Offensive Coordinator Ben McAdoo
Q: What do you need to see out of Eli [Manning] these final two weeks?
A: We are focused on this game, playing against a pretty good defense, a top-ten defense. Last seven games, they have been excellent. We are looking for consistency. I want to move the ball and have consistency throughout the game, not just in one spot of the game, not just the first half, not just the second half, but 60 minutes of football.
Q: It is still a first-year offense… Do you feel like before you head into the offseason you have a firm enough grip of what is going on here?
A: Yeah, absolutely. We made progress. We have played a lot of games so far and spent a lot of time together. Being new is no longer an excuse.
Q: What do you view as the biggest part of that progress?
A: We are always chasing consistency. The more time you spend together, the more time you can grow and see consistent improvement. We are looking for that over the final two games, especially this week. It is about consistency. Each play, each quarter, each half and each game, we are looking to put it all together.
Q: Have you seen that at any point this year?
Q: This season was a chance for Rueben Randle to step forward as a starter… Can you evaluate his year and how you see how he has done so far?
A: Rueben has been productive in stretches. He grows as a player each week. He is a smart player. We would like a little bit more productivity out of him, but we would like a little bit more productivity out of everyone out there.
Q: Have you noticed the frustration level with him at all… He has had a couple off the field things, but then the way he came back and made that catch on Sunday… What did that tell you about him?
A: It showed some resiliency. He was able to hang in there. He didn't get a lot of playing time early, but he stayed the course and when we needed him to make a play for us, Eli and Rueben connected. It was good to see and it was a big play in the game.
Q: Have you sensed a level of frustration with [Randle]?
Q: How have you personally evolved as a coach this year, your first as a coordinator and a play caller? What kind of things have you learned?
A: That is a good question. I haven't spent a lot of time thinking about that. You learn what you learn along the way. You apply. You go back to conversations that you may have had along the way and in tough times, you think about players, not plays. Maybe that is something that you can apply going forward, especially in a long season. Other than that, that is the first thing that comes to mind.
Q: Is that something you learned this year?
A: I have been a part of multiple conversations where that has come up in the past and I think this year it showed up.
Q: Can I interpret that to mean as opposed this is the scheme and sometimes we have to expand it because of the personnel or specific player?
A: You can think of it a few different ways. Simply, the best play may not be the best play because it doesn't get the person the ball who gives you the best chance to win the game. Getting the ball to the right guy at the right time is most critical.
Q: Would you say that being a play-caller has taught you that or being the coordinator?
A: Seeing it from a variety of perspectives, coaching a skill player, coaching the quarterback, and now being in the position to call plays.
Q: Was there a point where that hit you and you realized that you needed to do more of this?
A: There was no 'ah-ha' moment. No, there was no one moment. You figure that out through a couple different experiences.
Q: How can you apply that to make you better and the team better going forward?
A: You don't fall into the trap where you think the system is everything.
Q: Do you ever allow yourself to think about if Victor Cruz were in this offense the way it is performing now with the personnel in it now?
A: No. We believe in the next man up mentality. We have a lot of guys who have stepped up and played some good football for us when Victor went down. Preston Parker is a guy who comes in and fights hard and he works hard and it is important to him. We respect that. There are a bunch of different guys who have stepped up and filled Victor's shoes and done a nice job for us.
Q: Probably goes back to the consistency you talked about, but in terms of protecting Eli, it seems like there are games where he is hardly ever touched and games where he is constantly under siege… Do you see that disparity and what do you attribute it to?
A: We are working on trying to get the games where he is hardly ever touched. That is the way we would like to move forward. That is hard to do in this league. It'll be a big challenge for us this weekend.
Q: How important is the running back to the protection scheme?
A: The running back position is vital every week. There are three decision-makers in the offense: the center, the quarterback and the halfback position. The spotlight will be on those positions this week.
Q: With [Odell] Beckham Jr. showing himself as such a unique offensive player… Will you be able to expand on that even more so in the future?
A: He has handled a lot of responsibility well. We need to work with him. [Wide Receivers Coach] Sean Ryan does a great job with him. We need to continue to work with him in expanding his role and seeing what he can handle and really going through an offseason and seeing what he does well. Where we are right now is we are putting game plans in and we have a good feel for what his strengths are and detailing his strengths and making sure we bring his weaknesses up and make those better. The offseason is the time where we will be able to help mold his game and see where we can go with him and his position.
Q: What are his weaknesses?
A: That wouldn't be very smart for me to answer, now would it?
Defensive Coordinator Perry Fewell
Q: What have you seen from Jason Pierre-Paul and Jonathan Hankins over the past few weeks?
A: I think Jonathan Hankins is really coming into his own right now. He's playing with good strength and power. He's playing more snaps for us. He's playing about 35 to 45 more snaps a game and so with he and JPP working together over there, I think that they feel very comfortable in what they're doing and how they're communicating and I just think JPP has turned it up a notch this second half of the season, with the last three, four ball games. He's setting the edge of our defense. That's what we've asked him to do. He's been setting the edge of our defense and has been solid over on the left side. Now we've moved him around, both left and right, but he's doing a good job of setting the edge our defense.
Q: With regards to Hankins, I think people presumed he was a capable run-stopper, but has he surpassed even what you guys had expected in terms of his pass-rushing?
A: I would say yeah. He may be surpassing what we felt. He showed flashes of being able to play each position on the defensive line in his college tape. We saw flashes of him being able to have power and rush the quarterback. We didn't know how that would transfer over. We thought he was capable. He wanted the opportunity to do that and so we've been giving him the opportunity. He's telling us that he can play first, second and third down, so I think Jonathan is playing to his capability right now.
Q: How much of Hankins' improvement as a rusher is technique? Or how much of it is playing with a high motor and playing until the whistle?
A: I think Coach (Robert) Nunn has done a good job with just developing his technique – how to use his hands, when to use his hands, vulnerable positions with the offensive lineman that he's getting them in, setting up different moves for him. I think that's just the maturation process.
Q: How do you look at JPP's sudden increase in sacks these past three weeks?
A: I think he's kind of taken it upon himself with the other defensive linemen to apply more pressure. We've always emphasized it. It's always been a stress point. I think he's just cranked it up a notch to try to do better and to do more.
Q: What's changed about the defense over the past three weeks? Are you calling anything differently?
A: If I told you that, I'd have to kill you.
Q: You had 19 sacks in the first 11 games of the season and now 22 in your last three games. Do you look at those numbers and marvel at what the difference is?
A: We've had to do some different things. Obviously we're happy with the numbers. We're happy with the pressure that we're getting from the defensive line and we're happy with some of the production that we're getting from Devon Kennard. He's helped a lot in that pass rush resurgence, so I think it's a combination of both.
Q: What are a couple of things that stand out about Kennard?
A: For a rookie, he's very mature. He's very serious about his work and his business. He has a very professional attitude every single day in the classroom and on the field about his work and how he can improve for a rookie. We always talk about the rookie wall or what have you. It doesn't seem to faze him. We're giving him more in the classroom and he's able to take it on the field. He loves to talk football and he loves to visualize what he's doing and how he's doing it. He takes the critiquing not personally, but he takes it as a learning experience and for a rookie, that's very mature.
Q: Has he ever asked you a question in the meeting room where you've had to pause because it was such an intelligent question?
A: Yes, because he's an intelligent man. He thinks about football. When you say, 'Did you pause?' You would like for them to be that way because they think through what you're asking them to do and he does that on the field sometimes. He'll come off after a particular session… We were critiquing him today and he said, 'I did it twice today. I'm not very good at that. I've got to learn how to do that.' You kind of step back and go 'wow.' He's not taking it personally. He's saying, 'help me with this. I need to improve.'
Q: What's his ideal position? He played all over the place at USC.
A: He was a defensive end at USC.
Q: Where do you see him ideally?
A: That's really a good question. It's kind of tough from that standpoint. He's a powerful man that can play at defensive end and rush and do that type of thing. He's also skillful enough to play a linebacker position. He's not as fleet-footed as you would like for him to be and so we put that in the term of a tweener. I think after the season and over the next training period, if he works on his burst and his explosion, that he can be an ideal linebacker. We call him a SAM linebacker. That would be his ideal position and he can also transition and put his hand on the dirt and rush, but I think linebacker would be his natural position.
Q: How would you describe JPP's play when he caught Robert Griffin III at the pylon?
A: Amazing. Absolutely amazing, because RG3 is a 4.4, 4.5 guy. JPP was on the right side of the defensive line. It just showed you his desire to want to make that football play and I think that's what he has done over the last three or four weeks. He's turned up his desire to make plays. That was really a game-changing play in my mind because he wasn't going to fumble that ball unless he had an obstacle in his way and I was in awe. I really was. It was like wow. The guy continues to amaze you.
Q: When the defense was going through early season struggles, how did you tune out the criticism around you to focus on the task at hand?
A: I have an obligation to the guys in that room. I have an obligation to the Giants. No matter what goes on, I have to be focused because if I'm not focused, they're not focused. We have an obligation to improve every day, to be professional in what we do and how we do it. That's easy for me. I have to tune that out and improve those guys because I have to look at those guys in that room every day and try to get them to improve every day. You just have to have mental focus.
Q: Over the past few games, have you as a coach and defensive unit kind of proven something?
A: I wouldn't say proven anything. All we're trying to do is one day at a time, improve each day. We're trying to win as many ball games as we can win. We're trying to be a better unit than we were the week before. We're just trying to improve.
Q: Over the last few games, have you seen the Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie you thought you were going to have?
A: He is a guy that I would say he flashes his talent at us. I would like to see a healthier DRC, but yes, he is. That's the guy we went after in free agency.
Special Teams Coordinator Tom Quinn
Q: Was that the first time you kicked off from the opponent's 35-yard line?
A: Yeah. We've kicked off from a bunch of different spots, but that's the first time from the 35.
Q: When did you know that's where the ball was going to be spotted?
A: We saw what happened at the end of the half. We knew we were going to kickoff from at least the 50, so we were preparing for that. And then we talked to the officials coming out and proposed that to them and we kind of laughed and we ended up doing it from the 35. We had both scenarios ready.
Q: Was it a no-brainer to try an onside kick once you were on the 35?
Q: You had nothing to lose right?
Q: How nice is it to have a kicker who is having a dependable season like this?
A: He's (Josh Brown) good with it. He's very good with the ball coming off his foot. He's got a lot of different shots, so it's always nice to be able to use those.
Q: Was that a picture perfect onside kick?
A: The picture would have been perfect if (Adrien) Robinson would have gone up at the high point and then had ended the play right there, but Chandler Fenner did a good job of scrambling after it.
Q: Did you call him a shot kicker?
A: Shot maker.
Q: Are there different styles of onside kicks?
A: With some guys, usually the ones with the soccer background, the ball just comes easily off the foot. They can do a lot of different things and you can ask them to do a lot of different things with the ball coming off their foot. Some guys are better than others with that.
Q: It looked at one point Josh Brown got banged up on kickoff?
A: Yeah, he's fine.
Q: How tough is he? He looks like he's as big as some of the linebackers.
A: I don't know if he's as big as one of the linebackers, but he is tough.
Q: It used to be that you would want to kick the ball as far as you could. Now it seems like kickers want to entice the returner to come out a little bit more often.
A: I don't think we're enticing them. I think it's weather. When it gets colder, the ball isn't going to travel as far. The wind and then just the length of the year and the number of kicks that they have accumulated to this point and so we try to keep a watch on that so we don't over-kick them and keep their leg fresh. But we're trying to kick it as far and as deep as we can.
Q: What is the threshold for kicking? Is there a number or how he feels?
A: How he feels, but it's the type of thing if he's sore, then it's too late, so you try and head it off ahead of time and we historically have not over-kicked guys. We've been pretty good with that throughout the years.
Q: What was the penalty with Odell Beckham Jr. and the fair catch? Did he not clearly signal the fair catch?
A: Yeah. You've got to get it clearly above the shoulder and I guess he didn't really… I can't really see it on tape, so that's just a learning point for him as well as finishing the game and fielding the ball. I told him he can catch the ball with one hand, you can do all these different things, but let's catch that with two hands and not have a muff.
Q: He lost his concentration on that?
A: Yeah. The ball started to fade away from him. He wasn't in good position and he should have just gone away from it in that situation.
Q: What have you seen from Corey Washington as a gunner?
A: Probably the best thing he does is block. He can track guys well and he plays with some good size and strength. We're just working him in with where we see fit.
Q: Are there any areas where you would like to see him improve?
A: It's mostly the return game where he shines, but he's good on kickoff. We haven't had much reps with him as a gunner, but he's working at it each week.