Q. You guys have won a couple games in a row on the road now; I guess that is a good sign?
A. Anytime you win anywhere is a good sign. We are excited, but we know it is going to be a great challenge this weekend going on the road playing against this football team. It is the best we felt at any point during this season. I think we have played our best football the last couple of weeks. We are going to try to build on it this week and we know there is a huge challenge in front of us.
Q. When you watch a team that just gave up 48 points and the opposing quarterback put on a show through the air what are your thoughts?
A. I went and watched the film. I think everybody gets excited when they hear that and thinks, okay, there is a chink in the armor, and then I go back and watch the film. I think it was impressive what the Saints did. But I think the Giants were there and had many opportunities to make plays on some of those balls. To New Orleans’ credit they made the plays and the Giants didn’t. I don’t think it was a blowout. I don’t think it was that the Giants didn’t show up. I think they played a good football game. I just think New Orleans came out hot and some of those receivers made some great plays, Drew (Brees) made some great throws. It was two good football teams playing against each other. You don’t watch the film and just think, ‘Oh man, there is stuff open all over the place.’ This defense is still really solid, still in position to make a lot of plays. It just so happens that this past game they didn’t make the plays they usually make or could have made. I don’t think that is a trend with this football team. They are going to be solid and we are going to have to be very efficient.
Q. You have some pretty good playmakers, too; you think you could take advantage of some of those matchups?
A. Well, I mean I think we always go into games feeling that we have good matchups with our receivers. Still at the same time, you have to play within the scheme, you have to make reads. You don’t just throw balls up because these guys are good playmakers on the other side of the ball. In the one on one situations, I think we always feel that we have good matchups. We don’t go into the game thinking that by any means. We are going to try to take advantage of the opportunities we have.
Q. Justin Tuck said that you seem to get the ball out a little faster this year. Is that something you have worked on or what led to that?
A. I mean, I have no idea. It goes year to year. If I’m successful, people say I am getting the ball out quick. If I am not successful, then people say I am holding the ball too long. I don’t think I have ever held the ball long. To me, it is all based on my reads. If my read is there, then I take it and I get the ball out as fast as I need to. It is not anything conscious that I am doing. I don’t feel that I am doing anything better. Maybe our scheme, maybe the way our receivers are playing helps me to get the ball out quicker. I think sometimes it is the schemes we run and the plays that are designed. I really don’t know if I am getting it out any quicker. I don’t have any evidence to say one way or the other.
Q. Have you heard that from other people this season?
A. No, I heard when I was in New York that I held the ball too long. That one season I heard that I held the ball too long. I hadn’t heard that this year, but that is the one thing that throughout my career people have said about me is that I get the ball out as quick as anybody. I don’t really have any idea one way or the other if it has worked out that way or not, but I always do my best and try not to hold the ball.
Q. Do you feel like you haven’t thrown the ball as deep this year? Are you throwing shorter routes?
A. Yeah, I mean we are. Not by design. We are trying to take opportunities down the field, but things haven’t worked out for us, whether defenses are playing back, whether it is them double-teaming or two guys on the guy who is trying to stretch the field or protection issues on certain plays. I don’t think we are trying to go down the field any less. I just think the way it has played out is that we haven’t had the opportunities. But we are happy to take advantage of those if anyone wants to give it to us. I just think it has been harder. Different games, different schemes and the way things have been dictated to get the ball out, they haven’t been advantageous to taking a lot of big shots down the field.
Q. Are you a one dimensional team and is that a concern?
A. Always a concern. Always a concern when you don’t do everything well. Especially offensively when you are not balanced. We are always concerned about that and we always want to be better at it. But, again, you have to play your strengths. If we go into a game and we are having trouble running the ball, we feel good about throwing, it puts more pressure on that part of the game, but we feel we are pretty good at it. If that is what the game dictates, then we will go with it and try to win that way.
Q. You are going up against a good defense that is coming off a bad game. Do you feel like, ‘Oh great, they are going to come after me?’
A. Not really. I think any time you are playing a good football team and they lose a game, and probably, like this team, it is a good football team that very seldom loses two games in a row. That is where the challenge lies. You get guys angry. Not that they weren’t focused, but you lose a game, guys get a little more focused. They want to make up for that, they want to get back on track. I think that is the big concern. Not so much that they are going to come after us. We’ve got a very good football team on the heels of their first loss. They are going to want to right those wrongs, they want to get back on track and it is in their stadium. I think that is what concerns us more than anything.
Q. You could see last week at the Saints those receivers going up and making plays. Is anybody as good as Larry Fitzgerald at going up and making plays on the ball?
A. Not many. He is really good at going up in one on one situations and getting the ball out of the air, no question. He is the best that I have ever been around and one of the best that has played this game. But again, you have to get in those right matchups, right situations to give your guys the best chance to win. But yeah, he is really good at that when we give him those opportunities.
Q. There have been a lot of comparisons between Hakeem Nicks and Anquan Boldin. Have you seen any of those similarities?
A. I haven’t had a chance to watch their offense this year much. I have seen some of the highlights and some of the plays that he has made but not enough to make those comparisons. If he is being compared to Anquan, then he must be a pretty darn good football player that is all I can say. Anquan is one of the best I have been around who plays at a unique level in a unique way. So, if he is being compared to that that is pretty high praise for a rookie.
Q. How far has Eli come as a quarterback since you knew him?
A. Just talking about it here, he just continually impresses me with the way he plays the game, the command of the situations, his poise regardless of the situation, regardless of what is being thrown at him, regardless of if the play is good or bad, he just seems in such command of what is going on out there. He just seems to be a natural leader. Guys follow him, he doesn’t have to be demonstrative, just in his own way, the way he plays the game, the way he lets everything fall by the wayside, the way he has never let the pressure get to him, whether that was New York City and being the savior or being Peyton’s brother. I have just been continually impressed by the way he plays the game, the way he continues to lead. He has become one of the best quarterbacks in the league and one of the best pressure quarterbacks in the league. I just enjoy watching him and knowing him. I cheer for him because of the kind of person he is. I am just impressed.