Good morning, New York Giants fans! Players were available to media on Tuesday at the Giants’ facility, so let’s find out what we learned.
Eli Manning apologizes to Sterling Shepard
Much was made of the fact that rookie wide receiver Sterling Shepard was never targeted Sunday against the Cleveland Browns. Tuesday, quarterback Eli Manning said he apologized to Shepard, who has 44 catches this season and was targeted 11 times the previous week.
“I talked to him,” Manning said. “I apologized for not getting him a catch. We need to get him the ball and get him catches. That’s just the way the day kind of went. He’s done a good job all year and we have to get him involved in the offense.”
Shepard said the apology wasn’t necessary.
“He didn’t have to apologize to me,” Shepard said. “He just said, ‘You are a big part of the offense and we need to get you involved.’ He was just apologizing to me, but it is all good.”
Shepard said he was “not at all” bothered by getting no targets.
“I feel like I did everything like I was supposed to. It is just the way it goes sometimes. You have Odell having a big day and we came out with the W,” Shepard said. “The fact (is) it was a win, so I don’t want to make a big deal out of it.”
Offensive guard Justin Pugh said the setback he suffered last week in his recovery from a knee injury was his own fault. He said he tried to do too much, too soon.
“I went out there and did individuals and I was feeling good and I was like, ‘Can I get some team reps?’ ” Pugh said. “And the first one I went out there I did two one-on-ones and felt good and then I went out there for another team rep and kind of got rolled up. My knee wasn't ready to go back out and be out there. It is what it is. That's me trying to get back too quick and it was a learning experience for me. I've never had this type of injury.”
Pugh, who has missed the last three games, will practice this week. He is, however, uncertain about playing against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
“I wouldn't say no way for Sunday, but I wouldn't say 100 percent I'm in for Sunday,” Pugh said. “It really is how my knee responds to going out and doing more and more. I know for sure I'm not going try and push it too much, because I don't want to keep having setbacks and missing extra weeks. So I'm going to make sure I'm 100 percent and doing it the right way.”
New quarterback in town
Peyton Manning visited with little brother Eli at the Giants’ facility on Tuesday. Big brother even sat in on a few of the quarterback meetings.
“I hadn’t seen him in a while. He has something to do tomorrow, so he popped in and sat in on a few meetings with us today. Just good to catch up. I’ll get some time with him later on,” Eli Manning said.
“He seems to be staying busy and enjoying the down time. I think when he gets in this environment, he was kind of drilling the coaches with his own questions. I know he liked being in there and doing a little install on Pittsburgh. I’m sure he misses that environment. Just the game plan, how you’re going to do things, how you’re going to deal with protections, how you’re going to pick things up. Just really getting back into that flow of things, I’m sure, is a little reminder of how special it is to be in this situation.”
Brett Jones laments missed opportunity
When Pugh was first injured against the Philadelphia Eagles, Brett Jones filled in. Unfortunately for Jones, the following week against the Cincinnati Bengals he lasted only one series into his first NFL start before suffering a calf injury.
Jones will return to practice this week. He admitted Tuesday that “there was a lot of disappointment” about his missed opportunity.
"You're not gonna beat yourself up about it, but definitely there was a lot of disappointment,” Jones said. “That's part of the game. You work really hard for your opportunity, that's all you can do every time.
“Every day I haven't been out there that's all I've been working for is the next opportunity. That's all you can do. I try to stay positive. Negative thoughts don't help healing."