Coaches Corner: Coughlin speaks out

Tom Coughlin met the media three times last week during the club's veteran minicamp. Here are some of the highlights of what New York's head man had to say.

Q: How is it heading into second season as opposed to the first season?

A: Yeah, the players know more about what we expect of them. They have had an opportunity to be in meetings with us, obviously, through an entire season and into the spring as well. We have had a chance to address many of the things that we felt needed to be improved in the offseason as we came forth into the spring. So, naturally they are more in tune and know what to expect. I think there is better communication at the line of scrimmage. I think there is better information being passed from the coaches to the players throughout. As far as the snap of the ball, I think people are able to get lined up faster and so on and so forth. We had a few things that didn?t go the way we would have liked them and things we have to iron out in terms of our own communication. But the purpose here is for us to have had the amount of time from March 21st to here for the offseason program, but really the strength and conditioning program. We have been on the field twice (each of) the last couple of weeks with our football - the orientation of our football information - and now we have a mini camp that sort of launches us into June where we can have solid practices here and then more OTAs in the next two weeks. So we continue to get information to them, particularly in the areas that we are trying to improve upon.

Q: Are you looking for Eli to be more of a leader?

A: Well, that position is the position of leadership. Each quarterback does it in a different way. They grow to being more confident in terms of expressing themselves. Now he is going to lead by example, by making plays, by performance, and that is the best way.

Q: With him being experienced, should this team be better?

A: I think we will be better. I think we will certainly do better.

Q: Is there a lot more talent on the field at this time this year as opposed to your first year?

A: Let's see. Let's see how it goes. On paper there is. Let's see how it goes.

Q: How is Michael Strahan looking to you? I know he is not doing a lot, but how do you see him developing?

A: Well, we need to see, certainly a lot more, but Michael is Michael. He is very athletic. He moves very well, very gracefully. He seems to be doing well recovering from his injury. And that is something that I will have to gauge as we go along here, whether he gets sore or how he feels after he has some contact. Without the pads sometimes you say, 'Well, there aren't really a lot of collisions.' But up front you play the game with your hands in these situations. So without pads those arms and hands are jamming into people throughout the entire day. So we will see how he comes through.

Q: How do Burress, Shockey and Toomer help Eli? And how do they help dictate coverages?

A: They help each other because, obviously, they should take pressure off one another in terms of where the defense has to go to try to defend by coverage what they are trying to accomplish. So the balance that they will be getting in terms of not being able to overload, but other than that, let's see how it turns out. Let's let these guys play a little bit and see how the defense reacts.

Q: Do you expect Amani to have a bounce-back year?

A: If Amani is healthy, then certainly I do expect him to play and have more production than he had a year ago. And he has been working toward that the whole offseason. We would like to see him play injury-free, obviously. That would be huge factor.

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