Al Thompson
Eli Manning is keeping his head up after losing two starting receivers. Photo by TJ Engler /

The Giants continue a season that is hard to believe. Big Blue has had more bad luck than someone walking under a dozen ladders and crossing the path of a dozen black cats.

The latest was losing wide receivers Odell Beckham, Jr. and Brandon Marshall for the season due to severe ankle injuries.

Three straight heart-breaking losses and schedule only gets tougher.

Just when the offensive line started to find its way, when Orleans Darkwa (21-122-5.8-1) started to emerge as a competent running back, this happens.

Eli Manning talked about how hard it is to move on and try to win a game on the road in Denver Sunday night (8:30 p.m. NBC).

“We have to move on and obviously, whenever you lose players, you have to make adjustments and other guys have to step up,” Manning said at his weekly press conference. “Nothing has changed in that fact. So, we have some guys – brought back some guys who have been around, been in the system who have made some plays for us in the past. So, they’ll be ready. They’ll know the system. They’ll know what they’re doing. Thrown the routes with them before. Shouldn’t have to worry about guys not knowing their assignments. So, I’ll have confidence in them and we’ll go out there, have a good plan, go execute it.

 Manning was asked about what sort of conversations have you had with the guys recently signed?

“Glad to have them back,” he said. “TK (Tavarres King). TK is a guy who has made plays for us. Thrown him touchdowns before and so, glad to have him. He’s always been a great teammate and a guy who knows what he’s doing, can play fast. So, good to have him back. Couple other guys, so, just excited to have them and excited for their opportunity to go out there, start a game and get a lot of reps and make plays for us.”

Manning said it’s good the Giants broad in receivers he knows rather than new ones.

“Well, that’s a good thing,” Manning said. “They have been around. So, I think it’s different when you bring in a guy who is brand new to the system. Then you’re working all week just to make sure he knows what the routes are, knows what the adjustments are, knows everything. So, with these guys, some of them have been here two-three years. They know what they’re doing. They were just here a few weeks ago, so they’ll be ready. We’ll talk. There’s always some things you’ve added in. There’s some new plays or different things, but I don’t see there being a problem with being on the same page. I think we’ll be on the same page. Just about going and competing and making the plays.”

How will he and other veterans make sure the mood stays upbeat after a 0-5 start and the injuries piling up?

“Well, you just have to,” Manning said. “Hey, the only way to fix the mood is to get a win. Nothing else is going to change it. Nothing else is going to make you feel any better except going out there and getting a ‘W’. We have to have great preparation. We have to have great energy and enthusiasm. Excited about this opportunity”

How would you describe the mood in the locker room?

“I thought it was good,” Manning said. “I thought, obviously, everybody is upset about another tough loss and coming down to the fourth quarter and not getting that win. But, I think once you get back into the locker room, into the meeting rooms, you start preparing for the next team. They excitement gets up about the opportunities and you see how you’re going to move the ball and score some points”

The veteran quarterback talked about the opportunity this gives rookie tight end Evan Engram.

“I mean, I think it’s a big opportunity for everybody,” Manning said. “But, obviously Evan is one of the guys who has been here and Evan has been a playmaker already for us, so he’ll have some opportunities to get open. That’s not our goal to line him up at receiver. Want to keep him, you know, every once in a while we put him out wide. But, want to keep him running plays that he knows how to run.”

And how difficult is this for Manniing since he’s at a stage in his career when he wants to be playing for a championship

“Well, hey, you go out there and you play the next game. It’s tough losing. It’s not fun. There’s a lot of great things in this game and losing – that’s the worst part of it. That’s kind of the situation we’re in and now, you still have to go prepare and try to win the next game like always.”


11 Oct 17 - Football, Giants - Al Thompson - No Comments