Head Coach Pat Shurmur -- December 7, 2018
Opening Remarks: Odell (Beckham Jr.) has got a bruised quad, so we just gave him a little time. He’s going to be fine. That’s the issue in terms of the injuries. Tae Davis and (B.J.) Goodson both practiced today, so we’re very hopeful they’ll be available to us (Sunday).
Q: No designation of questionable?
A: Davis and Goodson as questionable, and they both practiced today.
Q: So Odell did not practice but he’s playing Sunday?
A: He’s playing. He’s got a quad bruise. It’s been lingering. Remember the last play of the game against Philly, where he got leg whipped?
Q: How does Evan Engram fit back into the mix?
A: He practiced throughout the week.
Q: In regards to the rotation?
A: Same. We’ll try to use the tight ends like we always do, use all three of them, try to maximize the use of their strengths.
Q: Could you see putting all three of them on the field together, like Evan as more of a receiver?
A: We’ve done that numerous times this year, so yeah, that’s a possibility. 13 personnel – one back, three tight ends.
Q: You don’t see that very often.
A: You see it more than you think. Everybody has it in their package, a lot of times you use it in four-minute. Again, it depends on the skill and ability of your tight ends, depending on who they are.
Q: You don’t have to use Evan judiciously coming back from the injury?
A: No, he’s going to play at this point.
Q: Can you talk about the maturation between Nate Solder and Will Hernandez and their relationship?
A: As you see the way this has played out since the bye, four of our starting linemen didn’t have a Giants helmet last year, so there’s been a lot of changeover. I think that’s important to remember. There’s a lot of new moving forward, running parallel with trying to block a lot of really good fronts. With regard to the left side, that’s been constant, and certainly Nate’s an outstanding player. They work together, so then Nate’s been bringing along a true rookie in Will, who has improved each week. The combination of those two guys, they’re getting better and better and better, and I think Nate behind the scenes has sort of mentored that whole group because there’s a lot of new and a lot that goes into it.
Q: Hernandez said he felt their relationship changed, it was a teacher-student kind of thing but he felt like he finally got up to speed, they’re now a tandem rather than Solder bringing him along. Have you seen that on the field in the second half especially?
A: I think so. Then when they’re working together, whether they’re double-teaming or they’re scooping, or they’re passing off twists, they’re doing a better job of making that all happen when they’re working together. Again, it’s just experience. I said this I think earlier in the week but what’s going to happen and it happens with most rookies that are thrust into a starting role like Will has been. Somewhere in the offseason, he’s going to have an “ah-ha” moment that says, ‘Wow, when this thing started I didn’t know much about what was going on, but now the next time through I’ll have so much more of an idea.’ And that’s sort of what you get. I think Nate’s been able to help guide him through that.
Q: This used to be one of the best rivalries in football (Redskins-Giants) a few years ago maybe. Is it still there?
A: NFC East game, I think so. They all count one, the next game is most important, they’re all big games. There’s a lot of ways to look at it. I don’t ever want to minimize the importance of an NFC East matchup, and I think the rivalries are huge. You play each other twice. Every team, now with the Eagles winning the Super Bowl, every team in our division has Super Bowl trophies. There’s great tradition in the NFC East, they beat us the last time through, we didn’t make enough plays to win so there’s a lot there.
Q: How do you go about preparing for (QB) Mark Sanchez? How much do you go back and look at old stuff, or where do you look because he’s been in a bunch of different spots?
A: I have a memory bank of what he’s good at and that’s what I told the defense -- these are the things he’s really good at, so we’ve got to be sharp. So that helps me, because I worked with him intimately, I’ve seen the way he works, I know he’s won a lot of games, and so I have that memory of Mark. Then what you do is watch, each system’s different, so you watch how they’re using him in their system and what they’re asking him to do. We have to defend the Redskins, but you’re always aware of the people that are involved.
Q: So as players, they don’t go back to tape of him with another team? You don’t think that’s useful in this instance?
A: Not in this instance, I don’t think. Mark didn’t play much last year, I saw him twice, he was at the Bears. I think the most important thing is to watch their scheme, know what Mark’s good at and then try to defeat their scheme.
Q: Eli Penny seems to be getting more snaps since the bye week. Is that one of the things you changed up, something you looked at over the bye week?
A: A little bit. Roster permitting, I’m fond of having a fullback. I think they’re very valuable guys, and from the second half of the year here, we’ve utilized 21 personnel more. He’s got a good skillset, he’s a converted halfback so he can run the ball, he can catch the ball, and he’s swelled up since his halfback days, so he’s a better blocker now. Again, he was new, he didn’t start, so he had a long way to go to catch up and know what we were doing and he’s done a good job doing that.
Q: Kyle (Lauletta) and Alex (Tanney) staying in the same order this week?
A: Yeah, they’ll be the same.