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New York Giants arrive in Albany

The New York Giants' players and coaches are all present and accounted for at UAlbany.

I will be there bright and early when the first practice starts Monday at 8:35 a.m. (yeah, I will be on Coughlin time -- meaning I will be there loooong before then).

For now, I have a ton of reading material to keep you busy. The Giants provided an immense number of interview transcripts, and I am giving you all of them on the 'Transcripts' page.

Below, I have summarized some of the best quotes from the various interviews. There were, as you might expect, tons of questions about Plaxico Burress and Antonio Pierce.

You can also view all of the photos of Sunday's arrival in gallery format.

Tom Coughlin:

Q. Two years ago you won the Super Bowl and last year didn’t quite end the way you wanted it to. Talk about the mindset going into this year.

A. In training camp, everybody starts at square one. We’re very excited to be here, and are looking forward to getting our rookie group and all of our new players integrated with our present team. I think the mindset is that our players are disappointed with the way things finished last year, they’re all eager to get back on the field. We all know that it’s a long grind and we have to take full advantage of every opportunity that we have. We’re starting a little bit later here at camp this year, because of Labor Day and also because our opener falls on a Monday night. Quite frankly, we’re not going to get those two days of practice back so we have a lot of work to do and are anxious to do that. I think it’s a good, humble, serious mindset that we have going in. Everyone’s just anxious to get on the field and make progress together as a whole.

Q. Can you address the Antonio Pierce situation … how will that be handled?

A. The Antonio (Pierce) situation is a very serious matter. He’s been very serious about the way he has been going about getting it all cleared. John Mara made a strong statement about our feelings on it. It’s a new year, and we’re anxious to get started. We have a football team that’s been very mature in the way in which they’ve handled situations like this. Hopefully, this will be resolved in a manner that’s very positive for our team. We are going to move forward and focus on this upcoming season, and hope for the best with the result of the grand jury.

-- Full Coughlin transcript

By the way, Coughlin also said Fred Robbins and Michael Boley will begin camp on the Physically Unable to Perform (P.U.P.) list.

Eli Manning:

Q: Does the team have enough talent in the absence of Plaxico Burress?

A: I think we have a lot of playmakers on this team. Some guys are going to have to step up. Given the opportunity, I think we have a number of guys who can do some great things for us. It’s just a matter of us getting our timing down. We have to see who’s going to step up the most and be ready to start the season and who’s going to be our playmaker.

-- Full Manning transcript

Hakeem Nicks:

Q: How important was it for you to be here at the beginning of camp?

A: It was really important for me. That was one of my main focuses. Coming in, getting here on time, and contributing to the team.

-- Full Nicks transcript

Justin Tuck:

Q: How much are those defensive additions going to help?

They are definitely going to help. Not only just bodies, we got good guys, Chris Canty, Rocky Bernard and Mike Boley. And all of the additions, all of them have played at a very high level for a long time. I think Mr. Reese did a good job as far as getting us some very high quality individuals who are going to really help this football team.

-- Full Tuck transcript

Steve Smith:

Q. In the context of having a bigger role, do you put certain expectations and goals on yourself personally as to what you need to do?

A. Absolutely. I need to make plays and go out there and try to minimize mistakes and make a lot of plays and get on the same page as Eli.

Q. What would you like to see happen over the next few days?

A. I’m just really excited to start a new training camp after a tough loss in our last game. We really want to rebound with a good camp and get everybody excited for this season.

-- Full Smith transcript

Brandon Jacobs:

Q. Some of the faces from last year aren’t here anymore. Talk about a new season, going out there and moving forward, leaving last year behind.

A. We had a couple people last year who played a big part in a lot of things who are not here. We’re going to be fine. As a football team, we have a lot of talent and we have a lot of players with a lot of will and determination to make themselves better and make us better as a team.

Q. What excites you the most about this year?

A. I like that people are counting us out again this year – because we don’t have Plaxico (Burress). They’re saying that the young receivers can’t pan out and our veteran receivers can’t get it done. Plax was a special talent and it’s hard to find someone like him but we have a lot of guys here that can play and do well enough to get the job done.

-- Full Jacobs transcript

Osi Umenyiora:

Q. Was your off-season any different this year coming off an injury?

A. No, because I think my injury healed right in time for off-season conditioning and I went right back into it and did everything that everyone else was doing at that time.

Q. Talk about coming back, being healthy, and contributing to a team that missed you last year.

A. I’m just going to try my best to do what I can do. Any time I’m on the football field I can help this team win. I love these guys, I love being around them, I love being out there so I’m just going to go out there and do everything I can to help this team win.

-- Full Umenyiora transcript

Other Transcripts

That should be enough reading material to keep you busy for a while. Football is back! Enjoy!