*Coach Ben McAdoo recaps the Giants Week 17 win and looks ahead to Green Bay: *
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Ben McAdoo was Aaron Rodgers' position coach for two seasons and worked with him for eight years as an assistant coach with the Green Bay Packers. So it's safe to say he is intimately aware of the capabilities of the quarterback who has won a Super Bowl and two NFL Most Valuable Player awards.
But McAdoo said today that knowledge might not be useful when the Giants attempt to derail Rodgers and the Packers when the teams meet Sunday in an NFC Wild Card Game in Green Bay, simply because the quarterback is playing so well.
In Green Bay's last seven games – including victories in their final six, which propelled the Packers to the NFC North championship -- Rodgers completed 70 percent of his 241 passes while throwing for 18 touchdowns and no – that's zero – interceptions (his streak is actually at 245 consecutive throws without a pick). For the season, Rodgers has the otherworldly numbers of 40 touchdown passes and only seven interceptions. He had a passer rating of at least 115.0 in six of the last seven games.
"Aaron is playing out of his mind right now," said McAdoo, who was the Packers' quarterback coach in 2012-13.
"He's on fire, taking care of the ball, and is moving very well in and out of the pocket, making all the throws. I don't have any kryptonite. I've spent some time in the building with him and in the room with him. You know that when he's on fire, the weather doesn't really factor for him. When it's cold and he's outside, he plays the same game and plays very well. Maybe not the same game, maybe a little bit different outside in the elements, but he has big hands and he can handle the ball and make all the throws in the elements. We need to be ready for his best."
Giants.com hand out game balls in Sunday's win over Washington
Last night, the Packers were in Detroit to face the Lions with the division title on the line. Rodgers threw four touchdown passes for the second straight game while completing 27 of 39 overall for an even 300 yards in Green Bay's 31-24 victory.
McAdoo wouldn't say if this is the best he's seen Rodgers play, perhaps because it's so difficult to select one stretch over another.
"I'm just in the beginning phases of watching film on Green Bay," McAdoo said. "He had some nice stretches there in 2011. I thought he was off to a nice start in 2013 before he got injured (a fractured collarbone that sidelined him for seven games). He's put together some nice stretches. He's playing with a killer instinct."
*While praising Rodgers, McAdoo is very happy to travel to Green Bay with Eli Manning as his quarterback. Manning helped the Giants win postseason games in Green Bay in 2007 and 2011 on their way to Super Bowl triumphs.
"I saw a quarterback that was very consistent," McAdoo said of Manning. "He was someone that didn't let anything around him bother him. He was in the zone. You could tell. He was pretty sharp in both of those games."
*The Giants lost to the Packers in Lambeau Field, 23-16, on Oct. 9. McAdoo was asked how the Packers have changed since then.
"They had a couple of big backs last time we faced them," McAdoo said. "They were running the ball and ran the ball well with Eddie (Lacy) and with (James) Starks. (Aaron) Ripkowski was in the mix there, too. They changed things up a little bit in the backfield because of health (Christine Michael, whom they acquired off waivers from Seattle on Nov. 17, is now the team's leading rusher). They had to. They changed up a little bit on offense. They've had some guys nicked and are using a variety of players in the secondary on the other side of the ball. Dom (Capers, the defensive coordinator) is doing a nice job there playing with what he has to play with. They did a nice job yesterday in the dome against Detroit."
*The Giants yesterday concluded their regular season with a 19-10 victory in Washington. Did they emerge from the game healthy?
"Healthy for this time of year," McAdoo said.
*Pro Bowl cornerback Janoris Jenkins, who missed the previous game with a back injury, played the first half yesterday and was sore, according to McAdoo. Jenkins will be limited when the Giants resume practice.
*Paul Perkins rushed for 102 yards in his first career start, but McAdoo didn't directly answer a question about whether the rookie running back is the starter going forward.
"I thought Paul did some good things on tape," McAdoo said. "Found some runs nicely. Rashad (Jennings) ran the ball hard and physical. We're excited about both of those guys, and also the impact Bobby Rainey can make."
*Jason Pierre-Paul missed the last for games with a core muscle injury – might he return to the practice field this week?
"When he's ready, they'll let me know," McAdoo said.
*McAdoo on whether he has any personal feelings returning to Green Bay:
"I try to leave feelings out of it," he said. "It's football. We have a job to do. I appreciate you bringing that up, but that doesn't have anything to do with ballgame, so we won't worry about it."