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Kevin Gilbride Q&A


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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – The Giants’ mandatory mini-camp and veteran offseason conditioning program concluded last Friday with the team’s three coordinators holding question-and-answer sessions with reporters who cover the team. The following are exceprts from the media's conversation with Kevin Gilbride. Defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo and special teams coordinator Tom Quinn will be posted later this week.

 

Kevin Gilbride:

 

Q: What did Eli Manning do differently this spring (under new quarterbacks coach Chris Palmer)?

 

Gilbride: “I would say that there are different drills that have been used to try to get him to accomplish the same goals that we’ve always had, which is being in balance when you throw the ball, having your feet underneath you so you get the weight distribution, so you get the weight transferred from the back to the front, just the basic fundamental things. But there are just different ways to do it, so he’s done that. He’s always going through the different cut-ups, trying to examine what was good, what was bad so he makes better decisions. He usually makes great decisions, but it’s been those occasional bad ones that have really hurt us. So those are the ones we are trying to stay away from.”

 

Q: How is he throwing the ball so far?

Gilbride: "He is throwing the ball well. The problem we have is there is a lot of new stuff we threw at them. Some guys have been here all the time, so we’ve gone through it and continue on as if everybody has been here, which hasn’t been the case. So sometimes you get some different reactions that are a little bit unexpected and therefore it doesn’t always look like he is throwing the ball well. But when the guy has done what he’s supposed to do, he’s thrown the ball well."

 

Q: What are some of the questions you have entering training camp?

 

Gilbride: “Obviously, the left tackle position is a big one. I think when you look at when we lost Luke (Petitgout) and we lost (wide receiver) Amani (Toomer) last season and then all the sudden we went from one of the best offenses in the league to one that’s in the middle of the pack, which is something you’d like to avoid. Then you add on that you lost an outstanding football player in Tiki (Barber, who retired), so the challenges are obvious - just finding the personnel, seeing who can do what, seeing if some of those young receivers can come up, what can they do, what do they do that we can count on in the crunch time. Then I think certainly the running back position, seeing who can do what. You’re not going to replace the same type of guy (as Barber). We don’t have that kind of guy here, but we do have some backs that can do some different things. And very few people have the kind of physical presence that we are going to have in the backfield now (with Brandon Jacobs and Reuben Droughns). So we’re hopeful that with our style with the different backs we have, pounding it a little bit, maybe we’ll get a different response from the defense, which allows us to do some different things. It all really is predicated on the players, who’s going to play, who is going to do well, who can you count on, who’s going to step-up to the forefront and fill some of those voids and that will determine what we do offensively.”

 

Q: Is David Diehl going to move from left guard to left tackle?

 

Gilbride: “It definitely has not been determined that he will. He is ahead right now because of experience, but we are certainly waiting to see if Guy Whimper can be the guy. That gives us a little more stability inside, a little more flexibility with doing some things with Rich Seubert, moving him around, but David’s way ahead. We’re hoping that Guy catches up. Then it gives us some options that right now I’m not sure we are able to do.”

 

Q: How has Kevin Boss (the tight end from Western Oregon drafted on the fifth round) performed in the spring drills?

 

Gilbride: “He has made as much improvement as anybody. I’m not sure he has been asked to do the things that will be required from him if he plays the tight end position for us, so Mike (Pope, the tight ends coach) has done a nice job with him technique-wise and I think he has been exposed to some things he hasn’t learned before. He is a big, strong kid and he’s got some natural punch to him. So it’s just a matter of utilizing the techniques, so the size and the explosiveness he has can be best utilized.”

 

Q: This is a critical year for Eli Manning. Do you think he will rise up this season?

 

Gilbride: “Hopefully, you’ll see that in training camp. The thing that’s difficult is that we’ve put a lot of stuff in. You spend the whole offseason seeing what you did, seeing what areas you did well in, what areas are voids in your offense that you’d like to experiment with so we do some new things. We’ve got some guys that maybe haven’t been here the whole time, their reactions aren’t always what they are supposed to be just yet. When we get that resolved, then we’ll see if he can make the step that we all want. It’s not like we don’t see glimpses of it, because we do. We see performances that are as good as anybody’s. We just need to see the consistency.”

 

Q: Is your success tied with Manning’s?

 

Gilbride: “I don’t know if I can help him, but he can certainly help us. His performance is one that we are counting on to help replace the things that we’ve lost, so we are all depending on him.”

 

Q: What are his impressions of the new-look backfield?

 

Gilbride: “We are waiting to see. Can Robert Douglas play the fullback position (in place of Jim Finn, who is out for the season after shoulder surgery)? Do we have to go to (rookie free agent tight end) Mike Matthews and move him back there, do we have to play with two tight ends? I really don’t know. Now we’ve done both. We’ve done a lot of two tights and taken the backside tight end and moved him around as if he was a fullback, but so much of it is really going to be once we put the pads on who plays. So we will certainly be scrutinizing and seeing if somebody can play the fullback position. I thought Jim Finn did some things very well for us and his loss will be felt.”

 

Q: Wide receiver Sinorice Moss missed most of his rookie season. He is healthy now. Will there be a role for him?

 

Gilbride: “I am certainly hoping that that will be the case. I think we see, like with a lot of these young guys, moments where we say that’s what we are looking for. But certainly missing last year really slowed him down in terms of knowing what do to and how to do it. I’m not even talking about plays, I’m talking about being able to escape corners that are bump-and-run. Those are the things that he missed. He missed (almost) the whole year, so he’s really like a rookie all over again. We’re hopeful because you do see some moments where he’ll explode and he gets off the line of scrimmage - we see the explosiveness that we really need to see. We’d like to be a little bit more explosive offensively, but there are a lot of things in life that you’d like to do that you can’t do if you don’t have the resources or the people to do it. So we need him, Sinorice, (second-round draft choice) Steve Smith - someone has to step up.”

 

Q: Have you thought about moving Reuben Droughns to fullback?

 

Gilbride: “We’ve talked about it. I think we’d like to stay away from it and see if somebody else can be that person. His size is not the prototypical fullback size, so if you do Denver’s style running game, you can get away with it. That’s not necessarily our style of running game and we’ve been pretty successful running the ball. We’d like to be able to do it and we think the guys we have, Brandon and Reuben and Derrick (Ward) and Ahmad (Bradhsaw, a rookie) can all do the things we need to do if we have a certain kind of fullback. And that’s a big, strong, power-driving, physical type of guy. And that is why it may be a tight end. Without pads on, I can’t tell if any of those guys can even do it, because it’s easy to say that guy is big and strong enough. But more often than not in my experience, that big tight end doesn’t have the same feel as the running back does to get through the line of scrimmage to find his blocking assignment. It’s a whole new world. You think it’s the same game, but for an on the line of scrimmage-type player, to all the sudden put yourself in the backfield, it’s completely foreign. Linemen are darting in and out, half the time they know who to get to, they just don’t have the ability to get to that person. We are anxious to see.”

 

Q: Will you use some single back formations?

 

Gilbride: “Yeah, we can do that. I don’t really know what we are going to do, because it’s all predicated on our players. Our best 11 has a fullback, a tight end and two wideouts, or does it have three wideouts, or does it have two tight ends and one back? Obviously, when you have one back in the backfield that modifies some of the things you can do. Some of our best runs, our most successful runs, have been with two-back runs. If you don’t have someone who can play that position, that’s okay, you make adjustments and move on, but you are taking away a very successful portion of what we’ve been doing over last few years.”

 

Q: is it fair to say you won’t radically change the offense that’s been used here, but will tweak it instead?

 

Gilbride: “Very fair. Tom (Coughlin) has got his hand in it and he sets the parameters for which you can explore and do different things. Plus, some of the things that have been going on was stuff that I brought in. A lot of those plays were stuff that I had done. A lot of those plays were plays that I brought with me, so it was a hybrid, a mixture of a lot of different thoughts and philosophies. So it will be some subtle changes, but more of it will be determined by the players than anything else.”

 

Do you think defenses will have difficulty dealing with Brandon Jacobs?

 

Gilbride: “I think he’s a special guy. There are a lot of big guys, but he is exceptionally big and strong and physical and I think he is going to wear people down. My concern is whether he can stay healthy, because even though he is administering a lot of the hits, he is taking them, too. Tiki was special with his improvisation ability. I don’t know that Brandon will have that. But he is a physical guy and I think if he can stay healthy, after a period of time in every game, he is going to start wearing people down and hopefully that will pay off for us two-fold. One, it will force that safety to come down, so we get some one-on-one isolations that your guys have to be good enough to win and then secondly, in the fourth quarter, when you are trying to hold onto a lead, it’d be nice to think that the guy can do that. And I think he can.”

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Same ol shit about Eli, he's doin well but he needs some work. He better step up this yr. :furious:

Im actually pumped about the backfield, I think BJ is a stud. We just need for the 2 young rec's (Moss and Smith) to be productive and we're lethal on offense.

 

Now that Emmons and Arrington are gone, the injury prone LB's are gone. need that D to stay healthy.

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