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1.11 Postgame QB Eli Manning

Q. How would you sum up today's events?

A. I would say missed opportunities. We did some good things; we drove the ball pretty well. We got into their territory; we got into their red zone a number of times. We didn't play our best when we got into the red zone. We didn't convert any of those times down there into touchdowns. We settled for five field goals, and made three of them. That is not going to win games in the playoffs. You have to get touchdowns when you get down there. We did some good things, we had some good drives, and we made some plays. When we needed to get something done, when we needed to get a spark and make a big play, that is when we didn't do our best.

Q. Was the wind a major factor in the today's game?

A. No, I didn't think the wind was all that bad today. We definitely played in worst cases of wind. There were times when there was a little bit in there, but I don't think it affected what we were doing or any of my throws that would have made a big difference.

Q. Eli, after the experience you had last year and how well you guys played for most of this season, what are your emotions now?

A. Dissapointing. I thought we did some good things. I thought we had some opportunities, and that is what is disappointing. It's not like we came out here and they just flat out beat us. We moved the ball, we had opportunities, we had chances, we just didn't make the plays when we needed to. We didn't make the plays when we had the opportunity. A lot of that was in the first half. We had opportunities to score a couple of touchdowns and take this game away. I throw an interception and gave them seven points. Things like that, you can't afford to do. You can't afford to make those mistakes, and you can't afford to give up scoring opportunities when you get down in their territory.

Q. Can you talk about that first interception?

A. Just threw it high. I rolled out right and had (Domenik) Hixon open over the middle. The ball sailed on me and threw it high. You can't throw high over the middle. There's a good chance it's going to get intercepted.

Q. Eli, on that first drive, you had Steve Smith out in the flat there. Was it the wind? Was it the grip?

A. No, it was just one of those throws where we had that play in. We worked it all week, Amani (Toomer) was in there all week when we threw it. It was a check to it, just having him going down the sideline. It was going to be a whole throw, it should have been caught around twenty yards, it was going to be a line drive. Steve (Smith) was kind of expecting it to be deeper down the field on the go route. I didn't want to lead him into the safety, I was going to throw it hard on a line drive. I just think it was a slight miscommunication. The wind hit it a little but still it should have been a completion. That could have been a big play right there, possible touchdown on that series. We got the first down, and kept moving the ball, but the first play of the game we could have jumped out and got some momentum and some points. Just another example of a missed opportunity.

Q. Are you shocked that the way you pounded teams all year, you weren't able to get that on fourth and inches?

A. Yeah. We had one on the first drive where we went for it and got it. On that one, we had a quarterback sneak where we needed about two inches. I couldn't get it. Then there at the end again. When we needed to make a play and give ourselves a spark, those two last fourth downs, you don't convert and we didn't give ourselves a chance to keep those drives going and a chance to win the game.

Q. In hindsight, how did the absence of Plaxico Burress affect this offense?

A. You know, we just didn't play well today. It's not about Plaxico (Burress). We had opportunities. We have players that can make plays and do things. It's not the issue. I have total confidence and faith in the guys we had out there today. I could have hit them on a few more plays and we could have made something happen.

Q. On a couple different occasions you had Derrick Ward and Brandon Jacobs split out wide. And you did a couple other things, like the direct snap to Ward. What was it in the Eagles past couple of games that you were trying to exploit?

A. A couple of different things. We have done that before, throwing screens out to Derrick (Ward) when they are blitzing. Both times we hit them on a blitz , we had a chance to make some big plays. One of them we got tackled just short of a first down, and we had to settle for a field goal right there. You know, it's a game of inches. We had another one that could have been a good play. They had a blitz on and we were trying a couple of different ways to throw some screens. We had a drop and didn't convert on that. We tried some different looks, tried to move some guys around and try to indicate exactly what they were doing. If you put Brandon (Jacobs) out wide or put Kevin Boss out wide, and a linebacker goes with him, then you know it is man. We were trying to indentify what they were doing and take advantage of it.

Q. Overall, can you speak about the season overall? Any positives or negatives?

A. Yeah I mean there are a lot of positives on the season. Getting this far in the playoffs is a positive. Winning the NFC is a positive. We did a lot of good things, but as we know it all comes down to what you do in the playoffs. That is what makes your season a good season or a disappointment. It's a disappointment because we felt this was a special team and that we could go far with this team. Our defense played outstanding today and gave us opportunities. Offensively we didn't do our job and score enough points.

Q. Do you see the same type of confidence in the Eagles as you guys had last year in the playoffs?

A. Yeah, they are playing well. Their defense is playing well. Their offense is not making mistakes and Donovan (McNabb) is hanging in there and making plays. They had some big third down conversions today, at certain times which kept drives going and they got points on. They hung in there, kind of what we were doing and they made the plays in the end. In the third and fourth quarter, they were the ones who got touchdowns and made the big plays.

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