Tom Coughlin doesn't ask for much.
"What do I always tell you?" he said in an interview with Giants.com. "What does a coach pray for? 'Dear Lord, can I please have the team that we started with, please?' "
It's always an unanswered prayer.
And this year Victor Cruz tops the list of losses for the Giants.
"It's tragic," Coughlin said of the wide receiver's torn patellar tendon that required season-ending surgery. "When an individual goes down, you stop and you talk to the team about that individual and how badly we all feel and how supportive we are and how we know that he's going to return 100 percent and that it would be his wish, as well as ours -- next up, let's go. We don't have time. You can't feel sorry for yourself, that's the first thing I told them. There's none of that."
Coughlin discussed a few other matters in the interview, including the Giants' trash-talking before their 27-0 loss to the Eagles.
"It's un-Giant-like," he said, "but I don't believe in any of it and I voiced it. I used the word, they were a 'distracted' group last week, I think. There seemed to be too much interest in that and not enough in playing the game."
On guard Weston Richburg's personal foul for spearing Fletcher Cox, which the rookie dismissed as "just football," noting that he'd been taught to block through the whistle, Coughlin overruled the second-round pick. "I don't buy it," he said. "You don't put your team in jeopardy."
And on integrating newly acquired receiver Kevin Ogletree into the system and how a midseason newcomer usually fits in: "It's the player and the position that he plays and the impact that he can make on the game. A receiver touches the ball, you would think, three, four times a game, right? Well, what does he do with the three or four times? Does he also get the message about being one of the 11 and proving his quality of team in terms of his blocking? Does he realize that he may make a play that springs a runner for a touchdown? That's what has to be. You've got to contribute in every possible way."