Giants, Not Quite Elite Yet?

The New York Giants are labeled as an elite team after beating the Patriots. But when you ask some of New York's players, they're not quite ready to agree with that assessment.

Not Quite Elite

For as impressive as the Giants' win over New England was, defensive end Justin Tuck was not quite ready to agree with the notion that Giants are an elite NFL team.

  "We'll have more opportunities coming up, but I think we're close," he said. "I've always told you it doesn't matter what you do in November. No one is going to remember what we did in November. No one is going to remember what we did in December. It's all about getting to the Super Bowl and winning that. When you do that, that's when you're elite.

   "We don't play this game to be second best, or third best or whatever. So, if you're not holding that trophy at the end of the year, you're not elite, in my opinion."

 Big Day For Jacobs

  --Last week, running back Brandon Jacobs vowed to change his sour attitude and to start making the most of his opportunities when they came. He did just that in his first game as a starter this season, a game in which he ran for a season-high 18 carries for 72 yards and a touchdown.

   "I just took what they gave me and made the best of it," said a humbled Jacobs after the game. "I wish I could have played better, I ran hard, but I still think I may have left some yards out on the field, but no one is perfect, I went in and did what they asked me to do."

   Jacobs, who was on the field for one play in the Giants' game-winning drive -- he failed to convert a second-and-one from the Patriots' 1-yard line -- praised quarterback Eli Manning for finding a way to bring the Giants back from the edge.

   "When you've got Eli as the quarterback in a two-minute situation, I am confident all the way in and out," he said. "Eli has been a beast all season long -- ever since I've been in the league  -- on two-minute drives. The offensive line blocked very well, they protected him, and they got in the end zone."

Special Teams

   --The Giants' special teams usually don't get much attention unless there is a disaster, such as was the case when punt returner Aaron Ross fumbled away the ball to set up a Patriots scoring drive.

   However, the unit not only won the field position battle against the Patriots, it also turned in an overall solid performance that included a major forced fumble caused by Mark Herzlich that was recovered by linebacker Jacquian Williams to set up a Giants scoring opportunity.

   "It feels great," said long snapper and special teams captain Zak DeOssie. "Any turnover in any game is huge. That is how you win and lose games on turnovers."

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