Before Thursday's practice, head coach Pat Shurmur, coordinators and players spoke to the media. This is what you need to know from the pressers:
1. Replacing the spot Snacks left. With Damon Harrison off to the Detroit Lions, there is a large void to fill on defense. Head coach Pat Shurmur hinted yesterday that Dalvin Tomlinson is a more natural nose tackle, the same position that Harrison played. However, defensive coordinator James Bettcher will be doing a more rotational style for the time being.
"The thing with Dalvin is, he's an extremely heavy-handed striker, a guy that can punch and separate, a guy that has the ability to displace blockers, and he's going to get his great fair share of snaps; but the truth is, there's going to be a great rotation in that room," Bettcher said. "I think we've kind of done that to this point. Snacks had played similar, around 50 percent of the snaps to this point. You might ask me why, and at the end of the day, you have to have a great rotation in the (defensive) line room. This is a long season, we played a span of where there was three games in a matter of a pretty quick turnaround, but at the end of the day, if you're going to be good in your front, you have to have a rotation with some of those core guys. Dalvin will be a huge part of that rotation as he has been, and some other guys in the room are going to get some shots."
Bettcher added: "[Josh] Mauro, Kerry [Wynn], Mario [Edwards] – all those guys are going to get snaps. You're going to see them all up there. We just got to the point in (Arizona), we had a nose and we were right and left with our defensive linemen. I think as much motion and shift and some of that stuff you get in the NFL right now, that's really the direction you want to be, is have a guy that can play right and a guy that play left."
2. Offense looking for right tempo. Throughout the first seven games, the Giants have struggled to come out of the gates firing on all cylinders. When the game starts to wind down, the offense begins to click, something that should be happening for all 60 minutes.
"I think it's important we get a fast start," Shurmur said. "We've only had a couple games where we got fast starts on both sides of the ball, and that's something as we get more and more familiar with one another we'll do. We just have to make sure we as coaches are putting the players in the right spots."
When the offense begins to click, that's when the play-calling starts to become more up-tempo, which is something that is up Shurmur's sleeve at all times.
"When I was with Chip [Kelly] we majored in it, so it's in our DNA to do it and I think it's something that Eli [Manning]is good at," Shurmur said. "We always have it available. It's sort of like, get that first first-down to get going, and I think that's a little bit of what we've fallen victim to."
3. All about execution. The Giants have talent on both sides of the ball, but the little mistakes have hindered the team from having a better record. Once the team starts to execute, it'll be a different story moving forward.
"When we go back and we watch film, we see on the film all the plays we left out there," running back Saquon Barkley said. "Execution, scoring point, especially on the offensive side of the ball. That's the simplest way to put it. That's where we're at right now. We're playing with effort, we're playing with heart, we're playing our butts off. We're believing in each other, but at the end of the day, we're not executing. If we can figure that out, our record would be a lot different right now. You can't control that, you can only control this week, and this week we got to come out against a very, very good defensive team, especially in the run game, and execute against them."
4. Stopping Alex Smith and Adrian Peterson. Going into the season, there wasn't much focus on the Washington Redskins coming out of the NFC East. Now heading into Week 8, they lead the division at 4-2. A large part of the team's success is thanks to newcomers Alex Smith and Adrian Peterson. Smith hasn't had the flashiest numbers this season, but has only thrown two interceptions to his seven touchdowns and has been smart with the ball throughout his career. At 33 years old, Peterson is 10th in the league with 438 rushing yards through six games. Stopping those two will be the main challenge for the Giants' defense.
"Smith is more of a mobile guy. He did a lot of work with this legs when he was over in Kansas City," outside linebacker Olivier Vernon Said. "Offensively, that's one of the threats that they bring to the table. He can make good plays in critical situations. He's a great quarterback. Just another threat that we just have to worry about, and try to contain."
On Peterson, Vernon added: "Future Hall of Famer, Adrian Peterson is still Adrian Peterson. I don't know how he does it, but he finds a way. Kudos to him, he's a hard-working guy. He's been doing it for a long time. It's going to be a privilege to play against him."
5. Corey Coleman ready to prove himself. The Giants activated wide receiver Corey Coleman off their practice squad today. The former first-round draft choice spent two years in Cleveland and was plagued with injuries before being traded to Buffalo this offseason. After being cut and spending time on New England's practice squad, Coleman lands in New York for a shot to show that he belongs in the league.
"It's all about opportunity and I feel like this organization gave me a great opportunity to come here, for me to prove to them that I'm worthy to be here and I'm happy and blessed to be here," Coleman said. "Sometimes you got to put your ego to the side and I love this game and if it, like you said, result in me signing on the practice squad that's cool because I'm going to work every day. That's my whole mentality. Sign me, I'm going to work, try to prove to you that I'm worthy being a part of this team."