Quarterback Eli Manning
September 26, 2017
Q: How important is the game coming up?
A: Theyíre all crucial and I think everybody knows the record and the next game is always the next game and is always the most important one. So, obviously, weíre searching and weíre going to keep working and grinding to find a way to get a win and thatís the mindset.
Q: How is the result going to be different?
A: We just have to clean things up. I think last week, we did some good things offensively. Just enough things that, you know, hurt ourselves with some penalties, not making a couple key plays in certain situations that we have to make if we are going to expect to win some ball games.
Q: Is it to the point where improvement isnít good enough?
A: Well, improvement, thatís going to get us into the winning factor. We have to make some plays, fix some things and be accountable for all of our actions and canít afford the mistakes that are holding us back right now.
Q: Can you talk about how you felt about WR Odell Beckham Jr.ís celebration?
A: I didnít see the celebration when it occurred. I knew we were penalized, but I didnít know why it occurred. Penalties, you canít have penalties. Thatís that simple and so on all aspects of it, we have to eliminate those.
Q: How much do you feel the need to talk to WR Odell Beckham Jr.?
A: No. I didnít talk to him about that. Again, my job is to get him ready to play each week, you know, make sure he knows his assignments, knows what heís doing and he can go out there and get in the end zone and do a celebration, but make sure weíre not penalizing the team.
Q: Do you feel like itís a cause for alarm when the owner speaks about a prominent player and says that heís unhappy?
A: Thatís part of football. You get penalized, thereís a chance thereís going to be people that are unhappy whether itís the owner, the head coach or other players. Canít afford penalties.
Q: Are you unhappy with WR Odell Beckham Jr.ís antics?
A: No. I want him to go out there and play hard obviously. Itís part of being smart in all aspects of penalties. I donít think unhappy is the word. Just everybody has to be a little smarter and in this situation when things are tough and weíre trying to find ways to get wins and we have to grind and weíre catching some bad breaks and things arenít going our way, we canít afford to make it harder on ourselves.
Q: How has your relationship with WR Brandon Marshall improved on the field?
A: I think heís done a good job. I thought he had his best week of practice last week and knew we had to get him involved in the offense. So, I thought it was good to get him a bunch of catches and made some nice plays and I think heíll continue to get better for us.
Q: How will you start to get the offense going earlier this week?
A: I think we just have to find completions. I thought last week Ė moved the ball well. The first couple drives, just had a couple third downs that were just not good enough on third down right now and both of them are very manageable. One is a third-and-one and we tried to run it. Next one, just a little off between Odell and I. So, just cleaning up those things. Both of them were plays that were not executed exactly the way we wanted them to be executed. So, thatís on ourselves and we canít afford to have ourselves make it any harder than it already is.
Q: How encouraging is it to go against the Buccaneers who gave up a lot of big plays to Minnesota last week?
A: We have to have a great week of preparation. Minnesota made some plays on them last week. They had a couple big plays on them and the quarterback played well. So, we have to do a good job, make sure weíre getting completions, protecting things and if we get a couple opportunities to hit some shots, we have to hit them.
Q: What is it like having a guy like Jameis Winston at quarterback?
A: Just from what Iíve seen the last couple years, Jameis has played well. He creates a lot of plays, moves around the pocket some, throws it well and has a couple playmakers at receiver.
Q: Only three teams have come back from 0-3 and made the playoffs. Do you think this team can do it?
A: Our mindset is we have to get this win right here. Get our first win and go from there. So, we have a long football season left and anything is possible, but still the focus is on the next game no matter if weíre 3-0 or 1-2 or whatever. Next game is the most important one. Thatís where we are right now.
Q: Is it time to just be quiet and play the game?
A: I think itís always time for that. You have to go play. You have to go play and find ways to win and make the plays that are there for you.
Q: How important is it for you to turn this around quickly?
A: Itís important for everybody. Everybody knows how this business works and you have to go out there and produce and you have to find ways to win football games. Weíve worked hard enough to win some of these past games and now we have to show it on gameday.
Q: What kind of confidence does it show in the offensive line when you go into a shotgun when youíre inches from the goal line?
A: Well, they were coming out all-out blitz, so it was going to be tough to run it in those situations. If we had a run right there, probably would have had to check out of it. So, they went to all-out blitz and they were giving us the throw. We have to make the plays.
Q: How challenging is it for the team to deal with all the protests going on across the NFL?
A: I think the team is focused on the game. Weíre focused about going out there and doing our business and understand that weíre football players and we have a job to do on Sunday. I think weíve done a good job of everybody sticking together, understanding the situation, but not letting it divide us. Understand, have empathy for each other and everybodyís different situation or environments or what theyíve experienced and deal with that, but understand once the kickoff starts, we have to focus on playing football.
Q: Does the NFL have more distractions today than what you remember them having in the past?
A: Yeah. With more outlets, you know, itís going to be more stuff going on, more opportunities for distractions. So, I think you have to do great as players of keeping things in the locker room, keeping things close and have a strong team, close team that you can handle all of those things.
Q: Do you think that this team is close enough to handle outside distractions?
A: I think itís a strong team. Yeah. I think guys have a lot of respect for each other. They work hard, they get along with each other, great communication starting from the coaches going all the way down to the players and be able to handle things and whatever is thrown at us.
Q: Do you have more player meetings when youíre 0-3 to keep everyone on the same page?
A: Weíve had talks and weíve had some opportunities to make sure everybody is on the same page and I think the team is still strong and dedicated to going out there and doing whatís right and fixing the problems.