QB Eli Manning -- November 14, 2018
Q: How was practice today?
A: It was good. We got back to work. Obviously, off the short week. Just kind of a walk-thru today. Just to get the offense and get to gameplan. Just make sure everybody knows what’s going on. It’s always good to come in the locker room and then the meeting rooms after a win. Everybody is in better spirits, but still the same determination to focus and learn the gameplan, and know we got to work hard and come out and play well again this week, and try to get another win.
Q: How much encouragement do you take from last week’s win?
A: I think it is encouraging for the team. It just gives guys that confidence that we can win games, we can come back from being down, we can get a two-minute drive to win a game when we need to. Guys can step up and make plays on offense, defense, everything, special teams. Everybody contributed, everybody played their part, and it was a team victory.
Q: What are your thoughts of facing an old teammate in (Buccaneers DE) Jason Pierre-Paul?
A: JPP was a great teammate. He’s having a great year. He’s getting a lot of sacks and making plays. I expect him to be fired up. Hopefully we got a gameplan for him, and make sure we try to control him.
Q: [Pierre-Paul] talked today about how you reached out to him after the trade. What did you say to him in those moments?
A: You just thank him for being a great teammate, for being a great player. The way he practiced, the way he competed, the way he came back after his injury and fought, and did everything to come back, and be a part of the team, and play well. You hate to lose guys you win championships with and does everything the right way. That’s the NFL, but I just wanted to say I appreciated him as a person and as a player.
Q: Was there anything schematically from last game that led you to believe that things are coming together?
A: I think there’s been signs of things clicking and good plays. We’re able to eliminate the negative plays. Only one sack, and it came on a third-down. We just didn’t have those negative plays on first and second down that really hurt us and got us into third-and-longs. Most of our third downs were in that third-and-six, and third-and-fours, and that gives you an opportunity to convert those and move forward. So, I thought we were able to hit a couple big plays, but also able to extend drives and score in the red zone.
Q: Do you feel like you were able to step up in the pocket more consistently and deliver the ball as compared to previous games this year?
A: Yeah, I thought the offensive line did a great job, and I thought we did a good job mixing up different protections and different drops. Try to get the ball out on time and get it to our playmakers. I thought our concepts were concepts that our guys knew really well, and can get open in a timely fashion.
Q: After (WR) Odell (Beckham Jr.) had the two touchdowns earlier in the game, but he didn’t have a catch on that winning drive. Is that what this offense is supposed to look like?
A: Yeah, obviously, he drew a pass interference, was a big play – Odell did. Especially in a two-minute, people will be lined up in different spots. It’s not necessarily try to get Odell the ball. You call plays based on what you think the defense is doing. Everybody has gotten opportunites to get the ball. We have playmakers. With (TE) Evan (Engram), with (WR) Sterling (Shepard), with Odell, and then (RB) Saquon (Barkley), all those guys can make plays, and all of them stepped up and made big plays for us.
Q: When you see (Buccaneers QB) Ryan Fitzpatrick on the other side, what are your thoughts on that?
A: Fitz is playing well. They’re moving the ball, they’re scoring a lot of points, they’re offense is scoring a lot of points and getting a lot of yards. We just got to understand, offensively, we just got to do our part. We got to control the ball. Don’t put our defense in a bind. Don’t make it easy on their offense, and we got to score some point also.