General Manager, Senior Vice President Jerry Reese
January 9, 2017
Good afternoon. Well, obviously it did not end like we wanted it to last night, but we had some good things happen this season and we have some things that we can build on and grow from. Ben McAdoo has done a really nice job for us as a first year head coach, how he handled himself, and how he handled the team. I think probably for the head coaches, for the most part, you donít realize how much extra you have to do beyond coaching, so he has learned a lot, done a nice job and I think we have a good foundation to build on. The defense did some nice things this year. The offense didnít do as much as we expected it to do, and the special teams were up and down, so we have a lot of things that we need to work on during this offseason, and we started today doing that. We had a lot of conversations with players on exit interviews and we will move forward and build around this foundation that we have and we think that we can get where we want to go. Are there any questions?
Q: Where do you think that the offense fell short this year?
A: I think it is a little bit of a mystery about that. I thought that the offense would definitely come in and be able to score more points than we did. I thought that we had some yards, but we settled for three points too many times. In this league, when you get in the red zone and green zone, you have to score touchdowns and put teams away. Last night, if we go up 14-0 we are in pretty good position right there, and we didnít get a chance to do that, and all they had to do was make a play and they were back in the game, so that hurt us.
Q: Do you think Eli had a down year?
A: I wouldnít say it was a down year. I just think that offensively as a whole it didnít function as a unit like we thought it would. So we have some things that we need to evaluate and we will do that. We will be honest about it and evaluate it and see which direction we need to go to get it fixed.
Q: How do you think he did this year, speaking of Eli? How do you think his year went in general?
A: I think Eli as a professional, did everything that we asked him to do. Last night he was in a good rhythm and was throwing the ball well, and there were some drops that came into play and it kind of set the tone for things that happened last night. But overall, I thought that Eli played well.
Q: As a general manager, how does it make you feel to go into the offseason spending a lot of money on free agents who turned into Pro Bowlers and All-Pros?
A: Well, the guys that we brought in did a nice job, but it wasnít just them. It was guys that we have had on the team, guys that we have drafted, and it was a combination of a lot of things. It was all about the team here for us, but the guys that we brought in as free agents did a nice job for us.
Q: Based on what you know on the roster, are you that far away from filling in the pieces that you wanted to fill in last year, but didnít get a chance to?
A: Obviously you canít do everything in one year, or one draft, or one free agency period. We have things that we can build on. We want to continue to build on every position and upgrade where we can, and build as strong a football team as we can, moving forward.
Q: Eli talked about not having many players with playoff experience. Looking back, is that something that you maybe could have tried to add more of?
A: Yeah, well when you are in free agency Ė obviously draft picks donít have any playoff experience, but when you go out and get free agents you try to get guys who are good players, regardless if they have been in the playoffs or not. It would be nice to have a young veteran that can come in and have playoff experience and be able to lead you that way, but that wasnít the opportunity for us this past offseason. But, you can see early in the game that when you are in a playoff game, you have to respond. If you have a chance to make plays early in the game, you canít let that go. You have to put teams away if you have a chance. We had them on the ropes early and we just didnít finish the job. Give them credit, they did a nice job of hanging in there and got the one play that they needed, and then got another play that they needed, and that is how it happens sometimes.
Q: What is your evaluation of Ereck Flowers?
A: Ereck has played basically every snap since he has been here. He is an early-out junior, still a young player, but it is time for him to show us the fruits of being a first round draft pick, and I still think he has a chance to do that. We will evaluate that. Is he the left tackle? Should he be in a different position? We will evaluate that. But I do think that he is a big, strong kid who has a chance to be a really good player, so I still believe he has a chance to be a good player.
Q: Do you think that this team, with a couple moves in the next few months, can be a Super Bowl contending team?
A: We sure hope so. Again, I think we have a good foundation, and hopefully we can get some pieces in free agency and the draft to build around this foundation. We can upgrade at some places that we need to upgrade, and we can get back in the tournament and have some playoff experience, and see how hard it is when you get there. You have to make plays in the playoffs, you have to do things that you have to do to move on to the next round, and Green Bay did that last night and we didnít.
Q: Will you consider extending Odell this offseason?
A: We will keep all of our options open with respect to those things.
Q: What do you see when you watch Odell now on the field, and also in off the field situations?
A: This is what I see Ė I see a guy who needs to think about some of the things that he does. Everybody knows that he is a gifted player, but there are some things that he has done that he needs to look at himself in the mirror and be honest with himself about, and I think he will do that. We will help him with that, but he has to help himself, and we believe he will do that. He is a smart guy, but sometimes he doesnít do smart things.
Q: How do you help him with that though?
A: We all have had to grow up at different times in our lives, and I think it is time for him to do that. He has been here for three years now and is a little bit of a lightning rod because of what he does on the football field, but the things he does off the football field, he has to be responsible for those things and we will talk through it. I know he is a smart guy, and I believe he understands that he has a responsibility being one of the faces of this franchise, and I think he will accept that responsibility.
Q: What was your feeling about the trip to Miami, and the hole in the wall?
A: Yeah, I donít think that had anything to do with it. The trip to Miami - you can always point to that if you want to, and they came out and had really good practices, but had a bad game. So I donít think that had a lot of bearings on what happened in the game last night.
Q: And the hole in the wall?
A: We will address that when we get all the information, and we will definitely take full responsibility for it after we get all the information on what happened.
Q: What about holding (Odell) responsible?
A: Well, that is what I mean. If it comes down to him being responsible then we will definitely, one thousand percent hold him responsible for that.
Q: Did he hurt his hand at all? Punching the wall?
A: No, again, I am not going to say anything else about the wall. I just want to let you know that if he is responsible for it, we will hold him responsible for it.
Q: Is the team holding its own investigation?
Q: Did you talk to him today?
A: I did talk to him.
Q: How did you find him? He talked about near misses and not being able to connect. With you, did he take personal responsibility?
A: We are all in it together. There is not one person who lost the game last night, we all lost the game last night. That is how we do it here. We all lost the game. Green Bay was better than us last night and we all take responsibility for it. Not one person lost the game last night, we all did.
Q: Where does JPP stand in regards to your decision-making this offseason? He said he is not signing a one year deal.
A: Well, players should say that, and we are in the genesis of the offseason evaluation and we keep all of our options open, and we will try to do what is best for everybody involved in the situation.
Q: Do you want him back?
A: Do we want him back? Of course we want him back. He is a good football player.
Q: After putting together that defense and seeing what they were doing, would you like to have that complete unit back?
A: That would be great, but again, we will see what our options are. Again, the evalution starts and we will grade all of our players, we will see how everything fits. We will sit down with our personnel staff, and our coaching staff, and we will see how everything fits into the puzzle. But as many good players as you can have, you want them on your roster, and Jason is a good player.
Q: With Eli at age 36, do you feel there is a little more urgency to add a player or two around him?
A: Of course. Everybody has a job. Eli has a job to do and everyone around him has a job to do. 36, I donít think that is ancient for a quarterback. I think he is probably on the back nine, but I donít think that is ancient for a quarterback, and he is taking care of himself really well, and I thought he finished the season strong. I thought he was in a really good rhythm last night. We were protecting, running the ball a little bit, he was hitting guys, and we just had some untimely drops right there that hurt him.
Q: Do you regret not picking up a fullback?
A: I am not a coach. There are a lot of teams that use tight ends in different ways and not carry fullbacks. This offense doesnít really have a lot of plays, you would play five or six plays a game. The thought was, ĎWhy carry a fullback if he is only going to play five plays a game?í, but we will look into that as we move forward and see if that is something that we need to have.
Q: Ben is an offensive guy, so did that really puzzle you why they couldnít figure out what was going on with the offense?
A: We will evaluate everything. We will evaluate the play calling, the players, everything that happened. It is all part of the evaluation process and we will be honest and look deep into that and see what was a problem. Why didnít we produce more points than we did? We will figure that out.
Q: Do you envision Victor Cruz seeing more days with the Giants?
A: That is all part of the process. Everybody is being evaluated. We will come to a conclusion after the process is over, and we will see where everything goes. We will keep all of our options open with respect to everybody on the roster right now.
Q: Where do you stand financially in your ability to make moves this offseason?
A: We donít have as much money as we had last year to go shopping in free agency. But I think that we will be able to do things that we need to get done to help this football team.
Q: Is re-signing JPP and Hankins realistic?
A: I think so.
Q: When did Josh Brown inform the team that he abused his wife?
A: I am not going to talk about Josh Brown, guys. I already told you guys that I am not going to talk about that, so I am not going to answer any questions about Josh Brown.
A: Not with you guys.
Q: There was a lot of talk about you being on the hot seat coming into this season. Do you feel like you have done enough to be off the hot seat?
A: Everything is a hot seat, man. It is New York. I tell free agents this, ĎGuys look, if you canít take criticism, or not want to be on the hot seat, then donít come here, this is not the place for you.í That is the way it is here and we relish that here. Even when you win, you are on the hot seat because you are only as good as your last game in this business, and I am always on the hot seat. I am used to it.
Q: Have any teams have asked permission to interview your assistants or coordinators about jobs?
A: Not at this point.
Q: Was the special teams play last night bad enough that you could make some changes there?
A: I think that as a whole, special teams-wise, we had a bad night. It was a bad night for our punter. Our punter has really been one of the valuable players on our team. Their punter kept them in the game last night. He did what Wing had been doing for us Ė turning the field over and giving us good field position. Their punter did that for them last night. He kept them in the game, really, how he hit the ball last night, and Wing didnít have his best game and the coverages teams were not up to par like we want them to be, so it was a bad night to have your special teams not show up like we needed them to do.
Q: Any concerning injuries that might not be ready in time for when you start back up again?
A: I donít think so. Not right now. We havenít had a medical meeting today. It has been chaos today when you have these days right after the season and you have a lot of meetings going on. But we havenít had a medical meeting. We had all the physicals, but I havenít sat down with the doctors or Ronnie Barnes to see exactly what we are thinking of in respect to medical.
Q: The perception has been that you have a very good relationship with Odell and that you guys connect. Is there anything that you have told us today that you have not told Odell yet?
A: I try to have a good relationship with all the players and they can always come to my office. I have an open door policy about everything. You can come in, but if you come in my office, I am going to tell you the truth. When Odell comes into my office, I tell him the truth, and he heard the truth today and I think he is going to do the things that he needs to do to be accountable for some of the actions he has had.
Q: Do you guys have to go into this offseason thinking about drafting a quarterback?
A: We always think about every position. But Eli is 36, and we have started to think about who is the next quarterback, and who is in line, so we will look into that as we move into the offseason.