Tom Coughlin, Post-Game, 08.22.11

Opening Remarks

Well we played better and we improved tonight. We had a lot of big plays in the game. I was glad to see so many guys make strong contributions. The blocked punt, the fourth down play by Cruz, with Hixon, David Carr played well tonight. Defensively, we did a good job pretty much all the way through against there ones. A lot of guys made strong contributions on special teams. I think, especially in the first half, we had a lot of big hits on kick-off coverage--Devin Thomas, naturally, as we saw, had some outstanding kick-returns. It was very well blocked. We're very pleased with that part of it; very disappointed in the injuries that occurred. That's the part of the game that just makes you shake your head. You extend the play time a little bit to take full advantage of the fact that we literally had no off-season and a very small preseason, very short preseason. So, we extended a little bit of play time tonight and we did have some guys that got nicked up. I don't have a whole lot of information on that, but I do know that Terrell was an ACL.

Q: How many plays was it over?

A: None of it was over, I didn't say that. I said we extended the plays, because it was the second game. I did not go over anything.

Q: How are you going to address the secondary injuries ?

A: We have to address it. We just have to make some decisions, whether or not there is anybody out there that we can bring in, and shuffle some guys around. Because of the 90, we had a lot of corners and a lot of safeties. That number has been depleted obviously.

Q: If it was a normal offseason, would Thomas still have been in the game?

A: We were going 25 to 30 snaps and that's exactly where we were--between 25 and 30 snaps. They had their ones in there--their first quarterback was in the game. We were facing a two-minute drill, which we thought would be a very good experience for our defensive team. It's one of those unexplainable kind of things. I'll have to look at it on tape, but it seemed like maybe they just ran into each other.

Q: How good to you feel seeing your defense make a goal line stand?

A: We had a couple of those tonight that were very good to keep them out of the end zone, to maintain the momentum on our part with them having four shots down there. To play good solid defense, that was an outstanding part of the game as well.

Q: Do you feel comfortable putting Aaron Ross in there as the starter?

A: Aaron played well tonight, thank goodness. It is a numbers thing and you have to have plenty of those guys around.

Q: Any news on Witherspoon?

A: They haven't finished the medical check on him.

Q: Was he one of the guys who was hurt that you talked about?

A: Yes he is.

Q: Is it serious?

A: It is serious as far as I am concerned. I don't know anything yet. It is just speculation.

Q: Can you talk about the improvements from this game in comparison to last?

A: I think it was a progression. We had a five practice week and we knew this was going to have to be our week for improvement because our next couple games are after very short weeks. We put a lot of emphasis on our coverage teams based on the week before. We put a lot of emphasis defensively on stopping the run and preventing big plays because we allowed some big plays the week before. Offensively, I don't know what the third down rate was but I know that was an emphasis, as was getting the running game going. I didn't think that was all that great, although we did have the one run at the end of the game. That was a nice thing to see but whether or not we really balanced out with our running game, I didn't quite feel that way, so there is more work to be done.

Q: What did you think about Herzlich's interception?

A: It was a heck of a play by that kid. It was one of those dream deals where he jumped up in the air and the quarterback is trying to throw the ball over him. Again it was a goal line situation and Mark makes a heck of a play. I am glad to see that from him.

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