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Manning, players getting ready for lockout mode

Eli Manning and the Giants are preparing for the 2011 season … officially or unofficially.

With a lockout looming and players unable to take part in routine offseason activities such as workouts, OTAs, and even rehab, Eli Manning said today that he and other leaders are starting to organize their own network.

“You have to wait and see, but kind of make some plans to get a high school field to throw at or find a place to lift weights or get a training room for guys who are coming back from injuries and stuff,” said the Giants quarterback, who was at the Super Bowl to endorse “Heads or Tails” Oreos. “There’s a lot to think into it. But yeah, we definitely have a little time schedule where if (an agreement) doesn’t happen by (a certain date), we have to start it up and get going by ourselves to make sure we’re ready.”

Manning said he is taking the responsibility for making sure the offense is functioning even in lockout mode.

“I think so,” he said of his role. “There will be a couple of key guys, but from the offensive standpoint, definitely. And you have Justin Tuck and other guys to make sure everybody is set (on defense) and say ‘Hey, we have to still take care of our responsibilities and make sure when the season starts up we’re ready to go.’”

Manning also touched on a few other topics, including the comments by Antrel Rolle several weeks ago regarding his desire for Tom Coughlin to loosen up. Yesterday at the Super Bowl, tackle David Diehl said that Rolle does not speak for the entire team. Manning made the same point and noted that for guys like Rolle, it can take some time to get used to Coughlin.

“Coach Coughlin is the only NFL coach I’ve played for and I like the routine, I like how it’s structured,” Manning said. “I like knowing what our schedule’s going to be, I like knowing how our practices are. He gets us prepared. It’s not a lot of hootin’ and hollerin’ like Coach Ryan, but it’s about getting prepared and going out there and trying to play good football. In that case, I enjoy it and I think he does a great job and a lot of people like the way it is.”

Tuck spoke with Rolle about his comments when they were together in Hawaii for the Pro Bowl last week. Manning said he probably won’t have to pull Rolle aside.

“I don’t think it’ll be a huge issue and it probably won’t be talked about a lot more,” he said.

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