Wednesday Player Interviews

Transcript of interviews with selected Jets players during the locker room media period before Wednesday's afternoon practice:      

QB CHAD PENNINGTON

On whether he had a chance to watch any of the Giants-Eagles game …

A little bit. It was pretty impressive. Anytime you look at a team that has a lot of sacks, you can point out one guy that is the reason for that. Maybe it's a great defensive end, one rush defensive end or a blitzing linebacker that causes a lot of plays. But when you look at their game vs. Philadelphia, there were numerous guys. That obviously makes it difficult on the offense because you can't pinpoint one guy and set your protection or really concentrate on that one person. They've got three, four, five guys that can wreak havoc and do some damage in the pass rush.

On what he thought while watching the game…

I know I have to buckle it up a little tighter [laughs]. When you play against a defense like this, you can't expect the game to go perfectly. You can't expect to have a positive play every play with the type of movement they have and with all of the different looks they present on defense. There are going to be some plays that look a little ugly. What we have to do as an offense is maintain our composure and understand that it's about the total perspective of the game and our goal is to win more than they win. You can't get caught up in a couple of plays they might make.

On whether he called anyone while watching the game …

No, no, it's just part of it. I only watched a little bit of it to see what we were going up against. I didn't want to sit there and watch the rest of it. I got the gist of what was going on. I see the whole thing because I watch it the next day on film and actually study it and analyze it and possibly see why those types of things are happening and what we can do a little bit better than their previous opponent to give us a chance.

On what you do as a quarterback to calm yourself down when facing a tough defense …

That's the biggest challenge. I don't know if there's one concrete, single answer to that. As a quarterback you have to take each play as its own entity and you use the previous information to help you anticipate. It's tough not to get happy feet. It's tough not to try to get rid of the ball earlier because of what's happened in the previous plays. That's the hardest thing. You have to maintain your composure every time you go to the sideline. You have to see those different looks they gave you and let that go and move on to the next series, which is extremely difficult. That's why they do the things they do.

On whether he's faced a similar defense and how he battled through …

I can't recall a specific game right off the top of my head, but I know it's difficult and I've been on both sides. I've been on the side where I've been able to battle through it and I've been on the side, in my younger days, where I wasn't able to battle through it. That's the biggest thing, not to get discouraged and move on and look at the big picture when all of that was happening. It was a still a 10-0 game before they had the turnover for the touchdown to make it 16. That's what you have to look at. You can't look at each individual play. You have to look at the body of work, whatever quarter you're in or whatever the situation. You have to look at the scoreboard and realize what type of situation you're in and realize you're still in the game and just one play away from making something happen.

On whether he'd like to see the offense open up more …

Number one, we have to concentrate on consistency. Last week we were able to toss it around. The reason we didn't throw it down the field as much is because when we were throwing the football, they were playing a lot of Cover-2 zone. What we really stressed earlier in the week is not to get greedy in their Cover-2 zones, take our checkdowns, take our underneath routes and force them to tackle us to stay in those manageable situations, don't get caught in third-and-longs where their defense can have a heyday with you.

On whether the Giants play a lot of Cover-2 …

They're multiple. I think the best thing they do is you're not going to get the same look twice. If you do get the same look twice, it's going to be a quarter apart where you saw it in the first quarter and you may see it again in the third quarter. But a lot of times they're going to have some game-plan stuff for us. They're going to have some stuff that we may not have seen and we're going to have to make adjustments on the run, trust our rules, trust our communication and react to it.

On the Jets' long scoring drives …

I think the goal of an offense is always to score points. However you do it, you want to put as many points on the board as possible. When we face the defenses we've faced so far, they're very aware of our receivers and they're very aware of the matchup problems we cause. Just like in the Miami game, they're aware of that and they played a lot of split safety, made sure our receivers didn't see a lot of single coverage, and that's when we got the running game going. In the Buffalo game, we weren't very good on first down, which caused us to be in second-and-long situations, which now they're going to play more split-safety, two-safety coverages, bend-but-don't-break mentality, and keep us from the big plays.

People are aware of our receivers and the damage they can cause, so what we have to do is when we get those opportunities down the field, we've got to capitalize on them. For instance, last week we had three basic opportunities where we capitalized and had gains of 28 yards or more, with the two catches with Jerricho [Cotchery] and then one with Brad Smith on the sidelines. We have to be efficient when we get our opportunities and be patient, understand it's a four-quarter game. We'd love to score quickly and put a lot of points on the board, but our main focus is making sure we protect the football, that we're good in situational football and that we always have a chance to win in the end.

On whether his ankle is affecting his ability to drive the ball down the field …

No, the three throws I had downfield, I felt really good about those three throws. I felt like I got great velocity on it, had good placement and accuracy with it. Kudos to our training staff, they've done a great job in making me feel good on game day and doing all the necessary work throughout the week to feel comfortable and confident. I would tell you if I didn't, but I feel pretty good.

On if teams have caught up with Brian Schottenheimer's offense …

They have definitely had a year to study us and a year to look at us where the surprise element is not as big a factor as it may have been last year. But at the same time, we're very efficient in the red zone right now and we're very efficient on third down, but we need to concentrate on being efficient every down and putting ourselves in positions to make plays every down and executing those plays. Right now I feel good with our game plans and what we're doing both passing and running the ball. We just need to be more consistent. What you're seeing right now is an inconsistent team and that's why we're 1-3.

On the influence QB coach Brian Daboll has had on the offense …

Coach Daboll has really come in and done a great job with some of the concepts and some of the things he believes in and allowing us to get the ball to our playmakers. I know both Coach Schottenheimer and Coach Daboll work really hard on the passing game and they work really well together. It's been a nice mixture.

On the biggest improvement with the Giants defense since Week 1 …

I think success breeds confidence and I think you're looking at a confident defense. The first two weeks I don't think you saw a confident defense with the new system, still trying to learn each other, learn the different calls and communication things they have to go through. In the last two weeks with their winning and how they have won, with great defensive play, that breeds confidence and confidence leads to better play. You're looking at a confident defense that keeps gaining momentum each week, that believes in their coordinator and believes in what they're trying to get accomplished.

On whether the opposing defenses are forcing the Jets to beat them running the ball …

It's been a mixture. A lot of times they have different philosophies, whether or not they're going to make us prove to them that we can run the football before they actually bring the extra guy up to help stop the run, or is it vice versa? So what we need to do is really concentrate on the consistency of that. We all feel we haven't been consistent enough to really make the defense choose one or the other. They've been able to play around with us and because of our inconsistent play we haven't been able to put a stamp on what we're going to do and how we're going to do it.

On whether he's bothered by the speculation that he's unable to make downfield throws …

Not really. I feel comfortable making those throws. We had three opportunities in Buffalo to make those throws and I completed all three of them. My goal as a quarterback is to put us in the end zone, score points, be efficient and move the chains. It's not to show anyone I can throw downfield or that I can make those throws. I'm not going to force balls into coverage just to do that and make that point. That's just bad quarterback play and I don't believe in that.

I believe in protecting the football, playing good, solid football, playing fundamental football and putting our guys in positions to make plays. One of our strengths is catch-and-run. We have a lot of guys that if you get the ball in their hands they can really do some damage. It doesn't have to be a 40-yard throw. So we know we want to be as multiple and as versatile as possible. We want to be able to do both, we want to be good at both, I want to be good at both. I want to be good at throwing those deeper, intermediate routes and doing all of those necessary things. But I'm not going to force those issues. I'm just going to let it come.

DB DARRELLE REVIS

On what has been his biggest adjustment to the pro level …

Playing against different types of receivers and learning that different guys do different moves and learning how they play.

On the Giants' receiving corps …

They are dangerous. Three out of their five guys are 6-0 and up. They have Anthony Mix who is 6-foot-4. [The Giants waived Mix later in the day.] Plaxico [Burress] is 6-foot-5. They have [Jeremy] Shockey, who they can split out wide, and then they have Amani Toomer and [Sinorice] Moss. Those guys are talented and they are a smart group.

On the Giants' passing attack …

They are a play-action team. You don't want Plaxico to get behind you. If he does, he can hurt you. We just have to play what our game plan is and compete. It is a competition, nothing that you can get scared or worried about.

On defending Burress ...

It is a challenge for our whole secondary. We have to have guys on him and be physical and aggressive with him. He is a great receiver. He made a lot of plays and will continue to. Our job is to play the game plan and go play football.

S KERRY RHODES

On WR Plaxico Burress and the Giants offense …

One out of every three catches that he has are for touchdowns. You know he is dangerous and they are going to him deep. We have to try and control him, but we can't key on him because they have so many other weapons. [Jeremy] Shockey is a great weapon. Amani Toomer is coming back from last season's injury and having a good season. They can also run the ball, so it is going to be pretty tough.

On Giants QB Eli Manning …

Eli has done a good job this year. He has evolved more as a quarterback and he is reading things more presnap. He is making better decisions with the ball. He is playing better and he is the leader on that offense right now.

On playing a road game at the Meadowlands …

It was real strange in the preseason. We got a taste of it and it was weird to see all of the blue because when we come in it is usually green. It is what it is. It's a road game for us at "Jets Stadium."

On the significance of a Giants-Jets game …

They have their own things to handle and we have our own things to handle. We are 1-3 and trying to get a win. It doesn't matter who we play. It is not a division game, but it is a big game for us. It is another game we have to win. We need to come out and play hard.

T D'BRICKASHAW FERGUSON

On the Giants' 12-sack performance against the Eagles …

That was real impressive. It almost reminds me of Baltimore and their great defense. You really have to study these guys and take heed to the fact that they can do a lot of great things.

On preventing Giants DE Osi Umenyiora from having another six-sack performance …

You definitely see that and say, "I don't want that to happen to me or this organization." It is real important to watch the tape and develop a game plan. We are doing that.

On watching Umenyiora's performance on video …

I try to analyze it for what it is. I look for what may have happened here or tendencies. I take a critical eye to the tape.

On facing Umenyiora in the preseason …

Anytime you have an opportunity to play against somebody and you can use that as information, it's definitely good. There is a big difference between seeing it on tape and actually going out there and putting your hands on someone and seeing how their moves work. It's definitely a bonus.

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