Press Conference: Tom Coughlin

Tom Coughlin addressed the media today. Here is the transcript:

Shaun O'Hara will not practice today.  Corey Webster is going to go through individual; he feels a little bit better. We'll see how far that goes.  Michael Strahan is going to do some things up in the bubble as far as trying to get himself in position to know more about his status.  Of course Luke will not practice.  But the majority of the other guys will practice. 

Q:  McKenzie?

A:  McKenzie will practice. 

Q:  You said Michael will do more things, is that individual drills?

A:  That is individual stuff, yeah.

Q:  Is there still a mystery about Michael?

A:  No, the only thing is that you have to, again, be patient with this because there is no – what happens when he tried to do something early, he gets sore.  So we have to obviously do it in a timely fashion.

Q:  How is Luke right now as far as the healing process?

A:  The process is going along fine.  He is impatient about it, as is everyone else.  But it is healing.

Q:  When Bob Whitfield first took over for Luke Bob said that he did not play well.  How has he played the last four weeks?  What did you guys have to do differently?

A:  It is identification of the outstanding pass rushers on the other teams and trying to adjust your protections accordingly.  So with that in mind you know the teams that we have played here the last couple of weeks and how we have adjusted and what we have had to do.  But Bob has done a good job.  Our quarterback, for the most part, has been on his feet, with his eyes downfield.  He did show good mobility the other day and the ability to move around in the pocket, which is a good sign.  So Bob has played a long time.  He is very smart; has a lot of guile, a lot of understanding about the game.  And he has adjusted and plies his trade accordingly.  And he does a good job. 

Q:  After that Bears game he said it was just a matter of, "I wasn't prepared, or hadn't had a chance to prepare all week."  Has that been why he has been able to play better?

A:  I think it is one thing.  I think you have to look at it from the standpoint of being the next tackle in the game to being a starter.  It is almost like watching some of these guys come back from injuries.  They have to play probably a game, or even more than a game, before you feel like they are back to where they are going to contribute.

Q:  You mentioned before that Eli did some things with his feet; you mentioned that the other day.  Is that something you have to try to coax out of him?  It doesn't seem like he wants to do any part of that stuff?

A:  I don't know if any quarterback does; they had rather set and throw.  Sometimes when forced to do something, if you can make a play, it certainly creates some things for you and for your team, because you are not absolutely on the clock. 

Q:  You guys haven't used a lot of quarterback sneaks.  You ran one last week. Is that something you would like to see him take the initiative to do?

A:  No, it is more of design.  If you thought that they are going to line up a certain way to take a certain thing away, then that becomes more of possibility.

Q:  In that first Eagles game Tiki said that Trotter was the biggest reason why he had trouble running.  Do you see him having that kind of impact? If so, why?

A:  Because he is a heck of a football player.  He has been that way for a long time.  He is very physical.  He takes it upon himself to be the run stopper.  They do a lot of things with their defense that allows him to come down hill.  And he has responded, not only this year, but for a lot of years.

Q:  Does it become more of an issue with the possibility of having to shuffle the O-line?

A:  I don't know if it would be even more of an issue; everybody is aware of where Trotter is.  And 54 has to be blocked.  If you are going to have any success running the ball, you have to block him. 

Q:  You look back at the eight sacks from that game and that was a very high number for you the last couple of years.  Do you see the reasons for that when you look back at the tape?

A:  Speed and outstanding pass rush, pressure.  You can name any number of things. 

Q:  They both kicked well Sunday.  But with the injuries that Feagles and Feely are dealing with, are they of a nature that could change immediately or are they pretty stabilized?  What is their status?

A:  They have both played through the extent of it.  We will deal with whatever soreness or inconvenience there is at this point in time.  But there was no doubt about seeing the way special teams performed and what we have needed, and in some cases what we have been lacking.

Q:  What is the sense of how Jeff Garcia has done since taking over the Eagles offense?

A:  He has played well; eight touchdowns and no interceptions.  He has continued to be able to maneuver and he is mobile.  He does a good job when he is on the run.  He will pull the ball down and run.  They have won two very close football games, which builds the confidence of your team around you.  He is playing well.

Q:  Do you think the history he had – as a first string guy and what he had done in San Francisco – that must factor in a lot to him being able to step in the way he has.

A:  Well, that is obviously why he was brought there to be the backup, because the system is not foreign to him at all.  He has performed very well in the past in that system and is doing a good job now.

Q:  Does it seem strange to have three straight weeks of backup quarterbacks, or are you used to that?

A:  When you watch this team and the way they are performing right now, it would be hard to call this guy a backup quarterback.

Q:  How much does the comeback and just the way that first game played out factor into this game as far as confidence …..?

A:  Well, I think it was certainly a great win for us at that time.  Anytime you come back from that kind of deficit.  But that was then; now is now, as they say.  We are aware of that.  We look at it.  You look at the tape.  You study it.  You look at what was accomplished then and you factor in where you are now.

Q:  Your backup situation at quarterback is obviously a little different than what Andy Reid has.  You have two players that haven't thrown a pass in two years; he has a former Pro Bowl player.  Is that a luxury for a team to have a guy like Garcia?

A:  Without knowing what the reasoning completely is, they went out and got him because of the system, because the coaching staff had great knowledge of Garcia.

Q:  When Eli got the wind knocked out of him, you had to have Jared warm up – even though it was very brief period of time.  What would your thought process be if Eli should go down and Jared had to go in?

A:  He has got to play. 

Q:  I understand he has to play.  But what level of confidence do you have in your backup?

A:  The backup quarterback - you expect him to be ready to play.  There were no plays missed by the starter.  I have no idea why we are talking about this.

Q:  Health issues aside, has Sinorice Moss ever been a consideration for the return game at all?

A:  He has been.  He did some in preseason, practice wise. 

Q:  Is that something you have thought about – making a change?

A:  No.  I'm not thinking about it now, either.

Q:  The Eagles have been a very good run defense – but not lately.  But they really have really slipped the last four or five weeks.  Why do you think that is the case?

A:  That's a good question.  I think they have adapted well to the players that are injured and have been replaced.  And as I said, they have won two very close football games.  And again, you are talking about looking at a lot of numbers, but yet not being about to quite get the job done.  They are a team that has always taken great pride in stopping the run.  Washington's plan was a very good plan – spread them out on a lot of occasions.  They had a hot back that made some people miss, and moved the ball well between the two 10-yard lines.  But the exact reason for it – the National Football League – a good offensive line, a good defensive line. 

Q:  Your most effective runs in that game also seem to be when you spread the field or had Eli in the shotgun.  Washington obviously did some of that.  Is that just the obvious way to attack the Eagles?

A:  I don't know that it is the obvious way, but it is a very good defensive scheme.  They do an outstanding job of preparing for what you do by formation.  And sometimes you are better off when you do some things that are not absolutely recognizable. 

Q:  Does that success some times come because Trotter comes off the field a lot in those situations?

A:  Well, that possibly could be.  But I wouldn't say that was the only reason, no.  Trotter has been on the field for a while with Barber injured.  The two of them share one particular sub package and then you expect that in another package Trotter would come on.

Q:  Luckily Sunday when the offensive linemen got hurt you had some maneuverability.  What happens if McKenzie can't go?

A:  Well, you saw it, Diehl was over at right tackle.

Q:  But with Seubert working at center for O'Hara, what would you do now?

A:  Now you have Ruegamer ready to go.  The flexibility, as I said the other day, was very obvious.  We have Rich play center, we have had him play guard, we have had him  play tackle.  We have had Diehl play tackle, we have him play guard.  Ruegamer has played center and guard.  Seubert has played left tackle.  So that is kind of the way it has to be with your offensive line, the flexibility, the versatility, the maneuverability.  You have different people backup at different spots.  And I thought one of the really good things was when McKenzie was not going to be able to start right away in the third quarter, which is what we found out at that point in time, Diehl just moved over and was ready to go.

Q:  Has the Eagles' resolve been particularly impressive after losing Donovan over the last few games?

A:  Well, you watch them play, when they come back from the Tennessee thing and Indianapolis and then continue to play.  Their numbers are outstanding.  They have a lot of good football players.

Q:  Has Boston College asked you for your input for their coaching situation?

A:  No.

Q:  Have you had a request from them to speak with Gilbride?

A:  Yes.

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