Head Coach Joe Judge
Q: What's the plan for today with the snow? Are you guys going to the stadium or indoors or what?
A: No, we'll be out on field three. They've plowed out the snow for us. It looks like there's still a little bit of residue out there. We'll be out there playing in the snow today.
Q: We saw (Wide Receiver) Kadarius (Toney) practiced a little on Wednesday, didn't go yesterday. What's his status?
A: Yesterday he couldn't go through practice with us and he remained with the trainers. The plan today is to kind of move him around early in practice and see where that goes. If we think he has a chance of getting more in team drills, which he should have about a good half hour or so before we get to that, we can get him implanted and see if we can give him a chance to play. No decision has been made at this point, but we'll look and see where he is today.
Q: So, he hurt his shoulder in the game. Is that going to require something in the offseason surgery-wise or anything like that?
A: That's more of a question for the trainers right now. Obviously, we're looking to get him ready for the game. In terms of what will have to be corrected in the offseason if something was long-term, that's really more of a question for (Senior Vice President of Medical Services/Head Athletic Trainer) Ronnie Barnes.
Q: Obviously, this isn't related to the last five games when we all know you've had some personnel limitations. More big-picture offense, I remember you saying you wanted to be a flexible, versatile offense, game by game you could do different things. Moving forward, does this offense need more things it can hang its hat on? Like, every game we know we're going to be able to do this, X, Y, Z well.
A: I'd say that's a pretty general statement. The answer to that would be yes in terms of just having staples within your offense of staple runs, staple pass plays, staple themes of how you want to play. That being said, those same staples have to be flexible in terms of how you have to play each game individually. I'm a firm believer in versatility because to me you prepare for the opponent and you have to make sure that whatever you do you can take away their strengths and expose their weaknesses. Based on the circumstance and situation in different game plans, that may require a different way of attacking. You want to always be able to be a balanced team, talking about being a balanced team of running or passing when you have to and when they know you have to do it. That's the way you want to play. It's not simply about 50-50 run-pass relationship. You want to be a balanced team. If we're going to run the ball, run the ball downhill. That's an aspect of this program that we have to have. That's just he way we've got to play. It's the New York Giants, it's got to be a physical running team. In terms of throwing the ball, you want to be an accurate, efficient team and it really flows through the quarterback and allows your players to make plays in space and prioritizes getting the ball in the hands of the playmakers. The quarterback's job is to facilitate. It's also his job at the line of scrummage to be able to make adjustments or checks within the system, as he's prepared to do. I saw (Quarterback) Daniel (Jones) make a lot of improvement at that throughout the last year and a half up until when he got hurt. That's something that was getting better for us as an offense and that he was able to make some productive plays this year. That being said, there definitely have to be some things to hang the hat on as far as staples, but you also have to have the flexibility per game plan to play however you have to play that week.
Q: We've heard a couple of your defensive players say, 'We know we're a defense-first team. We have to win low-scoring games.' Is that your philosophy or is that what your team is suited to? You have a better defense than you have offense, so you try to win low-scoring games. Would it be different if maybe you had different offensive personnel and you could be a high-scoring team, if that makes sense?
A: My belief is to play complementary football. That's my belief, to have three phases that complement each other. Some games will be high-scoring, some games are going to be low-scoring, and that just happens within the flow of a season. You've got 17 games in the regular season, they're not all going to be the same. There are always different challenges and different things you have to deal with each week. My answer to that would be my vision is to be a complementary football team, to play good in all three phases and to utilize the strengths of each phase to complement the other and take advantage of field position created by the kicking game on both offense and defense and be able to capitalize on the field position sustained by the defense to get it back for the offense.
Q: Just to circle back to Kadarius, a more big-picture question – how much of a challenge was it this season to really have a chance to develop him and coach him up the way you would've wanted when he's battling all these injuries and stuff like that? Obviously, with rookies you want to spend as much time with them as you can, but he was pretty banged up this year.
A: With rookies, obviously every snap you get is invaluable. When time is eliminated due to injuries, that's definitely a challenge. The reality is, whether it was KT, A-Rob (Cornerback Aaron Robinson) or (Linebacker) Elerson Smith, these are three guys that lost a significant amount of time through training camp and different points this year. I've seen improvement by all three of these guys throughout the year. Actually, I just talked to Elerson a little while ago and was telling him he had missed a lot of ball through opting out of his senior year, through not having a true training camp, through being on PUP to start the season, but the important thing was we saw improvement every game going forward, and there are things he has to work on. The invaluable thing he can take is the experience, but you have to understand there are a lot of reps these guys have missed. I think A-Rob's another guy who has improved a lot throughout this year. He's got a great skill set and demeanor. He's a long way from where he's going to be as a player. He's going to be a good player in this league and that's the same with KT. There are a lot of things he missed, the opportunity this year with injuries. I think all three are intelligent players, guys who go out there with the right demeanor, but they've got to gain more experience and that's true for any rookie in this league and especially guys who have dealt with injuries early in their career.
Q: We saw Elerson Smith went on IR the other day. How serious is that? We see it's a neck injury. What do you make of his rookie year?
A: He obviously missed a lot of time. I saw a lot of improvement along the way. You can't make up for the lost snaps right away, but over time he's got to keep developing. The important thing for these rookies going from year one to year two is really make a physical jump and their bodies have to continue to change and adapt to the demands of the league. From year two to year three, the important jump is really production-based. Going back to Elerson, obviously he wouldn't be able to play this week, that's why he went on IR, to clear available spaces if we need them for different reasons. As far as a long-term concern, from everything we've been told by the medical team and the trainers, this would not be a long-term concern at all, but it would limit him both this week and probably next week if we were playing as well at least.
Q: With Daniel, he's still on IR, obviously. Do you keep on getting updates about any progress he's making? The fact that he hasn't been here the last five games, does it almost make you appreciate even more what he can do for your team considering what's happened to the offense without him?
A: I appreciate all of our players who come to work every day and put it on the line, first off. And I didn't need to lose Daniel to appreciate him. So, the answer is yes, I do appreciate him, but not because of something I haven't had with Daniel. I appreciate him more for what he does every day in the building of how he comes to work and puts the team first. In terms of the medical question to that, the answer is yes, I do get updates on where he's at and then, as I said yesterday in the press conference with you guys on the patio, the updates of the frequency of imaging and things of that nature, those updates decrease a little bit. In terms of the amount and quantity and frequency of those images, they obviously decrease once you're removed from playing status and put on IR. We do talk about our players all the time. I wouldn't say it's a daily update on Daniel at this point. We do talk at least once a week about how's he doing. I talk to Daniel on a regular basis about how he's feeling. Obviously, this is a guy who wants to be out there with the team. This is a guy that really wants to be out there and breaking the huddle himself, but he's here supporting his teammates when he can't do that.
Q: Has this been an especially tumultuous week for you? Do you feel any particular pressure going into this game?
A: No. My focus is on playing Washington, that's it. We talk all the time about ignoring the noise. Whatever is going on outside this building, a lot of times I have no idea about. I tell you all the time, (Senior Vice President of Communications) Pat Hanlon and a couple other people close to me kind of keep me up to speed on what's going on outside of this building, more so that I know how things may be affecting our players. In terms of this week in itself, no. I'm concerned about getting our players ready to go. We've had great energy at practice. We get an opportunity to go out there today. One more practice as a team. We get to play in the snow and have some fun. We're going to go out there and embrace this opportunity, not look back and say we wish we had done it differently.
Wide Receiver Kenny Golladay
Q: How much of a 'what if' do you leave this season with knowing how little time you, (Running Back) Saquon (Barkley), Shep (Wide Receiver Sterling Shepard), (Wide Receiver Kadarius) Toney and (Tight End Evan) Engram – the three top receivers, running back and tight end – were on the field together? It was hardly ever. Does that leave you with a 'what if'?
A: Yeah, of course. I came into the season saying that the expectations were high. The 'what ifs,' that's always valid, pretty much. That's all you can really say is 'what if.'
Q: You were in Detroit, you had some injuries there. Are the Giants any more cautious with injuries? Are they more hesitant, the trainers, doctors here to put you out if you're banged up than in Detroit? Or is it pretty standard across the league? I'm just curious if maybe they're a little wearier of reinjuries and that's why guys have a harder time getting on the field sooner.
A: I would just say – I've only been on two teams – I would just say it's standard.
Q: If they came to you this offseason and said, 'Hey, we know the offense was broken. What do you think we need to do to make sure it's fixed next year,' where would you start?
A: First off, I'm keeping that in-house. That's definitely something I would talk to (Head) Coach (Joe Judge) about and that would be between me and him.
Q: Do you think that's something that they would take your input on?
A: As of right now, we're just worried about Washington. When we get into the offseason, we'll talk about the offseason when it arrives.
Q: When you do some self-scouting and reflecting on your season, what do you think was the biggest issue and the biggest reason why you weren't able to find the end zone this year?
A: A lot goes into it – different personnel, as far as who's playing and who's not playing, including myself. Even in the personnel as far as coaching-wise. A lot goes into it. A lot goes into it to make a football team go.
Q: Where is your emotion at? Obviously, I don't think this is the type of year that you signed up for, not scoring a touchdown, going 4-12. Your first year here, where's your head at?
A: To be honest, me just looking back, I would just say just not good enough on my part. Not saying I was playing terrible or anything, but I expect more. Yeah, just not good enough.
Q: Your rookie year you missed a bunch of games and Kadarius has kind of gone through that too as a rookie. What advice can you give to him to help him bounce back from that? Obviously, rookie year is a big year for development and things like that, and he kind of missed out on a lot of that.
A: To be honest, I'm not even sure how many games he missed. I know as far as me, I missed early on in the year in my rookie year just with a hamstring. I want to say I missed about five games and I was able to finish the season out strong. He's been dealing with a lot. I was a third-rounder, he was a first-rounder, so he already had high expectations. I would just say stay the course. Stay the course. You're going to have an offseason this year – you know, last year he didn't really have an offseason. You're going from training for the Combine straight into rookie minicamp and that whole thing. Just focus on trying to learn his body more and just stay the course.
Q: (Wide Receivers Coach) Tyke (Tolbert) was saying the other day that maybe your open isn't the same as everybody else's open because you're such a high-point catch radius guy more so than a separation guy. I'm curious if you think the more time that you have with the same quarterback – (Quarterback) Daniel (Jones) in theory – that will change, guys will get more comfortable with you, throwing to you and realizing what your definition of open is? You obviously played with the same quarterback your whole time in Detroit and got more comfortable than you would have this year.
A: That's something else I kind of said early on, pretty much gaining his trust. If I'm not out there on the field or he's not out there on the field, there's only so much trust you can really get without him actually trying to force the ball to me. It's going to make him look bad. We don't have that same type of chemistry and him knowing and the coaches knowing that I would go up and make that play. It's easy to look and say, 'Yeah, he made a lot of those catches in Detroit,' but if I haven't made not one here then that's not a good play and you shouldn't do it.
Tight End Evan Engram
Q: Obviously, this could be your last game as a Giant. Is that something you've thought about recently and do you want to be back here, or do you maybe feel a change of scenery might be beneficial?
A: Honestly, I'm still where my feet are. We're preparing to try to go win this last game. Obviously, free agency and stuff, all that stuff is out of my hands and out of my control. I'm definitely going to savor the moment and try to go out and have fun with my team and bring a win for our last one.
Q: I don't know how much you pay attention to other sports, but this summer a couple of Mets gave the thumbs down sign to fans. Last night, Julius Randle of the Knicks gave the thumbs down sign to fans. As hard a time as fans have given you, you've never given in. You've never reacted. You've never fought back. You've never done anything to antagonize. Why?
A: I just don't feel it's my place. My job is to go out and perform and play well and play good for my team and to do whatever I can to win, and the fans' job is to support and be there, tell the truth and be honest – which this fan base is very much that. I never took it personal. It's just who I am. I just think I answer adversity or people doubting me and people have disrespected me my whole life and my whole career. I think this place is a place where you play well, they're going to support you and they're going to ride for you and they're going to fight for you. You play bad and you're not living up to expectations, they're going to let you know. They're going to hold you accountable. I learned that very fast coming into this league and coming to this team. I love our fan base no matter what. That's just how I am. That's how I operate. I just go out there and just be me in my own little world.
Q: I've got to change gears for you there. I'm wondering, this goes for this year but really the last three, four years. Do you leave the season with a what if of like how very few times you, Shep (Wide Receiver Sterling Shepard), (Wide Receiver) Kenny (Golladay), (Running Back) Saquon (Barkley) – the top tight end, running back and top three receivers were on the field together this year, last year. Do you ever wonder like, 'wow, what if? We'd be a heck of an on-paper fantasy football offense'?
A: I never really live in that what-if hypothetical world. Obviously, it's been unfortunate with some of the injuries and some of the hands we've been dealt, but that's just the nature of this game. Like I said, it's kind of what we've been dealt with and it's unfortunate, but not a lot of what-ifs, not a lot of hypotheticals. Obviously, we wish we all could've been healthy for every single game, but that's just not reality and not what happened. I don't really live in that world or have those thoughts.
Q: Saquon and (Defensive Back) Logan (Ryan) were saying that the Giants take extraordinary precautions, like they won't put you on the field if you're even a little banged up. Do you feel that way as somebody who's been injured a lot? Do you feel like they're extra cautious and do you appreciate that or do you wish they let you play a little more through things?
A: I'm not going to get into all that. I know our training staff is one of the best in the league and through my experiences, they've taken great care of me and helped me through a lot. Each case is different, but I can't really get into detail about that.
Q: A couple things, how difficult has it been for you I guess dealing with not having winning seasons here and never being to the playoffs? The second thing is how would you evaluate your personal play this season?
A: It's been a tough ride. Definitely want to have success here and want to win here. Honestly, my goal was to try to be perfect and obviously that didn't happen. It's tough, but I definitely don't take it for granted my experiences here without learning throughout all the struggles and even the good times we've had here, I've learned a lot. No matter what, I'm thankful. I think my play this year I just wanted to be as consistent as I could be, and be available, and be healthy and make the plays when my name is called. That film will be judged by my coaches and evaluators. I know myself, I've given everything I've had this year and we've got one more ride on Sunday and I'm looking forward to that.
Cornerback James Bradberry
Q: How was practice today? I ask you that because you're one of the only guys who's been at every practice so far this season. Were you aware of that streak, and what does that mean to you?
A: Yeah, somebody showed me the post about it yesterday. I mean, I like to think that I'm a durable player. I like to show up week-in and week-out and be there for the team. I'm just glad I was able to be a full participant in all of our practices. That's tough in the NFL.
Q: What was today's practice like? It was obviously the last full practice for this team?
A: It was typical of any other Friday we've had. We made sure that we got all of our work in and went over the plays that we needed to see. Of course, guys had a little fun with the snow afterwards – diving in there, throwing snowballs around – but it was a typical Friday as far as practice.
Q: What makes (Washington Wide Receiver) Terry McLaurin such a tough receiver?
A: I think his speed and explosiveness is what makes him a very tough receiver. You add in the fact that he's able to catch the ball well wherever the quarterback throws it. You add that with speed and explosiveness, and you've pretty much got an elite receiver.
Q: When you guys played him last time, he had like 11 catches for 107 yards. That doesn't seem like big numbers. Is that acceptable?
A: That's definitely not acceptable. You never want to have a receiver over 100 yards when you're facing them. Yeah, that wasn't acceptable on our behalf.
Q: I figured that 10 yards a pop isn't bad in the sense that if he's so explosive.
A: When you have a lot of targets, of course, your opportunity to create more yards, it goes up. 10 yards a pop – I mean it isn't bad. But to have 100 yards, you never want a receiver to have that. So just looking at that, we don't want that to happen again. Of course, we limited explosive passes, but he had too many catches.
View rare photos of the all-time series between the New York Giants and the Washington Football Team.