Eli Manning delivered a rare address to his team Monday morning: Stay positive.
He wasn’t just asking for a strong finish after his team suffered the most epic fourth-quarter collapse in franchise history against Philadelphia. The Giants can still clinch a playoff spot Sunday with a victory in Green Bay.
And with Tampa Bay and the Packers losing Sunday, the 9-5 Giants can still sneak into the sixth seed with just a win over Washington and some outside help.
Coughlin, who spent Sunday evening brooding “in a room with the lights out for about two-and-a-half hours,” said he was glad Manning asserted himself.
“I wasn’t surprised at all,” Coughlin said of his usually quiet quarterback. “It wasn’t very long. It was very concise. It was about, ‘Hey, we all win, we all lose together. We’ve all got a lot at stake and there are many teams in this league who’d like to be in the position we’re in.”
Coughlin spent the morning encouraging his players to get Sunday’s disaster out of their systems — quickly. Especially rookie Matt Dodge, whose failure to punt the ball out of bounds resulted in DeSean Jackson’s 65-yard, game-winning return as time expired. Coughlin said he has no plans to replace him.
The bottom line, Coughlin said, is that the Giants are in with a win. And then, as they proved in 2007, anything can happen.
“The point is, okay, that was yesterday,” Coughlin told his team. “We screwed up. Look at what’s here now. You win this weekend, you’re in the playoffs. That’s what the goal was in the first place.”