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Players Quotes - August 16: Manning, Cruz


COACH TOM COUGHLINQ: What was behind the Sintim decision?
A: We found ourselves in need of players at a certain position. We felt that was probably the best way to go for both, for Clint as well. He's probably quite a ways away.

Q: How about Trattou?
A: Same basic thing. We feel it would be wonderful to just keep everybody and be able to have a place for everybody. Justin did a nice job for us last year, as a rookie, just coming in and making the team and being very good on special teams and giving us a great look. In this case, the doctors tell us he's quite a ways away and we felt like this was something we needed to do to bolster that one spot.

Q: How are you feeling about the state of your defensive line right now?
A: I feel good except for the fact that at the tackle position, where we thought we were deep, we're all of a sudden not. I can't feel very good about that when I really did think we had a lot of people who could play and we would be good in that spot. Obviously not great news. It seems like the harder you feel and you push to get people back out, the longer it takes. We're going to have to wait and see.

Q: It's pretty hard not to think there will a lot of extra buzz and enthusiasm in the building, playing the Jets this week. How much does it affect you, impact you? Do you even care at all?
A: No. I mean, I think we're just looking forward to playing a good team. Offensively, we know we're going to go against a good defense.They got good players, and they do a good scheme. So, we're going to be tested and knowing our rules and our assignments,and making sure we know exactly what's going on. Know all of our responsibilities,and see if we can go and be effective against a top-quality defense.

Q: You got Hakeem back off the PUP. You're getting him back in practice, very, very shortly. Obviously, you can't wait to get back on the field with him, I'm sure?
A: Yeah, definitely. It'll be great to have Hakeem back. He's a big part of our offense, and a playmaker. So, it'll be good to get him back on the practice field, start working, and seeing how we can improve as a tandem.

Q: How much do you think you lost by not having him around in Albany on the field?
A: He'll be fine. He knows the offense, he's a hard worker, he knows how to get open and how to work. Once he comes back, we shouldn't miss a beat.

Q: Looking forward to a good test from the Jets' defense this weekend to see where you guys are at as an offense?
A: Yeah, they always have a great package on defense. They run a bit of a 3-4 so it's going to be a good test for our offense and our running backs to get used to.

Q: Is it good to be back in your normal routine here in this facility?
A: Yeah. It's always good to be back home. We have great facilities here, so I can't wait to get back to them.

Q: You still have a few weeks but I'm sure you want to get this running game hitting on all cylinders, right?
A: That's the plan. In the running back room, we want to just get started and be a spark to this offense.

Q: A lot of this summer had been about trying to figure out what everybody else can do. Has any other receiver jumped out at you?
A: Ironically enough it's been a little bit of everyone. Ramses has had a great training camp, Jernigan has had a great training camp, and Randle's been doing some good things. It's going to be tough for these coaches, I'm glad I'm not a coach or anybody working up top because it's going to be tough to pick one of those guys or even two of those guys to be our third and fourth receiver. They're all talented, and they're all good players so it's going to be a tough decision, but I think all of those guys definitely have the talent.

Q: The Jets have some good corners out there. What kind of a test is that for you and everybody?
A: It's a huge test to go against the potentially top two corners in the league and to get some solid work against them. We'll really see where you stand as a team and we'll get some self-analysis to see how you are as an individual against those guys. It's a test and you've got to be up to the challenge. I think our guys are ready to go and I think we'll show up to play on Saturday.

Q: Thanks to the Giants-Jets rivalry, do you think that this game will have a little more excitement and buzz surrounding it?
A: A little bit. Every time you play the Jets, they're our hometown rivals and we share the stadium so it's always going to be an electric game. All the fans are going to make it electric. If we don't feel so on the field, the fans are going to make you feel like it's a big time game. It's definitely going to have some jitters and some anxiety, like it's a season opener or something like that, but it's going to be a good test for us. It's going to be a good test from us offensively and defensively just to see where we stand as a team.


Q: What did the tests say?
A: It came about after the walkthrough during practice or whatever. I was having a little backache. They just wanted to make sure everything was O.K.

Q: And it is?
A: Yeah.

Q: It was just a muscle spasm or something?
A: Yeah, something like that. They just wanted to look in there and see that I'll be able to go out and perform.

Q: That must be tough for you to see Clint go?
A: Clint got released? I had no idea. He kind of expected it. Talking to him, he understands the business aspect of football. His biggest this is trying to progress as much as possible and get his knee healthy and be able to make a return this year. I'm shocked. I just found that out. I hate to see him go. He's a good teammate.

Q: He just wasn't ready?
A: He tore it late last year. Being that it was the second one, he just wanted to take the proper time, which the Giants gave him. I'm pretty sure once he gets picked up with another team, they will as well.

Q: You tweeted a picture of you running in the pool today. Is that the first time you did that?
A: Yeah.


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