New York Giants News And Notes: 'Grave Concern' Over Secondary Breakdowns

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Good morning, New York Giants fans! Let's get your day started with some news and notes regarding your favorite football team.

Giants coach Tom Coughlin Monday expressed "grave concern" over the continued breakdowns in communication in the team's secondary.

"The thing that I'm most discouraged about and disappointed is when we do have a breakdown in communication and we do have some type of an error that gives up a big play. And that should not be happening," Coughlin said. [Full Coughlin Transcript]

Here is another look at some of the issues in the Giants' secondary.

The Giants, as we know, now lead the NFC East and control their own playoff destiny.

"Hopefully this will again continue to motivate and excite us about the very difficult remainder of our schedule," Coughlin said, "I've always been a huge believer in you have to take care of your own business. Whenever you start to drift and to think that perhaps other people are going to help you out, I think you get in trouble. You have to take care of your own business. We realize how difficult each one of these games will be, but we put ourselves in position where if we can take care of our own business then what we've wanted all along will present itself as an opportunity for us."

Coughlin has, of course, pounded home the 'finish' message all season. The Giants have finished with six fourth-quarter victories. Now, facing a difficult schedule, they need to finish the season strong to make the playoffs for the first time in three seasons.

"It is not about style points, it is about having the opportunity to accomplish what we set out to accomplish at the beginning of the season, which was win the division," defensive tackle Chris Canty said. "Now we are in a pretty good position but we have three tough ballgames ahead of us. We know that we are going to have to finish. Coach Coughlin started it in training camp with the motto of ‘finish' and that is the mentality. That is the mentality of our football team for the next few weeks." [Full Canty Transcript]

Justin Tuck has 'no clue' if he'll play against Redskins | New York Daily News

Giant DE Justin Tuck had an MRI on his toe Monday and has "no clue," if he will be available to play Sunday against the Redskins. On his weekly radio spot on WFAN, Tuck said that he felt like he was "just the fourth man on the line. I was playing on one leg," in the Giants win over the Cowboys.

Tuck said he felt the injury first in the loss to Green Bay and then again on Wednesday when the team returned to the field for practice. It continued to get worse.

It is just the latest in what Tuck called a "laundry list," of injuries this season. He has missed time with a neck and groin injuries this season.

Is Manning the League's M.V.P.? - NYTimes.com

Manning has been very good–excellent even–for the Giants as the season swings toward its final three weeks. The question is, has he been the best? At one point it might have seemed outlandish to suggest that anyone other than Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers would win the most valuable player award, with New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees on the edge of the conversation.

Now, though, it is getting harder and harder to ignore Manning. What he has done this season with a patchwork offensive line, a mostly non-existent running game and a crew of receivers that, save Hakeem Nicks, had little cachet coming into the season, is simply remarkable.

To be sure, Manning is the M.V.P. of the Giants (with Jason Pierre-Paul a very solid runner-up) but does Manning deserve more? My thinking is that Rodgers still has the edge–his performance is just insane–but it sure is closer than I thought it would ever be.

For NY Giants' Osi Umenyiora, little relief from aching, may miss game vs. Washington Redskins - NY Daily News

Osi Umenyiora is unlikely to play against the Washington Redskins on Sunday, according to a source close to the defensive end.

The source said the progress on Umenyiora’s ankle has "been more down than up."

Umenyiora got hurt in the Giants’ loss in New Orleans two weeks ago.

Smith's season ends on IR with knee injury - Giants Blog - ESPN New York
Steve Smith’s season has come to an end as the Eagles placed the former Giants wide receiver on injured reserve on Monday with a bone bruise in his surgically-repaired left knee.

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