(on Eli Manning)
"Eli has always been someone I've watched and admired. I think he's a great player. He plays under some pretty intense scrutiny in New York and always seems to step up and answer the call. People always want to make comparisons between he and Peyton and that's a pretty incredible family of athletes. He's got a great personality for what he does and it's obvious the team believes in him and respects him. I'm sure he's going to play a great game on Sunday."
*(on what Manning overcame with the weather conditions in the NFC Championship Game in Green Bay) *
"I watched quite a bit of it. I thought he played great. He played exactly how his team needed him to play. He was very sharp and very accurate in extremely tough conditions. Other quarterbacks can truly appreciate when it's negative wind-chill and what it takes to be able to throw the ball and complete passes. He certainly did that. He played great."
*(on whether he has worn gloves before in similar conditions) *
"I think three or four years ago. We now get to work the balls in a little bit now and it's a great advantage to be able to do that."
*(on his familiarity with Eli Manning) *
"I've exchanged some text messages with Eli in the past. We've spent quite a bit of time together so I know Eli pretty well. Just in the course of the different offseasons, just being around him. We always seem to be at the same events, (like the) Kentucky Derby."
*(on the growth of Eli Manning) *
"I think that's a natural process for all of us in this position. You come into the league at one point, fresh out of college with all the experiences you had leading up to that and thinking you know a hell of a lot more than you do know. You get into the NFL and you're humbled by how good everybody is and the level of preparation you need. I think we all grow a lot because you're forced to. I know the intensity of the scrutiny that he's been under even at the beginning of this season. So to see the way he's handled that, never said a word and just gone about his business says a lot about his character."
*(on his offensive line) *
"They're a great group. They're a fun group. They've been healthy and together all season. That's great for an offensive line because the communication they need…that offensive line is one group. They're coached that way and they're always together. It's not like you coach the left tackle in one meeting room and the right guard's in the other. They're all in the same room together, and the more they understand how to communicate and work effectively together the better they are."
*(on his appreciation for a game in which he doesn't get hit) *
"I like those games. I like when I don't get touched. Hopefully there's one of those this Sunday. I doubt it because of the rush that we're facing this week. But they've had an incredible season and I think that's evidenced by the election of (C Dan) Koppen, (LG) Logan (Mankins) and (LT Matt) Light to the Pro Bowl, and then with (RT Nick) Kaczur and (RG) Steve Neal, that's quite a group."
*(on Randy Moss) *
"He just has a great understanding of how the offense tries to get him the ball and how the defense tries to stop him. A lot of players just have the perspective of their own position that they play, you know, if you're a running back you just see it through the running back's eyes. Randy has an understanding of the quarterback's eyes and the receiver and the defense and how they're trying to stop him. He's seen every form of double coverage that there is in the NFL. When you're the caliber of player that he is, teams are always trying to find ways to slow him down. You still have to figure out ways to get him the ball and he still has to figure out ways to get open, and he certainly does that."
*(on Moss having fewer receptions in this postseason) *
"You can't control, as a receiver, whether you're getting the ball or not. You can just control what you do. You can't control the plays that are called. He can just run the routes and if he gets the ball, he gets the ball. He's a factor in every game he plays in whether he gets the ball or he doesn't. People think he's not a factor in a game because he's not catching the ball (but) that's not really accurate."
*(on whether he's heard from Peyton Manning) *
"Peyton texted me and congratulated me, and I thought he had a pretty incredible season too. It's a pretty close bond you share with guys when you're both around the same age and you're playing the same sport and the same position. We've had a lot of similar experiences, Peyton and I. With Eli and what he's accomplished this year, the Manning family is pretty special. (Peyton) and Eli have probably talked about our defense a little bit. Peyton has had quite a bit of experience with our defense, understanding how to play against our defense and what our defense does that is probably a little bit unique to our team."
*(on the Giants' defensive backfield) *
"It's a very good secondary that we're playing. They've got a lot of guys who play, a lot of guys who've been in and out of the lineup the last six weeks. We're not really sure how it's going to play out this week. We're preparing for everybody. (CB) Sam Madison is a great player. He's been a nemesis to the Patriots for a long time, going back to his days in Miami. (CB Corey) Webster's having a great postseason. (CB R.W.) McQuarters has three picks in the postseason. (CB) Aaron Ross is a great player and he's only a rookie. (They have) two very good, hard-hitting safeties. (CB Kevin) Dockery, I don't know if he will be back but he's been a very good player for them this season. They've got a lot of depth and I know they have a lot of confidence."
*(on comments by opponents and the perception of him other players may have) *
"I think it's funny. I get a kick out of it. It's probably the different perception when you're not around me, you probably say whatever you want, but as long as my teammates don't call me that I'm cool."
*(on his offensive line) *
"Football is a team sport (but) there's no glory in (playing) offensive line. I don't know if you're born one day and you go 'I hope I'm an offensive lineman one day in the Super Bowl.' It's just a dirty job. Someone's got to do it and I think we've got five guys who relish that opportunity. They don't get the ball. They celebrate in the success of the team and the success of the offense. Whatever their job is that they're called to do they go out and do it as best they can. We've got a group of five guys who do that as well as anybody in the league."
*(on what kind of ribbing he gets from his offensive lineman about the exposure and publicity he gets) *
"I try to take an offensive approach to that. The more that I'm on the offensive the less I have to be on the defensive. I'm always ragging those guys for everything and as soon as they kind of chirp up about stuff I've done I get right back and rag on them. Matt Light and I have been together for seven years and there's a lot of comfort in that relationship. (Dan) Koppen and I have been together for five years. Steve Neal's been with me since the day we started together. Logan (Mankins), it's his third year but it feels like it's his sixth or seventh; he's a very mature guy. (Nick) Kaczur, same thing. (C/G) Russ (Hochstein), we've been together for six years. It's great. We've had that camaraderie between each other. They take a lot of pride in making sure I don't get hit."
*(on his offensive linemen's appearance) *
"(laughing) Logan's is ridiculous, and when he goes to Hawaii and shaves his face it's going to look terrible. Not that it can look any worse than it looks right now. Steve and what he's doing…I don't know what he's doing."
*(on the influence of Bill Belichick's late father Steve on Coach Belichick) *
"His father was always around the facility and always had words to share with the team. He coached for a long time and had a lot of credibility being around our team. I think there's always pictures of him in Coach Belichick's office and I know he had a huge impact on our coach's life. They're very much the same style, the same personality."
*(on a situation at a practice when Steve Belichick was run into on the sideline) *
"Someone was running to the sideline and knocked him clear off his feet and he just popped right back up. Everyone was worried at first. Any time an older guy gets knocked down, but he just popped right back up. I know he loved being around the younger players, he loved being around the coaching and he loved seeing his son coach."
*(on reports of Giants WR Plaxico Burress predicting victory for the Giants and giving a score) *
"What was the score?" (reporter answers 23-17) "(laughs) We're only going to score 17 points? Is Plax playing defense?"
*(on confident talk by Giants players) *
"I know they have confidence. They should have confidence, they're the NFC champs. They're very talented. We don't make predictions, we just let our play do the talking. I learned that lesson early in my career. No matter what you say during the week, and God knows we say a lot this entire week, we're focused on going out there and trying to do our best."
*(on whether he's surprised opponents would talk considering the Patriots are undefeated) *
"We've been dealing with that all season. There was a guy from the Chargers last week that did it and obviously the well-documented Steeler game (Dec. 9). Like I said, they should be confident. We're confident. I don't think we share our thoughts with everybody. Plaxico is a hell of a player. If he feels that way I think that's great. I'd hate for him to think he's going to lose this game. It's obvious nobody does. (thinking back to prediction) 23-17? I wish he'd said like 45-42 or something like that. (smiling) At least he'd give us a little more credit for scoring a few points."
*(more on Randy Moss) *
"One great thing for Randy is everybody gets to see his personality. He talks to the media a lot (this week) and we all have to. It's obvious he's such a fun guy to be around. He's very authentic as a person. What you see is what you get with Randy. He's incredibly gifted physically, and mentally he's as smart as anybody I've ever been around. He's a great teammate and takes a lot of pride in what he does."
*(on offensive coordinator/QBs coach Josh McDaniels) *
"He's not moving on. He's with us, so I'm not worried about him moving on. That will come one day but I know that's not coming this week. He's a great coach and a great friend of mine. We've been together for four seasons and had a lot of success as a team together. He's got a great understanding of everything we do. He always brings a level of energy and emotion to our meetings and the game, and he's a great coach. I hope he's with us for a long time."
*(on the difference in the expectation level when a quarterback is drafted later as opposed to being a first-round pick) *
"I think as a sixth-round pick you slide under the radar. Nobody expects anything from you. You just show up and you're trying to make the team. You're trying to bring your playbook to the meetings and not forget that in the room. When you're a first-round pick everybody's counting on you to come in and save the franchise, and I think that's an incredible amount of pressure. I look at guys who have been those first-round picks and have taken their teams to this point in the season and I think that's a great statement about what they're all about."
*(more on Eli Manning) *
"I think Eli handles it all just fine. He knows what he needs to do. It's obvious he's right in his judgment. He doesn't need advice from me. If he wants advice he's got two other great members of his family to go speak to, so that's probably who he relies on."
*(on 'unsung heroes' on the Patriots, like RB Kevin Faulk) *
"Kevin is not an unsung hero in our minds. He's as good a playmaker as we have on our team, and that's evidenced by what we did last week in the fourth quarter, throwing him the ball on two huge third-downs, plays that are designed to get the ball to him. Against the Giants, the last time we played them, he had some huge third-down receptions in that game too. Kevin, Wes (Welker), Donte' Stallworth, every time you get the ball in their hands they're making plays. If you choose to double-cover Randy or put extra players on Wes then you've got to deal with Kevin and Donte' or Jabar (Gaffney) and go one-on-one with them. They've found ways this year to still make impacts on games. They're never lost in my mind. They're always a big part of our offense."