Giants coach Tom Coughlin isn't the most effusive coach in the world, and by Friday afternoons, he's halfway to his game face. But he offered a couple of tidbits during a brief interview after practice.
First, he confirmed that defensive back Brian Jackson has been moved from corner to safety and likely would get the call as the third safety if Kenny Phillips (sprained left MCL) can't go Sunday in Houston. That means, since being called up from the practice squad, Jackson first pushed D.J. Johnson from corner to safety and now might have pushed him to the outer limits of the active roster.
Explaining the decision to try Jackson at safety, Coughlin said: "He did some nice things out here. When we first decided to bring him up [from the practice squad], we thought he was a guy who could play either corner or safety. Coaches wanted to see him at corner first, so we did that first. This week, we needed him at safety, and he seemed to do well there."
Darius Reynaud hasn 't been lighting it up on punt returns, and Coughlin admitted cornerback Aaron Ross has been lobbying to return to that role. But the coach is hesitant to pull the plug on Reynaud at this point. "I’d like to see more productivity on the punt return and kickoff return," Coughlin said. "Although we have confidence in Aaron, we’ve got to give Darius every opportunity and, hopefully, we’ll block for him a little bit in there, too."
As for Houston's seemingly porous pass defense offering and inviting target to Giants quarterback Eli Manning this week, Coughlin said the fact the Texans rank last in the NFL in pass defense, yielding an average of 337.8 yards per game is because they have scored at least 30 points in all three wins and forced opponents to play catchup. Contrasting the Texans' three wins to the 27-13 victory Dallas scored in Houston, Coughlin said, "[The Texans] have played well offensively and people -- even Washington – have thrown the ball a lot more. Dallas didn’t play that way. Dallas was pretty evenly distributed."
Sounds like the Cowboys' approach is the role model for the Giants this week. Running the football keeps Houston's offense off the field, too.