QB Eli Manning
Postgame vs. Jets, December 6, 2015
Q: What’s been so challenging to the offense this year for you in the red zone, in the green zone, where you just can’t get that touchdown pass?
A: We’ve just got to find ways to execute a little better down there. We made some plays and for whatever reason, that’s where the penalties seemed to come out also. We got penalties, get sacked, and we’d start going backwards and get ourselves in some bad situations. Today, we got close on a number of them. We got down to the one-yard line once and went for it on third down. We got down to the one and couldn’t turn it in, so next time we got there, we had a fourth and one from the four-yard line and they had good coverage and played us well. We’re just not making plays we need to down there.
Q: On that drive where you threw the interception, right before that, was there an opportunity to throw the ball away or end up taking the sack instead?
A: Yeah, just tough. We had a little play-action trying to get either Dwayne or get Odell – they played both the guys well. I kind of came back to my third option and it was one of those deals where you wanted to throw the ball away, but you’ve just got to find a place to throw the ball away sometimes. My third option, if I could have found him and thrown it maybe over his head, but at that point, it was just a little too late.
Q: On that fourth and two from the four-yard line, were you surprised that Tom decided to go for it? And then what happened on that play?
A: It was an opportunity for us to get the three-score lead and go up 17 with limited time left. It was a chance to win the game right there. They had good coverage and they played it well. We had decent pressure and not really any time to scramble around, or get to my last option to the running back. You’re just in a bad situation at that point, whether you try and take a sack or throw it away. Do you give a guy a shot and maybe it pops up our way. Obviously it was intercepted and didn’t have much of an opportunity right there.
Q: When you think about, for a moment, the entire season, and for you guys, this is not the first fourth-quarter lead that’s gone away, is it possible to even just put it into words how that feels?
A: It seems like most of the losses have come that way. Besides the Philadelphia game, they got after us good, in every other one, we’ve had an opportunity. We’ve had opportunities, we’ve had chances, we’ve been right there in the mix. It’s in the last drive or within the last drives. We’ve just got to find ways to make critical plays in the game and in the fourth quarter, and we haven’t been able to make enough of them to win these tight games.
Q: On the fourth and two, you guys were up 10. Did you think you were just going to kick a field goal and go up by 13?
A: I didn’t know what the circumstances were. To try to go up 17 right there is a great opportunity to extend the lead. It didn’t work out, but that’s football. We’ve got to do a better job and execute a little better there.
Q: You’ve been around long enough to know the kind of criticism coaches take under these circumstances. Do you feel like Coach Coughlin is going to take a lot of undeserved criticism about today’s decisions, including the fourth and two?
A: We got down there earlier and kicked a field goal, and got down a second time with a chance to win the game. It may not win the game right there, but extend the lead and give yourself three scores. I like the call. I think it’s the right call. I think we need to execute. We’ve got to put it in right there and we didn’t do it.
Q: Do you think at some point these results when they keep happening, when you try as much as you can and you’re failing, does that get to a team after a while and do you almost expect it, to fail?
A: No, we don’t expect it. I think we expect to go out there and win the game. We expect to make the plays when we need to and it’s just the way things have bounced this year. And hopefully we’ll have the opportunity to fix that and hopefully no matter what happens today with other teams, we’re still going to have an opportunity and we’re still going to have a chance to win some games, but obviously opportunities are running limited and we need to find ways to win some games.
Q: When does the process begin for you to put a game like this behind you and start to look at next week?
A: We’ll look at the film tomorrow—look at what we need to do, what we need to clean up. How I can play better. How I can improve my game. And start Tuesday getting prepared for Miami.
Q: Will this sit with you tonight, then?
A: Yeah, I’m sure. I’ll watch it tonight as well. So I’ll watch the film to see if there are some things I could have done better, there always is, but see where I could have made some better plays, some better reads and put us in a better position to win the game.
Q: Did you get out of this one, health-wise, okay?
A: Yeah, fixed up. I always get banged up a little bit, but yeah, should be fine.
Q: Did you get looked at? X-ray-wise?
A: I did, but everything’s good.
Q: When you look at that fourth and four and you get the timeout over there, what kind of input are you giving in terms of what type of plays you think could work at that point?
A: Yeah, you know, just right there you’re trying to guess what the defense is going to do and whether they’re going to play you the kind of the coverage they played, kind of two high safeties and play like a four man or they’re going to come after you with an all-out blitz or what their game plan was and trying to get, trying to have two plays for both of them or be able to get to a check. You know they had a good coverage and played it well.
Q: Of the fourth quarter losses you’ve had this year, is this one particularly more frustrating considering the fact that A—you really had even more golden opportunities to put this one away, and B—it’s the team you lost to.
A: No, I think it’s just the circumstances of where we are in the season and you kind of just hope that we’ve lost enough tough ones for a season and they weren’t going to keep coming and we put that behind us and found a way to win these close games and unfortunately, just couldn’t make that happen tonight.
Q: I know you have to watch the film, but your early read on how the offensive line—you had a lot of changes in there today—played.
A: We had some new guys in there, but I think they played tough against a good defensive line. They hung in there and did a good job and picked up things, we made checks. I think we were running our offense effectively, hit some big plays, did some good things, but you know some guys stepped up. Bobby Hart stepped up playing right tackle, [Justin] Pugh having to move out to left tackle and Dallas [Reynolds] had to come in and play guard, so we had some guys moving around, but I thought they competed hard and did a good job.
Q: You had a scramble on a third down, took a shot, you didn’t quite make it, you took a shot, I think it was from [David] Harris. Is that where you got shaken up a little bit?
A: No, that was good.
Q: What were the x-rays for?
A: Just to see if anything was broken, but all good. You can ask Coach [Coughlin] about it. Ask T.C. about it.