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Super Bowl Media Day: Giants Player Quotes



(on the challenges facing the Patriots defense) "Clearly different personnel, bigger bodies up front. San Francisco was a traditional 3-4 style. New England will throw different looks at you. That's the difference, just the overall scheme."

(on how the offensive line is responding after the San Francisco 49ers game) "Yeah, it was tough, something we weren't proud of. Overall this year, I think we've done a good job of keeping him clean. San Fran is a very talented defense, and they got us with some things up front. We took a hard look at that knowing that it could possibly surface again what they were doing. I think we have it under control. We're confident if we give Eli (Manning) enough time to throw the ball, he can make plays."

(on how his concussion this season affected the rest of the year) "The only time I really thought about it was that next game against Miami. You always worry about the next time what would happen when your head got hit. I was a little worried putting it back in there. But as the game went on, the season went on, you don't really think about it. Definitely that week after the Seattle game was a tough time for me."

(on how he would categorize the Patriots defensive front) "They're very big the four or five big bodies that they rotate in there. The thing is, they are also very athletic. You look at guys like Vince (Wilfork) and Gerard Warren, (Kyle) Love, they are large guys. You wouldn't think they can move the way that they do. They move very well for big guys."

(on if the Patriots rely on their front seven) "They don't blitz as much as other teams we faced, but I think when you make plays on them and you're driving the ball, they're going to obviously not sit there. That's where they're going to come with some pressure or send a five down front or something like that. I'd say about 30 percent of time is when you see a dog or a blitz."

(on the Patriots run defense) "Like I said, the big bodies up front make it tough, and you're not going to get great push. That's obviously their goal is get off the ball, but really you're just trying to neutralize them at the line and just stick with it, try to finish, maybe let their momentum kind of take them out of the ball. They do a good job holding their ground."

(on how the Patriots defense pursues) "I think they're a very good defense. I think their linebackers. They can run, (Jerod) Mayo and (Brandon) Spikes. (Brandon) Spikes is a very physical downhill linebacker who I've seen take out a few guards, fullbacks in the hole. He looks to blow people up, so I think they do a very good job."

(on tackle Tony Ugoh) "He's done a great job. He had to come in, and he's played jumbo tight end for us a little bit, but also he's the swing tackle. If something were to happen to one of our tackles, he would be the guy to go in the game and would have to play the left or right. He's done a good job coming in and learning our offense pretty quickly."

(on being the Indianapolis Colts high draft pick and sticking with it to find another team) "Yeah, he's a guy where you look at him, and he's got tools. He's got great feet. He's a strong guy. He's a good football player, a good addition for us."

(on if Tony Ugoh has showed him around Indianapolis at all) "We're only here one night."

(on what he recalls about the final drive of the last Super Bowl he played in) "I recall great effort by Eli (Manning) to get out of the grasp of four D-linemen, a great catch by David Tyree and just a lot of excitement after Plaxico (Burress) scored that. When the clock struck zero is when it was enjoyed most, just several big plays that got us down the field."

(on how the outside perception changed when Eli Manning finished that last Super Bowl) "I think every year he's gotten more believers in him, and this year is when everyone kind of jumped; all the other people jumped on board. He's always done a great job for us. He's always been a guy that kind of thrived in the fourth quarter. He loved being in that situation. He loved being in the two-minute situation at the end of the game. He's always been that presence for us."

(on if he thinks they can have any advantage going against the New England defense) "You know, I don't really get caught up too much in the stats. I know they do a pretty good job of keeping teams out of the end zone, which when you put up as many points as they do, that's obviously why they had the record they did. Their defense does a good job of keeping you out. Just look what they did against Baltimore last week. They shut down their run game pretty good and that's a good offensive line and a good running game. I'm just looking more at the present and they're playing pretty well right now."

(on if there is added pressure because of the Patriots offense) "Yeah that's no question. We look at that every week. We always look at it as it's our job to try to keep our defense off the field and the only way to do that is to protect Eli (Manning) and to run the ball. We prefer to methodically march down the field although this year it seems like it's been all big plays. The goal is the same, control the clock and keep that explosive offense on the field."

(on if Tom Coughlin has gotten any warmer and fuzzier) "Warmer? Fuzzier? I don't know if I'd use those adjectives, but he's lightened up a lot and we made reference to that four years ago when we were here. How he kind of changed in that regard, getting to know players more, getting players to know the softer side of him, the side that family members see. He shows that but then again he still has his beliefs that he sticks to. That's what makes him more successful."

(on if he is more beloved or respected) "If I had to choose one, he is definitely more respected. He has the respect of our team and we all believe in everything he says. We're all on board with him."

(on if it would be appropriate to carry Tom Coughlin off the field unlike last time they won the Super Bowl) "I never even thought about that after the first game. I know he got dumped with the Gatorade but I didn't even think about getting carried off. Maybe I will if we are fortunate enough to win this game."

(on if it makes it any tougher that Tom Coughlin is his father-in-law as well as the Head Coach) "No, not at all. It's eight years of having this relationship so we got it ironed out pretty good."

(on if he is thankful he doesn't have to deal with the media crowd Eli Manning has to deal with) "No one handles it better than he does. He's been criticized more often than praised throughout his career. He does a great job handling days like this, the weekly media session in New York. But yeah, I am very thankful I don't have that around me right now."

(on his mentality on how he and his teammates got through the season) "I think that's just when you rely on the depth of your team. That's when credit has to go to the front office for bringing guys in who can play football. I've been in here years past when we haven't had that luxury of having the backups that we do. That and there's the expectation where someone goes down the backup is expected to come out and play at a high level, and that's what we have."

(on former Patriot Rodney Harrison saying he'd rather have Eli Manning than Tom Brady in this game) "I agree with him. I'll take Eli too. I don't know. To get more in depth with that you're going to have to ask Rodney or Tom Brady how he feels about that. I'm sure he doesn't mind."


(on if he is enjoying being at the Super Bowl for a second time) "I am. I really am trying to because the last time, I told my wife, the last one was a blur. Let's really enjoy this one. I am 33 now and hope to play a lot longer, you never know when you are going to get back here. I am taking in everything. I have taken a lot more pictures since I have been here and kind of got the feel for the street last night. I walked around and felt the pulse of the city. It is exciting. Last time I didn't really get to do any of that."

(on what he sees different in Eli Manning from Super Bowl XLII to this Super Bowl) "I think it is more of the passing game as a whole in NFL has changed. We were more of a run team, kind of a balanced attack in '07-08. I just think the league has evolved and therefore Eli has evolved and all the quarterbacks. The numbers guys are putting up this year are staggering. So to say that he is better, obviously he is, and you would hope so after four years so I think we are all better players. I am happy for him, but Eli is Eli, he is always going to be solid. He is going to play well and he is going to play well in the big game."

(on what winning a second Super Bowl would do for Eli Manning's legacy) "It would mean he is a two-time Super Bowl champ. Sure it would mean a lot to him, especially in the city we play in. they are going to put you on a pedestal if you have two. They put you on a pedestal if you have one. He would go down as one of the best I'd assume with having two rings that would put him in the top five or 10 guys."

(on what winning a second Super Bowl would do for Tom Coughlin's legacy) "He could be (headed to the Hall of Fame). I don't know the numbers so I would probably be speaking out of turn. I feel like he is (a Hall of Famer). He has had winning teams. He has produced in a tough market and everyone that puts that NY logo on, on Sundays, is on the hot seat, every week, no matter what we do. We know that and that is kind of the approach. He has handled it well and he is the best guy for the job."

(on Tom Coughlin's evolution over the years to today's players) "I came in after he made the adjustment so I don't know the other Tom, but the guy is a winner. He is hard. He is black and white. He is pass/fail, but you have to buy into what he is teaching because for some guys it rubs them the wrong way, for some guys it doesn't. He wins and he gets the most out of his players and he got us to this point again, here we are. So I respect the heck out of him."

(on blazing a trail for the NFL back in Scotland/Britain with having been born in Scotland) "It is an honor to kind of represent an entire country. I know they are all watching and supporting, so that is fun. When you get to this game, you obviously know that people are going to follow and look at you a little bit more closely. I love it. I am really excited to represent Scotland on Sunday."

(on how he ended up in the United States having been born in Scotland) "Lot of travels. My father was obviously a military man. My mother is Scottish. I moved to Milton, Fla. when I was 11. I didn't like this game that I am playing on Sunday because it was tackling and physical, and finally my senior year I realized I could kick a ball and they had a position that required kicking a ball, and that was something I was pretty good at it and here I am. It has been pretty fun."

(on the big kicks he has made over his career) "You have to feel blessed and honored. It is a privilege to play in this league. It is not a right. No one has to play in this. I work my butt off every day to try and stay in this league and my mindset every week is to keep your job and that is how you have to think about it. I have just been blessed to be around good teams, good coaches, good players. That is the reason we are in this game again, it is not just because of me, but because of the guys that are in that locker room."


(on his plans to donate playoff gear) "I go through about three pairs of cleats a year but when I do finish with

a pair, I'll sign them and send them to United Way auctions or stuff like that. I try to be as generous as possible, but at the same time, I'm not going to give away a pair of cleats that I need."

(on always being in great shape) "I'm a bad dude, man. I'm a bad dude." Fitness has always been important to me because it helps me execute my sport, but at the same time, it has always been something that has fascinated me. Ever since I was a kid, I used to love the sections of movies where people used to work really hard like in Rocky or The Karate Kid. My mom would never let me watch those movies past 6:00 pm because I would want to go run or do pushups or sit-ups. I was blessed with good genetics, but I also work very hard.

(on high school athletic career) "I played four sports in High School and played safety on the football team. Then I ran track in college so I stayed busy."

(on getting thank you notes from fans who he sends cleats to) "There not so much thank you notes as they are crayon drawings but it's cool. My fridge at home is covered with Go Giants pictures. Some of those kids aren't big enough to wear the cleats but the fact that they have a pair of Justin Tuck cleats, they just keep them as trophies so they love it."

(on how he ended up playing at The University of Illinois) "Being from Terre Haute Indiana, it was a smaller rural town in comparison to a lot of other college football towns. Illinois just had a home feel. It was a comfortable fit for me. The years that I played there we won about six games so we punted quite a bit. It was good for me. I loved every minute of being an Illini, it made me who I am today. It has given me an edge"

(on being a part of Media Day for Super Bowl) "It's a dream come true. It's a good time. It's every little boys dream to play in the NFL and to play in the Super Bowl is just the cherry on top."

(on advice to high school and college athletes ) "For me it's preparation because I think getting into college nowadays is so (publicized) televised with twitter and Facebook so it's just preparation because when preparation meets opportunity good things are going to happen."

(on what advice he has received on how to manage Super Bowl week) "Just enjoy it because this may never happen again. The percentage of this happening period is very low. So the fact that I'm standing here right now is unbelievable. What a blessing. I'm enjoying it. 10 years from now I don't think anyone is going to care about me, so I'm just enjoying it."

(on Ravens kicker Billy Cundiff missing crucial kick against the Patriots in AFC Championship ) "My heart goes out to him because, obviously everyone right now thinks I'm the best holder, but I have been on the other side of that where you screwed up a hold and everyone hates you. I feel terrible for him because he prepared really hard for that season coming off a Pro Bowl season, and to miss a kick like that is disappointing for him, disappointing for his team and disappointing for the fans."

(on being from Terre Haute Indiana) "It's great, what an opportunity. I'm playing in a Super Bowl 46 miles from my hometown, so I'm excited. It's really special for me to be at media day and then drive 45 minutes and be at my parent's house."


(on what the feeling is like for him to have a chance to play in the Super Bowl) "It's amazing. I feel like this is once in a lifetime opportunity. You don't want to let it go to waste. You're here for one reason, to win and you don't want that taste in your mouth afterwards and wondering "why this? or, why that?" You do everything you can this week to prepare yourself to go out there and show the world what you've got."

(on what the key offensively will be for the Giants on Sunday) "I feel like the key is execution. We know they have a very good defense but we know they have a very high powered offense. I feel like it's going to come down to who executes the best on offense is going to win the game."

(on having a lot of Michigan and Michigan State guys on both teams) "It's way better here because we've got all the guys here and when I was out in San Francisco there was like five or six Ohio State guys and me. I had to hear about it all the time. I can rub it in a little bit more here."

(on the best thing is about being an offensive lineman) "You gain your respect through your players. Nobody really gives you credit for the things you go through, how bad you beat yourself up, just little things like that. When you can look each other and know that you've done a good job and hey we're here at the Super Bowl, that's gratifying. Then you need to look at each other and say we need to win this. As a lineman you don't get the glory. You don't get all the praise. It's more from just knowing that from your teammates that you did something special, you deserve every bit of it."

(on the worst part about being an offensive lineman is) "Probably just the feeling in your knees and watching the kickers standing over there on the sideline as you're doing drills. It's a tough job. You're down there in the trenches and constantly beating yourself up. It's a very tough job and you just never know when it's going to end so just try and enjoy it as long as you can.

(on if he has always been an offensive lineman) "I was a tight end for my very first year in high school. Then I went from tackle to guard to center. Then I went everywhere for a while."


(on taking in the experience) "This is just a fun part of the Super Bowl that you have to experience and enjoy because it's a once in a lifetime kind of thing for a lot of guys. Just having fun."

(on playing in his hometown) "It was overwhelming at first  but being at home last night hanging with my mom and everybody, it was just fun. This is something that I'm going to cherish for the rest of my life. Got some home cooking,  got to see my nieces and nephews, it was great."

(on thinking back to his days at Cathedral High School) "It's unbelievable and has been a great journey. It has been fun with a lot of ups and downs. I look back on the teams we had and there was some great players that went on to do some great things. There are a lot of guys that went on to contribute to their college teams. To be at this point I feel very fortunate."

(on playing in RCA Dome) "I did. We used to play at the beginning of the year and then I had Tuesday championships at the end of the year. Didn't play in this stadium but playing at the hometown stadium is always fun."

(on the Giants making it to the Super Bowl after almost missing the playoffs) "It has been a hell of a dream to be honest. We have been in some bad situations but when it came down to it we did what we had to do to get here and we are still focused on getting the win."

(on fans being at media day) "It's amazing, just the way the entire city has been behind us, it's been awesome to experience this at home."

(on if Colts fans are on the Giants side) "I think so. They have to be especially with the matchup that we have and having me on the team. I feel like we will welcome it with open arms."

(on his experience in last Giants Super Bowl being injured) "It's tough. You don't come down with the team.  You come down a little later in the week. You participate in the game day stuff but you're not at media day. You're not doing a lot of things that everybody else gets to do so it's not the same, it's a little bit different, but I'm here, so I'm focused on this one right now."

(on being able to play this time around) "It makes it so much sweeter. It has been a goal of mine since we got off that field. One of my biggest goals was to be back in a Super Bowl and be out there on the field. Being out there when that confetti dropped, it was fun, it was exciting, but I was waiting for my chance to be out there with the team. I got it now."

(on playing in Indianapolis for the Super Bowl) "That's the surreal part right there, that's the part that is unbelievable. As a kid you dream about playing in the biggest games but you don't ever expect it to be in your hometown especially when you are from Indianapolis. Getting this opportunity is great."

(on what Jason Pierre-Paul means to their defense) "He's a huge part of our defense. When you look at the kinds of things he does, not just speed and power but his understanding of our defense and what offenses are trying to do to him. It makes them account for him on every single play regardless of what they are trying to do."

(on Jason Pierre-Paul's success being only a second-year player) "Watching his development we all knew he had the physical skills to do what he's doing now but to watch him develop and to work and to study and do all all these things he has to do, I mean it's good."

(on Dallas Week 14 game in the fourth quarter and the two plays Jason Pierre-Paul made) "It is a testament to his family, upbringing, whoever he has around him because they have instilled those values in him. When everything is on the line he is going full mode and there is no hesitation at all. We rely on him, we count on him, and at this point we are going to keep riding out the intensity that he's got."

(on grandfather being the prime minister in Uganda, trickled down effect for leadership) "Yeah, I would think so. You can see it in terms of my entire family and how everybody responds to different pressure situations, so if I have a little bit of his genes in me I definitely appreciate it."

(on giving advice to the rookies) "You got to enjoy it and take it all in. You have to take in the whole experience but when it comes time to go out there and practice you have to be able to separate the fanfare and all the hoopla from game time intensity. The thing that we're doing is making sure that everybody stays focused, everybody is on time for every meeting, everybody is on time for curfew, and then we'll party after the game."

(on the best part of this week thus far) "To be honest, I got a chance to just go home and sit with my grandma and my mom and we just had a conversation and had dinner and that's something that doesn't really happen all that often for a guy. I'm in the Super Bowl and I had just a chance to go home and decompress and relax, and then come back so I know it's a special thing."

(on the Super Bowl host city) "The way the entire city has been changed and developed the past 10  years, it's amazing. I'm proud to be from Indianapolis, I'm proud to be here playing in the Super Bowl."

(on his favorite memory growing up in Indianapolis) "Of Indianapolis in general? I have them in different categories so my sports memory would probably be the state championship in the RCA Dome from my Junior year. There's so many. My family's here and we always had good get-togethers, so I think overall just having my family around me all the time. "

(on people in Indianapolis rooting for the Giants) "I know that everyone I know is behind me, but I also know that people from Indiana respect the way that the Giants handle our business. We go about it in a passionate way."

(on what was the most difficult part of becoming an integral part of Giants defense) "In general, it is just the grind. The number of games that you play. The number of practices you have. The speed of practices you have. Going through an NFL practice is like playing in the college all-star game. It's learning all the details and taking care of your body. It's about being all the little things you have to be to be successful."

(on difficulty of transition from defensive line to linebacker) "This year it wasn't as tough as it was my second year. It was tougher because I didn't have a lot of NFL experience in terms of game speed and that kind of thing."

(on the status of his brother and difficulty of his accident) "If you didn't know him before the accident you wouldn't have known that he had a life-threatening motorcycle accident, but he'll have some issues going forward but his spirits are high and everyone is excited. It was the most painful experience of my life to be honest with you. It was something I wouldn't wish on anyone. Watching him throughout the entire process was tough and emotional, but we pulled through as a family. He has gotten to the point he is at now because he is a strong man."


(on what gets him amped before the game) "Actually I kind of listen to gospel most of the time. I don't like to be super excited before a game. I like to be calm and just relaxed."

(on his touchdown dance) "I have no idea. Whatever comes to me I'll just do. I hope it's not silly."

(on if the Giants win, where he will party) "I'm going to party in New York and then probably go to sleep."

(on the biggest key when he faces a guy like Tom Brady) "Just try to be tight in coverage. He definitely is a gunslinger. Even though you have guys covered up he throws them open. It's definitely key to just stay close in coverage and for those guys up front to really get after him."

(on if he has seen a player like Rob Gronkowski before) "I wouldn't say I have but we faced some pretty good tight ends this season. This wouldn't be nothing new for us. But he is definitely a new type of monster."

(on when he felt this team might be special) "Just basically right before the Jets game. It was kind of win or go home. Our backs were against the wall. We knew we weren't ready to go home. For some reason we all started bonding to what we were doing. Our chemistry just began to grow and just made it here."

(on the relationship between the players and Tom Coughlin) "It's definitely much respect. We may not be on the same page as far as the gap difference in the age but he's a guy you can definitely go talk to. Even on the plane he doesn't sit in the front. He is back there with the players and nobody minds. We still are normal. He is just a great guy."

(on being on time with Tom Coughlin) "We are definitely going to be on time. It's basically like this, you don't want to bend the rules. We have respect for one another so you definitely want to be on time for his meetings."

(on if rigid it good in the NFL today) "He definitely is a winner. The main thing is you got to be consistent. He doesn't change. You know what you're going to get with the guy so it's his way. You just bond to his rules or you're going to have a long year. You know what you're going to get from him so just bond to the system which a lot of guys are doing."

(on where the Giants/Patriots are on the dislike meter) "I have no idea. We are just here to play football. I am not even looking into that."

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