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Eli Manning, 11.04.09

Q. Do you get anything out of the fact that you and Philip Rivers were traded for each other on draft day? Do you think about that at all?

A. Nah, really haven’t. This is the Giants versus San Diego. It is about us getting back on track and getting that winning feeling again. I think that is my only concern. I think that is kind of in the past.

Q. Talk about what it is going to take to get the team back on track after the three losses.

A. Just preparing well, having a great week of practice and going out there and performing better on the field. There is no secret. There is no, you have to exactly do this, it is just about going out there and performing better. Everybody just being prepared and executing at a high level that we know we can.

Q. What about some of the characteristics of the San Diego defense?

A. They are very talented on defense. It is not a team that we play very often so you’ve got to watch a lot of film, see some of their tendencies and what they like to do. Especially see the players and how they perform. I thought we were off to a good start and we just have to go out there, everybody being on the same page and make some plays when they are open.

Q. How do they use Shawne Merriman?

A. He is an outside linebacker who they will put on different sides of the ball. He is not always to a certain side, they like to rotate him around, move him around, try to get him one on one. He is a talented, talented pass rusher, but they’ve got a couple of guys who can get to the quarterback and cause some problems, so we have to block them all.

Q. Coach Coughlin called it a "one-game season." Is that how you are approaching it?

A. Yeah. You don’t always like to put too much pressure on one game, but I think in this scenario, that is kind of what you have to do. We need to get a win going into the bye week and get back to playing our style of football and winning games. Performing better than what we have been, so we’ve got to prepare well all week and go out there and we’ve just got to play. Don’t think too much about it and just go do our jobs.

Q. Is it just a coincidence that this slump coincides with your injury? Where are you mentally?

A. Mentally, I am good. I think I have put that behind me and that is not an issue. I feel great out there at practice. It is just a matter of the whole team coming around together. The offense can help out the defense, and vice versa. We have to do our job and don’t put the defense in bad situations, get some long drives, keep them off the field. When we do well, it motivates the defense and when the defense does well, it motivates us. We’ve got to help out each other.

Q. Trent Green provided analysis recently attributing your poor throws to your throwing mechanics. Do you think your mechanics are an issue and if so, how do you fix them?

A. No, I think my mechanics are fine. It is something that you work on constantly throughout the season. You can get off a little bit and it is just all repetition and getting back to it at practice and working on things. You can see something from week to week that you want to fix or work on. Every week I look at it. I think for the most part I am throwing the ball pretty accurately. There are always a couple throws that you want to have back, but for us it is just getting back to being consistent and getting into our rhythm and not getting so down that we kind of get out of our style of offense.

Q. Coach Coughlin said following the game that he had noticed some things wrong mechanically mainly regarding your ability to push off that back foot. Has that changed any this week, are you more aware of that?

A. Yeah, I think that was over the past three weeks that happened a few times with the foot. I don’t remember last week it occurring. I was conscious of it to make sure I was pushing off. You stop using your legs, it affects your elbow, your arm gets tired or starts getting sore, so I have been better. My body feels better this week. I feel stronger and more confident in what I am doing.

Q. What have you been doing for the foot?

A. Just a little maintenance stuff and just kind of coming in, getting stretched out, nothing too major.

Q. When we spoke to coach Coughlin earlier he sort of issued a challenge to the best players on the team to be the "lifters." Do you feel like that is the challenge that is appropriate at this point?

A. Yeah, I think so. You always expect your leaders and the guys who expect to play well to go out there and do their job and play at a high level. That level motivates the other guys and gets everybody going. We have to do our job. Each individual has to do their job, whether you are a guy expecting to make plays. If you are out there on the field, everybody has to do their job, perform well and help out the team.

Q. He mentioned possibly meeting with the leadership council again and making sure that his message got across. Is that something that you feel has been working well enough or is there still more to be said?

A. No, I think the message is clear. I think we know what we’ve got to do and what’s at stake, how important this game is. We’ve got to turn this thing around and start playing better football. The message is clear, everybody knows it and now it’s a matter of just going out there and doing it.

Q. Do you meet in a special room for the leadership council?

A. No. Just a regular meeting room.

Q. How often do you meet?

A. It is not on a schedule; whenever he calls us up.

Q. He said that he met with you on Monday morning. How long did that last and how did that go?

A. I can’t even remember, it went well.

Q. This is the first time that you are playing against Philip Rivers?

A. Since he has been the starter, yes.

Q. Does that play into the game in your mind?

A. No, I don’t get into playing other quarterbacks. I have to worry about San Diego’s defense. Their offense is powerful and they score points and we have to do a good job offensively to try and keep them off the field. Don’t give their offense good field position and easy points. My focus is on the defense of San Diego.

Q. Do you know him at all? Do you have a bond?

A. I think all quarterbacks have a little, it’s a fraternity between quarterbacks. I have known Philip since college when we did some things together. He is a great player, great person and we always kind of keep up through texts over the years.