Coach Tom Coughlin Postgame Presser
Coach Tom Coughlin says his team won a hard fought football game, and the defense did a good job bouncing back this week against the Bucs
Coach Coughlin: "This was a hard-fought football game, as we knew it was going to be. I felt good about the defense coming in, I thought they would bounce back. They did a nice job holding [them to] basically field goals. We did have the one touchdown in the second half. Disappointing with the turnovers, but we got some and put ourselves in pretty good position, as well. Josh Brown with the 53-yard field goal there when we really needed it, put us up by five. It was a huge play in the game. At times we didn't play as well as we are capable of playing, then we kind of boosted it up at the end to make sure we were going to win, and that was good. We benefitted from the personal foul, but still we ground the yardage out. Odell [Beckham Jr.] made a heck of a play over on the other sideline to get a first down. The whole intent was to make that last first down so we could kneel, and we didn't get it. So, the rest is history."
(On him preaching finishing lately)
"Yeah, we always preach about finishing, and tonight we did. I give them credit. Lovie [Smith] has done a good job. They battled back. Their young quarterback played well. In the long run we kind of hung in there and we got ourselves a much-needed win."
**(On the play and impact of Jason Pierre-Paul's return)
"Well I think the players were excited to have him as a part of our team and have him active tonight. I think he made a couple of outstanding rushes, particularly at the end when the quarterback was forced to roll right and heave the ball up. That was critical at that time. We didn't get a sack, but we did pressure. He needs to get his timing down, obviously. He made a couple real good rushes coming up and under. So I think he is just going to get better and better."
(On if he intended Pierre-Paul to play as many snaps as he did)
"We did. I thought in the beginning I had a number in mind, and we wanted him at the end of the game, obviously. So he got probably more then he should of, but, like I said, he is in great shape and he kept wanting to go, and so be it. "
(On Pierre-Paul being at his best in the end of the game)
"He did. That was a huge play."
(On the difference a player like Pierre-Paul makes for a defense)
"The quarterback can never be too settled. That's the whole deal. He did make him uncomfortable, even though we weren't able to get to him, we did make him uncomfortable and that was a huge plus."
(On Johnathan Hankins' injury)
"Yeah I don't know the extent of it. It's a [pectoral] injury but where it is, they are usually not very good. But I don't have anything else other than that."
(On Pierre-Paul playing about 75% of the defensive snaps)
"That's probably more than I expected him to play, but he was at his best, as someone just said, on the last drive. So, based on the conditioning, he really help us at the end. You saw him chase the quarterback out to the right on a couple of times and that helped. That's helped tremendously."
(On Jasper Brinkley's fumble recovery)
"He is a good football player. We needed him to step up and play tonight and he did. He played a lot last week and I think he benefitted from that. He got to play more tonight and made some big plays."
(On the number of snaps he wanted to take)
"I don't know, if it was up to me, I would have never came out but that's not possible."
**(On his mindset when Tampa Bay was driving in the fourth quarter)
"Just to stop them. It came down to the fourth quarter, managed to stop them and get the ball back."
(On his play in the fourth quarter)
"Yeah, it's time to win the game. When it comes down to the fourth quarter, you just have to give everything you got. You got to give everything you got in the game."
(On if he felt like he could play the whole game)
"No, this is my first game back. I'm a little rusty in areas. I need to go back and watch the film and see where I can get better at and get ready for New England."
(On his pass rush on Jameis Winston on the last defensive drive)
"Yeah we definitely made him uncomfortable. He is a good quarterback – he can run, he can scramble. A couple times he got out [of the pocket] and scrambled on us, but we kept our composure and played some good football."
(On reflecting on coming back from his hand injury)
"I didn't really think about it. I just know I'm happy being out here doing what I love to do. I basically got a second opportunity and that's basically it. I'm just helping my teammates win football games."
(On his play today)
"I think I played good. I got some errors I need to take care of. I'm not perfect, but I'm going to try my hardest to take care of them and move on to the next game. "
(On how comfortable the glove was)
"It was pretty comfortable, I practiced all through the week with it and I decided to go with it. It was cool. "
(On the defense's performance this week)
"Any time you hold them to 18 points it feels good, but at the end of the day we just came out here and played some great football Coach Spags (Defensive Coordinator Steve Spagnulo) gave a speech and he told us what we need to do and we execute our game in practice pretty well and that's what we came out here and did."
(On how special it was to play at Raymond James Stadium)
"I went to school here at USF and it felt pretty good. Felt like I was in college again, but I'm not (laughts). It's a cool stadium to play at you know, and it just felt good."
(On playing his best and feeling comfortable in the fourth quarter)
"I just mean it's time to play the game and, no matter what, we had to get a stop."
(On getting used to playing with his injured hand)
"It takes time you know, like I said, I'm not perfect, nobody is in this world, but I'm going to take care of that and get better"
(On the effect of using his other hand)
"There is no effect, you just have to get comfortable with it. I'm in good shape right now and I just want to get ready for New England."
(On taking a hit during the game)
"Yeah, I got, I don't know if it was a triple team or a double team – it was during the second quarter, I think – I got popped one time and I said 'Oh, I'm back now.' It was a good hit, a good double team. I don't know if it was a running back or tight end but he kind of got me good. I just moved on to the next play. "
(On if he had doubts about his ability to play again)
"No doubts. I know how hard I worked to get back in the position I'm in and to get back with my team. I just went out there and played great football. It was no condition that I couldn't do, I just went out there and played great football."
(On if he took a moment to appreciate returning to play)
"I was just very quiet. Normally, I just listen to music or whatever, but I was really quiet. I was just focused."
(On why he was quiet)
"Just trying to figure out the plays. Make sure I go over my coaches [inaudible], make sure I got it down. This is a new defense for me. You know I'm getting better at it. I'm learning, but I've still got a long way to go."
(On playing in this defensive scheme)
"I think Coach Spags is going to put us in great position to win football games."
QB Eli Manning on JPP and Giants Offense
QB Eli Manning talks JPP and the play of the Giants offense against the Tampa Bay Bucs
QB Eli Manning: "It was a good win, we needed this win. We knew it was going to be tough. They're a scrappy
team. We knew going in that they did a good job getting turnovers, and they got two on us today. So offensively I thought we did some good things in the first half, the second half was tough to get into rhythm, they did a good job changing some things up, and playing us pretty well. There was definitely some opportunities, but we did what we had to do to win, and we needed a drive there at the very end, and we go get it, waste almost the last five minutes of the game. It starts with the ball, get a field goal, go up eight [points], with giving them just a little bit of time. So that was a big drive, what needed to be done to win, and we did enough good things to win the game."
(On the last drive of the game)
"Big play by Odell [Beckham Jr.], had man-to-man coverage and it was tight, it was definitely tight, they played it pretty well. I tried to put it in a safe spot, he did a great job getting his hands underneath the ball and making that catch. A huge third-down conversion, then had a little momentum going, offensively, and to get that conversion, run some more clock, make them use the timeouts was huge."
(On his team's performance)
"I thought we did make some nice plays in the first half, had a couple of nice drives. Went down got a touchdown, got a field goal. Second half, defense got us the turnover right off the get-go. Great field position, missed a couple throws there that could've been touchdowns or first downs, so had to settle for a field goal, but I thought after that we converted on some on third downs, we had some things we just weren't getting very many big plays. They had a lot of first downs, second down, third down, we convert, and we just kept getting a lot of third downs, and eventually they'd get a stop and we would have to give it back to them. (We) had the turnover there in the second half also, but I thought we had some decent drives, and did some good things, but obviously it could've been better."
**(On having Jason Pierre-Paul back this game)
"It was just fun seeing him out there chasing the quarterback, we wanted him to get a sack, I don't think he got one that I saw, but I definitely saw him chasing the quarterback around and getting him out of the pocket and making him move. So he was a presence and that's just after two weeks of practicing. The more practice that he gets, getting back in the lineup, getting more game playing time, will help him, but he was definitely disruptive today and it was good to see that."
(On his third-down conversion to Beckham on the Giants' final drive)
"It was a good chance I was going to him. It was man-to-man, and I was working him on the outside on that route. So I had off coverage and pre-release, and he ran a good route and it was tight, but we needed to convert right there."
(On whether there needs to be more balance in the passing game)
"I don't think it felt that way, I thought early on we were moving the ball around, we got Rueben [Randle] mixed up, hit some stuff to the tight end, got Shane [Vereen] involved, but yeah I guess second half they was playing some man-to-man, and that's the matchup we like to win on man-to-man coverage, so we just got to hit a few more than we did."
CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie on Return of JPP
CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie says that the return of DE Jason Pierre-Paul had a huge impact on the Giants defense
CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie: "He is a guy that can definitely get after the quarterback. You know, he got out there, got the feeling, and you definitely know what he's capable of and next week, he's definitely going to hit you while running."
(On Jason Pierre-Paul's performance today)
"He played a lot. That's good for him. He can come in, [you] think he's going to be in packages in certain downs, but he played a lot and he did his job, and came out and helped us so that's the main part so I think that gave him the confidence he needs."
(On what Pierre-Paul went through and the emotions of finally seeing him in the locker room before the game)
"I'm happy, very, very happy for him. Like you said, he's been through a lot. Had a lot of criticism. He kept fighting, he kept training, and he came out here and stuck his hand in the dirt. It was just an unbelievable feeling for him and us as a team as well."
(On embracing the challenge of facing Mike Evans for most of the game)
"I mean, whatever is asked of me, I accept it. If they feel it's best for the team, I'd do it. I definitely don't have a problem doing it."
(On the defense not having the best track record of getting teams off the field, especially in the fourth quarter, but it happening tonight)
"Coming off of last week and the things that we went through and to come out here and get a stop of defense and end it on defense is definitely a great feeling and it's kind of a booster and you just keep going from there."
(On if he was surprised to see the caliber of the game Pierre-Paul had)
"No sir. If you watched him, even if he wasn't on the team, he was always working out, trying to be dedicated to working out and keeping himself strong, and he definitely showed that tonight."
WR Rueben Randle on Touchdown Catch
WR Rueben Randle takes us through his first half touchdown catch
LB Jasper Brinkley on Forcing Turnovers
LB Jasper Brinkely says the key to the Giants defense is forcing turnovers
LB Jasper Brinkley: "You have to have a lot of motivation, just being defensive-minded anyway. We have to try to get the offense the ball back as many times as possible. That's our mindset each and every time we step on the field. Get the ball back to Eli [Manning]. We have a great quarterback. Get him the ball as many times and put us in the best situation to win the game."
(On the team having something to prove today following last week's loss)
"I feel like we always have something to prove. A lot of people just look over our defense. That's our mindset when we go out on the field, let's show everybody what we're made of."
(On this year as a starting linebacker and what's its been like for him)
"This year, it's been a crazy year for me because I signed a contract in Dallas, that didn't work out for the offseason, and I ended up here but you know the Lord works in mysterious ways, man, and I'm here. Unfortunately [Jon] Beason went down and I had the opportunity to step in and play. It's the next man up."
RB Rashad Jennings
"It's important to learn how to finish in the fourth quarter. We're still collectively as a team, all three phases, I think we're starting to show signs of knowing how to get the job done. [We have to] build on it, learn from mistakes, and boy, we've got a good team [New England Patriots] coming in the house next week."
(On how satisfying it was to get the points on the board in the four-minute drill near the end the game)
"That's huge. Hats off to the offensive line. They have body on body every single play and gave the [running] backs opportunities to fit through the holes and fight for those extra yards. We can build on that."
(On finishing the game)
"That's what it's all about man. Find a way to finish. No matter what it looked like. It doesn't have to look pretty. You just have to finish."
(On how satisfying it was to be able to run the ball in the fourth quarter)
"It's huge. At the end of the game, you know, both sides know what we're doing. They know we're running it, we know we're running it, that's [man on man], offensive line versus defensive line and backs versus linebackers. I think our offensive line was just stout, you know they got body on body and gave us an opportunity to run fit."
(On how much ball security was on his mind in the final minutes of game)
"Oh premium. They can't win if they don't have the football at that point in time. We fight for those extra yards, we're smart with the ball, get a first down and find a way to end the game. That's what your mindset is."
WR Odell Beckham
(On the third-down catch at the end of the game)
"We called up the play and we needed a big first down and Eli [Manning] and I connected on a third down that kept the drive alive."
(On what today's win meant)
"It's great to be able to see progress and where in the past where we may not have finished the game the same way we did today, we got the job done."
(On the return of defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul and what that brought to the team)
"His presence; just his presence of being there. He had a couple of opportunities he got back there and you could tell he was just determined. He wants to get back to the quarterback and I think he did a good job."
(On if he was surprised that Pierre-Paul played a great deal of the game)
"I'm not surprised; he's a beast."
(On his overall assessment of how the offense played)
"I think we did a good job, I think we just need to execute better on some plays, but overall we had a good day in the office."
RB Shane Vereen
(On how he thought they played today)
"I think it was a good team win. It was our team's goal to come out and get a W and we were able to do that."
(On the Giants' running game and the running backs getting equal reps on the field)
"I think on me personally, it keeps me fresh longer throughout the game and it's a change of pace because each back that we have is different, so the defense has to prepare for four different guys."
(On how today's win will help going forward for the remainder of the season)
"It's just another step in the direction we are trying to go. It was a goal to come out in Tampa and win and that's what we did