New York Giants
Inside Slant | Notes, Quotes | Strategy and Personnel |
For the last few weeks, head coach Tom Coughlin spoke about the team's desire to see second-year defensive end Damontre Moore get more snaps.
Yet that hasn't happened, which is odd considering that Coughlin is the man that can make it happen.
On Wednesday, Coughlin was asked why Moore hasn't been able to earn more snaps in games.
"Because there are times, to be honest with you, during the week when you talk about confidence level, whether it's assignment football or whatever, it hasn't been something that we thought he knows exactly what he's doing," Coughlin said.
Thus far, Moore has been primarily limited to pass rushing situations. He has 15 total tackles but is third on the team in sacks with 3.0. He also has four tackles for a loss and has logged eight quarterback hits.
Still, when it comes to getting more game snaps, a player, regardless of the number of years of experience he has, still has to prove it to Coughlin and the coaches in practice.
"The practices have to fulfill the idea that we can go ahead and play him under all kinds of circumstances is what we'd like to do, not just on third down," Coughlin said.
At the start of this season, the Giants run defense was among the top-10 in the league.
These days not so much so, however as the Giants run defense is currently ranked 31st in the NFL after allowing opponents an average of 142.6 yards per game.
That's not much of an improvement from their previous last-place ranking (No. 32) that they held for two straight weeks. Further, it's a long fall from having the eighth-best run defense as they did in Week 1.
Certainly, injuries have played a part in the Giants' fall from being a top-10 unit. Gone for the season are cornerback Prince Amukamara, who was strong against the run, and middle linebacker Jon Beason.
Defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins has been in and out of the lineup and Mathias Kiwanuka has been dealing with a knee injury.
Still, injuries are only a small part of the run defense's deterioration. The other part has been a lack of discipline by the front seven, who at times have been sloppy with contain and who have not done a good job of filling gaps.
"I could put a finger on it, but it is a family matter," linebacker Jameel McClain said. "We just have to fix the things we have to fix, we all have to do our jobs and focus on that. We have to focus on the fundamentals of the game."
This week, the Giants will get another solid test in the form of second-year man Denard Robinson, the former quarterback turned running back who's currently averaging 4.6 yards per carry and who has four rushing touchdowns.
"Dennard is playing some good football, doing some great things out of the backfield, running and catching," McClain said. "(He is) definitely something we have to focus on and shutting that down and letting their rookie quarterback (Blake Bortles) do what he does."
If the Giants can bottle up Robinson and the Jaguars running game, they should be able to have an easier time against the Bortles, who is 191 of 305 this year for 2,067 yards with 8 touchdowns and 15 interceptions-assuming of course the Giants can get home with their pressures.
"You can talk about pressure all you want but we've got to have people to get to the ball, get to the quarterback. That hasn't happened much," head coach Tom Coughlin said. "It is something that has been missing the majority of the time this year. The effectiveness of pressures, whether they come out of the secondary, the linebacker level, we have not been good with that."
They are hoping to be better this week, especially with bringing the pressure against Bortles.
"Hopefully you can hit him and force him to throw some interceptions or something," defensive end Robert Ayers said.
There is still plenty of buzz surrounding the amazing fingertip reception made on Sunday by receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who us desperately trying to keep his life as normal as can be despite his repletion for the ages.
"It's definitely still there," he said when asked if he is still feeling the euphoria from that reception. "There's no way of denying that. For the most part, I'm just trying to get ready for this week. We do have another game coming up Sunday. You've got to put it behind you at some point."
Beckham has kept a low profile since making that reception, though he did make an appearance at a scheduled autograph signing earlier in the week where stacks of that photo were waiting for his signature.
"It was great to see the fans, kids waiting in line," Beckham said. "They were cute. They were smiling. They were just like, 'Wow, it was a great catch.' It just puts a smile on my face to have an impact on kids. It's a great moment to have, but like I said, you've got to put it behind you at some point."
Having made such an amazing catch, though, now puts an even bigger spotlight on the Giants' first-round draft pick, who realizes that people are going to be looking at him to produce similar plays.
That's fine with Beckham.
"I love opportunities and I love embracing a challenge, so whatever this brings, I guess I've brought it on myself," Beckham said. "You've just got to deal with it."
One of the things he is almost certain to have to deal with moving forward is more attention from defenses. As far as Beckham, who is nursing a sore back following a knee he took in the area last week, is concerned, if his drawing double coverage helps the team, he is fine with that.
"Hopefully, if they start rolling coverages and stuff like that, it's not going to be able to work, because we have other receivers Rueben (Randle), who's going to get open and beat one-on-one, and Preston (Parker)," he said.
"At the end of the day I wouldn't mind them doing that and the other receivers getting more opportunities."
BY THE NUMBERS: 300 Number of regular-season games Tom Coughlin will have served as a NFL head coach as of this Sunday. Coughlin, coincidentally, began his NFL head-coaching career in Jacksonville.
QUOTE TO NOTE:
"For a young guy, it's hard to believe 300 games. I must have started when I was 15." Giants head coach Tom Coughlin when asked if he realized that he was about to coach his 300th career NFL regular-season game on Sunday.