Head Coach Tom Coughlin
September 10, 2015
Q: Any update on Victor Cruz?
Q: Are you ready to rule him out at this point? He hasn’t run in three-plus weeks.
A: I’m not ruling anything out.
Q: How’d Jon Beason look yesterday?
A: Okay. Moved around okay.
Q: Now that the roster is set…
A: You mean, set for the moment?
Q: Yeah. What do you think of the collection of talent and players you have?
A: I think we’re ready to start the season.
Q: What makes you feel that way?
A: We’re ready to start the season. Whether you like it or not, it’s right there. We’re going to start the season. That’s what I mean.
Q: Do you see anything from your team that makes you optimistic that you think they’re ready to go out there and play well?
A: I see a good practice, and I’m looking for another one today.
Q: The offensive line was a level of concern or question coming into training camp. How do you feel it has come together?
A: As I went through yesterday, I think that we’re ready to start the season. I think we’ll steadily improve throughout the season. I think that they’ll come together even more as they have an opportunity to compete and communicate under game circumstances.
Q: The players have described Steve Spagnuolo’s defense as complex, and he obviously had a couple of hurdles the last time he installed it here. Have you seen anything that has indicated you won’t have to go through that again?
A: Boy, you guys are working hard to come up with it, aren’t you? Complex is probably a term that you can apply to any defense at this level, and the sophistication of which to try and defend the talented athletes that are part of the National Football League. Under those circumstances, whatever word you want to use. I doubt it will be verbalization that will hold us back. Once we get to a game plan and we zoom in and we feel like the players can handle the plan, then I think we’ll go and play and play hard.
Q: Obviously Antrel Rolle had a big voice in that defensive room. Who do you think sort of stepped into that role?
A: There are different people, there are different people that have done it from day one. You’ve had Jon Beason, you’ve had Cullen Jenkins. In the secondary, some of the corners have come in with positive comments from time to time. So there’s different guys that have stepped up. Hankins has been in that position. So different people.
Q: Do you view it as beneficial that there are different voices?
A: I think it is. I think it is. It’s beneficial from the standpoint that more people contributing feels like more people have ownership.
Q: Speaking of ownership and leadership, I assume you’re having your captains vote this week or maybe even today.
A: I wouldn’t assume anything, but it’ll come. It’ll come.
Q: Do you anticipate keeping the same format as in past years with season-long captains or is it going to be rotating? Have you thought about that?
A: If we have the captains’ vote, the captains will be representatives. Occasionally, there’s been another player that’s been out with the captains. If so, that will be the case.
Q: Is there any reason you wouldn’t do that before Opening Day?
A: No. Not really.
Q: Damontre Moore is a guy that you guys have liked, assumed to be a good pass rusher. Have you seen signs of improvement from his this summer?
A: Yes. Even though his spring was limited, he did show that pass rush ability. And I think based on his last preseason game, you’ve seen it. Hopefully it will continue.
Q: Are there specific areas he improved in? Things that he didn’t do so well before?
A: He has a natural feel for it. Whether he’s developed other types moves or not, I think that remains to be seen. What he’s been able to do is get on the edge, and he has long arms. That’s been effective.
Q: You’ve spoken in the past about him, about not being able to get him to practice like you want him to practice; therefore, game opportunities have been limited. Has that changed?
A: I’m not sure that I would have said it that way. When he was restricted, obviously, in the spring, it was physical.
Q: Right, but in year’s past.
A: But the more he learns and the more he understands, he does have some new things to learn, the better off he’ll be. Focus and concentration and repetition are the keys for him.
Q: Dave Merritt talked a lot in the spring about with Landon Collins and the trust factor. The veterans around him will listen to what he’s saying, trust what he’s saying. Have you seen that growth as you’re getting ready for opening night?
A: I think he’s more concerned about his job. The communication back there is a natural thing between the safeties. As far as being someone who is one of the defensive guys who is pulling people together, I don’t think that will happen until he’s really sure of his own job.
Q: How difficult of a spot is that for a rookie on opening night?
A: Well, I’m sure it is. Anytime the potential of the ball in the air, and you’re not in the right spot, it’s pretty serious business. There’s a lot to be prepared for.
Q: How confident are you that he’s ready?
A: Oh, I’m confident in him. You bet I am.
A: Why? Because he’s a good football player. And he’s demonstrated that throughout his collegiate career and he was taken in the second round.
Q: What has Markus Kuhn showed you to gain your trust?
A: He’s anchored better, he’s moved a little bit better, and he’s more conscious of his footwork. He’s doing a better job with that.
Q: What have you changed about your week? Tomorrow is different.
A: Yeah, it’s what we call a GPS week. We’re going to follow through with that. We did that for our third preseason game, and we’ll do it here, too.
Q: Tomorrow will be that recovery day?
A: Tomorrow will be a recovery day. This will be a much longer practice. This will be a 23 mod practice today.
Q: Saturday changes?
A: Saturday changes. Saturday becomes a full-speed drill for a minimum amount of time. But it does put them in the mode where they’ve gone full speed the day before they play.
Q: What did you see that prompted you to stick with it?
A: All these things are being done for the health issue, that’s what this is all about.
Q: You said you wanted a better punt return game. Has Dwayne Harris given you that?
A: He hasn’t had many opportunities, but he will. He will.
Q: It seems like you obviously put a strong emphasis these past couple weeks on special teams, even with regards to the roster composition.
A: We’ve put a high regard on special teams and expectations on special teams all preseason. That’s nothing new. People are here because of special teams, you’re right about that. But the emphasis has always been to improve and give ourselves better field position.