Manning's Staying Medium
We had a pretty ho-hum conference call with Eli "LBM" Manning today, but I'll pass along a few tidbits. (Also, Coach Tom Coughlin didn't say much about the injuries to RB Brandon Jacobs and WR Plaxico Burress, calling them both "day-to-day" and saying they need "further rehab and healing" to be able to play Sunday).
Manning was asked if he expects to rely a little less on the pass this week than they did at Arizona, especially if Jacobs returns (the Skins are figuring he will play).
"It all depends on what kind of game it turns out to be," Manning said. "We're always going to try to run the ball." Manning said that, with the Cards playing a single safety and man coverage on one side, the Giants figured would be tough to make plays in the passing game with Burress leaving with a hamstring injury, but they stuck with it.
This game doesn't project to be as high-scoring as the Giants-Cards game (37-29). "Probably not," Manning said, "but you never know what can happen in the NFC East."
We tried to get Manning going about his development as a QB, winning the big game last year and all, but he took a measured approach.
"I just try to improve from week to week and learn from my mistakes," Manning said, "and just figure out the best way to play quarterback to my ability, and the best way to put our team in situations to win games, not making mistakes. You don't have to force things if something's not there."
As for the Giants going from a team that seemed ready to implode last season, to winning the Super Bowl, to now, at 10-1 being one of the NFL's best teams, Manning believes they found a singular identity on offense.
"We're not taking as many shots as we did before," he said, with the run carrying the day and the passing game more often based on short routes. "We just kind of found our style of playing football. We've been a team that was streaky at times ... We found that we've got to be consistent."
With so much success, obviously there are a lot of smiles in East Rutherford these days. "It's been a fun season, it really has," Manning said. "Guys are playing tough."
Manning said the Giants are bracing for an emotional game Sunday, with the Redskins honoring Sean Taylor before the game. "We know they're going to be coming out with their best game and playing great football," Manning said. "So we know we've got to try to match that attitude and mentality."
Jason La Canfora
November 26, 2008; 3:25 PM ET
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