Head Coach Joe Judge
Opening statement: "I'm proud of the team and the way they came out and competed. This is definitely a positive week for us as a team, and we got better this week. We got a lot of quality work in two days of practice with a lot of our vets and young guys. A lot of guys were taking a lot of balls. We were able to evaluate our roster and evaluate a lot of players going into the stretch. We are going to New England next week, and we will be able to go with our team as narrowed down as possible. We're not making all the final decisions, but this game will give us a clearer picture going into New England next week in terms of treating it almost like a regular season game."
On what the plan was going into this game:
"It really went back to the quality of practice we had. With the volume and intensity of the work we had, we thought that it was best for the health of those players, especially with a quick turnaround and one day off in between. As we get these guys ready to go next week, we know it's going to be a hard work week that simulates a regular season week and having a competitive practice session with Patriots. It was the best thing for the health of the team and it also gave us an opportunity to really evaluate a lot of guys on the roster. We have to make sure that we have as clear a picture as possible to give them a fair evaluation."
On why NY Giants Matt Cole played CB:
"Because of the way Matt competed. He has been the guy since he got here. Whether special teams, offense or defense, he just says 'yes sir' and goes out there and plays 100 percent. We were sitting there and looking at the amount of guys we were going to play yesterday. We knew the depth of some was going to be an issue. We knew it was going to be a hot day and playing a lot of snaps. We just turned around and said, Let's let Matt go out there. This guy competes on punt returns against a gunner. Let's see what he's got. To be honest with you, I've had experience with receivers in training camp and guys that have stuck around. One thing that impressed us was that he didn't blink. He went out there. He got the ball thrown to him a couple times. He made a nice tackle. He stopped them short right there and forced a field goal. Obviously, the calls were a little new to him. He got a crash course last night on our defense and some meanings, but he went out there to compete."
On when Cole found out he was playing:
"The decision was made yesterday so we got him before we went into the final meetings for prep. We brushed up the best we could. (Defensive Backs Coach) Jerome (Henderson) did a great job of communicating with him on the field in terms of the technical signs on a play-by-play basis. We kind of had a 10-man huddle, and Matt had a personal tutor on the sideline, but he did a good job."
On whether getting better this week was because of guys like DL David Moa and LB Trent Harris:
"I think our entire roster got better this week. We had great quality work. I thought our practices are exactly what we needed to come out here with high intensity, high volume, building our conditioning and our fundamentals at a competitive rate. I thought seeing those young guys play in competitive situations throughout the entire game – for 60 minutes – gives a really good extended view of these players, not only early or in some small glimpses but extended – how they make adjustments in games, how they respond to situations, four-minute for the defense, two-minute for the offense. You can see a lot of players elevate their game this entire week. There is definitely a lot of push on the roster. There are positions like Trent, Moa and other guys."
On LB Oshane Ximines:
"It was good to see X back out there with us. He had a good week of practice. We just wanted to get him some reps in. Go with X and just get him back out there playing ball. He obviously missed a lot of ball last year being injured. He missed a lot of ball this year with starting camp late so the goal for him and (LB) Ryan Anderson was to just get them as many snaps as they could with playing ball. I'm happy the way it came out. They did some nice things for us today. Obviously, there are always things to clean up. We're never fully satisfied with the tape. However, they went out there and played a lot of ball for us and definitely did some good things."
On whether RB Saquon Barkley will play next week:
"We have not [made a decision]. We are going to the doctors and approach it as we get closer. We will have conversations tomorrow and will definitely be increasing what he's doing. I can't tell you exactly what that's going to be. I don't know at this point if that's going to include 11-on-11 or 7-on-7, or whatever it may be, but we're going to make sure we're very calculated with what we do. At the same time, he had a great week this week with the trainers and with what he could give us on the field. I know he is tapping his foot and getting anxious. As soon as we get the greenlight from the medical staff, we'll keep going."
On whether it is a reasonable timeline for RB Saquon Barkley to play in the opener:
"I don't have an answer there, but I wouldn't eliminate any possibilities."
On what the message was for WR Sterling Shepard after the altercation with Browns CB Troy Hill at joint practice:
"I handled that internally. We handled that internally. They kept it to their players and we'll keep it between us."
On whether TE Kyle Rudolph will come off PUP this week:
"He had a good week this week at rehab. When I talked to him with the medical team, it's optimistic that there may be a chance coming up to get off. Again, that is an individual basis so we will see what the medical team says on that and see if we can get him out there with the team working."
On whether LB Azeez Ojulari was injured at practice:
"He has had a week in practice, and we aren't used to having full weeks, so that's why he wasn't out there."
On whether he sees a finish line since Cleveland and New England were the early goals laid out:
"I think we're progressing for where we want to be. We're at a point where the first part of training camp was ramping the team up, getting the conditioning right, building on the fundamentals. And that never stops. But coming out of the Jets week, and turning around and having a good week here in Cleveland with a lot of good competition – it's a great team to correct off of. It's a great team to teach off of. To turn around and in this game, have a lot of young guys playing and going out there and showing how to make some decisions. Now turn around and going to New England next week and having their folks. We're working, specifically with individual practice. We will talk to their staff in New England and narrow down who the folks are going to be, but it's going to be a lot of situational football. It will great for our team and something that we have to get against another opponent."
On if the team will be getting out as expected:
"Yes. Last I heard, the hurricane should not stop us from landing in Newark as planned. There were some contingency plans earlier in the day, but the plan all day has been to go ahead and get out of here. It was either going to be landing in Newark or somewhere close to drive. Right now, everything is going to Newark. I haven't talked to anyone back home, but I hear it's been more rain than anything."
On how the storm may effect the trip to New England:
"I haven't spoken to anyone specifically in New England about that, but our Ops team has worked on the travel plans in terms of going up there. There are some alternatives if anything happens, like a train trip."
On the importance of game exposures:
"It is huge. A lot of times in practice, it is kind of scripted. Even when you call something off the cuff, they know in certain periods that you're going to play certain things. When you get into games, you get to move things around. You really work different guys around. That is where versatility comes in. It's not just something you talk about. It's something you have to have in our program. As you go through the season, these scenarios are going to come up, so you have to do something different than what they've practiced on. You have to be able to go in and make the adjustments. This is great preparation for our players, but it is great preparation for our coaches as well. Make the sideline, in-game adjustments collectively and talk about it as a staff. Get the offensive guys together, the defensive guys together. This is valuable experience in preseason and will set you up to work together to seamlessly make the transitions in the season. That's really where it's most important."
On the decision to not give S Xavier McKinney a series:
"To be honest, we wanted to get him out there and let him break a single color roll. When (DB) Logan (Ryan) is on the field, Logan handles the majority of the calls. We just want to give him some game reps of being out there and running the huddle, making the on-field checks, and getting prepared for the season."
On K Ryan Santoso:
"I have to evaluate the tape fully. I thought it was a good start for what we want to do. A large part of our focus for this game was to take a look at some of the guys, like (K Ryan) Santoso with kicks. He has been tremendous for us so we wanted to make sure we got him out there. Those guys did a tremendous job for us. We're happy to have (K) Graham (Gano). He is a phenomenal kicker. I know he is a quality guy and we wanted to make sure we got him some tape, to be honest with you. This guy deserves to be 1 of 32. He's got that kind of ability. We have all the faith in the world. We have tried to get him out there for some kicks, and we haven't been able to the past few weeks. We wanted to go for two at the end because there is no overtime in preseason."
Defensive Back Julian Love
On the starting units on defense:
"We feel like this week was a huge step for us, getting out there to compete against a quality team. A little more on our plates in terms of calls and what they expect from us. I know that the starters are guys up front who are especially ready to get after it. The closer we get to Week 1, everyone is fired up. We are going to attack and get better to where we want to be. We really have to take advantage of next week."
On looking at the starting lineup with Week 1 three weeks away:
"Training camp from the outside mind might look tough, but it has been a fun camp because you can see the improvement in a lot of people – players, coaches and all of us together building a camaraderie that we talk about so much that we want to build. As camp went on, we are still growing and getting to that point, and it is crazy we are on to our last preseason game and then we get to go at it for real."
On any recent expressions from Head Coach Joe Judge:
"Well, you just heard him call me duct tape. That was a funny story. In a meeting in the defensive room, he said, 'Well, we can put you in any situation, wherever we need you, you are like duct tape for us.' That is a true story. Now everyone is calling me duct tape now because he made that comment. It is a short-term solution – duct tape. We will move on to something more permanent."
On how duct tape means versatile:
"Listen, it might be a Philly thing where his from and how he grew up. Something is broken, and you put duct tape on it. I don't know how his household was taken care of, but that is kind of his expression. Just do it all. I take pride in that. Obviously over the years to get better, try to establish how I want to be as a player and that involves doing a lot. I like it. I like doing a lot."
On what WR Matt Cole is if he specifically is duct tape:
"Have you ever seen Big Fat Greek Wedding – the dad always used to put Windex on everything? We will say Matt Cole is Windex (laughter)."
Running Back Devontae Booker
On his production today, including scoring a TD:
"It felt good. It felt great. Just trying to be a spark out there ever time that I get."
On being warmed up in the first quarter:
"Yes, I did. I did not know how long I was going to be out there, but I just wanted to be a spark for the team and for the offense, go out there and do what we have been doing. Got a touchdown with it, and that is always good. Just continue to get better."
On the NY Giants OL's performance:
"They did pretty good. Executed on assignments they had out there, gave the quarterbacks some time and opening up some holes for me. I was just going up there and trying to execute my assignment, and when we all execute our assignments, it is perfect."
On leaping over the pile for the TD:
"Honestly, I just saw everyone on the ground. Typically, I am not a big leap guy, but I tried it today and it worked."
On if NY Giants RB Saquon Barkley taught him how to jump like he did for the TD:
"We really did not talk about it because we have not repped too much on goal line (laughter). I always knew I had the leaping ability in me. It came out today."
Wide Receiver Matt Cole
On when he found out that he was going to be playing CB:
"I actually got the news yesterday. Coach asked me about playing corner, and in my mind I was like, 'I already play corner on punt return.' He said, 'I am talking about defense.' I said, 'It is too early to be playing games. You can't be for real.' Coach said, 'I am serious. We might need you.' I just stayed ready, and I have history of playing defense back in high school."
On if he last played CB in high school:
"Yes, that was the last time. Then it had transferred over to college – I played all phases of special teams. My coach in college when I was a freshman I used to… I just love to play football."
Of if he was surprised he was not targeted more at CB:
"They did target my area. I do not want to toot my own horn, but I do not think a receiver caught the ball on my side of the field – Cole World. I think I did pretty good. I just stepped up and just filled in a spot. My coaches helped on the side that are sure about the defenses that they run. I would just charge."
Linebacker Trent Harris
On if he feels like he turned heads today:
"I do not really know what to think. I am just trying to come in, improve and get better. There is a lot of competition out here in my position. Just trying to take advantage of my opportunities and make the roster."
On how much better he is now compared to when he joined the NY Giants last year:
"I feel better. I had a whole offseason to work. Hoping to improve every day. I feel more confident, and I do feel better."
On getting a significant number of first-team reps:
"It is always great to have opportunities so just have to take advantage of it. That is all you can do really."
On his relationship with assistant head coach/defensive coordinator Patrick Graham:
"Just a regular coach and player relationship."
On if he was expecting the whistle for the sack on QB Baker Mayfield on Thursday:
"We got to stay away from the quarterback, but (NY Giants OLB) Azeez (Ojulari) did a great job of getting him confused and the play just happened."
Defensive Tackle David Moa
On how this summer has gone:
"With the leadership we have in that D line room, guys like Leo (DL Leonard Williams), (DL) Dexter (Lawrence II) and (DL) Danny Shelton, we just got to bring it every day. It was nice to have some of our offseason programs where we could come in and work with the guys and actually get it going. Taking those guys and going underneath them and learning from some of the best."
On practicing with the Cleveland Browns for a week and then playing with them today:
"It was my first time experiencing something like this and I thought it was awesome going against such a talented offensive line from the Cleveland Browns. To go against them two days before the game, you kind of pick up on each other's tendencies and try to exploit that today. I'm looking forward to experiencing something like this again next week against New England."
On getting playing time:
"Coaches are giving us the opportunity to go out there and play. It's on us to go out there and show them what we can do and try to make the most out of the opportunity."
On getting the quarterback on the ground:
"That's a defensive tackles' goal and dreams, putting pressure on them. It's not always about getting sacks. It's getting your hand in his face, trying to disturb his passing motion. You kind of pick up on things like that, where he likes to throw the ball. Leo was the one who taught me little tendencies like that to pick up on."
On scratching out a spot with all the established veterans:
"I'm not worried about that. Right now it's just working day by day, learning from guys like that. I'm young in this game and to have people so experienced and so talented, I have a great opportunity to learn."
Check out the best photos from the Giants' preseason contest against the Cleveland Browns.