had additional time to prepare?
A : Well, …because they played Thursday night, they naturally got a weekend off and get an extra day, but our routine has been the normal in-season routine and that’s always been beneficial and enough time to prepare for the next opponent. I’m sure they’ve had some extra film time because the game was over, but as far as practicing, they practiced Monday and took Tuesday off and back to work.
Q: How’s Da’Rel Scott?
A: He’s fine.
Q: Bill Parcells will be honored at halftime with his Hall of Fame ring. What does that mean to you to be on the field as a head coach with him being honored like that?
A: It means a great deal to me. I wanted to be sure to honor Bill and to celebrate with his family when he was enshrined. Now coming and receiving his ring in Giants’ stadium, for all Giants, is a thing because, not only Bill but the other Hall of Fame members, as I understand, are all going to be there. I think that’s very special. It means a lot to me because without Bill Parcells, I wouldn’t have had the first opportunity to be here as an assistant with the great Giants organization. I always will be indebted to him for that opportunity and having had an opportunity to work with him and having been a part of a group of people that were able to win a world championship, it certainly gave me a great indication of how things should be done that I could apply as I moved along in my career.
Q: Tom, you’re always one who appreciates the tradition of this franchise, will you address the fact that the Hall of Famers are all going to be here with your players?
A: You bet I will, so the players know what a significant evening, in terms of the members of the Hall, will be.
Defensive Coordinator Perry Fewell
Q: What did you see from the Broncos offense?
A: Peyton is Peyton. With the addition of Welker, they really have a strong passing attack. I think the running game has improved. It’s a very explosive offense. They can catch a screen pass and go 70 or they can catch a five-yard ball and clip the ball and move it down the field. So it’s a very potent offense.
Q: What did you see in the second half when Baltimore broke down? Is there stuff you can learn there?
A: There were some things that we think we’ve learned by looking at the tape. I have to keep that to myself because of strategy purposes, but just looking at them there are things we can learn from.
Q: You’ve game planned against Welker in the past. Is he doing things differently?
A: We don’t think so. We think that he has some routes that he likes to run that he’s very comfortable running. Peyton gets him involved in the offense in a way that he feels that’s a seamless transition and he has the ability to take it vertically and go down the field and he has the ability to work you inside. So it’s classic Wes Welker and he’s at his best.
Q: What is your impression of what took place in the last 30 minutes of the Denver game?
A: As a defensive coach, you’re saying ‘wow’ because they’re so explosive and Peyton is the type of player that he drives the offense and he puts the pedal to the metal to make them go faster, to push them to score points and he just doesn’t let up and you can see the other guys gaining energy and gaining confidence from him driving them and so you need to just try to make a play in order to break that momentum and that’s what you try to see from the tape. Hey, can you make a play to stop that momentum because he goes for the jugular every time he’s on the field. I think that’s what makes him an outstanding quarterback because he’s relentless in his pursuit of perfection.
Q: We asked
A: I think that’s the mindset, period, with football. The physical aspect definitely contributes, but it’s a mindset period and so sometimes you can do some things that will help you from a coverage standpoint and a scheme standpoint. When you play a guy like Peyton, I think he’s seen everything that’s known to man. The mindset really does take over, especially in a game against a guy like him.
Q: Do you think your guys take a different mindset when they know they’re facing an offense like that?
A: I think you’re going to have to ask our guys because I don’t know that until game day, until I look in their eyes on game day. So you have to ask them during the week.
Q: What did you learn as a coordinator in 2010 when you played the Colts and Peyton?
A: There were some things we prepared for and that we did that I wouldn’t do again. I felt like, from a planning standpoint, that we planned properly but it was not the best plan we could have come up with. Without trying to reveal a lot of things I learned, I would just say that we’re doing it differently. We’re doing it much differently because there’s some things that when you go into a contest and you have a plan against a guy like that and you come out and make some notes and try to improve on those notes that you made so when you take that test again you got your cheat sheet and you hope you’re much better.
Q: In that game, it seemed like you were daring them to run it.
A: They did. They ran the football. We went in with the smaller lineup from a defensive standpoint and tried to say we were going to get pressure on you and do some things because you won’t run the football and he took advantage of that. So definitely the mindset then was to stop the pass and not the run. That’s not my mindset this time.
Q: What do you take from last week’s game into this week?
A: Really, it’s two different offenses and the way the quarterback operates with two different styles of no-huddle or up-tempo offense. Peyton is always pushing the pedal, so his change of speed… He has several different changes of speed in his offense. He can get them up over the ball and let the clock run down and snap the ball or he can get right up on the ball. It’s tough to make a substation against him because if you run a guy on the field, he’s going to get his team up on the ball and snap the ball and get a penalty. He’s so aware of everything that happens on the field from the way he runs his offense and the way he tries to dictate and control the game that it’s two different styles of play.
Q: What are some of the traits of a good defense against Wes Welker?
A: We personally believe this, Wes doesn’t have a whole lot of bad games. He’s been a pretty good receiver and has been pretty consistent for the last eight years or so. I know he’s a 10-year vet. You can try to take him out and be physical with him, but he finds a way to win and his quarterback that he played with in New England was very motivated and he expected him to win. I’m sure Peyton expects him to win in matchups also. So that combination of them daring you to win… We just have to do a great job of competing. Your question about the mindset… You’ve got to take that mindset and compete with these guys every single down. You cannot take one play off. We have to go in with that part of it. Yes, you must be physical, yet you can’t show them the same things over and over and over, but you have to take that physical mentality and that mindset into the game and compete and challenge them on every single down.
A: I don’t think about it. We don’t think about it as a staff. When he made the roster and we put him on the field, we don’t say we hope his knee holds up. We don’t really think about that. We were pleasantly pleased with… I think he had 48 plays in the Dallas game and we were pleasantly pleased that his conditioning level was good and we thought he competed well in that football game and so we just think that he’ll get better and better. There are some things that obviously he can improve on, but for not playing football for two full seasons, we felt like he competed pretty well and that he’ll just get better.
Q: Is pressuring Peyton a big part of the game plan?
A: I’ll have to let you see that on Sunday.
Q: Does the injury to Dan Connor change your approach with the low numbers at linebacker?
A: It’s always a problem when you lose a player that is a first-team player, that’s a starter, so that’s always a problem. Yes, that is a problem.
Q: How much will it hurt if Prince can’t go on Sunday?
A: That would be a big blow.
Q: Will you still keep Terrell in that case?
A: Terrell will be the slot.
Q: How about the Denver defense? They lost some pass rushers, but they still manage to get to the passer.
A: They did a great job of mixing up a very complex splits package that obviously caused the Ravens some difficulties in recognition and generated a lot of pressure on the quarterback.
Q: Your weapons had a pretty good day. Three 100-yard receivers for the first time ever for the Giants. Is that kind of the way you envisioned it when you see the talent of those three guys?
A: I think we’ve got some good players. I think we have a hell of a scheme. I think we’ve got one hell of a quarterback and if we can protect and do the things that we need to do, where we can get them into the flow of the game, then I think they’ll be a difficult matchup for anyone.
Q: It looked like Hakeem has been as healthy as he’s been in a couple of years. Did you notice from watching film if that made a big difference for you guys?
A: He played well. I didn’t necessarily see it that way, but I thought he ran the ball after the catch very well. He caught the ball well. I thought all receivers ran after the catch extraordinarily well. It was great to see. I think they never lost heart, they never lost the thought that they could win the game, they could compete as an entire unit. As a result, because of the flow of the game, we threw the ball more than we necessarily anticipated, but to see them respond the way they did was very encouraging.
Q: On those two screen passes, were they both timing things?
A: Two completely different. One was a play action screen and you hope that the defensive end goes one way, while he ended up coming underneath. We have some inexperienced backs who are just learning how to play the game so they didn’t float out. Should have just thrown it into the ground. The other one, the back just turned in when he should have just stayed where he was. The first one might have gone to the house, but it is what it is. We threw two interceptions on two screens, which is maybe the first time in 25 years in the National Football League. It wasn’t very encouraging. Think of it, when you’re throwing a ball, that’s an integral and very complimentary part of what you’re trying to do. We have to get the screen game going.
Q: A lot has been made about David Wilson’s fumbles, but also in the running game, it looked like there was some rust, missed assignments. Do you feel like that has come along this week in practice?
A: We’re trying. We’re certainly working at it. They were stunting and doing a lot of things and you had two new parts in there for the first time. Plus, the tight end was new. The left guard was playing center. To get the cohesiveness you need to have to be an effective/efficient running game takes a little time. You have to have five guys playing together for a little bit. Hopefuly we’ve ironed out a few kinks and we’ll be a little bit better with it.
Q: Baas is practicing. Are you almost inclined to keep the unit you have together now though?
A: It still comes down to the better players. Put your best players out there and he certainly is one of the five best, so you’d like to put him out there. It allows Kevin to get over to the left guard where he and Beatty work together very well.
Q: Last week, Champ Bailey being out was a big story. They have a lot of young guys in that secondary. Can you talk about what they do in the secondary and why they’re so effective?
A: You’ve got some athletes that can run. You look at guys like Torrey Smith, who wasn’t running away from them, who has phenomenal speed. That was impressive for me. A little bit unnerving to see how well they ran, but it’s also part of the package. I think the fact that they were able to generate pressure on the quarterback and cause him to maybe be not quite as comfortable in the pocket as he probably was the year before, I think that was all part of it. They really did a nice job with their blitz package.
Q: Are you worried at all about David Wilson after the two fumbles Sunday night?
A: I’m worried about everything, every week. So if they say am I worried about David Wilson, yeah, I’m worried about everything. That’s part of playing the game. You have to bounce back. The ones who thrive and flourish are the ones who can learn from their mistakes and put it behind them and certainly he needs to do that and I think he will.
Q: Will you turn right back to him and he’s still your starting running back right?
A: We’re going to play everybody. I know you guys like to know who’s starting and not, but I haven’t put together the openers yet, so I don’t know who’s going to be in there because I don’t know what the opening plays are. Once we decide what plays we’re going to run, then whoever we think is best capable of running that play is the guy that will be in there.
Q: After the first fumble, though, I think the next series you went right back to him. Was there a conscious effort there to just kind of let him know?
A: A little bit. It was also in the sequence and I thought we had a play and we did. We rolled for about 12 yards, 14 yards. It was pretty good, it’s his kind of play that he does well. We blocked very well, so it was nice it opened up the way it did.
Q: Can you expect that much out of Brandon Jacobs? It’s been a long time for him.
A: Yeah. The good thing is the learning curve is accelerated because of the familiarity… Hopefully it won’t take nearly as long and then we’ll just wait and see.
Q: Do you have an idea of what his role would be?
A: I’d rather not tip my hand at this point.
Q: What have you seen out of Rueben through camp and now that game?
A: I think that I’ve kind of shared that from the spring on, he’s done very well. It’s somewhat night and day in terms of his approach. He’s been professional, very workman like, so he’s always had some ability and so you just thought if he would do what he’s doing now, which is really focused and zeroed in, he’d be a good player in this league. It’s still a long season. You have to do it over a long period of time. I wasn’t surprised, let’s put it that way. I was hoping and it’s what I kind of thought he would do.
Q: How would you compare him to Cruz and Nicks?
A: All three are very, very different, which is nice. They complement each other very well.
Q: I know that Tom said you guys aren’t bringing Brandon in to be a mentor specifically. Does he still add a little bit of fire to the meeting rooms and everything like that?
A: Not to my meetings. It may be when he gets with the running backs. I’m sure he has a little bit more to say when they just get by themselves, which is good. I think that’s a positive. He’s been through some trials and tribulations. He knows what it’s like to survive in this league and I think that’s a good thing. It’s not a stretch for him to be that way. He’s comfortable and encouraging and supporting David. That’s a good thing.
Q: When you got the decision that David is going to be sitting on the bench, were you told that was it for the game?
A: No, it wasn’t mentioned. We were moving on.
Q: How difficult does it make it for you?
A: Not at all. Stuff like that happens all the time. You lose a tight end, receiver, a back, usually it’s injury. I guess when I first got in the league, Jerry Glanville said, ‘you got this job because we thought you knew what you’re doing. We’ll judge you by how well you can adjust in a game because all of those questions you have answers to starting a game, change all the time once the game starts.’ You’re constantly trying to evolve based upon how things are going. The score, a guy playing well, a guy not playing well, a certain matchup that proves to be a lot more difficult than you expected, there’s 100 things that go on. You just have to move on.
Special Teams Coordinator Tom Quinn
Q: Trindon Holliday is a dangerous punt returner.
A: Yeah. Kickoff returner, punt returner. He’s very dangerous. We’ll try to not let him touch the ball, which is easier said than done. We’ve got to be very disciplined in coverage. Every guy has got to do their job. You do have to attack him at some point. You can’t play on your heels. So it’s a huge, huge challenge for both our punt coverage and our kickoff coverage.
Q: Is he harder to find sometimes because he’s so short?
A: He’s fast. He has exceptional quickness, his speed. Rueben played with him at LSU and it’s legitimate speed and you see it on tape and so you’ve got to try not to let him get going the best you can. When he does, it’s a tough day trying to catch him. He is small, but he’s explosive.
Q: Are there punt returners where you say we’re fine if he wants to handle it?
A: We always want to kick directionally. We always want to try and not have to cover the whole field, but obviously with guys like this you want to try and kick it as far as you can out of bounds, but that’s a lot easier said than done.
Q: Were you pleased with how Rueben did the other night on punt return?
A: Yeah. He did a good job. It’s unfortunate we had the one that was a mishit ball that bounced and hit our guy. If we do a better job blocking the gunners, I think we can come up and catch that for a fair catch and not put ourselves in that situation. You never want to let the ball bounce because usually bad things are going to happen as far as field position and then, number two, when it starts taking crazy bounces and it hits off of you, it’s tough.
Q: How good was last week for the offense?
A: We got rolling pretty good at the end. Eli was getting us into great situations and we were going out there and making plays. We stepped up to the table to make those plays, so we’ve just got to build on that performance.
Q: Does it make a difference with having Hakeem healthy out there?
A: Yeah. He’s going to attract that attention and it’s going to leave the third receiver or whoever is in there a lot of single coverage and you have to take advantage of that and continue to make plays at that position.
Q: What do you think you learned from last year?
A: I just understand the offense now, the whole concept of everything. That lets me go out there and play a lot faster. The offseason also helped just going out there running all the plays and running all the routes in the different positions and getting the trust of the coaches. I’m just looking to build on those performances.
Q: When Hakeem gets double-teamed and you get single coverage, do your eyes light up?
A: Definitely. In the offense, whenever there’s single coverage, Eli looks to the single receiver side. We’ve got to continue to build on that performance and keep making plays for him so he can come at me more and more.
Q: Peyton threw for seven touchdowns and their offense seems to get a lot of hype. Do you guys feel like you can hang with anybody with the weapons you have here?
A: Yeah. We think that way, but we’re not really going into the game thinking that way. We just have to continue to do our job. We’re not going against Peyton. It’s just going to be our defense. So we’ve just got to come out there focused against their defense. That’s pretty much our main focus coming into this week, of how we are going to beat the opponent that we’re going to line up against.
Q: What do you present to the offense?
A: Whatever they need me to do. I don’t want to specify myself as one type of receiver. I just want to go out there and do it all. That’s why I continue to try to get better each and every day. Whenever they want me to go out there and do it, I try and do it.
DE Mathias Kiwanuka
I think it’s a combination of things. We definitely have to be disciplined, we definitely have to be able to get pressure on him and change up the looks and do whatever we can, but up front, that’s the number one goal for us every third down, just to make sure that we get pressure any time their quarterback drops back to pass the ball.
Q: Is it strange, you guys always talk about hitting the quarterback, is it strange to talk about hitting the quarterback and having his brother in the room with you?
A: I mean, we all know what it is. It’s a business and we would never do anything intentionally dirty to hurt their player but at the same time it’s football, it’s a violent sport and when we get there, we want to make him very uncomfortable in the pocket.
Q: What is it like to look at a film that has seven touchdown passes?
A: It’s interesting. It’s eye-opening. You have to make sure that you’re studying and you’re trying to understand what his tendencies are, what the formations are, what he’s seeing out there against different defenses so that we can go out there and get the right matchups and make the right adjustments.
Q: What did you think of your pass rush in the opener?
A: We didn’t get there enough. We did some good things, they did some good things. They got the ball out quick, they were running some shorter routes, but as a whole, when he does sit back, when he does set his feet, we have to make sure we can get there. There was a lot of emphasis on a guy like Romo and keeping him in the pocket but we can’t let that dictate how we’re going to pass rush. We still have to beat the man in front of us and get there.
Q: You want to get to the quarterback every game but when Peyton’s the guy back there, is that even more important?
A: It’s always important. Number one, it’s getting to the quarterback. If he’s going to throw the really quick one, you have to get your hands up. And then it’s always you have to stop the run first. Even if they are a predominately passing team, you’ve got to make sure you stop the run because that’s the way for them to bleed the clock and to keep our offense off the field, so the basics are always going to be the same. Yeah, getting there is a point of emphasis.
Q: You played two really good passing attacks last season with Green Bay and New Orleans and you guys handled it pretty well. Were there things that you take from those games, those game plans, that you feel like you can adapt to this week?
A: The main thing, the biggest thing, is that it’s a mindset. When this group upfront and, with the guys we have behind us, when we decide that we’re going to get there, when we decide that we’re going to go out there and play our technique, then the outcome of the game is in our hands. That’s how we feel and that’s how we’ve always felt.
CB Terrell Thomas
It definitely is, to be able to go up against a Hall of Famer and an offense like that, how many points they put up and the way they did it, it’s definitely a challenge for our defense, but we’re excited. I think we played pretty solid, for the most part, against the Cowboys, and we’re looking to follow up with a strong performance at home.
Q: You see a guy throw seven TDs, is it scary or do you just sit there and say, “the other guys made mistakes” or…?
A: I think the Ravens got out of their…if you watch the game, they got out of their game plan in the second half. Peyton caught them off balance a lot of plays. More than anything, they weren’t set. I think he was dictating to them compared to the first half, so we want to stay ahead of him. He’s a great commander out there on the field and gets his team in the best position. We hope to do the same thing.
Q: What do you think about Welker? If you’re in the slot, seems you will be seeing him a lot.
A: It’s an exciting challenge. He’s an All-Pro, Pro Bowl caliber receiver in the slot, one of the best in there. It’s a great challenge for me and the defense. I’m excited to go up against him. I think he had a good game versus the Ravens, they put him in a lot of positions where it made it easy for him as far as pick routes and leverage. My biggest thing is just doing what the coaches ask me, playing to my leverage and, if he does catch the ball, be right there and make the tackle.
Q: Have you played against him before?
A: No, I haven’t, so it’s exciting. I was looking forward to the year when I first tore my ACL because we played them up there, to go against him. I’m excited, this is a great challenge for myself.
Q: He just seems to get open, it’s like he has that knack.
A: He’s good at what he does and he’s a slot wide receiver to the T. He’s very explosive out of his breaks. If you can be explosive out of your breaks out of the slot, it makes you very productive. He’s very good east and west and north and south, but he’s not explosive north to south compared to east to west.
Q: What about the strain that a guy like that is going to put on you physically?
A: I’m not worried about it. My knee is fine, I’ve proven that in this last game going against another slot receiver in Miles Austin, who’s a little bit bigger, more powerful guy, but I think I held my own against him. I’m looking forward to the challenge. I know he’s one of the best out there on top of having Peyton Manning, so it’s a big challenge for the defense and myself.