New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning has not had much success against the Minnesota Vikings in his career, throwing 14 interceptions in eight games, including five that have been run back for touchdowns. He isn’t, however, buying the idea that the Vikings have his number.
“I don't think anybody has my phone number on the Vikings (laughs). Maybe Linval (Joseph, an ex-Giant) ... I'm trying to think if I have anybody's number, I'm not sure. Maybe Bradford's number, he's got my number (laughs). I can't think of anybody else's off hand. I’ll look at my phone and get back to you on that one though,” Manning said.
Manning may have joked about his struggles against Minnesota over the years. What isn’t a laughing matter, though, is that the Vikings are 3-0 and present the Giants with the best defense they have faced this season. Also that the 2-1 Giants need to play better than they did in Sunday’s disappointing 29-27 loss to the Washington Redskins.
“You’ve got to come back and, hey, each week, whether you had your best game or your worst game or whatever, you come back, have a great week of preparation and go out there and try to play well,” Manning said. “Just because one game wasn't your best or the year before or whatever, you can't worry about it. Just have a great prep and get a good game plan. Get on the same page as coaches and receivers and be confident in your ability and what you have to do and go out there and do it.”
Running backs ready to step up
With running back Shane Vereen on IR with a triceps injury the Giants have lost a valuable play maker.
“Shane is somebody that you can’t replace,” Rashad Jennings said. “You can’t replace Shane. We do have guys that can get the job done, that’s 100 percent. He’s special. He can do a lot. He makes defensive coordinators adjust when he’s on the football field. You have to respect everything when he’s out there. Again, you can’t replace him as a player but you can fill in those spots with the players we have.”
After missing Sunday’s game with a thumb injury, Jennings said on Wednesday that he expects to be ready Monday night.
“Losing a guy like Shane is a big deal,” Orleans Darkwa said. “He’s a key part of the offense and a key part of our group. That’s a big deal. Everybody has to pick up their game. We obviously felt for him. The mentality is next man up and that’s what it has to be.”
With Jennings out and Vereen hurting, Darkwa had career highs of 10 carries and 53 yards vs. the Redskins.
“Obviously, my goal at the end of the day is to be a key contributor to the offense,” Darkwa said. “I would like to be the starter. That’s my goal and what I work for. You build off of that. I don’t know what’s going to happen going into Monday, but my mentality and preparation doesn’t change. I’m going to make sure I’m ready for it.”
Bobby Rainey, a speedy five-year veteran who caught 33 passes for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2014, has filled the third-down back role in the past. The other possibility is that rookie fifth-round pick Paul Perkins sees his first action with the offense.
Giants make practice squad move
The Giants signed tackle Jon Halapio to their practice squad. Halapio, 6-foot-2 and 320 pounds, was a sixth-round draft choice by the New England Patriots in 2014 out of the University of Florida. Halapio has not played in a regular-season game.