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OC Mike Sullivan lauds play of Giants’ running back Orleans Darkwa

Takeaways from Sullivan’s time with the media

New York Giants v San Francisco 49ers
Orleans Darkwa with the stiff arm.
Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Coming off a 31-21 loss to the San Fransisco 49ers, the New York Giants will head back to MetLife Stadium to take on the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. With the offense a huge reason why the Giants have dropped their last three games, New York offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan spoke with the media on Thursday. Here are some takeaway’s from his time with the media.

On Orleans Darkwa’s improved play in the backfield ...

“Yeah, Orleans is a tough competitor, “Sullivan said. “He hits the hole hard. He’s done a good job in recent weeks at breaking some of those arm tackles or some of those tackles where the defender is coming off a block or in the process of being blocked and instances in the past. You can look at games where – and not just our games, but throughout the league – where the ball carrier goes down or they stumble. He’s been able to be very strong through the hole and he presses the hole well, so excited about the things he’s been doing and hopefully he can keep it up for us.”

On the chances of Sterling Shepard continuing his great play ...

“You hit the nail on the head,” Sullivan said. “Sterling had a monster game. I mean, and I say that just from the standpoint of you look at the production that he had. You look at the competitiveness that he showed, the catches he made. There’s some things he did in the run game. Really responded well and it’s just a young player, but someone that’s called upon that’s played some football quite a bit for us in the past and someone that can be a leader for us and is assuming that role. Has also done a great job with the other receivers. The other guys in the room and some of those new faces and he’s a guy that I was particularly proud of. His attitude. His competitiveness through that game. Even when it wasn’t looking great and there was disappointment as there has been throughout the year, obviously, he responded well and his attitude was attack, attack regardless of the situation and we’re real pleased with that.”

On the offensive line’s play ...

“Well, I think the big thing that comes out obviously – people will talk about the turnover,” Sullivan said. “The number of different guys who have been in there. Then early on, there was everybody getting on Ereck Flowers, yet the results are the results. There hasn’t been a sack given up, I believe, since Detroit maybe. So, he’s continued to improve and he’s worked very hard. Really all the guys have just – when they’ve been called upon or whether they’ve been moved from one position to the other. I just can’t say enough about that group. Just they’re a gritty, competitive, you know, they don’t to do anything pretty and fancy. It’s just about just going after it and competing and like most offensive lineman – they really love when a running play is called. So, they’ve been in pretty good spirits lately with us trying to do that.”

On the turn over on the offensive line ...

“Well, you know, there’s obviously instances where you prefer to have those same five,” Sullivan said. “That consistency. We talked a little bit a couple weeks ago about just the chemistry and what that really means in terms of the communication, in terms of the anticipation. But, I think it’s a credit to those guys – the fact that we have had so many moving parts and yet you look at the consistency with which we’ve been running the football and doing some good things from that standpoint and whoever is called upon will be at their best and they’ll be ready to go.”

Sullivan and the Giants will look to improve on the offensive side of the ball on Sunday against the Chiefs. You can catch the game on CBS at 1 p.m. EST.