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Tom Coughlin On Marvin Austin, 04.29.11

With this second pick we took a very talented defensive lineman that has had some issues - without a doubt. We did a lot of studying on this guy. There were probably seven or eight of our people at the workout at North Carolina. There were some private interviews. We had a private interview with him at the combine. I spent quite a few minutes on the phone with him prior to telling him that we would be drafting him in the second round and that there were some very, very high expectations for him if he was to come here and be a New York Giant. I think he understood that, so we will get off on the right foot. A talented football player. Certainly has an opportunity now to show the world what he can do and to, hopefully, package all of the energy and disappointment and motivation based on the fact that he did not play this past year. Hopefully he'll wrap all that up and come here and be the football player that we think he can be. Let me say this to you, his grade - strictly looking at his football ability - is very high.

Q: How much is the motivation a factor?

A: He wants the opportunity to prove a lot of people wrong. The fact that we do all kinds of tests on people and those tests were very good. A lot of people substantiated the fact that although you do have to have some borders in place, he's basically a guy that's sharp and, if focused, can be a very good football player.

Q: Consider him a risk?

A: I think anybody's a risk. Until they come in and prove exactly what they can do, there's risk involved for anybody. But we're in a high-risk business.

Q: When you say borders in place, what are you talking about?

A: Just so he knows exactly what our expectations are and exactly what we don't want to see occur and how strongly we would enforce.

Q: Similar to the talk Jerry Reese had with Bradshaw?

A: Absolutely.

Q: Physically, how does he compare to Linval Joseph?

A: He is just under 6'2", at about 309 and very quick. Comparable. I would say very comparable. His bench press now, you know what that was right? 38 reps on the bench at Indianapolis. He's strong.

Q: Jerry said he plays with a mean streak...

A: We'll encourage that.

Q: After having your players here briefly today, is it disappointing that you may not get to see them for awhile now?

A: I keep looking out the window at that beautiful grass and there's nobody running around on it.

Q: Were you able to give Prince Amukamara a playbook?

A: We did not give him a playbook. We gave him some instructions and some technical things that we wanted, but not a book.

Q: You said yesterday that you didn't know Prince, what were your impressions today?

A: I didn't say that I didn't know him very well. I knew everything that I could possibly know about him by reading about him. I had not spent any real quality time with him, but many people in our organization had. I thought he was a really wide-eyed young man who was very humble. He was extremely happy to be a New York Giant and looking forward to the great challenge. He impressed me an awful lot by the quality of the young man. I talked to him about his family. I talked to him about his own background, his high school experiences, college experience. I was very impressed.

Q: Accomplish anything with the veteran players who came in today? Or was it just social and catching up?

A: Catch-ups. We hadn't seen them in quite some time and tried to spend some quality personal time with them. The only football type things discussed were the idea of what their routine was like from the standpoint of conditioning.

Q: With Austin not playing for a year, do you have to give him a longer learning curve?

A: The fact that he hasn't played in a year - he did play in an all-star game. So he has played some football.

Q: What does this say about Barry Cofield coming back?

A: The more, the merrier, that's the way I look at it. The more quality football players you can have, the better off you are going to be. It's a long season, as you know. It takes its toll.

Q: How long was Austin on your radar? Since he hadn't played, when did you consider him a possibility?

A: We knew the whole story. Those players have been followed very closely, even though they haven't had an opportunity to play this year. But they were a talented group. All of these people are evaluated in the prior season anyway. So you had a real good feel for them and then all of a sudden the disappointment of not being able to grade them this year. But it didn't stop us from tracking them and from keeping tabs on them. You saw, they were invited to the various tryout functions, if you want to call it that, and they had their own pro days. They've been adequately and properly graded and taken into consideration with all players at their position. And that goes for all of the kids at North Carolina that didn't play.

Q: At the combine, you said center was an area of concern, yet it hasn't been addressed. Is that frustrating?

A: It's the way it happens sometimes. True to form, we're not going to reach. We're not going to leave a value to go somewhere else. There's more draft to go.