Broncos QB Peyton Manning
Q: What is it like for you knowing that Eli is on the other side of the field?
A: There's two different parts to it. Certainly, this is game two in the regular season. It's an important game for both teams. It's our first road game. It's the Giants' first home game, and for all of those reasons, it's an important game. For Eli and myself both being the quarterbacks, I take a moment to appreciate the unique situation. I've played against him twice before. I try to do the same thing and realize that it is a unique situation. The past two times that I've played against the Giants, for whatever reason, Eli and I are kind of on the same yard-line singing the national anthem. I just take a moment and realize that it is pretty unique and it is my brother over there and so I'm grateful for the opportunity because it is special for that reason. But once that ball is kicked off and all week long and the preparation, you're getting ready to play a good team on the road.
Q: Can you compare the emotions of playing against your brother versus going against Tom Brady?
A: The emphasis all week and the preparation… You're preparing for an excellent team, a team that knows how to win, a team that's good at home, a team that has a lot of pride coming off of a road division loss. Those guys are going to be ready to play. So that's where the focus is. I can't really compare it to anything else. Eli is my brother. We're very close. We pull for each other and then obviously on this particular Sunday we want both of our teams to win. It's not really like any other because he is your brother.
Q: Do you think Eli gets the recognition he deserves for the career he's having?
A: I do.
Q: In what ways do you think Eli is better than you on the football field?
A: I don't have a good answer for you on that. I know people like to make comparisons, but that's not something that he or I do.
Q: Are you guys competitive with each other?
A: We pull for each other. We play the same sport. We have the same job. So we certainly can relate to a lot of the same things that quarterbacks go through. We worked out together this offseason a couple of times, which is always fun. We try to help each other in the offseason. It's something like a tip here with throwing tips. I pull for Eli and I know he pulls for me as well.
Q: How about off the football field? Is there a competitive edge between the two of you?
A: I don't think so. Eli and I end up being partners a lot in golf, to tell you the truth. We're close. It's not really how it's set up with he and I.
Q: Would you trade some of the records that you have for the second Super Bowl ring that he has?
A: Every single year I try to do whatever I can to help my team win. Anything that comes along with that, so be it. All I was trying to do the other night was help my team win the game, whether you throw zero touchdowns or throw seven touchdowns. It's not important as long as you win the game. The goal this year is to try to win every game and try to give yourself a position to the end. That's the same thing every single year. You're trying to help your team win and certainly the goal is to try to win a championship.
Q: How was Eli supportive when you were going through your rehab?
A: Like all members in my family, they were all very supportive. It's nice to have that support when you're going through something different… kind of an unknown injury with not a real set timetable. Eli was encouraging and supportive that whole time. I certainly appreciated it.
Q: Wat has Eli impressed you with the most during his career?
A: Eli is a great player. He's a consistent player. I think he's gotten better every year. I've always thought that's the goal for a brand new player is to try to be a better player each year than the year you were before. He's made things happen with different players, different receivers and different running backs. He's been very flexible to adjust to the different players that he's played with. But his consistency as a player has been awfully impressive.
Q: After a week when you've thrown for seven touchdowns, is it tough for you guys to improve?
A: No. It's all about just trying to get ready for the Giants. I haven't been asked one question about the Giants defense. That's where the focus is for me as a quarterback and for our offense. It's a good defense. They were put in some tough spots due to some turnovers against Dallas, but they were outstanding last year in creating turnovers, outstanding in the red zone and so those are things that they're very capable of and that's where our focus is, is getting ready to play a tough defense on the road. At the same time you do know because of their explosive offense, they're capable of scoring some points, so you better be on top of your game from an offensive standpoint.
Q: How do you look at their defensive line?
A: Yeah. It's an outstanding bunch. There's good depth there with physical guys. They're stout up front. They can be tough against the run, but like you said, all of them can rush the passer and there's no question it's going to be a tough test for our guys up front.
Coach John FoxQ: How are you health-wise?
A: Well, I'm about 30 pounds lighter than the last time you saw me, so that part's good.
Q: So you haven't fallen down the stairs?
A: I changed my eating habits, or maybe it's the altitude. I'm not sure.
Q: How's your team's health?
A: We shaped up. One game into it, we're out of the blocks and that's about all we are right now. I know we're coming back to play a very well coached, very good Giants football team.
Q: John, after your quarterback throws for seven touchdowns in the first game of the year, in team meetings, how do you pick him apart a little bit? He's not the kind of guy who is going to rest on anything he does, but do you need to really search to find some things to improve on?
A: Somebody asked me that here, earlier in the week. You look at tape, you go into meetings, you look at things that we could have done a lot better. Whether it's what to do, or even the technique in which you do it. We look at it, I'm not sure about any stats, because the only important stat is winning. We look at it like we do have room for improvement and I think just like the other 31 teams in the league after week one.
Q: John, do you have an appreciation for the Manning brothers going up against each other, even though the game is about more than that?
A: Yeah, just because it doesn't happen often, the sibling thing. We just lived it through the Super Bowl, with the coaches. It just doesn't happen very often. I understand it, but I think that both sides understand that there's 11 guys out there at once and I guess that's kind of noise on the outside. I understand it.
Q: If you were a fan, would you have an appreciation towards it in terms of who comes out on top?
A: Well, I have appreciation for it because I have such respect for the family, both guys in the league. I think they're both highly competitive guys at quite arguably what may be the hardest position to play in professional sports.
Q: How much better is Peyton now, even though you don't have the same offensive coordinator? A year in, is he better than he was last year?
A: When you compare it to this time a year ago, I don't think it's a question. I try to measure more with how we ended the season versus where we started last season. He's a guy who did it one way for 14 years in one city and came to Denver, had a new city, had new teammates, new coaches, didn't play the year before. Coming off of a bit of an unusual type of injury that I don't think anybody totally understood. I think it's a tribute to him how far he's come and all of the work he's put in getting where he is today.
Q: Tom Coughlin said David Wilson is a marked man because of the fumbles. Have you sat down with your team and told them to go after the ball while he's carrying it?
A: First and foremost, he's an explosive guy. We have a little bit of an issue with one of our backs early in the season. The way I look at it is, anyone with the ball is a marked man because that's what everybody's trying to get, that ball. I don't think any different this week than last week or the next eight weeks.
Q: How disappointed are you in Von Miller?
A: Around here we talk about it, there's no "i" in team but there is an "i" in win and that's individual responsibility. We ask that of all our people, and sometimes you fall short of that. Those things happen. There are not too many pleasant people walking around. I'd say yes, disappointed, but we've not given up by any stretch.
*Q: When you look at Eli from your defensive game plan, what would you say is the most dangerous aspect of him? *
A: Number one, it's not just the quarterback. It's the whole offense. They're very talented and they can line up in certain groups and pound it at you, or they can line up in another group and throw it all over the block at a very successful rate. I think their ability to have both those styles was a big reason why they've been successful and have two world championships here of late. Their quarterback is very talented and when they do throw the ball, he's very effective.