A look back: Coughlin sees some positives

November, 14, 2012
11/14/12
12:32
PM ET
Tom Coughlin said he saw some good and bad while watching film of the carnage from Sunday's 31-13 loss at Cincinnati.

It's hard to imagine seeing any good out of a game in which the Giants looked like they already were in bye mode before their bye week had even begun.

Coughlin, though, says he thought Eli Manning showed signs of breaking out of his slump with good velocity on his throws.

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Coughlin also praised punt returner Rueben Randle for gaining 14 yards on a punt. The rookie has been pretty sure-handed on punt returns but hasn't been able to gain much yardage on returns.

"We got a little bit more out of punt return than we have had in the past," Coughlin said. "He did a good job with that."

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Coughlin stood by his decision to defer on the opening kickoff and receive for the second half.

"I deferred for a bunch of reasons," Coughlin said. "I wanted the ball in the second half. We were plus-52 over our opposition in the second half and they were a team, with exception of one game, that did not score a lot of points in the second half."

Coughlin cited the wind as a factor in deferring in hopes of keeping Cincinnati's returners in check.

The Giants, though, went three-and-out on their first possession of the second half. Manning was sacked on second down.

"Yeah, I am not used to that," Manning said of deferring on the opening kickoff. "It was one of the few times and obviously it didn't really work all that well. So hopefully, it might be the last. You want the ball to get started."

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Coughlin was upset about the Giants' four turnovers, two leading to 14 Bengals points in the third quarter to blow the game open.

He also was unhappy with his defense's job on third downs against the Bengals. Cincinnati converted six of 13 third downs but scored three of its touchdowns on third downs deep in Giants territory.

"They had the ball first-and-10 on our 11, our 12 and our 16," Coughlin said. "On each of those occasions, it took them third down before they scored, but they scored each time on third down.

"We didn't stop them on third down at all."

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And on Manning's two interceptions, Coughlin obviously would have liked to have seen his quarterback take sacks instead of turning the ball over.

"That was terrible," Coughlin said. "He'd be the first one to tell you that. That was so foolish to try to make a play there. The one guy has got his shirt. ... Just go down and take care of the ball and let us have another snap. Just take care of the football.

"I know he's always trying to make a play and he has done things under those circumstances in the past that have worked out," Coughlin added. "But the percentages are just not with you when that happens."
Ohm Youngmisuk has covered the Giants, Jets and the NFL since 2006. Prior to that, he covered the Nets, Knicks and the NBA for nearly a decade. He joined ESPNNewYork.com after working at the New York Daily News for almost 12 years and is a graduate of Michigan State University.
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