Tom: Team demonstrated ‘resiliency’ and ‘mental toughness’ in win over Lions

Tom Coughlin was proud of his team last night after they knocked off the Detroit Lions at Ford Field for their sixth win of the season….

“Nice to win. That was a very, very nice ending for a bunch of guys that worked their butts off this week, despite all that was being said about us. We had an offensive line that certainly very little tribute was paid to the week before. I thought they came up and played with great heart. Dallas Reynolds, who was one of our two backup guys, ended up playing about three quarters of the game as (Brandon) Mosley broke his hand. He had to go in there and battle against (Ndamukong) Suh and did a nice job of that. And then back and forth, Will Hill scored, our defense played an outstanding ball game. The turnovers, unfortunately we had a couple of them. Gosh, that one with Andre Brown, that hurt, but we were able to bounce back from that. We certainly demonstrated resiliency. We demonstrated mental toughness.”


“We had a nice lead at halftime, came out in the second half in the third quarter, didn’t look very good offensively. Three-and-outs, three-and-outs. They came up with a big punt return on us, which hurt. But then the fourth quarter, we battled back. We did have a very nice kickoff return, which we worked very hard to accomplish and hadn’t had a lot of success, but certainly a ball that was returned probably five deep in the end zone, gave us the ball at midfield. Lots of outstanding plays in the game, lots of physical football. A lot of big plays. Jerrel Jernigan made plays, the fourth-down call there, the sliding catch that put us in position to kick the field goal. That was a huge play. That’s not easy, you’re talking about another….first time I punted was 4th-and-10 and this looked like another fourth and, what was it seven or eight? We decided to go for it. We were into overtime, guys had played a lot of plays. Let’s see if we can make a play to put ourselves into position to end the game and we did.”

On what it says about the team to come through in this victory:
“Good character, tough kids. Took a lot of shots this year, quite frankly have earned the criticism. I don’t think there’s any doubt about that. We’ve been able to stay focused and we’ve been able to touch on some real deep values that get overlooked when people are telling you (that) you have nothing to play for. You’ve got everything in the world to play for. I think the way they played tonight was a good demonstration of that.”

On if QB Eli Manning was lobbying to go for it on fourth down in overtime:
“I think he was. I picked him up right after we made the decision and he was standing there. (He) didn’t want to come off the field. I’d say that’s about as close as lobbying as he gets.”

On the offensive game plan changing:
“You’d be surprised how much of that we have available on a weekly basis. Sometimes you don’t have the opportunity to make some of those calls. But there were a lot of them that came in handy tonight. We were disappointed in our ghost-screen production. We threw a lot of those, but the throwback screen was a big, big play. That last drive, Rueben (Randle) with the big third-down conversion there and then the fourth-down conversion by JJ (Jerrel Jernigan). The almost, the series before the ball off of Hakeem’s (Nicks) fingertips there. We have quite a bit on a weekly basis, just to answer that again, but sometimes you don’t have the spot to call.”

On WR Jerrel Jernigan stepping up the last few weeks:
“He did. This is two games in a row he’s played really well, and to be honest with you, this week, he was injured and he was sick last night, so he keeps you right on the edge of your seat, whether or not he’s going to be able to go. He bounced back and he’s a tough guy.

On FS Will Hill:
“We support him in every way we can. If there was something, he’s trying like heck to meet all of his responsibilities. I don’t know any more than that and you probably know more than I do. It is a private matter and it’s something he has taken care of. We, again, support him as best as we can. He tries like heck to meet all of his obligations.”

On the tipped balls:
“It was nice to get a couple.”

On the game plan to limit Lions WR Calvin Johnson:
“You have to have some ideas about what you’re going to do against him. He hurt us with one big play earlier on that we saw coming and we just couldn’t stop it. We did some good things in the red zone with our defensive structure to try to force the quarterback to not even think about going over there. Then in the field we had some circumstances where we able to have at least a guy or a guy-and-a-half or someone to cover over the top of him.”

On if he thought about going for a 62-yard field goal:
“No. Not at that point, no. I think, to be honest with you, the one that Josh (Brown) hit during the game, I thought he could have kicked a 60-yader with that kick, but I didn’t consider any more than that. I didn’t want to get in to those numbers either. I was thinking that we would probably have to kick a 56-yarder or something like that.”

*Transcript courtesy NY Giants public relations dept

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