Monday, October 7, 2013

Tom Coughlin rips Eli Manning for 'unbelievable' interceptions

Eli Manning and Tom Coughlin will be forever irrevocably connected to each other in New York Giants history for their two miraculous Super Bowl wins and their decade long relationship as mentor and protege.  Throughout it all, you never heard the head coach besmirch the play of Manning — either as a raw rookie or a struggling veteran —until now.

In what must have been a painful burst of criticism towards his quarterback's poor play against the Eagles Sunday, Coughlin ripped Manning for throwing three interceptions and pinned the devastating loss squarely on his signal caller.

"It all comes down to the interceptions," Coughlin said after the game. " Two of them were just unbelievable."

The 36-21 loss at home to Philadelphia sees the Giants (0-5) match their worst start in a non-strike season since 1979.

"I honestly believe that he’s trying so hard to get us a win, he’s almost put too much on himself," Coughlin said. "He keeps it all pretty much inside. I’m not making excuses. There were a couple of those plays that were terrible."

The quarterback — who now has a head-turning 12 interceptions on the season and hasn't heard boos like this in over six years— held himself accountable for the Giants’ latest debacle.

"I know I can play better," Manning said. "Sometimes, things are going to go wrong, but you’ve got to make the best decision. Throw it away, take a sack. I know I can’t keep turning the ball over every time."

Coughlin didn’t help the Giants with his own mistake. The coach, normally so attentive to detail, burned two timeouts on one play with 12:40 left in the third quarter, when LeSean McCoy’s tiptoeing catch gave the Eagles an apparent first down. Coughlin wasn’t initially sure if he wanted to challenge the play, so he called a timeout, and "just settled everybody down." When he elected to challenge and the play stood, he lost another timeout.

"I instinctively just took a timeout," he said. "Obviously, had I known in advance, I would have challenged first."

Coughlin was angry but still made sure he found Manning after the game to talk it over.

"I just grabbed him a moment in the locker room," said Coughlin. "He's way, way too good a player to have these things happen."

The boos probably drowned him out.

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