Interview: OC John Hufnagel

Q: Can you compare Eli to anybody that maybe you've seen in the past? A: No I'm really not into comparing people or players. I just know that Eli works very, very hard to become the best player he can be.

Q: Coach Coughlin said that Eli has been to more off-season sessions than anybody, watched more tape than anybody and you were a quarterback. For a young quarterback, how important is that?
A: It's very important. You have to understand that each and every day you go onto the practice field it is an experience to learn and gather information. You know, in the off-season, learn about the opponents that you are playing, the DB's their tendencies their weaknesses and he's very good at it. He has a very, very good memory, a great memory.  So, the things that he retains, it will come up sometime in the future and will make a play for us in the game.
Q:  What does Moss add to this offense?
A: Well, he did a nice job for us in the spring.  We're looking for great competition from him and everybody, all of the other receivers at training camp.  Hopefully his elusiveness and quickness will be part of the offense that we use.
Q:  Is it overrated how much a quarterback throws with his wide receivers during the off-season?
A: I'm not going to say it's overrated.  I think that the more you have the ability to do it, it will pay off for you at some point in time in the season.
Q: Coach Coughlin talked about the excitement, from an offensive standpoint, these guys are now together for another year: Jeremy Shockey is obviously a good player, and Plaxico Burress is pro-bowl caliber. As an offensive coordinator, how excited are you?
A: I think if you go back to the same time last year, we were looking forward to taking a big step offensively and team-wise and we did that.  Now, just as Tom said in his press conference, we need to take another step, a bigger step.  We need to come into this camp understanding that what we accomplished last year is over.  We need to get back to hard work and know what we can accomplish and let's go get more.  We got to get more.
Q: Coach seems to be using that 17th game as motivation.  Is that something that he's talked with the coaching staff about, in terms of really letting the guys know?
A: I think that everyone talks about that 17th game.  So, I mean, it's there.  It wasn't a good offensive outing for us.  That's part of the concept of being more consistent and playing through difficult times.
Q: How much does that weigh on your mind, that game, in terms of motivating you?
A: Well, it definitely does.  As I always say that best way to get the bad taste out of your mouth of a loss is to get back onto the field and win and when you lose that last game it's a long time.  So, we're anxious to get back on the field and get better as an offense, get better as a football team and start winning football games.

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