Redskins 23, Giants 10: Eli Manning Post-Game Press Conference

Eli Manning of the New York Giants stands on the sidelines during the last minutes of a loss to the Washington Redskins at MetLife Stadium on December 18, 2011 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)

Q: Are you baffled by what you saw today?
A: They played better than us. That's all it came down to. They had a good plan defensively. Some things that we were expecting, we didn't get. We still had opportunities for some big plays early on - we didn't capitalize on. That hurt us. The defense got us turnovers early in the game. We got nothing off of that. Even late in the second half, when we got into scoring range, we didn't score. We had turnovers, had a missed field goal, had a stop on downs. It came down to we just didn't execute as well as we needed to. Their offense played well, kept us off of the field a good bit. But we didn't convert on third downs early in the game and missed on some big plays.

Q: What did you think you would have been able to do today, but didn't?
A: We thought we'd be able to hit a few play actions and didn't get any of those. Didn't get any balls downfield on that. On third down we knew there was going to be some opportunities for some plays down the field. They do some things defensively where we thought we had a good plan and could hit a few big plays. That's what it was going to take - a few big plays, some long touchdowns to spark our offense and loosen [the defense up] also. They were there. We just didn't capitalize on those. We got down, obviously had some turnovers that hurt us. But we still had opportunities in the third and fourth quarter to go down and get some points, make it a game, and we weren't able to score.

Q: Do you still believe this team can make the playoffs?
A: Yeah. We have to. We've bounced back from tough games and from losses before. We know we have a short week and are playing a good Jets team. But we have to have a great week of preparation. We know there's going to be opportunities. There's going to be plays. We just have to make them.

Q: What happened on the pass intended for Manningham that was intercepted?
A: Had a fade route out there. They were doubling our tight end and Z so I was going to throw it to the back corner of the end zone. That's where we always try to hit those. I guess he went inside at the last second so it made it a little bit too easy of a play for the defensive back.

Q: What was going through your head when you threw that interception?
A: Disappointed. Upset. There was a great opportunity. We were going to go down and score and get back into the game. We knew we needed three scores at that point - three touchdowns at that point. We hit a big play, drove down there very quickly. Would have been nice to get a touchdown, put a little pressure on the Redskins knowing that we've been good with those two-minute drives. It was going to eat up more clock and make it tough on us to get enough chances to get back in the game.

Q: Did you feel that in the second half you could have come back?
A: Yeah. I thought we felt at the end of the first half when you go down there, had a good drive with just a minute, got into field goal range and got three points. Hopefully we were going to come out and get the ball in the second half. Throwing an interception on the first series of the second half doesn't help. But we got the ball back the next time, drove right down there and had a sack on third down that prevented us from keeping the drive going and then had the missed field goal.

Q: Did not hitting Hakeem Nicks on the long pass at the beginning of the game change the complexion of the game?
A: No. That was early in the game and obviously would have been nice to have had that, get a touchdown or get in scoring position. But there were still other opportunities. There were a lot of opportunities in the game. We had a lot of plays in the game that could have been a lot better, could have turned out a lot better for us.

Q: Will looking toward the next game help you to get over this one?
A: That's the good thing about having a short week. We'll get back to work on Tuesday and get our focus on the Jets. That's all we have to worry about. We still control our destiny. It's a matter of can we get back, put this one behind us and prepare to play a great game this week.

Q: What would you tell your fans after today?
A: We're competing and we're trying to win. We didn't play as well as we needed to today and Washington played better than us. We're sorry about that, but we're going to get back to work and get ready for the Jets.

Q: Did you feel you weren't as sharp today?
A: No. I had a poor pass to Hakeem on the interception - just underthrew it a little bit. I knew when I let it go it was going to be a little under-thrown. I was just hoping he could knock it away, but Hall made a good play on it. Besides that, we never got much going, never got in a great rhythm in the first half. At the start of the game had a lot of incompletions - never got in good down and distance and never got anything going as an offense.

Q: You've been asked to carry this team a lot this season. Is that a burden to you?
A: No. We're a team and we find ways to win games. We find ways to move the ball. Today we ran the ball well at times. The passing game early on wasn't as sharp as we needed it to be. [The Redskins] did some new things, some different things defensively to try to slow us down and it worked.

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