Philadelphia QB Donovan McNabb, 12.09.09

Q.  You have beaten the Giants three times in a row. Do you feel like maybe you have this team’s number?

A. No. Anytime that you play a divisional game and obviously a big rivalry game, it can go back and forth. I think in this situation you have two teams who feel that they are playing well, coming into the game confident and looking forward to the challenge of trying to improve and stay in the win column.

Q. What is it about the NFC East that makes these matchups such great rivalries?

A. It’s great teams and teams that find themselves in the hunt when the time comes. I think of everyone that knows about the NFC East and talks about the teams that we have and how competitive we are, it seems like everybody kind of falls off the bandwagon a little bit in the middle of the season and towards the end they join back on. Rightfully so, because when you talk about Dallas and New York, they are obviously two top teams that people focus on and are willing to do whatever it takes to win.

Q. Will this be about as physical as a football game will get?

A. I believe so. Two physical teams that don’t like each other too much. When you talk to people in Philly and talk to people in New York, it’s a love-hate relationship there.  It’s going to be a grind, we know it, they know it, but that is what makes the game exciting.

Q. What are your thoughts about Andy Reid’s contract extension and some thoughts on the long-term relationship you have had with him?

A. I am very happy for him. It is well deserved. The guy has had so much success over the past decade and we have competed in five NFC championships and a Super Bowl appearance.  Won the NFC East a number of times and just being competitive every year. It’s a tribute to the coach, as well as the players, where every year we find ourselves in great position. I think Andy has done a great job year in and year out of interchanging different guys when you have to and those guys seem to be ready when the time comes.

Q. Even when the Giants were struggling, did you think this team is not going to go away and would be one of the teams you would have to beat if you want to win the division?

A. I don’t look at our division when teams are struggling because teams still are very competitive. I mean everyone is probably down on the Washington Redskins and you see what happened with them against the New Orleans Saints, very competitive. They brought it to an undefeated team. I am sure they want some things back, but it was still a tough game. We don’t look at records or where teams are as far as rankings and categories. We know that every time we step onto the field it will be a battle.

Q. Why do you think you have won three in a row against the Giants?

A. We just eliminated mistakes more than they did. When you play a game like this it’s about who wins the turnover battle and who capitalizes on mistakes. I think we have had the opportunity of having less turnovers than them and have put ourselves in position to score when the time was needed. I think that not only for this particular game, but that is how you win games in this league.

Q. When you say capitalizing on mistakes, does that mean the quarterback play for both teams is paramount in importance?

A. Well, it is like that all the time. Who can take care of the ball and who is being smart with it. If there are opportunities down field to make play, if there is nothing down field, check it down to the back and give him an opportunity to pick up yards for you. On second and medium or third and short, you have to be able to convert and move the chains. There are a lot of ways to look at it, but that is how you win ballgames in this league.

Q. You have a lot of new blood on the offense. Talk about what those guys are bringing to the team?

A. It’s a mix of different things of what these guys have been able to bring to the table. That is what makes it exciting. You want to just reward these guys and give them opportunities to make plays for you. You also want to put these guys in position to be successful. I think we have been able to do that, we have a lot of guys around here who have just continued to strive in their opportunity. We have a lot more games ahead of us and it’s a growing process for them as well for all of us.

Q. You had to battle for your respect in Philly and Eli has had to do that in New York. Has Eli arrived at the point where the other quarterbacks in the league respect the progress that he’s made in his growth?

A. Eli definitely has something that I am looking for and I am trying to get and that is a Super Bowl ring. But Eli has definitely gained the respect of his peers and I think year in and year out he has continued to progress and obviously they are a tough team that you have to be ready for and have to prepare well for. On the offensive side, Eli is the trigger, he does a good job. I talk to him every time we play and I am just happy for the success that he has had.

Q. Are you happy that you are not Peyton’s younger brother?

A. I don’t think that is how any of us look at it. We don’t look at him as Peyton’s younger brother. He has made a name for himself just like Peyton has had to make a name for himself. You reward him in that way and give him that respect at least.

Q. Last time you played the Giants, there was a lot of confusion in the secondary. Was any of that because of stuff that you were doing?

A. I wouldn’t say more of a confusing game. I think it was a game where there were opportunities for us. You watch those guys on film flying around now and playing the way they played against Atlanta. They are making plays. It wasn’t an issue of could they make plays, they can definitely make plays. They got Aaron Ross back, I am sure they’ve got a lot of guys back healthy and want to take advantage of that opportunity.

Q. Do you see Aaron Ross becoming more comfortable at safety?

A. Well when you have experienced guys on the field, no matter where you put them, they adjust well. They feel confident with him back there or at corner. Obviously he can cover down if he needs to in the slot. He is making the right decisions for all those guys in the secondary.

Q. Do you have thoughts about playing at Giants Stadium for a final time?

A. It will be exciting; I am looking forward to it.

Q. Is the level of this competition in this division so great that whoever can come out of it will be very dangerous in the playoffs?

A. Well if you are going into the playoffs playing well, it could. But this is just one game, guys. A game that both teams need and we look forward to playing it.

Q. You have had some success up here even in bad weather situations. Is there a trick or skill for a quarterback to master throwing in the wind?

A.I don’t know. If you know, tell me. Just play the game. Hope they close that door where they kind of bring the trucks in so they won’t have that extra wind blowing in our face.

Q. Is it something you can work on?

A. You kind of just deal with it when it happens. There is no trick or anything to it. It’s something that you have to battle through when you are involved in it.

Q. Do you ever give thought to how much longer you want to play?

A. Yeah, I want to play for 20 years.

Q. Do you really give it some thought though?

A. No, I am still young and am enjoying the game. I don’t want to put a number on how long I want to play. But when I do decide to walk away from the game I do want to walk on my terms and nothing else and just be smart with the whole deal. Like I said, I am still young and enjoying the game and have a passion for putting everything on the line for my teammates.

Q. Is the success Michael Vick had last week something that will help him the rest of the way confidence-wise?

A. I think so. I think it is going to help him in the long run playing the quarterback position as well. I am happy for him and he did a great job for us, as well himself, and we look forward to more success.

Q. What impact do you think the Giants changes on the defensive lineup had last week on that group?

A. It’s tough to say. They were still a good defense anyway. With moving guys around, they are still the same guys just at different positions or with them bringing Osi in certain situations or Robbins. They are still good ballplayers and play with a lot of intensity. They were fired up playing against the Dallas Cowboys, and I don’t think it will be any different with the way they played against Dallas than the way they will play against us.

Q. Does the dominating way you won the first meeting have any impact going into this game?

A. No, it doesn’t. It’s a brand new ballgame and things can be different.

Q. Do you think Vick will be a starting quarterback somewhere and sometime soon?

A. Absolutely. The way the quarterback situations are in different places, there is no reason he shouldn’t get a shot at the quarterback position again.

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