Coach Tom Coughlin on disappointing loss
Tom Coughlin reflects on his team's 27-26 loss to the New England Patriots in Week 10.
Head Coach Tom Coughlin**
Extremely disappointing loss. Not much for me to say about it other than the frustration was—I mean, finish the game. Just get the game over with. We had the ball in the end zone that's knocked out of the hands. We have to kick a field goal, which makes you right away worried because they have an outstanding kicker who might kick it from 58 to 60 yards, he's done that before. You have a chance to intercept the ball in the middle of the field and it's just thrown up and we don't catch the ball. I thought there were times in the second half we weren't able, obviously, to sustain any kind of drives, and that was frustrating in itself. They did put a lot of pressure on the quarterback. We're up 10 and then we give up a punt return, which you know, jeez, here we go.
I'm very disappointed, upset, whatever the words might be. Guys practiced hard, they worked hard, they wanted it badly, they prepared well, they battled out on the field. We knew it would have to be physical. Was it as physical as I would've liked? I don't know, I would have to look at the numbers, but very frustrating loss.Q: On the Odell Beckham non-touchdown, did your coaches upstairs think that was a catch? How did they interpret it?
A: Initially they did, but it could've gone (the other way). They were open about that part, too. It could be ruled against us. We had two other plays. We weren't able to score. We already had the two-point play on the field ready to go for two. There you go.
Q: On the first down play there, did you consider trying to run it to try and force them to use a timeout or take the two-minute warning?
A: The first down play?
Q: The one that went to Beckham. So instead of throwing it…
A: I'll take the touchdown. I'll take the touchdown.
Q: On the Danny Amendola punt return, did it appear as though he signaled for a fair catch? It looked like he was waving his hands.
A: He did something, which is normally the way it is. He did something, which slowed—which whatever he did, (Dwayne) Harris didn't finish the play.
Q: Was there anything that Odell Beckham should have or could have done?
A: On that play?
Q: On the touchdown play. Like bring it in somehow?
A: Hang onto the ball. Get the ball and put it away. The one thing I noticed with (Malcolm) Butler all night long, are very quick hands, and his hands were in there on the ball a lot. He'll learn.
Q: What do you say to Landon Collins about the missed interception?
A: Play's there, you've got to make the play. I mean, he's throwing it up down the middle of the field with no one, there's no one even there. Catch the ball and the game's over. I'm sending the victory team out. I mean, it's just a shame. I don't know. I don't know how to explain it. I mean, it looked like he had it at first and the ball was out when he hit the ground.
Q: I don't know if there are degrees of disappointment with losses, but you've obviously had some very tough ones late in games this season. Does this feel worse?
A: They're all (bad). If you don't win, they're all miserable. I don't look at it in degrees, I just look at it in terms of the frustration that goes along with it because of what could've been. It's not that far away from being a win. Just finish the thing off. There were no timeouts. They were operating with no timeouts and only went to the sideline maybe once.
Q: Coach, you had a chance earlier after a turnover to…
A: That was an unfortunate series. There is no other way around it. We didn't do anything to threaten and the ball was turned over right there and it would have been outstanding, but we went backwards. We had the penalties right off the bat, then we took the sack and were out of field goal range.
Q: When you lose a number of these games like this --- you are playing well against good teams but don't finish. Are you concerned at all with any carryover?
A: They are going to come back and battle back and compete. These games against that present a great challenge for you, it is inspirational to the great competitors, they line up and battle against a very good football team, an undefeated football team and many of the writers are talking about them going undefeated and that was a highly motivating factor. You love to play these games, you really do and the frustration --- they will hurt all day tonight and all day tomorrow and we all will, we all will and probably well into the bye week, but maybe that is a good thing.
Q: You've learned a lot about your team in difficult spots this year. Did you learn anything differently with the way you played today?
A: I learn something every time out. When I look at the tape I'm sure I'll make some observations that will allow me to have a better perspective about certain things.
Q: On the play where Eli rolled out, that was very similar to the play in Dallas. Was there something to be made there?
A: No, they covered. They were obviously in a zone and the corner stayed right out there and took the underneath route away and it would have been a dangerous thing for [Eli] to try to come back and he had been caught from behind earlier so it just --- there was no pressure, so it ended up being a zone type of thing and he was trying to do that and used up their last time out.
Q: Why might it be a good thing for your team to be hurting well into the bye week?
A: It might not be a good thing, but it is what it is. It hurts to lose, it hurts when you put as much into it as these young men did, coaching staff did, to put what they put into it and not come away with a win --- when it seems the frustration of there is the game, just win the game.
Q: What did you think of your defense overall?
A: Yeah, we are getting better, we are getting better. We gave up some runs early on and then we settled down and did a good job with the run, I thought. We gave up a big play --- we gave up the play to Gronkowski in the middle of the field and that hurt obviously. We knew basically how far they needed to get to a field goal and that hurt, too.
Q: You have made a pretty good living here on the mantra "finish." Why is this group having so much trouble finishing?
A: The other guy finished the game. We didn't get it done. We could have had the game over with and been kneeling down, there was that circumstance --- we could have scored a touchdown and went for two, they couldn't kick a field goal, they had no timeouts. There was all kinds of things that could've happened. That is why you play the game.
Q: Any sense on the severity of Weston Richburg?
A: Not that I know of. [It was] an ankle and he was out.
QB Eli Manning**
Q: Eli, there were obviously a lot of opportunities to seal this game. Is there one part that is particularly frustrating to you?
A: Well, I think just at the end of the game, not getting the touchdown right there. Had a couple opportunities and we just didn't make it. For the first throw to Odell [Beckham Jr.] to the corner route and then on third down, they played it well, you know, went to the play and they passed it off and played it well and right there just had to go down and make sure we get the field goal, but yeah we had some opportunities. Obviously can't turn the ball over in the red zone—earlier in the game on the fumble. Our defense gets a turnover, we go backwards on the sack, so you know we definitely had some opportunities. You have to look at it at the very end, we had a chance to win and that's what you want and defense did a great job getting us some turnovers. We put a great drive together and we just got to find a way to get the touchdown right there and give us a little more lead.
Q: You obviously had success in late game situations, not just against these guys, but a lot of them. You come up in a situation like that, are you surprised it doesn't work out, you're not able to put it away?
A: We had a good drive, we needed to get the field goal. We were close. We had some opportunities. Sometimes they play well and make some plays. They did a good job. They make it tough for us, went to goal line personnel. First play had opportunity with Odell [Beckham Jr.]—makes a good play, knocks it out of his hands. Second down they had pretty good pressure and what you do in that situation is an all-out blitz. You don't have enough blockers to block them all and just didn't quite get to hang in there and wait to see how the play was going to develop. You know played it again, played it well on third down, but you know just one of those tough situations where we didn't run enough clock and had to settle for a field goal right there.
Q: In the first half you missed a c-pass to [Jerome] Cunningham in that first half. Was that route ever open in the second half where you could have run to the other side because it seemed like the safeties began to come up as the offense was moving forward?
A: Yeah, I had the opportunity right there to hit one and you know it's one of those he's got a post route and he got inside on the guy so it was hard to throw as you don't want those line drives because the defender might under cut it and throw it right to him. So, you try to put a little air and let him run under it and just overthrew it just enough where he couldn't make the play. We ran some similar routes later on, they covered it pretty well, they did a good job being physical with their tight ends kind of hitting them at the line of scrimmage and making their releases tough.
Q: Eli, you mentioned not running enough clock. Was there any thought at all to running the ball there?
A: We had some runs called and they weren't going to let us run. They had goal line personnel in and they just weren't going to let us run the ball in that situation, so the one to Odell [Beckham Jr.] on first down was actually a run call, but threw the pass on the outside and just kind of the way it was going to be, they weren't going to let us run the ball right there.
Q: When you kick the field goal and you go ahead, how comfortable or uncomfortable are you about 108 seconds left as you're standing […]?
A: I've got confidence in our defense. They played well throughout the night and done a good job slowing them down and obviously had some opportunities right there. You've got to give Tom Brady and their offense credit. They converted on a fourth down and made enough plays to move the ball and got close enough to the field goal, but you know our defense played very well all night and I had confidence in them that they'd get the stop.
Q: Were you surprised that the touchdown was overturned?
A: No. Just looking at it, it's kind of the way the rule is making the football move, especially in the end zone. You've got to have it the whole time and so I wasn't surprised after seeing the replay.
Q: Do you feel again like one got away today? A winnable game got away?
A: Yeah, we've had a lot of close ones. We've just got to be able to hold onto a lead and so you can always look back and see were there opportunities lost and where you could have been the difference in making the play, but you never know how that's going to turn out. It's all a matter of getting it to the end and making the plays when it counts in the fourth quarter. We made some good plays, we had a heck of a drive going getting the ball on our own three-yard line and driving down there to the five and the big third down conversions and some nice great plays and just close, you know. Close, but not as good as it could be. We could have actually got the touchdown and would have give us a bit of more breathing room for our defense.
Q: Eli, after the early touchdown to Odell [Beckham Jr], they seemed to really contain him almost to the end of the fourth quarter there. What were they doing that was…
A: They did a good job mixing up their coverages, playing a lot of two-high safety even a single-high, rotating the safety to his side, not giving us anything easy. So they had a plan for him, we knew they would. I was surprised on the long touchdown they weren't […] over to his side even more, so we kind of figured that might be the plan. But after he hit that first one that was really the emphasis to keep a guy kind over his head. But it opened up opportunities for other guys to make plays. But offensively we played pretty well, moved the ball, had some opportunities and even gave away a few opportunities not getting touchdowns and getting in the green zone and not getting points out of a few opportunities.
Q: Any concern just that your group needs to once again come back from a difficult game? You did it obviously you were 0-2, you kind of evened things out, but you're back in that situation. You've got to recover again.
A: I think the fact that, if I'm not mistaken, I think we're still in the lead in the division, so if anything we've still got a great opportunity to finish the season strong. Obviously we've got a bye week right now which is late in the season so guys will be able to us that to get healed up, to get healthy and we've got to come back and our season's going to depend on these last six games and that's the way we look at it. We've got six games to, if we handle our business and play well, play the way we need to play and win some games, make the playoffs, and we'll be happy.
WR Odell Beckham Jr.Q: How was it going toe to toe against the defending Super Bowl champions? **
A: We lost the game. I lost us the game with the play down in the end zone, a play that should have been made. You can't leave it up to the officials to get anything right. You've got to make the play yourself and it was just a case of playing the play longer than the opponent.
Q: Did you feel like you had that ball?
A: Yeah. I mean I caught it. I trust in my hands. I go up and catch it. You come down with two feet and you can't try to do anything too early. You've got to complete the whole process. It didn't go the way we wanted it to.
Q: The NFC East is down this year and you showed well against one of the elite teams. Going into the bye week, can you take any solace in that?
A: There's a lot of season left to be played. There's still chances to get to where we need to be. This is one game in the season. Unfortunately, this is a game that we all wanted to win. I definitely lost it for us. You can't win it, but you can definitely lose it and I feel like I did that. You've just got to come up with it.
Q: Was there any explanation from the refs at all?
Q: Did you seek one?
Q: Did you have to make a move of some sort after you were already down?
A: No. I didn't think you had to do anything else but catch the ball and get two feet in the end zone. I don't really know much more.
Q: Did you feel you had the ball and got two feet down?
A: Yeah. I definitely caught the ball and got two feet down. Like I said, it's just playing the play longer than the opponent. It came in late and knocked it out after I felt like it was already a catch.
Q: After the first touchdown catch, did they do anything different coverage wise?
A: They played the safety over the top. They had them rolling a lot and they played a lot of trail technique and the safety would just be over the top. It's hard to hit a deep ball on that and you have a safety over the top. He's going to be right there towards the end of the play.
Q: Were you surprised to see single coverage on the opening play?
A: No. I know that they've got a very good corner over there. Malcolm (Butler) is a good corner and he's a guy that they trust to do what he does over there. I think he did a very good job today at making it more difficult for us with the technique they were playing. You've got a man playing underneath and a man playing over the top – it makes it hard.
Q: How would you describe the move you made to beat the safety after you had gone past Butler on the touchdown?
A: At this point, it doesn't really matter. A touchdown in the first couple minutes of the game and we still lose the game because of me. It's not something that's going to sleep well.
Q: When you say, "Because of me…" are you blaming yourself for the loss?
A: Yes. I didn't catch the touchdown. We could have had a touchdown and made the Patriots go down and have to score and not put a kicker who is one of the best kickers in the league for a chance to kick an easy field goal.
DE Jason Pierre-Paul**
Every day I'm getting better or whatever. Still got some things to take care of.
Q: Obviously a championship team you saw, you guys fought until the end with an undefeated team, defending champion. Do you feel like you guys made a statement to the rest of the league that the Giants are an elite team?
A: We've got a lot of work to do. Yeah, we're a championship team but that was back then. This is a whole new team, whole new faces. We've got a lot of work to do.
Q: How frustrating is a loss like this?
A: Anytime you lose, it's frustrating. We had it right there until the end. Tom Brady is a good quarterback, you know? We were expecting him to do that, but we expected to stop the ball and get off the field. But he's a good quarterback, what can I say?
Q: As a leader on this team, the NFC East is a little bit down, you can't let this game get you guys down going forward.
A: We've got to move forward. It's a terrible loss. We wanted to win so badly, but they executed better than us today. But we've got to move on. We've got a bye week and guys are leaving or whatever, so we've got to come back and get on the roll again.
Q: What was it that you didn't like about the glove?
A: I just felt like going with the club.
Q: Is this kind of strange timing for you now with the bye? Everyone has just played 10 games.
A: Yeah, I'm just getting warmed up. I'm just getting warmed up, man. Stuff happens. It is what it is, but I'm just getting warmed up and next game will be better.
Q: Are you going to go home?
A: No, I'm staying up here. I'd rather stay up here and keep my mind focused and get ready for the next team.
Q: In another year, you would have gone home?
A: No, not necessarily. Last year, I didn't go home, I stayed up here. It doesn't make a difference. I'm just going to get some studying in on the next team and prepare myself to get better.
Q: What can you do during this bye week?
A: Watch film, first watch this film and see what I did wrong and what can I correct. Then start studying the next team. The next team is our next opponent.
Q: What about physically?
A: Physically, I'm good. Physically, I think I'm in good shape. I don't know, I'm tired man.
Q: This was the first time you'd lost to Brady, right?
A: Yeah, it's the first time I lost to Brady. I didn't even think about that, it's the first time.
Q: Not a good feeling?
A: You win some, you lose some. At the end of the day, I'm just happy to be out there having fun.
Q: You've seen progress?
A: Yeah, we've got progress. That was one of the top teams.
Q: I mean personally.
A: Yeah, I'm getting better every game. Every game I'm getting better.
CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie**
A: It's very frustrating, there's plenty of times this season we had the opportunity to win and we just didn't. It's very, very frustrating. We had the opportunity to seal the game and didn't come up with it. We've just got to find a way to win.
Q: You guys went toe to toe with the world champs. Going into the bye week, did you guys send a little bit of a statement out to the league?
A: Oh, definitely. A definite hard fought battle. The defending champs, what they've been doing this season, coming in 8-0 and just on a roll. You go out there and get them on their heels a little bit, and you rattle them. We had a chance to win, you've just got to come up with it. That being said, you take that into the (bye) knowing that you went toe to toe with the defending champs and you can play with anybody.
Q: Coming off of a loss like this, you're a veteran, you're a leader on this team, what do you tell the guys going into the bye week?
A: Take this game, let's get in the film room, understand where the mistakes went wrong and why we lost. Take the positives away that we went against one of the best, and we had it. Were right there, we've just got to find a way to dig deeper.