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'Optimist' Coughlin Planning For Football

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New York Giants coach Tom Coughin joined 'Ruocco & Lundberg' on ESPN Radio 1050 AM in New York on Wednesday. He talked NFL Lockout, once again passed on an opportunity to fire back at New York Jets coach Rex Ryan and issued a "no comment" when asked about Tiki Barber's comeback.

Follow the jump for the highlights of Coughlin's radio appearance.

On how his preparation for the season has been affacted by the lockout ...

"From a coaching standpoint we have continued right along as if we were playing tomorrow morning. We've done all of our offseason research, all of our studying of ourselves and all of our studying of our opponents. We're now into adding some of our new thoughts to the playbook.

"As an optimist here I've done five or six OTAs, I've done a mandatory mini-camp just in case those things occur and I've actually started on training camp. ... We're pushing on so that we're prepared no matter what, but it is a very, very difficult and unusual stretch because I'm looking out at the most beautiful green grass and there's nobody running around on it.

"All we can do is remain optimistic and confident that this will be settled so that we can get to work and hopefully so that we will have an opportunity to see and work with our rookies and have a chance to get into the free agency period so we can solidify our numbers as we move forward."

On Rex Ryan's constant jabs at the Giants ...

"Well, Rex is a good football coach and that's as far as it goes with me. He and I are good friends, or friends, and I'm not getting into any of that stuff. That remains for Rex to state what he feels, but I've never been a big believer in any of that. We'll just have to wait and see."

On 'Camp Eli' being run by quarterback Eli Manning at Hoboken (N.J.) High School ...

"I'm happy that Eli is doing that. I think players all over the league are into this right now at this time of the year, and it is time. We would hope that a lot of our players are working together, utilizing the drill work that they're familiar with and also going back and talking about their assignments, perhaps it would be from a year ago but nevertheless doing some football thinking in anticipation of the season."

On Manning's 25 interceptions last season ...

"I think we can solve that. There's some things that we've studied and looked at. You don't ever want to try to take a player's instinct away or whatever but sometimes there's occasion when its better off not to throw the ball at all. We did have a lot of tipped-ball interceptions a year ago, as you know, and I think we can cut down on that as well."

On the team's 42 turnovers overall ...

"Ultimately everything is the responsibility of the head coach and you don't want it any other way. But I will remind you guys that in ‘08 we set the all-time record for the fewest turnovers in the history of the National Football League. So we do know a little bit about that. Quite frankly it's an eyesore for me, it's close to being embarrassing the number of balls we turned over because you have to realize we also led the league in takeaways.

"So if you put a normal Giants team together with our defensive team that took the ball away the number of times we did a year ago it would be a pretty outstanding season for us."

On whether or not the Giants can get one more year out of its aging offensive line ...

"We certainly do hope so. We have some young guys I think are going to come along as well. We have some veteran football players that are outstanding players and have done this for a while. The main concern there is our injured guys come back."

On communicating with son-in-law Chris Snee, the Giants starting right guard during the lcokout. Players and coaches, of course, are forbidden from contact at the moment ...

"Well, Chris is in the family and when I do see Chris it's a family circumstance and I don't think anybody's going to tell you not to spend any time with your family."

Great stuff from Coughlin. Ryan is out peddling his book and TC already has a sizable chunk of training camp mapped out.