Tom Coughlin Press Conference, 11.21.11

Opening Remarks

Good afternoon. Not fun, not fun at all. The coaches looked at the tape this morning and spent time on it and of course we started off with special teams and then O and D. Then they had their debriefing sessions. It doesn’t change any. The disappointment is there. The players feel very badly about the outcome of the game but there is no intent to start out completely. This is exactly what the circumstances are. We are in a division now and how that has changed has changed with one loss and then the road ahead. The six-game schedule that we have now and the schedule and games going forward with the immediate game going forward. We are going to go as hard as we possibly can to rectify and correct where those things need to be corrected and then raise our spirits as we prepare for our next opponent. 

Q: Eli said the offense needs to get going earlier in games. How can you start faster as a team?

A:  It is not just start fast offensively, it is starting fast in all phases and we certainly wanted to do that last night. The opponent has something to do with that as well. I will tell you this, offensively, two of the first three plays should have been huge plays. One was dropped and the other one the ball didn’t go where it was supposed to go and there was pressure and it went somewhere else. If it is that kind of answer you are looking for, I am in total agreement with you. 

Q: What is the proper response to some of the things that happened yesterday like the hit on Eli?

A: The proper response is recognizing what has taken place and when the ball is snapped, that is when you do something about it. You don’t so something about it outside of the lines and outside of the playing of the game. That is where the problems occurred. It is not about being penalized, it is about being as physical as you possibly can when the ball is snapped, doing your job. You can’t lose your poise, you can’t lose sight of what your objective or goal is. You are not going to do anything except frustrate yourself if you don’t conduct yourself if you are in the rules. No way will it ever come from here that you can do it any other way.

Q: What do you say to your fan base that is worried right now?

A: It is within the power of our team to correct this situation. This is the same team that went to New England a few weeks ago. There are not any changes there and that is what I pointed out to them today. It is the same football team that went into a place that won 20 straight football games and won. The ability to do that is certainly here. We talked last week about details and so on and so forth and we did get off of our game early in the game. We came back to it a little better in the second half but we were off our game. The approach to each and every game is that the player is fully aware of what he is entering into and I don’t think in one instance that was the case last night. I think that the group has it within our power to change the circumstances and switch the situation around and, again, play at a very high level. I am glad that I am not a betting man but I thought yesterday would be a huge opportunity for our team. I thought we had a wonderful stage and within the division was certainly all that you would possibly need. The team that came in here was desperate and they played that way. They left here with what they came in here for. 

Q: Would you say the anger and emotion from the players today was a good sign?

A: In my meeting it had some emotion and frustration and what may have been some anger but I think as long as what you are describing is done the right way, it is a good thing. I am certain that it is not meant to be anything other than that, to up the level of intensity. It is a six-game schedule now. To become the physical team that we talk about being, it is difficult to do that when you rush for 29 yards. 

Q: What can you do about the offensive line? It is Thanksgiving and you surely must’ve believed your running game would’ve gotten going by now.

A: The two weeks before not bad, they were better and yesterday was different. We didn’t block them and you have to block them. You block them and a lot of things go.

Q: You don’t think the offensive line is just better at pass blocking?

A: You wouldn’t be able to say that after yesterday either. 

Q: Do you have any issues with the playcalling or are there some suggestions you might want incorporated in that area?

A: Yesterday there were no first downs. I have said this before, it is like throwing mud at the wall and trying to see what sticks if you are not making first downs. You can second-guess anybody at any time in this business about a call or a series of calls. We have had outstanding playcalling. We didn’t get anything done yesterday and we are all taking blame and you can start with me. I am sure everybody else will fall in line.

Q: Is a team lacking intensity the worst thing as a coach you can see?

A: It is very serious, yes. You don’t want to see an individual or a group not be able to do their job because they are getting their butt whipped. You certainly don’t ever want to see that as a player or a coach or whomever.

Q: What did you see from your linebackers that made you either happy or concerned going forward?

A: I think they continue to move in the right direction. Herzlich, I think, did some good things last night. He gave us some real encouragement. I think that Paysinger and Williams, you are going to continue to develop them in the roles that they have certainly fallen into. They do cross over from run stoppers and pass defenders. With Jacquian, he can rush the passer as well. There is progress being made. It may be slow but it is being made.

Q: Did you give Vince Young too much time?

A: We felt that way after the game. We certainly did not upset his rhythm at all. He was able to sit there. We were only credited with one sack and one quarterback hit.

Q: Is that a problem with not being physical enough or scheme?

A: Some of both.

Q: Did any players say ‘it’s not that bad’ when you gave them your assessment of the game?

A: No.

Q: Do you worry about what you said?

A: I don’t worry about it if it’s what I think is truthful. I’m not going to embarrass any one individual nor am I going to speak before I think about it, but when you’re upset the way I was upset and I had just come from the players and said basically the same thing, I don’t really think there’s anyone that would take real issue with what I say. As a matter of fact, there are probably many, many more in agreement. I wish I wasn’t right, if that’s the way it’s coming.

Q: Being aware of what was being said about the Eagles and preparing and being able to execute is that a mental thing?

A: Well, to me, it’s all mental. I’m constantly changing back and forth between trying to make them understand that a team is not as bad as their record might be versus a team that is performing at a very high level, but we still have an opportunity to win. You’re always going back and forth with that. And I don’t know this to be a fact, our guys might not have even paid any attention to what was being said out there, but I know because of the little bit of time – early morning when I’m trying to find a score here or there, some of the things that were being said about the Eagle team last week were ridiculous. With the talent level of that team, to be talking about them the way that people were. What do you think Vince Young was brought in for? So when Michael Vick gets hurt they can keep right on going with the same offense.

Q: The issues with the running game, were they blocking or was Jacobs not seeing the holes?

A: They were pretty much the blocking. But it’s not just the line now. You have a tight end, you have a fullback and you have some wide receivers involved, too. And as you know, one of the things that might happen on offense in football, you might block six of them and one of them is free and that guy makes the hit. They did a good job last night. They tackled well. We didn’t get a lot of yardage after first contact, anything of that nature. Like I said, they were a desperate team and they certainly did play like it.

Re: Jacobs’ reaction to the crowd booing him

A: The crowd is going to boo. I don’t see any reason to pay any attention to it. Make a good play and you’ll hear it the other way around. It’s just part of the game.

Q: Tuck said this team seems to play better as underdogs.

A: (Smiling) He talks too much. Really, what does that have to do with it? You have one game at a time. You have to line up and play well each week, week in and week out. And you have to figure out what the circumstances are and you have to maneuver yourself into a position where if it’s something that needs to be gained, respect for the opponent, then figure out how to do that for yourself. At our level, it’s always cutting edge. Anybody can beat anybody any place, anywhere, any time. All teams are talented. Look at the league as we’ve seen it this year. I don’t have a lot of time for that kind of talk. You have a job to do. You have 16 weeks. You have all kinds of information available to you, the greatest technology in the world, and you just have to be well prepared for your opponent, whoever it is, whenever it is.

Q: How do you think Prince did?

A: I think the kid played well. I think he did alright. We didn’t expect for him to play that long and he did play quite extensively. I thought he did an admirable job for the first time that he stepped on the field. Remember, he’s the guy that chased McCoy down even at the very last play, out of bounds on the two yard-line. I give him a lot of credit for that as well.

Q: Did you think you should have brought more blitzers on the pass rush?

A: Well, there’s a time and a place for everything. Sometimes you can do a good job of baiting people into things if you use a variety. When it’s not effective, no matter how many personnel you’re putting up there to rush, then that’s another issue. You could be bringing six or seven and not get home as well. There are not a lot of times that we brought the house, but we did bring five and what have you and we still didn’t have a whole lot of success. They did a good job. We’ve had two or three game plans now and you see it. There are extra people there to protect. They are one or two receiver routes so that the pass rush is well protected against. Sometimes there are one and one-half or two blockers for whoever the rushers are. We have to make the adjustment to that type of scheme as well.

Q: Can you talk about injuries?

A: There are a bunch of guys nicked today. This is a different kind of week for us. They do have an extra day to rest. Michael Coe did injure a shoulder. He’s going to require surgery. We’re going to lose him, but I would rather wait and see on any of these others that, hopefully, if they are out, they’re not out for long.

Q: What about Derrick Martin, does he have a hamstring injury?

A: He does and for that I’ll say day-to-day, but we’ll see.

Q: Are you happy to get an extra day?

A: If you think you have an extra day, take a look ahead. You don’t get extra days in this business. Being on schedule and so-on and so-forth is what you always hope for. We’ll use the time right and proper and we’ll get the extra day’s rest and maybe it is a good time from that standpoint. I don’t know. We’ll see. It may look like it, but come next Tuesday it won’t look like you have a lot of extra time.

Q: Is Jimmy Kennedy back on the 53-man roster?

A: He’s coming back on this afternoon.

Q: Will Beatty?

A: He’s continuing to see what this back issue is and if we can do anything about it to help him.

Q: Ballard?

A: I think it’ll end up being an elbow that he can play with.

Q: Boley and Bradshaw coming back?

A: We’re going to see where they’re at either tomorrow or Wednesday in terms of running. Seeing if they can practice, to what extent can they practice.

Q: Given the issues with the running game, will you hurry to get Bradshaw back?

A: Not unless they tell me it’s not going to be one and done or something like that. We’ve waited for Ahmad, and rightfully so. I don’t know that [the doctors] are just going to give us the green light. When they do and they say he can play and he can take a hit, he’s going to be sore for the rest of the season, but that he’ll be able to come back and play the following week, then we’ll take that into consideration as well.

Q: It sounds like you would give him a week to get back before you try to play him?

A: I’m not really going to say that because suppose he feels really good, better than you think. So we’ll just play that one by ear, if we can get out there and running. He was around on the sideline last night, not a very happy camper.

Q: Is it good for the players to see you so upset?

A: I think it’s okay that they see me like that. I don’t blame anybody and I don’t single anybody out except myself. But I don’t mince any words and I don’t hide any of the facts from them in terms of records that I personally keep and obviously the stats that everybody knows, in terms of how you chart to win. I will say this to you, the frustration here now is to get three interceptions and hold somebody to 17 points and not win. I can stand up here and pontificate all I want, that is very difficult to understand. That’s what we preach for all of the time. We did win the turnover battle, we tied the fourth quarter and we held them to 17 points, a team that’s known to score whatever number of points – just put 34 on Dallas a couple of weeks ago. And for us to not win that game, that is even further stuck in my craw because of the way we played offensively. And yet we still should’ve tied the score and put it into overtime – sitting there with 1:25 to go.

Q: Your voice is rising just talking about it now…

A: My blood pressure is out of sight.

Q: Do you think the hit on DJ Ware was a penalty?

A: From my understanding, that is not a penalty. He was advancing the ball up the field. The tackler came to tackle.

Q: Is he better?

A: He appeared to be better, but he’s going to have to pass all of the tests.

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