Giants' Coughlin in no-win situation
Wednesday, December 26, 2007 10:42 AM EST
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - There are a couple things sure to make Tom Coughlin grimace. One is a question about his game plan. The other is a question about the future beyond the next game.
So Wednesday, when a host of reporters gather for the coach's news conference, it should take about four 'questions for him to break out that tight grin that says, “Please stop asking me about this.”
Coughlin knows he's in a no-win situation as far as the outside world is concerned. On Saturday night, the Giants will host the Patriots, who are going for a perfect regular season on their way to a Super Bowl, world domination and perhaps a new baggy sweatshirt for Bill Belichick.
The Giants are in the playoffs at 10-5, and 11-5 wouldn't change a thing as far as they are concerned. They will face the Bucs in Tampa either Jan. 5 or Jan. 6 and almost certainly would have to win three games on the road to reach the Super Bowl. As for prizes beyond that, Coughlin will take a multi-year extension from the Giants and buy (and press) his own khakis and polo shirts, thanks.
But the debate will rage about what Coughlin and the Giants should do Saturday with their starters. Rest 'em? Ride 'em to a hoped-for win to have something besides a playoff win or two to hold for this season?
The players, of course, would relish a chance to knock off the Pats. But there is a greater goal in mind.
“This team is trying to go far,” linebacker Antonio Pierce said after the Giants clinched a third straight playoff berth with their 38-21 road win over the Bills Sunday. “We're not worried about Week 17 anymore. They're not going to take it easy on us, and we're not going to take it easy on them. But that's not part of the big picture.”
Coughlin will be second-guessed to death if he sits not just banged-up regulars such as Plaxico Burress, Gibril Wilson and Brandon Jacobs, but also healthy starters such as Michael Strahan, Amani Toomer or Eli Manning.
“We always want to stay sharp,” Coughlin said. “It's difficult for me to even talk about because we want to win every game.”
BBQ..June 27th..be there or be square..
Bring something for The House of Concern please!