Quarterback Eli Manning
Conference Call, November 24, 2017
Q: Is this as frustrating of a year as you could imagine?
A: Yeah, itís definitely a frustrating year. Weíre not playing great football offensively. The defense is playing well, keeping us in the games and especially some second half of games, we just havenít been able to move the ball, not been able to get first downs, not being able to get completions and itís frustrating. Itís not the style of football that Iím used to playing. Not being able to complete the ball, so yeah itís frustrating, it is tough. We just got to keep finding ways to be creative to put our guys in great position to make plays and be more efficient offensively.
Q: Do you sense guys are pressing too hard to make plays?
A: I donít sense that. The guys out there want to make plays. I donít think theyíre trying to do too much and therefore leading to. I think when you start pressing, thatís when mistakes happen and obviously some games weíve turned the ball over, but weíre not turning the ball over, weíre not forcing things, weíre not sloppy. Everybody has their part in it. Itís not one person, weíve had drops, Iíve missed some throws, weíve had some mistakes up front. Itís everybody at different times contributing to our lack of success.
Q: So how do you fix that then?
A: We just got to make sure guys are focused. Obviously this is tough. We got some young guys on a short week. Their first time doing this, late in the year on a short week. You got young guys playing, that can happen. Itís not an excuse, but we got some new guys in the mix. We just got to find a way. We tried to slow down the game a little bit and shorten the game by giving them more two tight ends and three tight ends and running the ball, running the ball and weíre getting ourselves into third and manageable positions, we got to convert. We got third and threes and fours, which we had a lot of, you canít let those pass away. We got to make the catches, we got to make the plays. It just comes down to everybody being that much more focused. Itís been a tough year and with five games left, this is about your pride and if everybody feels bad about the last game, that was bad football offensively. That is not even close to where it needs to be. Weíve had some injuries, weíve had some guys out, but we got to find a way to come together and find ways to excel our play and win some football games.
Q: How much of a challenge is it to manage the type of football you guys have been playing?
A: We were talking about the styles not being efficient. Not being explosive. But it is a different style and it is a little bit more run, run and then throw it on third down. So yeah itís different, but hey, it can be effective, it can work and understand thatís the situation weíre in, but we still got to do the part and finish that job and convert on those third downs and put our guys in a position where they can give them a chance to be successful and find out what they do well. So itís a little bit of playing it by ear and figuring things out and if you think youíre going to have a guy and then with some injuries, different things going on. So we hope to get Sterling Shepard back in the mix, if not, we got to make sure weíre putting guys in third and fives so they can be successful and the team can be successful.
Q: When one unit is having success on the field, how hard is it to be on the short end of the stick?
A: Yeah, itís no fun. Itís obviously a team game. All three sides have to do their part to win a football game, but you donít want to be one of the groups that is contributing to the losses and thatís what the offense is right now. Weíre not doing our part. The defense is getting the stops, theyíre getting the turnovers, theyíre getting the fourth down stops, theyíre getting in good field position. We got to do our part. We got to stay on the field, we canít have three and outs and we got to score more points and build them a lead. If we can get a lead, we can do some things to cause the other team to turn the ball over. We got to do our part.
Q: Do you take this week as a mini bye and take the rest of the weekend off to get some rest for the last five games of the season?
A: Yeah, I think thatís a good plan. It was a short week, after a long season and this last week was a grind and we didnít get home until 4 AM last night. So I think you do have to spend the next couple of days and let the body rest and recover and get away from it and spend time with the family and just get rejuvenated for these last five games and understand we got to be committed and all in and do everything you can these last five games to make sure we get a better product on the field than what we did last night.
Q: Did you have any specific advice for Evan (Engram)?
A: This is football. Things can be going very well and then all of a sudden, you can just have a few things not go your way and not make the plays. So you just got to keep doing the right things, stay positive, want to get the ball, want to get open, want to do the right things and youíll get out of it, it will snap. You just got to make sure youíre handling these situations correctly and thereís nothing wrong with feeling bad about it or feeling angry about it or embarrassed about it or whatever it is. Itís fine to go through those things, sometimes you got to have those feelings so you do snap out of it.