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Giants vs. Cowboys: Steve Spagnuolo will call the defense

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Interim coach trying not to make too many changes

NFL: New York Giants - Practice Northjersey.com-USA TODAY Sports

Steve Spagnulo has answered another of the many questions that have arisen since he became interim head coach of the New York Giants earlier this week by deciding that he will call the defensive plays Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys. Spagnuolo has been defensive coordinator for nearly three full seasons now.

“The biggest thing is I don’t want to disrupt the apple cart very much at all, so I’ll be doing that. Then, we’ll take it game-by-game, but that’s the – I enjoy that part of it if it’s going well,” Spagnuolo said. “It’s another story when things don’t go well, but I don’t want to change too much.”

Earlier in the week, Spagnuolo had indicated that long-time safeties coach Dave Merritt would handle any defensive responsibilities he could not attend to.

On Wednesday, Spagnuolo said he had a six-page typewritten list of things he would do differently if he got a second chance to be a head coach. He went 10-38 in a three-year stint with the St. Louis Rams. He said Friday that the biggest thing he learned was to not try and do too much.

“One of the things you do learn when you take it the first time, you think you’re going to charge in there and do everything on your own. You got to rely on a lot of other people and we’re lucky here because we have good people. I feel confident in the assistant coaches, the staff,” he said. “Obviously, the equipment, training room are familiar with everybody and everything kind of went smoothly in that regard and that’s a credit to all the people in the building and I appreciate it. So, trying not to stick my hand or foot or face or brain where it really doesn’t belong. That’s probably the biggest thing.”

Will he be nervous Sunday?

“There will probably be some butterflies, but they’re always there. I mean, even when you’re calling the defense,” he said. “That’s the fun part of working in the NFL. It’s big, it’s exciting.”