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Postgame Quotes: HC Brian Daboll, QB Daniel Jones, RB Saquon Barkley, OLB Kayvon Thibodeaux, DL Dexter Lawrence

Head Coach Brian Daboll

Daboll: How's everybody doing? Tough game. Physical game. It's what we thought it would be, and I thought Chicago played physical. I thought our guys played physical. (We) made a few more plays than they did. There were a lot of bumps and bruises. I don't know the answers to any of the questions relative to any of the players yet. We'll figure that out as we get going. But tough, competitive game; good to get another win.

Q: When (quarterback) Tyrod (Taylor) goes down there and you go to the wildcat for (running back) Saquon (Barkley). Was that a contingency plan, something you've worked on before? How seamless did you think that worked?

A: Those were plays we had in the gameplan. I just thought those were the right thing to use at that particular time based on where (quarterback) Daniel (Jones) was, limping around a little bit. And then we put a couple of other ones in on the sideline – ones that (offensive line coach) Bobby (Johnson) and I have run in the past. So didn't have to get to all of them but got to a couple of them that I thought helped us, particularly the edge plays with (running back Matt) Breida there at the end. And Barkley's been ballhandling since training camp, not for this necessary (reason that) both quarterbacks go down –just because it's part of our package that we have. Just thought that was the best thing to do.

Q: Could he (Saquon Barkley) have thrown the ball if he needed?

A: Yeah. I think he could've. I was hoping he would get over 40 runs this game.

Q: What was that moment like though when Tyrod goes down; you've already taken Daniel out of the game? Did you all have time to discuss that? He said he was good to go? How does that work?

A: So, you're just talking about the communication?

Q: How you decided to put him back in and said he wasn't done for the game.

A: I went up to him. He talked to the trainers. He worked over there on the side. I saw him moving a little bit. He wanted to go. I said, 'You're not going into the game. I see you're limping. I'm not risking you getting injured to try to protect yourself with that limp. But if we need you, can you go back in the game?' He said, 'Yeah. I can go in the game now.' I said, 'Tyrod's going in the game, and if we need you, hopefully it'll be just to hand the ball off.' So, when Tyrod went down, I looked over to (quarterbacks coach) Shea (Tierney) and said, 'Is he good to go?' He said, 'Yup.' We didn't pass it, right? We just handed it off.

Q: The rushing game with Saquon, Daniel. Can you talk about that? The offensive line.

A: Good week of practice. That was, I would say, the plan going into it. It's always good when things work out the way we want them to work out in a game. Daniel's weren't necessarily designed runs. There was pass elements to the play we thought would be a few good designs to run against their team. They happened to go with the receiver. We hit a couple of other ones. We hit the one to (wide receiver David) Sills where they called us on a formation. I thought our line did a good job. We ran the ball inside; we ran the ball outside; had a couple of scheme runs in there that we liked this particular week. And then 26 (Saquon Barkley) – I've said it since OTAs – is a really good football player. So, that along with Daniel's, what did he have – about 70 or something around there? That's the way we wanted to play this game. And it worked out.

Q: Was that what made those runs by Daniel so effective? You said they went with the receivers instead of staying with him. What other elements are there? It seemed like the fakes to Saquon also were confusing them. What made Daniel able to get those big runs?

A: They were open. There was nobody out there.

Q: Is that something you see on film during the week? Those boots were killing them especially in the first half there. And there just seemed to be a lot of real estate there.

A: Yeah. That's part of the preparation. It's really no different than a drop back pass you designed that you think looks good. We had a variety of formations that we used a few of them. It's the first time I think that we've called really one this year. I think we called one other one. But for the most part, we called a few of them. Just thought in our preparation it was a good play to use this week.

Q: How encouraging is it to see your team win this game on a day when you faced as much adversity as you did?

A: What adversity?

Q: The quarterbacks got hurt.

A: Oh. Sorry. You just move on. I mean look, you feel for the players that get injured that give everything they have during the week to get their bodies and their minds right. And if somebody's out, that's why you have other players on the roster that you have confidence and faith in, or they wouldn't be on the roster. So, you have to obviously show empathy to your players that get hurt, but you're onto the next play quickly. And you're not worried. I mean (tackle) Evan (Neal) went out. There's a list; you guys saw it. There's quite a bit of guys that were out there. I do have the names. I don't have reasons: Daniel, ARob (cornerback Aaron Robinson), (defensive lineman Henry) Mondeaux, Evan, (wide receiver Kenny) Golladay, Tyrod, so it was quite a bit of them. But I don't think you really think about that when you're going. Other than if it's a play call and you need to do something different to either help a particular player or flip a formation or not call a pressure. You got to know your players.

Q: Do you have an update on Tyrod? He was evaluated for a concussion. Does he have a concussion?

A: I have no updates on any player because I did not talk to the doctors or trainers before I came in here.

Q: As you've said, you've talked since you got here about how great Saquon is. But does the magnitude of what he's done so far surprise you at all? Just the level that he's at.

A: The magnitude?

Q: Yeah, how good he is. You said he was really good.

A: I think he's really good. He's a good player for us. I mean, we're on Week 4. So, he's one of our better players. Again, you can use him a bunch. You can use him as a decoy a bunch. But he's one of our better players; I think he touched it about 30 times (today). I'm not into – I understand the question: Am I surprised? Not surprised? I just think I watch him at practice. He goes out there. He prepares hard, and then he tries to play as a good as he can play.

Q: You said, 'This is the way we wanted to play.' But some of this at the end was certainly emergency situation. I mean I don't know if you wanted to go into the fourth quarter and not throw a pass for the next ten minutes. Obviously, you wanted to run the ball. You just said, 'What adversity?' and you sounded serious that you weren't thinking about that.

A: I don't see that as adversity.

Q: But there's two quarterbacks that aren't able to play, and neither of them can play.

A: He was out there. And we had other things we needed to do. That's our job as a coaching staff is to make sure you're prepared for whatever situation comes up. Is it always going to be great? No, it's not. There's certainly things that we can all do better, starting with me. But I just think that's what you do in a leadership position, too. You don't panic. You try to stay composed. You try to give people a plan that they can go out and execute and believe in when they need to do it. Whether that's the quarterback is not able to move, so you put him out there at receiver and give it to Saquon, who can move, and throw Matt Breida in there. I would say just our smart, tough, dependable theme, smart is at the top of that list. So, being able to adjust and handle things as they come our way – whether it's the coaching staff or whether it's the players – that's very important to us.

Q: You said that you and Bobby Johnson put in some things.

A: We talked. And Kafka (offensive Coordinator Mike Kafka), he had some things. He's had Tyreek (Hill), and he's had other guys. So, when that went on, we just sat down, and I said, 'Where's the grease board?' I know not many people use grease boards. Five people gave me an iPad at the same time. I said, 'I want a grease board,' which is rarely used nowadays. We talked about a few things. But we had things that were already in the game plan. So, it's just a matter of 'Let's go to three-back personnel' that they haven't seen all game and run one of our plays from our – it's not the wing T – but the three guys in alignment, and let's use that. If it works, let's come back to it. And you're looking across the field, and you know what's coming and Fleus (Bears head coach Matt Eberflus) is telling them (his players) to all come up and bring blitz zero. But we felt that we had a hat for a hat on most of those plays that we had; and then we ran another one that Saquon had a read on. And the discussion was, do we just put Saquon back there and forget about the quarterback and put him out? But that changes some defensive philosophy and mentality, too. So, just to try to give yourself a little bit of crease.

Q: Have you ever been in a situation as a coordinator or coach, head coach, where you haven't had a quarterback that might be able to throw the ball with more than half a quarter to go?

A: Not that I can think of. I could be wrong, but not that I can think of. And Daniel could have thrown it.

Q: How did Daniel handle that when you told him you were going to go with Tyrod? Like he wasn't happy about it?

A: He was like, 'I can go. I can go. I can go.' But I just think it's important. You can go and do the tests and run over there. And if you're a coach, you're watching him run, too. So, you appreciate the grit and the resolve that the players have. But I think it's your job, too. I want to make sure he can protect himself more than anything.

Q: You wouldn't put Daniel back in if you thought he was at serious risk. So, that said, is it fair to say that you don't think the injury is too serious now?

A: I don't know. I'll find out now when I go back in. But I honestly don't know.

Q: Can you call the press box when we're done?

A: If you want to bring (Senior Vice President, Medical Services/head athletic trainer) Ronnie (Barnes) in, we can bring him in (Laughs).

Q: Winning three out of four hasn't been the norm around here for a while. What, in your mind, is the biggest reason this team has responded this way in the first month of the season?

A: I think the players played good when it counted the most. Give all the credit to the players. I think the assistant coaches and coordinators are doing a good job of putting them in position, and those guys are playing hard for 60 minutes. So, I'd say give the players, first-and-foremost, all the credit. And give the assistant coaches and coordinators the second part of it.

Quarterback Daniel Jones

Q: How are you feeling?

A: I feel good. I feel good. A little sore but all good. Listen to the trainers and doctors and go from there but feeling good.

Q: It seemed like the last time you came out, you looked a little better than early on. Did you actually feel better by the end than when (the injury) first happened?

A: Yeah, maybe a little bit. Once I got out there, I got back loose again and felt a little better. Like I said, I'm feeling good and I'll listen to the trainers and doctors and go from there.

Q: How frustrating is that or difficult is that when they told you that you were shut down?

A: It's frustrating. Obviously you want to play and you want to be out there with your teammates at the end of the game where we're fighting and trying to win. I thought guys stepped up and played great to finish off the game.

Q: Considering how much you ran today, you were not going to be able to do that if you were back in the game, would you?

A: Probably not. I think that was part of the decision.

Q: Why were you so successful early on with those long runs? In your mind, why was that there for you?

A: I think the offensive line did a great job early on in the game. We hit a couple of big runs with (running back) Saquon (Barkley) and things were opened up. We had a couple of complements off it and they were obviously playing Saquon, playing the downhill run, so we had some chances off of it. I think hats off to the offensive line, they did a great job of controlling the line of scrimmage all day.

Q: When (quarterback) Tyrod (Taylor) went down, what's your first thought? Did you figure they would put Saquon at quarterback? Did you think you were going in? What were you thinking at that point?

A: I knew I was going back in, yeah.

Q: As far as taking those first few snaps, are you thinking "I got to go back in this" or did you figure Saquon is next up?

A: I knew I was going back in. I knew we'd be creative in how we'd scheme up certain runs to keep it moving forward. I knew I was going back in, I felt good about it.

Q: Did it feel odd being out there and not being the guy who relayed the calls to Saquon or the whole team?

A: Yeah, a little bit. It was a little bit different for us. Like I said, we had to get creative with some of those calls. I thought the coaches did a great job scheming some of that stuff up and still giving us a chance to move the ball down the field.

Q: How did you know that you were going back in after they had shut you down?

A: I think that was – the communication is that obviously I wanted to go in and considering the game and how it was playing out, it probably wasn't the best thing for the team. When Tyrod went down, I knew I was going back in.

Q: How did you feel when you were in the game after you returned? Was it pain? Did your ankle hurt? Was it just stiff?

A: Yeah, it hurt. It hurt. Didn't feel like I could move quite the same.

Q: None of these three wins have been easy. What does it feel like to be 3-1? This is not something that you've got some experience in.

A: It feels good. It feels good. We got a gritty, tough group of guys who want to compete and fight for 60 minutes. Like you said, it hadn't been perfect. There's a lot of things we're still working to clean up and correct going forward. We got a group that'll fight and compete for the whole game. That's fun to be a part of.

Q: On those fakes when you were spinning around and running, at some point do you look up and are you shocked at some point with how much green you saw in front of you?

A: Yeah, I mean I think when you get out there you want to make a good fake and there's kind of a moment where you turn around and you got to make a read quickly as to run it or throw it. A lot of times there's grass and you got to take what they give you. I thought it was good scheme and coaches did a good job seeing it and calling it.

Q: On the longer touchdown run, I got to differentiate because you had more than one, on the longer one, did you think you were going to score there? It kind of looked like you almost were dangling to the left side out of bounds. Did you see the endzone?

A: Yeah, I thought I was going to score. I was trying to decide to cut back or keep it there inside the pilon. I was confident I was going to score. It was a good block there by (tight end) Tanner (Hudson).

Q: Did you interact with Tyrod when he came off? Does that concern you when you see how hard he was hit considering what happened with (Miami Dolphins quarterback) Tua (Tagovailoa) last week?

A: Yeah, it was a scary play. Obviously, it was a big collision there on our sideline. I didn't get to see him before he went in, but I saw him after the game. Yeah, scary play and you don't want to see that fort a teammate or anybody playing.

Q: About as early as you can ask this question, but what do you think about next week and how the ankle is going to be able to come back and play against the Packers?

A: I think I'll listen to the doctors and trainers, take their advice and go from there. I'm going to do everything that I can to play, for sure.

Q: When those series of events are happening, you're obviously on the sideline, Tyrod gets hurt and then you having to come on and everything that happened after that. From the outside in, it looks chaotic, it looks like it's wild. What's going to happen? Is there confusion? It seems like from the inside out, you guys were pretty calm in terms of what you were going to do. Why is that? What do you credit that to?

A: I think we were prepared. I think we had some stuff in the gameplan for certain situations and stuff we could go to. I think also, guys were locked into the adjustments we had to make. There was clear communication from the coaching staff to us and guys understood what they had to do. We just had to go out and execute it. I think we got a smart group of guys, we got a smart group of coaches that are able to see that and adjust quickly and get us the assignments and we go from there. I thought we responded to that well.

Q: You've had a high ankle sprain, did they diagnose it for you yet?

A: Yeah, they haven't diagnosed it exactly. Throughout the week, I'll go through some more tests and figure it out.

Q: You've had it before this. How similar is it considering in the past you did have a high ankle sprain?

A: Each one is different. Like I said, I still don't know exactly what it is. We'll look at it throughout the week.

Running Back Saquon Barkley

Q: Wildcat quarterback, your thoughts?

A: It's something that we practiced. I think we did it, we showed it against Carolina. It was a package that we had in. You don't want to be in that situation but the way that the coaches reacted, brought us all in and started drawing it up. It felt like you're back again as a little kid in the backyard playing football. But like I said, we had some of those packages already. We worked at it and we have some really talented (running) backs and a great offensive line and we were able to have a little bit of success on it.

Q: (Head Coach) Brian (Daboll) said he actually had a grease board out and you were watching him draw it up?

A: Like you were eight years old playing with your friends on Sunday getting ready. You're just drawing it up. "I'm the quarterback, this is what we are going to do, this is how we're going to do it." We got to some of it, but the defense stepped up big for us and we were able to get the gritty runs and find a way to get a win.

Q: How encouraging is it to have a coach that can do that on the sidelines in a situation with so much adversity swirling around?

A: It's not just drawing it up, it's every week. The way that we come to work, how we adjust. I feel like every week, especially in the run game, the run that is hitting is not the one that hit the week before, the week prior. It just shows not just how versatile the coaches are but our players, especially the guys up front. They (Offensive Linemen) are doing a great job setting up holes. I got to be a little better for them at the beginning of the game when they give me the opportunity to get on the safety. A couple plays stick in my mind, especially the long one. I have to break that and find a way to get in the endzone. The great thing about it as we continue to trust each other, we are going to get better and just keep leaning on the o-line, keep trusting the system and week by week try to find a way to go 1-0.

Q: How did you know you were going in as the quarterback. How did that conversation happen?

A: When I saw (quarterback) Tyrod (Taylor) go down, I kind of realized I'm up next. I'm the quarterback. First of all, you have to give credit to DJ (quarterback Daniel Jones) coming back in the game. I can't curse, he's a tough you know what. Nothing but respect for him to go in and continue to fight through that for his team just shows you the type of person and type of player he is. I think I just tried my best to read it. It's really not that hard, I guess, but I think I made the right reads on them. But we were able to keep the ball moving, get down field, get some points and the defense did a great job for us.

Q: When you were out there, you were reading your keys as to whether or not to hand the ball off?

A: Yes. You go out there, you look at a guy, he does this, you do that. He does this, you do that. I really thought (running back Matt) Breida was going to break it. He's special. He's a really good back. I kind of got caught watching and seeing it because I knew he was going to get the edge. I have to do a better job faking there. The biggest thing, it shows how gritty this team is. I love all those guys in the locker room and the way that we come in and fight for each other. It's early in the year. Obviously, you would rather be 3-1 than 2-2, but we just have to keep building it, go back, watch film and get ready for Green Bay and the trip to London.

Q: Before Daniel went out, in your mind why were you being so effective in plays that you were working and whenever he was rolling out there was wide open space?

A: One, he's a heck of a quarterback. He's very athletic. Two, we kind of knew after the first drive what their gameplan was going to be and to load the box up a little bit. If they are going to do that, they don't have enough guys out there. We did a great job of even though they loaded the box, the o-line was leaning on them, making the right calls, creating movement. I was able to make some of the right reads, put a little pressure on the defense and DJ was DJ and made the plays.

Q: So basically, when you're in there – they are calling the play into Daniel, he's telling you but it's an RPO (run-pass option) without the 'P' (pass)?

A: No, not in that scenario.

Q: You had the mic?

A: The headset? Nah. We didn't go that far. I mean, I would love that but – actually, I wouldn't love that. Hopefully we are never in that situation again, but we were able to get it done.

Q: That screen pass that you took back around the other side, how do you make a play like that?

A: Just let your body react. Ball security was awful in the beginning, but I kind of just wanted to make sure we get back on track. It was a heck of a block by DJ. There are not really a lot of quarterbacks out there that will go out there and fight for his team, coming back in and making those blocks. O-line kept blocking, too, we picked up the first down.

Q: Obviously in your career here, there have been times where the (opposing) team knows that you are going to run the football and you guys collectively have not had success. I think from the beginning part of this game, people knew that you were going to try to run the football today. Why were you successful and why have you been successful in those circumstances where even though they know what's coming, you guys are producing?

A: I will say this – it is really hard to run the ball in the NFL when it's a loaded box. I can't really take credit for that. It's all about the gameplan, it's all about the system, it's all about starting up with (center) Jon (Feliciano) making the right calls and DJ putting us in the right position, the o-line communicating and getting to the second level. My responsibility is to just trust it. There're some plays I wish I had back, I feel like I could have done a better job but that's within every game. Like I said, when there's a focal point of stopping the run and you see me go out there making some of those plays, it all starts with the offensive line. I got to give credit to them today. We are going to continue to trust in them, lean on them and they're the engine of this team, especially the offense.

Outside Linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux

Q: What happened [on the last play of the game]?

A: Nothing, I'm fine. I had a little back spasm that I felt and it was I felt like I had to call somebody in, but I'm good though.

Q: Have you ever been part of a game that had that many injuries?

A: I mean, that's the resiliency. I think I said it to Dex [Giants DL Dexter Lawrence] 'Wow, we really have a team.' When I saw three running backs in the game and no quarterback, they all went down, they had to come up with the next situation and the next package and guys stepped up and they made plays.

Q: It seemed like even before you guys lost Julian [Giants S Julian Love] and Aaron [Giants CB Aaron Robinson], you guys were mixing and matching a lot.

A: I think that's the greatest part of what we do here at the Giants is that everybody is ready to play. There are no guys that think they aren't going to play. We all know that it is going to take all of us and that is what Coach [Giants HC Brian Daboll] has been harping on and we kind of just really have embodied that.

Q: Kayvon, what was the difference in the pass-rush today?

A: We were having fun; we're building that chemistry. This is our second time really out and we're still missing a couple of guys, but just being able to play free and the offense playing complementary football; going down there and scoring and giving us really an opportunity to go put some pressure on the quarterback.

Q: How slippery is Fields [Chicago Bears QB Justin Fields]?

A: He's a great player. He's going to be running the league for years to come. It was great playing against him and I hope to see him in the future.

Q: Did you know that it was a fumble right away? Or was that just heads-up in case it was a fumble when you fell on the ball?

A: I did not know that it was a fumble because it went forward. Usually, it's not a fumble, but that's just kind of instincts and that's what we're coached; if the ball is on the ground, pick it up and if it's reviewable, they are going to give it to us, rather than leaving it there and giving it back to them. It's something that we planned.

Q: Like you said, you lose two quarterbacks, you have the running back at quarterback, does the defense say anything like 'Hey, we're going to have to be the ones to finish this off'?

A: No, there was no flinch. I said 'Well, if you're going to put Saquon [Giants RB Saquon Barkley in at QB], give it to him.' I thought it was dope just seeing him back there and seeing the confidence in those guys knowing that they're going to take over and nobody flinched. Everybody got behind them and we got together.

Defensive Lineman Dexter Lawrence

Q: We saw the pass rush come to life today, what was the key behind it?

A: Honestly, just rushing as a group. Keeping him in the pocket, he had a lot of yards kind of escaping through little gaps and things like that. So, our plan was just to condense the pocket on him. He was holding the ball for us, and we got him.

Q: A lot of times with a slippery quarterback, they'll say don't go all out rush, hold back because he could escape. What was the mentality because even though he did run for some yards, you guys did contain him.

A: I don't think you should rush scared or anything like that. I think you should still rush how you want to rush, just be cognizant of your rush lanes. That was just the plan.

Q: (Defensive Lineman) Leonard Williams misses his second straight game. He's such a big, important part of your defensive line, but yet today you found the pass rush. To be honest, outside of Fields running, you contained the running game.

A: It takes all 11. We had a good week in practice on a short week. Just everybody getting 11 hats to the ball, everybody gang tackling. So, that was just the plan. To keep him contained and everybody get to the ball.

Q: What went right for you guys in the redzone? They went 0 for 3, just kicking field goals.

A: Not breaking. Bending, but not breaking. We're big on 'play the next down'. The next play is our play type of thing. You're kind of seeing that in the redzone.

Q: As a defensive player, are you aware at all that (Quarterback) Daniel Jones goes out with a sprained ankle and then (Quarterback) Tyrod Taylor gets hit in the head, he goes out and your offense is running wildcat.

A: I honestly didn't notice that until somebody was like, "Oh Tyrod's in." I was like, "What happened?" But there's always the next guy up and Daniel came back and finished the game and we won.

Q: 3-1 now after the first month of the season. You've got to feel pretty good about that?

A: It feels pretty good.

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