ALBANY -- Perhaps the only thing worse than losing Friday's preseason opener to the Jaguars would have been winning it big. For a team coming off a Super Bowl championship, taking a flawed first step as it begins its title defense was an eye-opener.
"To be in the position that we're in and look at it from the point of view of having a lot of work to do to improve, in a way that's a good thing," coach Tom Coughlin said. "We have no illusion about the improvement that needs to be made, and I'm talking about from the top of our team to the bottom of our team."
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To that point, Coughlin pointed out a drive by the starting offense that stalled in the first quarter, resulting in a field goal, and an 89-yard drive by the Jaguars against the Giants' first defensive unit.
"The position that we choose to take is, hey, we've got a lot of things to correct and we're not going to deny any of the issues that were present," Coughlin said. "We're going to work hard to solve them and we're going to work hard to improve our roster from top to bottom."
Coughlin cut the replacement officiating crew some slack despite an underwhelming performance. "They're trying as hard as they can to do the best job that they can," he said.
Coughlin said of TE Martellus Bennett, who caught three passes, including a touchdown: "He showed speed down the field. I think he'll be a guy who people have trouble covering." He said of DE Adrian Tracy (a strip-sack and two tackles): "I'm encouraged, and I look forward to him gaining a little more sophistication and knowledge about what we need for him to do." And of RB David Wilson, who led the Giants in rushing (43 yards on seven carries), he said: "He certainly did show the speed and the quickness . . . I think he's shown us some things that we can depend on going forward."