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New York Giants News And Notes: Talking Defense, Victor Cruz, 'Dirtbags' And More

Good morning, New York Giants fans! As we inch closer to Sunday's Wild-Card playoff game between the Giants and Atlanta Falcons let's look around and see what is making news.

Giants coach Tom Coughlin was asked Wednesday if he agreed with players who have suggested that the team's defense is playing better because the scheme has been simplified. Coughlin is not buying that argument:

"I don't know that it has anything to do with simplicity. It has a lot to do with the kind of belief that I think they have in themselves and what they're trying to prove and their confidence level rising and their situational defense being much better," Coughlin said. "If that's what it takes for us to feel good, that's fine. With the back end and the front end, all of those things meshing together - whatever you want to call it - there's enough there to win with. Let's put it that way. And there are enough pressures there and enough different personnel combinations there to win with."

‘Rude awakening’ ahead for Cruz & other Southern talk

The dream season is over for Victor Cruz—at least if you believe Roddy White.

The Falcons receiver told reporters that the Paterson native is in for a "rude awakening" next season when teams begin game-planning to stop him after his breakout season.

But White added: "Any time you put up those kinds of numbers, he’s going to be in for a really good pay day. But he deserves it. Any guy that goes out there and puts up 1,500 yards, that’s remarkable."

Tuck clarifies comments about ATL O-line - Giants Blog - ESPN New York

"I said that they have the reputation," Tuck said on NFL32 when asked about his comments. "Never did Justin Tuck say that the Atlanta Falcons' O-line is 'dirtbags.' I said most people would say that. But with that being said, it is football. Those guys play to the end of the whistle. I know my comments will be taken out of context. Honestly, it doesn't really matter. We still got to go out and do our jobs."

Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell signed through next season |

Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell is signed with the team through next season, according to someone informed of Fewell's contract status. news: Falcons LT Svitek on 'dirtbags' label: 'Going to do what we do'

"If (Tuck) views us as cheap, so be it," Svitek said, according to the Falcons' official website. "Going to do what we do. You don't want to be viewed as soft."

"We want them to know we're there," Svitek went on. "We're going to be pests. We're going to be physical."

JPP named NFC Defensive Player of the Month | New York Daily News news: Planting the seed: Giants, Steelers could be in trouble

How important is playoff seeding? Find out how the six playoff seeds from each conference have fared over the last 20 years and why two teams' Super Bowl aspirations just took a hit. Blogs " Blog Archive Playbook: First down D key for Giants vs. Falcons "

If the Giants allow yards on first down, encouraging the Falcons to run again on second down, Atlanta has proven on tape to find ways to be successful at it. More specifically, we saw on tape that Atlanta is efficient at running to the strong side of their formation on second down, averaging 4.74 yards per carry on those runs.

In turn, holding up versus the run will be a huge challenge for the Giants defensive line, including ends Justin Tuck and Jason Pierre-Paul, who want to get upfield and rush the passer. They must set the edge for their linebackers to fill, because success for the Falcons run game is one domino the Giants can’t let fall.

Former Badger Dayne honored by Rose Bowl

Ron Dayne dominated at the Rose Bowl in 1999 and 2000. Saturday, he was honored for his feats.

More Wednesday Transcripts

- Eli Manning
- Hakeem Nicks
- Victor Cruz
- Atlanta coach Mike Smith
- Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan

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