Head Coach Tom Coughlin
Good morning. We're excited about getting started in preparation for a very good Detroit team – a team that's played very well. As you know, they made a lot of moves after last season. It looks to me that they've benefitted greatly by it. We've looked at the controversial play where Detroit had the ball in the end zone against Chicago this morning. We looked at the completion of the Green Bay game this morning. We se the way in which all of their games with the exception maybe of the Minnesota game have been played very well, very competitive, with opportunities for Detroit to win. So, they are a much-improved football team. Their draft choices and their additions have really made them play outstanding football, so we prepare ourselves today for a very good Detroit team.
Q: When you look at the Lions' lopsided score in the St. Louis game – what did they do well?
A: They were outstanding. They moved the ball, they played great defense, they had a 105-yard kickoff return, they did a lot of very, very good things in that game.
Q: Will you be defending the big play this week more than you have in the past?
A: Well, you have a lot to defend. They have a lot of big play people, so you do have to be alert for that and try to figure out exactly what the variety of things they like to do are from the multiple personnel sets that they play.
Q: Are the Lions schematically similar to Tennessee?
A: Well, defensively there are a lot of similarities. I think that offensively they've adapted very well to their personnel and they utilize their personnel very well. It's Calvin Johnson in the red zone – it's no shocker to you, but he seems to make a play up over the top of everybody else – at least one per game.
Q: What has changed in the pass rush in the last two weeks?
A: I just think it's the multiple use of our individual talents, the coming together of that group, the ability to get them isolated in one on one situations and have them come through. So I think it's the development of our defense and the utilization of our talent.
Q: The Lions have lost the last 23 games on the road. Do you approach anything differently this week with your team?
A: No. I think you just look at the tape and study the tape. You see how well they've played. The thing that I reminded them the other day is that we know the Philadelphia Eagles very well and you look at the way in which that game came down, 35-32, and there was a great opportunity for Detroit even in that game as they got the ball back on the onside kick and put themselves in real good position. In Green Bay they had the ball first and ten at the plus 38 yard line, make one yard on the first play and then went incomplete, incomplete and had to punt the ball in a game which was 28-26 and then Green Bay took it for the next six minutes and 32 seconds with an outstanding four minute drive, but there were turnovers in that game and their defense gave them a chance to be in position to win it.
Q: What do you see from Shaun Hill?
A: Shaun is playing well – he gets the ball to the open receiver, he recognizes all the hots and sight adjusts, the ball comes out early. You see that he pulled the ball down against Green Bay against a two deep man under and ran for a 40-yard gain. He seems to be doing the things that he has to do. There was a play in the game the other day where he took a rocker step back and just threw it up in the air and 25 yards down the field Johnson went and got it, so the timing has really been working out there as well. You see him playing well.
Q: How does Detroit compare with Houston?
A: I think that there's more of a…the tree that Schwartz is from is the Tennessee tree and I think that that's where that particular style comes from. They play tough, hard-nosed defense. Their front is very good – their front is a penetrating front. I think that's closer to – they have their own style of play obviously, but I think it's closer to that.
Q: In terms of quality, is Detroit as good as Houston?
A: Well, you'd have to make the call on that one. I'm not going to compare teams for you. I will tell you this: Detroit has a number of playmakers.
Q: You added three new guys to the injury report – Cruz, Jackson, and Ware – any updates on them?
A: Victor has a hamstring that for some reason, somehow in striding Monday occurred. You get a lot of those – as you know – Sunday after the game and then before you know it on Monday, something happens and so we have a groin with Danny, which he looked pretty darn good today. I'm impressed with the way he's kind of bouncing around today. He has a little more of a positive attitude about that. And then Brian had a stiff neck or sore neck after the game, feels a lot better today but still has some of that around so they're reluctant to do anything until they do all the tests.
Q: Are all three out today?
A: All three today, yes.
Q: How is O'Hara?
A: He's going to work in individuals today.
Q: He responded well yesterday?
A: Actually they…from my understanding…they slowed him down yesterday to put him in today. We'll see what he's like today.
Q: He's going to try to run today?
A: He'll try to go individual and we'll go from there.
Q: How about Bulluck?
A: Bulluck was scheduled to do the individual. I'm not sure that he'll get that far today.
Q: Any word on Kiwanuka?
Q: Did Hedgecock get some running in yesterday?
A: He did, but not full speed.
Q: How'd that go?
A: He did, but not full speed.
Q: How do you handle Eli with all the turnovers? Is that a tough thing for a coach to deal with because you want him to be aggressive?
A: It is because you don't want to take that aspect away from him. He's always trying to make a play. He's always trying to make something even if it's something out of nothing and all I stress with Eli and with any of them is to be aware of the circumstances, know the situation, don't put your team in jeopardy. You don't have to. Throw it away. We'll have a next play. We'd rather have that be the consequence. Just get rid of the ball rather than go down or whatever, but give us another play, let us line up or punt – we'll punt the ball. We're fine with that. The circumstances of the game do the dictating and I think that he's very, very competitive, highly into what he's trying to do, has great faith in the guys that he's working with, but there are occasions when you just have to realize that it's not going to happen, so let's protect the ball.
Q: Has he been more aggressive in his passes and his decision making?
A: He was very good in his decision making the other day and he's been very good at it. As you know, we've had a number of tipped balls. That wasn't the case the other day, but we've got to stop this. It's got to stop. You come out of a game, you feel good about it…we've had a couple of games that were plus zero and we've had three and two turnovers. You expect to be the team that wins the turnover battle in that situation, especially when you're ahead in the game. You're just trying to figure out the circumstances and how to play and we'd like to put an end to this.
Q: Rolle has been very good against the run. How much did you think he'd do that when you signed him?
A: Well, he's a football player – whether it's run, whether it's pass. He loves that aspect of the game. He's done a very good job of being down there, so he has complimented in both defending the run and defending the pass.
Q: More than you thought?
A: I don't know about that. I think he's doing the things that we thought he could do and we had seen him do.
Q: What are your early impressions of Suh?
A: Very good player – strong, powerful. The two tackles are very good. Their front is very good.
Q: What about Perry Fewell did you like when you were interviewing defensive coordinators?
A: I knew him for a long time.
Q: Did he say anything you liked?
A: Sure. You look at everything. He had opportunities, too. You look at everything, you talk about the way you play, you talk about your style, you talk about your personnel, you talk about the things that are good, the things that are bad, what are we going to do about this? How can we speed up the introduction of the individual to our team and then how do we play? How is our team best suited to play? You look at the percentage of pressures that have prevailed over the course of the last…since '07 by down and distance, you adjust, you talk about that. How comfortable are you with this? This is where I'd like to be in terms of pressure, this is how I'd like to play. So the whole idea was that the personnel and the package basically remains the same as the influx of the individual and obviously his ability and personality and that type of things, so all of those things take place in the process of interviews.
Q: Has he presented anything so far that has made you raise an eyebrow?
A: Well, there's things that…everybody talks about that…whether it be offense, defense, special teams…that you share opinions on what you like or don't like. There are obviously things that you don't like more than some things that you do like. That goes on all the time. There's nothing new about that. The yay nay goes on pretty much all the time.
Q: When Bulluck was moved to outside linebacker, how much of that had to do with Bulluck's skill set and how much had to do with Goff's?
A: A lot. Are we going back over stuff we've talked about for six weeks? Yes. Two of the better run playing linebackers were those two guys. Get them on the field.
Q: How's Bradshaw?
A: Yes. He's practicing.
Q: Boothe will be eligible soon – will you put him in?
A: We'll see. A lot will depend on exactly where he is. If he's ready to practice and ready to go, then we'll give it full consideration. We don't have to rush into that because of the bye week.
Q: Kenny Phillips is doing better? Practicing?
A: Yes. Yes.
Q: How is Beatty?
A: Beatty is quite well – doing quite well. I would say he's advanced, but with these things you've got to go real slow. There is actually discussion here going forward whether he comes out of the boot, how much of the time he has to be in the boot... but he was in the weight room the other day with no boot on at all. He's making good progress.
Q: Does he affect Boothe or are they separate?
A: I think it's two separate deals.
Q: Any time frame on the Kiwanuka decision?
Q: So it's open-ended?
Q: Have you judged the other three division teams in comparison to yours?
A: Well, as you know, by virtue of scheduling, our divisional games have all been pushed back, so we've been pretty much consumed with the teams that we're playing. We're very well aware of what's going on in the division. We talk about it every week, every Friday, sometimes on Monday we talk about it. We're aware of wins, losses, how people are doing, how they're not doing and we talk about that, but to that extent, we're interested in who we're playing – the Detroit Lions.
QB Eli Manning
Q: How much better is this Lions' team than their record suggests?
A: They're a good team. They have a talented front four, talented defense, number one in the league in getting turnovers. Every game they have played has come down to the fourth quarter so they've had a chance to win every game except the Minnesota game, which got a little bit out of reach but not much. They were still very much in every game. They're very talented, and offensively they have playmakers. We have our hands full. We have to have a great week of practice, and we're off to a good start today. It's not a team that we play very often so we have to watch a lot of film, get prepared, and have a great plan.
Q: So you're not looking ahead to Dallas already?
A: No, not at all. Not at all. This is a big game for us.
Q: How do you work on the fine line between being aggressive and getting careless?
A: Yeah, I mean you always have to make smart decisions. With those third-and-long situations, I have to take my completion or throw it away and just be smart. I have to understand the circumstance of the game and don't need to force things at that point.
Q: Do you feel some of the picks you have had are bad throws or bad decisions?
A: Every one has its own reasoning. The ones in the Houston game were just bad decisions, and bad throws mixed with it. Usually a bad combination.
Q: Any reason the Lions have so many takeaways?
A: They're just talented. They get a good pass rush, they're aggressive, they're flying up the field. Their front four is very talented. If you can get a pass rush to the quarterback and slow down the run, it makes it tough. The quarterback is throwing it quick, gets hit, fumbles, having to throw it before things are opening up. It causes a lot of problems. They have talented players, they're aggressive, and they make plays.
Q: Things seem pretty wide open in the NFC so far, though:
A: Yeah, through five weeks, obviously it is. Every week is important, every game is important, and we have to handle our business now.
Q: Do you see the division in transition with new quarterbacks and Dallas at the bottom of the division?
A: That's nothing I can control. I have to worry about the Giants, and right now I have to worry about Detroit and getting ready to play that game. We haven't even played a division game yet, so we have to keep getting better and we'll see what happens.
Q: Are you alarmed with the number of interceptions you have now, or do you look at it only at the end of the year?
A: You just learn from each one. You can't get worried about them now. They happen, you try to learn from the ones that occur, and just play better football.
Q: How hard is it when you play a team that's 1-4 to give them the respect they deserve?
A: Not hard at all. A lot of times, I don't look at the record. I look at the film, and that's all I've looked at. I'm trying to prepare for a team and figure out where we can take advantage of something, where they're talented and what we have to worry about, get the game plan and go from there. Records don't mean anything to me.
LB Mathias Kiwanuka
Q: You seemed optimistic after the Chicago game, what has changed and how differently do you look at the situation?
A: I don't look at things any different. I think I'm always going to push myself, and push everything I can to get back on the field. At the same time, you have to respect the doctors and treatment. The only thing that has changed from that moment was the fact that the doctors decided it would be better for me to wait a little more time and make sure that I'm not going to re-injure myself by going out there.
Q: How frustrating and unsettling is this for you?
A: That aspect is very frustrating. You always want to be out there on the field and I'm very excited for when I get the chance to come back, but I've been in this situation before. The difference is this time, I have a chance to come back this year. Being hurt is tough, but as long as they don't put that I.R. stamp on you, you always have a chance to come back so I'm keeping my hopes up.
Q: Do you have any timeframe or any idea when you can return?
A: No clue. No clue because from the reports I'm getting, everyone's body is different and everyone responds differently to different treatments so it's a matter of when it happens. We are very optimistic that it will subside on its own, but it's a matter of when it does.
Q: Have you completely ruled out surgery?
A: No. I haven't ruled out anything. Nothing is off the table yet. I'm still keeping the hope alive, and hopefully it'll work itself out.
Q: What's the next step?
A: There are always constant doctor's visits, and they're staying on top of it. They're doing a very good job of monitoring the situation. From my standpoint, it's a wait and see situation.
Q: Today was the first time we saw you out there, were you cleared or you were able to do that?
A: I was allowed to go out and do that stuff, but I wasn't cleared to practice. That's why I wasn't out there with the team.
Q: What'd you do today?
A: Just some agility drills, ran around the hoop a little bit. I had my jersey on so it felt good to at least feel like you're part of the team.
Q: Any pain associated with this?
A: No, no pain right now.
Q: Strange to be held out with no pain?
A: It's a frustrating thing. As a player, you feel like once your body feels good, you should be able to go out there and play. At the same time, I'm not a physician and I didn't go to school for years and spend time studying and researching things to make that decision. From a player's standpoint, yeah, I feel I can go out there and play. I have to trust the doctors.
C Shaun O'Hara
Q: How are you feeling and what did you do and what are you thinking?
A: I feel pretty good. I did individual. I think the one thing that we're trying to do is just not do too much the first day, and really we're just kind of hoping for the best and hope it feels the same tomorrow.
Q: You were encouraged last week before you tried running, and then it did not go well. You're encouraged today more so I would guess?
A: Yeah. It felt better today than it did last week. I think everything I did today, nothing really was too painful. I think that's what we're hoping happens tomorrow, hoping it stays the same.
Q: What did they have you do today?
A: I just did some individual and took a couple snaps.
Q: Can you run? Have you really tested it or not quite yet?
A: I mean I'm not doing any sprints. Luckily they're not making me do the conditioning test. So I feel pretty comfortable that I can do all the things I need to do within my offensive line box.
Q: Are you going to try to practice tomorrow?
A: That's the plan. Yeah, I think so. We'll see. We'll see how it feels tomorrow.
Q: Is playing this Sunday realistic?
A: I hope so. Otherwise, what the hell am I doing out here?
Q: Well I mean if it takes a week or two...
A: I mean it's taken longer than I would have liked so I'm pushing.
Q: Is it just a pain tolerance thing right now?
A: Well right now, that's pretty much - I've been dealing with it since day one. So I think we feel pretty comfortable that we've really toned things down and quieted things down. So now we're just kind of waiting to see how it responds.
Q: Did the cortisone thing not work last week?
A: I mean it's definitely helped. It's felt better now than it's ever felt. So that's why I'm out here trying.
Q: So are you anxious to see how you feel tomorrow morning?
A: Yeah. Hopefully it'll feel the same tomorrow, and we can go from there.
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