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Eli Manning, Post-Game, 10.03.10

Can you sum up your first half?

We have to find ways to take advantage when we get great field position. Our defense was playing outstanding, getting us turnovers. We had the missed field goal and had a couple of opportunities where we were kind of going backwards. We didn't have any positive plays once we got down there. That is something we have to work on. We have to find ways to get touchdowns and at least get away with something. A couple of them we were going backwards instead of forwards. We hung in there until the end. We played smart. Early on we didn't have turnovers. We didn't put our defense in a bind in any way. We kept fighting, kept grinding it out running the ball and eventually tired them out a little bit and finally hit some plays in the passing game. We did some good things, but they are a good defense. They are talented. Not many teams have scored many points against them, but it was good to find a way to win.

What clicked on that 90-yard drive?

We hit a couple play-actions. We finally just got a first down and got some rhythm going. It is hard to get plays going when you have no rhythm. It is first, second, third down and you are out. We threw it to Steve (Smith) on second down and got a first down. The next time we hit a deep play-action and slowed them down a little bit and hit Hakeem (Nicks) on about a 20-yard pass. Then had a run, had another play-action, hit (Travis) Beckum down the middle of the field. A good job of run, pass, mixing up the play-action, and that is kind of when we are best. To do that you have to be able to get some first downs to start with, get a little rhythm, then you can find what you are doing. You can run, you can play-action off of it, you have good down and distance, and you can start to dictate what the defense is doing a little bit.

Were passing conditions difficult tonight?

No. I don't think they were difficult. I had a couple I would want back a little bit, one to Hakeem on a slant that was too high. Conditions weren't difficult. The first play I should have had a big chance to hit a big play just (Julius) Peppers, Peppers is a good player, he was coming around the corner and I just had to throw it before I wanted to. I thought the offensive line did a good job protecting against a talented defense that gets a lot of sacks. We ran the ball against the number one defense against the rush. We had a big night running the ball and that is what we needed to do.

Can you talk about your offensive line's overall performance?

I thought our offensive line played really well against a talented front seven. You don't see many front sevens better than the Chicago Bears. A bunch of defensive linemen, those linebackers can really run, they do some good things, and I thought we protected well. We ran the ball tough; we hung in there, and kept grinding it out. That is kind of the old school Giants football. Hopefully our defense can keep playing to that level, they played outstanding, but our offense kept grinding and finally in the second half we started getting some good things. We started getting the play-action, we started to run the ball, which opens up the play-action, and that is when this offense is at our best when we can mix in the run and the pass and do some of those things.

Does the quarterback in you look across and feel bad when you see the opposing QBs getting knocked out of the game?

Yeah a little bit. You see nine sacks in the first half and then the third quarterback comes in. It is not ideal to get your first playing time in your career when the two quarterbacks in front of you get knocked out of the game. It is fun to watch our defense when they are doing that. When they are making plays and getting sacks it gets the crowd fired up. They set the tempo early on in the game by playing outstanding. We have to help them out sometimes and we did a decent job until the fourth quarter getting a couple turnovers. We should have had a shut out, but we gave them great field position and gave them a field goal there at the end with the fumble. It was a fun game to watch, our defense played great, and offensively we did what we had to do to win.

Any extra satisfaction winning on the night of the Ring of Honor ceremony?

Yeah, definitely, definitely. I was reading the program today and all week just seeing a lot of the names and great players who were going into that ring of honor. Had a good amount that were here today watching the game. Got to see Y. A. Tittle before the game and some great players so it is always special when you know some guys are going to be here and you are honoring some of the great Giants that have played here to go out and get a win and play pretty well.

Did you think about the game against the Eagles three years ago when the defense had so many sacks?

I am just trying to figure out Chicago's defense and how to get the ball in the end zone.

What has Ahmad Bradshaw's development meant to the offense?

Ahmad played tough today. He did some good things in the run, had a big screen for a first down, in his pass protection, he is playing hard. He played really tough against a good defense. I think it is a great mix with him and Brandon (Jacobs). When Brandon came in he ran well also. Both of those guys need to run the ball and play well for us and it is good to get them both going.

What happened on the fumble?

I don't know. I have to look at it on film I guess. We just didn't get it. That is something we have to fix. They had pretty good penetration on the defensive line getting back there, but we can't afford to do that when our defense is playing well. At the end of the game we have to find ways to run the ball, don't turn the ball over. That is the last thing you can do in that situation.

How much of an inspiration was Jessie Armstead's speech to the team?

Jessie is a guy who is around the locker room, he is around the players, my time here never overlapped with him while he was a Giant, but I remember him playing. Just a ferocious player. He came in and had a great talk just about our responsibilities as a player, as a teammate, what we are doing, how other people are looking at us, how he played the game, and how he conducted himself. He is a great influence and presence around the locker room. It was good to have him there last night and give a good speech before a big game.

How long did he talk to you guys for?

He probably talked for 10 minutes at least, maybe a little longer.