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04 November 2015

Week 9 Conference Call Trancripts: vs.N.Y. Giants (11/8/15)

HEAD COACH TOM COUGHLIN
 
(On whether he’s seen development in Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston’s play)
“There’s no question [that Winston has developed]. They are averaging 353 yards a game. They’ve put together some very nice wins. They’re on their way. They could easily have won their last three [consecutive games], that one-pointer over in Washington. But I see a guy, a young man, that’s very talented and is developing and is handling the situations and the circumstances better and controlling himself in terms of turning the ball over.”
 
(On the challenges presented by the Tampa Bay run game with Doug Martin and Charles Sims)
“It’s a big challenge. You’re talking about the team that’s, what, No. 4 in the league rushing? Martin’s a very good runner – I really like the way that he appears to be stopped and then you look up and he’s got three more yards. He does that very well. Sims gives them outstanding balance, not only as a runner, but coming out of the backfield and catching the ball on screens, that type of thing. But give credit to their offensive line. They’ve made some changes and they’re still battling away and their ability to rush the ball against some very good defenses is quite obvious. That is the way in which you most help a young quarterback is rush the ball – let him throw off play action. All the things you’re seeing done right there.”
 
(On where he was when he heard about defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul’s injury this summer and what dealing with the aftermath has been like)
“I must have been home and I couldn’t believe what I was hearing at first. The people reporting to me, I think it was Jerry Reese [who] called, [were] very honest about the injury and what the injury entailed. So I felt very, very badly for Jason and his family first, and then wanted to know more information. And that’s basically about it. Other than answering so many questions about where is he, when will he come back, and now that he’s back, a bunch of questions about – when you tell people that there’s a chance that whenever he’s ready to play, we’ll play him, and then it gets reversed to people want to know, ‘Well, gee, isn’t it early to rush him?’ Well, you’ve been asking for him all summer, and now it’s [the opposite]. So that’s where we are. He’s practicing, we’ve upped the number of reps, he had a nice day today and we’ll see. We’ll see how he is.”
 
(On defensive end George Selvie)
“George is solid. I’ve always been a fan of George because he gives such great effort and he continues to do that.”
 
(On wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and if he is amazed by some of the catches Beckham makes)
“Well, that part, he’s done. He’s shown us that when he was a rookie. He is an exceptional receiver, catcher of the football, and thank goodness he has a lot of other ingredients to go with it as well. So I’m really not surprised. I’m cheering for him as everyone else is when he makes a play of that nature. What happened was that last week, when he was able to practice, it really did lift our passing game, because then our quarterback was also able to practice at that level. So it was a good thing.”
 
(On Quarterbacks Coach Mike Sullivan and whether Coughlin sees him as a coordinator or head coaching candidate in the future)
“There’s no question about that part. He definitely is [a future coordinator or head coach]. He’s very smart, he’s very disciplined, he’s very much into what he does. He’s very good with the players. He communicates extremely well; he’s a very good teacher. I’ve had Mike with me for a long time and I have always appreciated his job and the work that he put in. And quite frankly, his years with Eli [Manning] were good years.”
 
(On the defensive challenges that come from defending against two different rushers like Martin and Sims)
“You’ve got to recognize, first of all, who’s in the game and what the potential for – will they in fact be asked to do what they’ve done coming in, is there something new involved, that type of thing. Basically, it takes everyone involved to stop the running game, no matter who’s in there. And they rush it well.”
 
(On rookie left tackle Ereck Flowers)
“He’s an interesting young man. He’s very competitive. He’s tough; he’s played through ankle [injuries] and things of that nature and there’s no sense in even asking him [if he’s hurt], because he always tells you he’s fine. He’s one of those guys and we’re just very fortunate to have him.”
 
(On whether Pierre-Paul’s hand injury will cause a difference in level of play)
“He really doesn’t show a whole lot of difference, to be honest with you. They really do a nice job of making what appears to be a large thing for him to wear in practice. I don’t know how comfortable he is with that or how long that will be something he’ll do. But he was able to, a couple of times today that I noticed, get his hands in there and defend against the run, get his arms locked out, steer the offensive tackle, that type of thing. He was able to do that a couple of times today, so I think it’s just a matter of getting used to the padding, the glove and all the things he wears in practice, which he won’t wear to probably that degree in the game. He will have to go through the whole rigmarole of putting both hands down and using his hand the way he would try to use it normally. So he’ll go through all of that and I’m sure there’ll be a learning curve there as well.”
 
(On whether he feels that Pierre-Paul’s injury has made the player more grateful or changed him in any way)
“I think he’s definitely gone through a traumatic experience. When he first came in he was very upbeat, very positive, and he continues to do that with the same old Jason smile on his face, but there’s a seriousness about him that probably was not there before and I think the first week that he was back here, there’s no doubt that he was a young man who was just grateful for the opportunity to come back and to play the game that he loves to play. I think that kind of set in at first. I think, to be honest with you, that he’s dealt with this about as well as you can. I’ve been very impressed by the things that he’s said and the way in which he’s been received, not only by his peers, his fellow teammates, but also by the way he’s conducted himself, for example, with the media.”
 
QUARTERBACK ELI MANNING
 
(On what went right in last week’s game as far as passing was concerned)
“Guys up front did a great job giving me time. We did a good job just hitting some big plays, getting the ball down the field. We didn’t have many third downs – we were able to get production on first and second down and move the ball. We were just clicking. I think we had everybody practicing last week for the first time in a few weeks, so I think that helped just the timing of everything. So that was good. We just have to keep finding ways to move the ball and have positive plays, eliminate the turnovers and score in the red zone.”
 
(On whether it’s difficult to diagnose the exact issues causing inconsistency in a game)
“That’s just football. Sometimes things go well, sometimes the other team has some good calls at times or they’re just winning the individual battles. I feel like, for the most part, we’ve been sharp this season in moving the ball, being able to score some points. We just have to hopefully get the ball out quickly and [hopefully] receivers can win their one-on-one matchups and offensive line can hold up and have a good mix of the run and pass.”
 
(On having defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul back on the team following his hand injury this summer)
“Well, it’s good to have JPP back and just have him – we were all wishing him the best on everything that was going on this offseason when he had his injury, so it’s good to know that he’s back on the team and practicing and hopefully getting back real soon to help us out. I’m not sure exactly where I was [when news of Pierre-Paul’s injury broke], probably up here in New York area somewhere. Kind of heard the word on the news and checked in with the Giants. We didn’t’ have a whole lot of information at the time, just because it was all hearsay.”
 
(On whether Pierre-Paul’s injury has given him a different perspective on the game)
“You know, I haven’t asked him. I think you’d have to ask him on that one. But I’m sure, yeah, any time you have something like this happen it’s probably an awakening and you realize how fortunate you are.”
 
(On any past experience with Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston)
“I met Jameis. He came to the Manning Passing Academy when he was in college, when he was at Florida State. So I met him there and he seemed like a great kid. A lot of energy. All the other college guys enjoyed him. The high school kids he was coaching appreciated him just because he was smiling and upbeat and working hard. I’ve been impressed on how he’s been playing as a rookie and taking everything. He’s done a good job.”
 
(On his quarterbacks coach, Mike Sullivan, who served as the Tampa Bay offensive coordinator from 2012-13 before returning to the Giants)
“It’s been great to have Coach Sullivan back, someone I’m very comfortable with. We do a great job just communicating in the quarterback room, getting on the same page with how we’re going to go through our reads or our checks or our game plan and watching film. He left for a few years and became a coordinator and did his deal, but it’s good to have him back here and we’ve been working well together to see if we can win some games.”
 
(On having wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. back at practice and Beckham’s ability to make difficult catches)
“It’s good to have Odell back on the practice field. Guys realize that practice is important and it helps everybody get on the same page. It helps the timing of things. You take a few weeks off from running a certain route or doing something a certain way and you can quickly lose it. So it’s good to have guys practicing at full speed and having them out there and that carries over to the games. When you have good practices, you can make corrections. You might not do everything perfect in practice, but you can fix it, you can make corrections, so that on gameday you’re going to do it the right way. So it’s good. I don’t stick around and watch all those catches and stuff that he does pregame or whatnot, but he works hard in practice and if he’s got to go up one-handed, that’s fine. I’d rather him try to get two hands on the ball when possible, though.”
 
(On rookie left tackle Ereck Flowers)
“I’ve been impressed with Ereck. It hasn’t been too big for him. Even from the first game, opening night on Sunday Night [Football] in Dallas, it wasn’t [too big for him], the scene, the environment. He’s done well. He’s handled everything. He knows his assignments, he works hard, he comes to practice every day, showing some toughness, showing being a leader on that offensive line. So I’ve been impressed with how he’s playing and what he’s doing and just his competitiveness and his fight that he has.”
 
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