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Quotes: DC Wink Martindale, OC Mike Kafka, STC Thomas McGaughey, RB Saquon Barkley, LB Bobby Okereke

Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale

Well, that was a tough one obviously last week. I thought we started pretty well and then we got to find a way to keep it going. In the second quarter we got some guys banged up and that caught up to us and then the avalanche started to happen, so all credit to Dallas and their game plan. We've hit the reset button, and we are getting ready to go play a better Washington team than we played 24, 25 days ago, how many days ago it's been. It's going to be a tough challenge for us. I think (Commanders quarterback) Sam's (Howell) playing a lot better. He's getting rid of the ball quicker. I think that he's starting to find the answers that (Commanders offensive coordinator) Eric (Bieniemy) has in his offense. I told the defense it's equating to the same thing as how (inside linebacker) Bobby's (Okereke) improved and progressed as the MIKE linebacker in our defense. I think Sam Howell's done the same at quarterback for Washington, so with that I'll open it up to questions.

Q: Do you have any concerns about Bobby's injury? He's been on the field for 100% of the snaps.

A: I mean, yeah, anytime anybody gets banged up, I've got concerns for them, but we'll see where he's at and I think Dabs (Head Coach Brian Daboll) will answer all those questions about the injuries.

Q: If you had to replace him though, what goes into that? Obviously, he's a key piece to your defense. Does (inside linebacker) Micah (McFadden) kind of step more into that role?

A: Yeah, I believe it would be Micah. We'd sit down and talk about it. (Inside linebacker Darrian) Beavs (Beavers) is really starting to come back from a knee injury and looking well, doing nice things in practice, so I think we would have to wait and see what we could do roster wise and everything else with (Senior Vice President and General Manager) Joe (Schoen) and Dabs and go from there, but you know Micah has been playing well. Got a little beat up in the Dallas game, but I think that's what we would have to do.

Q: Can you talk about Micah's development? Sometimes when a season is not going great, it's like is a guy really developing or he is just standing out among other guys? It looks like he might be actually really developing.

A: No and I think you're right. I think he has developed and credit to him, the hard work he's put in, the hard work he put in the offseason. He's got more confidence and I think (inside linebacker) Bobby (Okereke) has a lot to do with Micah's development as well. Egs (inside linebackers coach John Egoruwu) has done a great job with all those guys in that room but

Micah, he's done a nice job of taking the opportunity and running with it. And you know, he'd be the first to tell you he still has things he wants to work on and get better at as well and that's one of the reasons why he's improving.

Q: How unique is giving up 640 yards in your career?

A: (Shivers) No, it was tough. It doesn't happen very often, or you wouldn't have this job very long so, you know, it was a tough game. It was really a tough game, but like I said I give Dallas credit. It was one of those games that you make a call, and you feel real good about it until the ball is snapped and then you are like, 'Oh, no.' You know? It was a tough one for all of us.

Q: Do you think your players kind of got dispirited as the game went along given the scoreboard?

A: I don't know. I still think those guys fight. I think they've got too much respect for the game and like I said, you know we had some guys, (outside linebacker) Kayvon (Thibodeaux) and Tae (cornerback Deonte Banks) and some guys went down there at halftime, but they all fought. I think that's one of the many things that I love about them is that they are fighters, and they are going to fight.

Q: With what you just said, you kind of understand why it happened, obviously, but do you then challenge the group this week? Or do you step back and take a different kind of tone with your defensive players?

A: No, I think that you've got to stay consistent, and you do challenge them, you challenge them every week and the challenge is Washington's offense and this league, there is no easy outs, you know what I mean? They are going to step on your throat if they think you're down. And you do the same thing defensively if you are doing that to an offense. I think the challenge is we have to get ready for Washington and the players see how much they've improved as well, offensively. The way the quarterback's been playing and the receivers are stepping up their game and (Commanders tight end) Logan (Thomas) is his security blanket in third-down and red zone and things like that, so it's going to be a great challenge for us.

Q: With (cornerback) Adoree' (Jackson) and D (Deonte Banks) and (cornerback) Cor'Dale (Flott) all a little dinged, do you have to adjust much what you are doing? Or do you just say next man up, do the same thing?

A: No, I think you have to adjust, I really do. It's one of those things like in the Dallas game when the ball is thrown down the field so far, I know there is some broadcasters that think you are in man coverage all the time and we were in three deep zones, we were in two deep, we tried every coverage but when the ball is thrown that far down the field, it ends up being a one on one situation and sometimes you make the play and sometimes they make the play. So, that's the challenge that you have.

Q: Did you play more zone as the game went along there? Is that what you are saying?

A: Tried to. Tried to. Quite honestly, it's like we didn't have our fastball, our curveball or our change up. They just hit it out of the park whatever we threw at them, it was just one of those games. Like I said, I give credit to Dallas.

Q: The broadcast showed you and Daboll in an extended conversation at the end of the second quarter and then (FOX Sports Reporter Tom) Rinaldi pointed that after halftime it was continuing.

A: Dabs said something to me after the game about that and he and I talk all the time, but in those two situations I talked to him about what happened because one thing about our defense, we don't give up a whole lot of big passing plays and I credit the secondary to that and Rome (defensive backs coach Jerome Henderson) and we gave up some big plays in the passing game, which you all saw. So, I told him what happened on the coverages. That was it right before half. And then coming back out, he had just got done at that time talking to the trainers and we were talking about who wasn't coming back for the third quarter during that time and that turned into whatever it turned into but there was nothing to it.

Q: You've played a couple games without (defensive lineman) Leo(nard Williams) now, what have you seen from how the defensive line has adjusted?

A: I think that Nacho (defensive lineman Rakeem Nuñez-Roches) and (defensive lineman) A'Shawn (Robinson) have really stepped up and I think (defensive lineman) D.J. Davidson, the last three weeks has had some of the best practices since he's been here. He's on the rise, he's on the come (up) as well. A'Shawn, like the last three weeks, has done some nice things for us and Nacho has as well. When you have a game like that, nobody played well. Nobody. We didn't coach well, we didn't play well, we didn't – whatever you want to put on it, put on it. But there is no hiding from that. Like I said, I give Dallas a lot of credit.

Q: You haven't been in this spot a lot in your career, is there a point at which you want to give more reps to young guys, guys who aren't playing as much, to see them and evaluate them or is it always play the best player?

A: I mean, that's the way it is with my philosophy unless somebody comes to me and says they want to see this guy and play this guy, obviously that's what we'll do, but you're here to win, every day. Offseason, during the season, everything else, so we are playing these games to win them and play well.

Q: Did you feel like you lost more than just the football stuff with Leo, and have you been able to get that back?

A: I think we've got great leaders in that room; you know, like I said, we miss Leo. We miss the guy, his personality. But no, I think there is great leadership, starting with Dre (defensive line coach Andre Patterson) in that d-line room and (defensive lineman) Dex(ter Lawrence II) being number one and Nacho and A'Shawn, they've done a great job as far as leading and leading within the entire defense as well. So, like I said, I miss the guy just cause you miss Leo, but I don't think we lost anything leadership wise that way.

Offensive Coordinator: Mike Kafka

Q: Where have you seen growth from (quarterback) Tommy (DeVito)?

A: Each day. I think each day he comes in to work the right way. In the meeting room, in the classroom, in the install on the field. He's growing every day, he's learning. I think he's taken steps in the right direction as far as his footwork, the huddle command, going through his progressions, even the protection game, so there are a bunch of elements of his game that he's improving each day.

Q: Is there any – you know the conundrum of running backs, they only have so many carries in their career. Is there any thoughts of limiting (running back) Saquon's (Barkley) workload down the stretch here so that he's fresher for later – next season or whenever games are more meaningful?

A: I'd say our training staff, they do a great job of taking care of those guys throughout the week so that they're ready to go on Sunday so they can go and give maximal effort.

Q: Do you have any long term – long term thinking doesn't go into your short-term plan?

A: I think we're just mostly focused on today and how that works. I know the guys are getting their prehab and trying to get their bodies right for this week.

Q: When you evaluate guys coming out of college or things like that do you take into consideration their workload to know what their career longevity could look like?

A: I think there's – short answer, yes. You look at that, you see how many touches they've had and that kind of stuff. I think every player is a little bit different. Some guys can take that, some guys you've got to manage. It's on a player-to-player basis.

Q: Is there a way to tell? With all the numbers that you guys have on the GPS tracking, is there a way to see like, 'this guy might be on the decline,' because this number dropped, or this specific number dropped?

A: That would be probably a little bit better question for the sports science guys, but I do know in talking with them and in the conversations we have, I know with our own players as we're managing through training camp or even in season right now, we're looking through their workload, what their GPS numbers are and that's all kind of built into the science of how we script practice and how we go through each week.

Q: Everybody gets second guessed at some point. I mean, on the play that most people talk about in that game, the 4th-and-2, what was the reasoning behind the call and why did it go wrong?

A: You know, I think that call, it was one of those plays on fourth down, you want to try to give you as much flexibility you can. Whether it's a run or a pass so it was kind of one of those RPO categories, we just didn't get it done.

Q: There's been a lot of young rookie quarterbacks playing this year. What does that mean for the league?

A: I'd say it's always good to have young players in. I think it's a youthful league, I think guys are younger, but I don't think at the expense of guys getting hurt or knocked out. You never want to see players get hurt. But I think it's just a testament to the players and to the coaches that they're getting those guys ready to go and stepping up and playing meaningful games.

Q: When you were in the league it was still the 'you draft a rookie, he sits for a year or two, then he plays.' Now, it's you draft him and play him right away. Have you seen from when you were a player to now the game planning and the playbooks adjust to the point to where maybe it's more easily digestible for a younger guy?

A: Yeah, I'd say every offense is a little bit different with that. Whether their terminology, I know how we do it here. We try to limit those words so guys can just play fast, get in and out of the huddle, get set, evaluate the defense, so from that standpoint, you're seeing that. You're seeing that trend kind of throughout high school, college and even into the pros.

Q: Have you contemplated coming down to the field? I know you like being up top, but have you thought about making a change and helping down below, I guess?

A: Yeah, I like being up top and really, it's to the preference of the head coach where he wants me, and I fully support that.

Q: So, he wants you up there? He was –

A: Yeah, I mean, it was a combination. We both talked about it, we both agreed it's probably the best thing to do just to get the space. Have some quietness down there when things are going crazy, so I think it's fine and I like it up there.

Q: Understanding that in the heat of the moment, you'd want players, I'd assume, to be frustrated and to want to do more or to do better. But during this week, how have you seen the offensive guys, maybe particularly the wide receivers, acclimate to – they have a new quarterback, it may be not going as well as they want but the frustration may or may not be helpful.

A: I think it's about just getting on the same page with the quarterback, working with him and then communicating and understanding how he sees certain looks, how he sees certain routes and just getting on the same page. That's just like any week, really, so it's just that process that we're going through.

Q: Why did you guys suddenly throw the ball a ton to (wide receiver Sterling Shepard) Shep on the last drive? It seemed like you were really making a point to try and get him the ball.

A: Gave Shep a couple opportunities at the end and he capitalized on one. Other than that, we were just rolling receivers.

Q: How hard is it to evaluate your receivers this year with the offensive line problems earlier in the season and now obviously playing your third quarterback?

A: I think I talk about this every week, and I really just believe it, offense is an 11-man operation so it's never just one person, never just one group, so we all have to be firing and executing at the same level.

Q: Are you excited about possibly having the same starting line for two weeks in a row?

A: Yeah, it's always good to have some comradery in there and have the guy's kind of communicating and you can see it throughout the week, you can see it in the walkthroughs and throughout practice as well.

Q: You said you were up top; you were watching. I know we're up top watching. Was it a level of surprise for you when either you were told or saw (tackle) Andrew (Thomas) getting ready to come back into the game considering how he left and what had happened on the field? And what does it speak about him to fight back?

A: He's a tough kid and absolutely, you see him go down like that and just walking off the field. It's never a good thing when you see a guy hurt like that, so it was great to have him back and great to get him back in the lineup and obviously, I think the o-line kind of feeds off that too.

Special Teams Coordinator Thomas McGaughey

Q: What have you seen from (kicker) Randy (Bullock) so far?

A: Randy's been Randy. He's done a good job. Randy's a veteran kicker. He's been around for a long time. He's played a lot of games. He's been a pro. He's come out, he's done a good job. We're just working through the process of the whole process, the new mechanics of everything. So, been good.

Q: On the flip side of that, what have you seen from (kicker) Cade (York) and that decision to go with Randy?

A: Cade's very, very, very talented. Very young, talented kicker. Cade's working through some things with his swing, but he's getting better. He has a very strong leg, very talented and he has a lot of upside, for sure.

Q: How is that going to work again this week?

A: Same as last week. They're going to kick again. They'll kick again today, they'll kick tomorrow, and we'll make a decision this weekend.

Q: When you say working through things, what would it take for you to be confident in him being ready for games? Is it a technique thing, I think you said last week?

A: It's just something that he's working through. It's some technical stuff. But again, I mean, it's one of those deals where he's a young kicker in this league, and these young kickers all go through the same process. They're all trying to figure out who they are, different stadiums… Cade was at LSU, I coached at LSU for three years, and there's not a lot of wind down there. In the SEC, you don't see the same type of wind patterns and the weather that you see up here. So, he made some adjustments in Cleveland, and I think now he's trying to work back through some things, but he's getting better.

Q: Do you have to make a more permanent decision on this coming up after three weeks?

A: Yeah, we'll figure it out.

Q: How close do you think you are on kick returns to breaking one? It seems like you've had some opportunities and it's getting closer here.

A: I was telling the guys today we're getting better and better on that unit. (Wide receiver) Parris (Campbell) has been a big help to us coming back there. Obviously, he provides a lot of speed and he's a good, strong runner. We're getting closer and closer. (Commanders kicker) Joey Slye has 44 touchbacks on 44 kickoffs. So I don't know how many opportunities we'll get this week, but we're getting closer.

Q: What do you think of that? Obviously, there's the new rule. Are we just heading towards that, or is it just team by team, or is there a trend there?

A: It's philosophical. You look at a team like Washington, for example, they kick everything out. You look at teams like Detroit, New England, some of these other teams, and they pop everything up, try and force the kick. So, it's all philosophical from organization to organization and game by game.

Q: Where do you stand?

A: I like to do both. It's situational. It depends on who they have and, obviously, who we're going against, and how we feel like we match up against them. So, again, week to week, it's different.

Q: After last season, it certainly felt like things were on a considerable upswing here. Is there surprise in what you've seen in terms of the way this season has developed and is developing?

A: Each year is a new year. Each team is a new team. It's totally different circumstances. The schedule is different. You know what I mean? It's just different. When you have some of the things that's happened to us early in the season, it's unfortunate, but it is what it is. You just try and make do with what you've got. You go from week to week, you're trying to get better as a group and as a team and gel and try and make plays when you need to. But sometimes, that's the game. It's tough at times.

Q: The last time you played Washington, you had trouble handling (Commanders punter Tress) Way's punts. Was that the wind that day or was that his punts?

A: It's two things: he's a lefty power punter, and it was very windy that day. It was gusting a lot, probably maybe 35-mile-an-hour gusts. So, it was a funky day in the Meadowlands, but I think we could have, not similar, but somewhat similar. It's supposed to be 20-something-mile-an-hour winds on Sunday. So, that's just part of being in the northeast playing football outside.

Q: Were some of your punt protections a little too close for comfort?

A: Schematically, what we do, it's a little different, what we've been doing. There are some things that we can do to make sure that doesn't happen. We're working through that stuff, and I think some of those styles of punts are playing to (punter) Jamie (Gillan)'s strengths. I think that's why he's having a pretty good season so far. So, we're just going to keep mixing that up, going from our regular stuff to new stuff.

Q: The risk of that is that it's an extra step or two, right?

A: Actually, it gets the ball out quicker. It's really amazing. His rugby muscle memory just kicks in, and as soon as he moves sideways, I mean, he can just… He's been kicking the ball since he was that big, running around with it, kicking it out of his hand. So, it's a little quicker.

Q: Any teaching tape from the Buffalo situation there with the 12 men? How do you handle the fire-drill defense? Do you keep your defense on the field?

A: We go defense stay. We work that all the time out here. We do it pre-practice probably twice a week. Those situations are things that have to be drilled and when the time comes, you've got to react accordingly. Sometimes people kind of panic in certain situations.

Running Back Saquon Barkley

Q: Did you tweak your ankle again? It was getting taped during the game.

A: Yeah, they landed on it. That's part of dealing with a high-ankle sprain. It's something that's not just going to magically go away. I happen to play the sport of football and I get tackled almost every single play. Been pretty good up until that point not having anyone really lay on it, but nothing that set myself back or anything like that. I should be fine.

Q: What would it take for you to say it's counterproductive to keep playing through it when it's bothering you?

A: I don't look at it that way. I just focus on going out there, try my best to make no excuses and go out there and try to compete and play at a high level for my team no matter the circumstance. I've been injured enough. I've torn an ACL before; I've been out for a whole season. So, if I'm able to, for the love of the game, go out there and play and be able to protect myself and compete for my team, that's something I'll always try to do.

Q: How do you reconcile that the best way for the Giants to compete in the short term is for you to carry the ball a lot, and then in the long term, somebody, the Giants or another team, is going to come to you after the season and say, 'You had a lot of carries last year,' but you need a lot of carries to be competitive? How do you reconcile those two things?

A: It's really crazy when you break it down like that. Just the way the business is when you're a premier back in this league, not to talk about myself, they feed you the ball because it helps you and gives you an opportunity to win games more times than not. When it comes to contract or a certain time, you're a running back, you're having so much miles on you. It's a crazy thought process. I try my best not to think about that, or I would go insane. I just try to keep my focus on the love of the game and take care of my body. Whenever the opportunity comes that I have to talk about the contracts again, whether it's with the Giants or with another team, hopefully I'm able to pull up film and pull up numbers to be able to get myself a contract that's the best for me and my family.

Q: Do you hope that teams see that, this team or any, as loyalty or commitment?

A: Loyalty means nothing. Loyalty, that doesn't mean anything. No matter how loyal, no matter how committed you are, it's a business at the end of the day. That's something that I've learned. So, for me, the way I try to handle that is to not really focus on that, try my best not to think about it. I feel like every week, I have to answer a question about it, which I get it, you guys are doing your jobs, but that's the only time it really crosses my mind to be completely honest. Because if not, I would go insane. I would lose my mind if I was able to focus on that. So, I try to keep the main thing the main thing and continue to enjoy the process and take it one day at a time.

Q: How long do you let a loss like that linger?

A: The Dallas loss? Not long. You can't. That's the beauty and the unfortunate part of this business. Right away, you've got to get ready for the next team. You come in and you break down the film and you watch, you learn from it. You have to move on, whether it's a win or whether you beat a team by 40 or

you get beat by 40. That's the mindset you have to have. You can't let it sit in and every game is a different game. It's a different opportunity, it's a different challenge that's going to present itself, and you've got to be ready for that next opportunity.

Q: You always say you're on social media, you see and hear everything. What do you think as a player when you hear everyone say you should tank? That you're playing (quarterback) Tommy (DeVito) and you're just tanking?

A: I don't really believe in that. I can't sit here and say that's not the case for some places, but the way I look at it, it really doesn't make sense. Because at the end of the day, the coaches and the people in the front office, their jobs are on the line, too, just like our jobs are on the line. If you don't go out there and compete and play at a high level, coaches and players get cut, coaches get fired, and that's the business of it. I don't know if—tanking, I know it's not the right thing to do, and I don't know if that's really a real thing, I can't speak for every other place, but here I don't get that feel at all, especially with Dabs (Head Coach Brian Daboll). You can see how fiery and how competitive he is. That's not the type of team or type of people we have in this building or this locker room.

Q: When you step on the field, is it less fun to play when you're in a situation where the playoffs seem so far away?

A: No, I think, obviously, if you're in a situation like being in the playoffs last year and playing in games that like—last year, we played Washington, it was a game you've probably got to win to give yourself a better chance to make the playoffs, or playing against the Vikings in the playoffs, or playing against Philly, definitely the juices, the speed's faster, you can feel it. But I wouldn't say it's hard to (inaudible). You're still blessed. Every single one in this locker room, the majority of us, have been playing this game since we were little kids and dream about being in these moments and playing in the NFL. So, that's kind of the way I look at it. Just take advantage of the opportunity. Obviously, we're not where we want to be. The season how it's going right now sucks, but we've still got a lot of games, and mathematically we still technically aren't out of it. You never know what could happen.

Q. What can you gain from the rest or the season?

A: For me, what I can gain is just continue to get better. Every game is a new opportunity, a new challenge and I get a chance to improve. I get a chance to get better, and I feel like I'm still getting better throughout the season, I feel like I'm getting a better feel with the offensive line. Obviously, a game like last week when things got out of hand pretty much early, I wouldn't say abandon the run game because I don't think we did that. When it came to the second half, we really got the run game going, but it's hard to just lean in on the run game, but that's what I gain. The enjoyment of playing the game and trying to improve and get better as an overall player.

Q. What do we on the outside miss because we don't play the sport you do when it comes to two receivers talking it out and it seems to be a different conversation than it actually is? Or you going over to Dabs after a play call and it is misinterpreted, that kind of thing. Like what do we miss in those on-field moments?

A: I don't think you guys miss anything and I don't think whoever reported that missed anything. Were they wrong? Yes, of course, but I think at the end of the day, you guys are doing your job. I just feel like it's a reach. Some of this stuff is just a reach. It's not – if we were 8-2, none of that would be a problem. (Special Team Coordinator Thomas McGaughey) T-Mac says it all the time, 'winning solves everything.' That's really what it is. There's been times, multiple times last year where I might have had a disagreement or I might have said out of frustration, something on the sideline that just wasn't picked up or someone didn't report about it. Same thing with Dabs, same thing with – that's just how it is.

You've got a whole bunch of men and women on the field, competing at a high-level, wanting to win, frustrations are going to happen. It's just the fact that the team is not doing good. We're not doing good as a team right now so it's easy to make it seem like, 'oh, is the locker room this' or 'there's a coach that's losing this.' That's where I think you guys miss it at. I think that's not even close to being the truth.

Q. You do see that like if there's multiple in the same game, it can easily be looked at as –

A: I can see why –

Q. It's obviously building up. The frustration is building up on guys more than usual…

A: I can see why. Especially if you see the camera view of it on TV and (wide receiver Sterling) Shep(ard) following (wide receiver Darius) Slay(ton), it looks like they are arguing. Even when I saw it, I was like, 'Dang, what are they arguing about?' and I was there – so I can see why you see it. But it's like when you really – I'm not going to speak for them and I'm pretty sure they'll talk about it, but I know the actual – what actually happened. It's more like, 'hats off to Slay' to be completely honest and Shep was just saying, 'you know what, you've got a good point. I've got your back.' That's really what it was. I'm not going to get too much into the details of that. With me and Dabs, it's as simple as we didn't get the fourth down and I was frustrated that we didn't get the fourth down. It's like, it's so simple. I'm trying to think of like a corny analogy I can think of right now. Just like if you're cooking and you touch a hot pot, you're going to go 'ah, (shoot), that's hot.' This is your reaction, but we were just on national tv. It's just – I can see why people make it seem like that, but you can see the locker room right now. To be honest, in a good way, in a good way, like not trying got make it in a negative way because obviously you can spin this in a negative way, we're 2-8 but it doesn't feel like we're 2-8 to be completely honest. The way we're out there, the way we're practicing, it's fast, still joy. It's not like you walk in the building like, 'I'm 2-8 and my life is miserable.' You don't get that feel from the players or the coaches.

Q. So you think Slayton's concerns or problems were heard?

A: What do you mean?

Q. You said hats off to him for what he was doing and saying on the sidelines. I'm saying do you think whatever he was frustrated about got corrected?

A: I think it was definitely corrected. It wasn't really a negative thing at all. He really just wanted to compete and go out there for the team. That's really what it was. It's just as simple as that, but I can see why from the outside view what it looked like, but it wasn't that at all.

View photos from the all-time series between the New York Giants and the Washington Commanders.

Inside Linebacker Bobby Okereke

Q. Have you played 100% of snaps before in the past?

A: Yeah, I think in 2021 I played 100% of snaps defensively. In 2022 I played 98, so I try to do as best a job as I can taking care of my body.

Q. Do you remember the ones you missed last year?

A: Do I remember the one? Yeah, I think it was for my broken pinky.

Q. Lame excuse.

A: (Laughs). For real.

Q. Washington has become such a pass-first team, you say to the defense, 'Oh, we got to stop the run' Is there a change of thinking when you play a team that passes so much?

A: A little bit. I mean, they do have very dynamic running backs. So, when a team can pass and run it makes it very difficult, so obviously you have to stop the run and put them in passing situations, but they are a dynamic offense. (Eric) Bieniemy is a great offensive coordinator. (Commanders quarterback) Sam Howell is throwing the ball really well and they have very dynamic receivers so we'll just be excited for the challenge.

Q. You were talking about it a little bit earlier, how are you feeling?

A: Good, feeling good.

Q. What's the situation?

A: Yeah, just maintenance on my hip. Yeah, I mean obviously a long, long season so just some wear and tear, some inflammation that I'm trying to get to calm down so I can feel fresh, 100% on game day.

Q. Is that inflammation is it calmed down today?

A: Yeah, did a lot of stuff yesterday and that's why I was out there running around, felt really good today. So, we'll just keep an eye on it, just more precautionary than anything.

Q. Do you think they will implement a rest day each week going forward? Has that been a discussion in practice?

A: Not really, I don't like missing days so if I don't have to there's no need.

Q. When you guys traded (defensive lineman) Leonard Williams there were a lot of guys in the locker room who maybe didn't understand it or didn't like the message that it sent and

the two games the defense has struggled since. Is there a correlation there? Like, frustration, not understanding the team direction leading to on-field struggles?

A: No, I wouldn't say – I mean I think anytime you lose a captain and such a dynamic player as Leonard Williams, you are going to feel that impact, but it's just extra onus for all of us. Whether it's defensive line, linebackers, or secondary step up and make up for the play because Leonard's a great player.

Q. So it's more about missing his physical ability than it is not understanding the team's direction or anything like that?

A: For sure. I mean, I wouldn't say it's a direct one-to-one correlation, I mean obviously, it's a lot of variables but it's just definitely an area we can step up.

View photos of the Giants on the practice field ahead of the Week 11 matchup against the Washington Commanders.