Coughlin, Manning Talk Eagles’ D-Line

Photo courtesy: USA Today Sports Images

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports.

The NFC announced its Week 5 Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week today, revealing the two will play against each other Monday night as Fletcher Cox tries to repeat Sunday’s dominant performance against Eli Manning and the Giants.

Manning’s first five games of the season have been impressive as he’s amassed a 66.5 completion percentage, 1,417 passing yards, 10 touchdowns and just two interceptions. But Tom Coughlin recognized the Eagles’ good start to the season today and explained why they can be a tough matchup.

“I think they’re physical, and I think there’s improvement all along the line,” Coughlin said. “Each guy’s very difficult to deal with on an individual basis. You have good size at the outside ‘backer positions, which also solidifies that front as you end up with your sub-rushers.”

Manning said the Eagles’ defensive line has done a good job of getting pressure on quarterbacks through five games, which hasn’t let receivers get open as their routes unfold.

Because Manning attributed a lot of his success this year to his offensive line giving him time to make smart decisions and avoid turnovers, the battle between the Birds’ defensive line and the Giants’ offensive line will be crucial Monday night.

Here are a few other highlights from Coughlin’s and Manning’s conference calls with the Philadelphia media.

Coughlin said Giants receiver Odell Beckham Jr. is “day-to-day” with a hamstring injury.

Manning was asked about his relationship with Sam Bradford.

“I’ve known Sam. When he was in college, he came down to [the Manning] Passing Academy in Louisiana. Talked to him a few times after he had a shoulder injury in college, because I had a similar one. We’ve been in touch a little bit over the years, and I know him a little bit. Seems to be getting the feel of the new offense and the new things going on, and playing good football.”

Manning was also asked about what he expects the atmosphere to be like on Monday, after last year’s Black Sunday game.

“You know what to expect. It’s going to be loud, they’re going to be fired up. It’s prime time on a Monday night, it should be a great atmosphere.

“We know it’s going to be loud, our communication’s got to be great, we’ve to be good with our snap count, and everybody on the same page, getting in and out of the huddle quickly.”

Coughlin discussed Walter Thurmond, who signed with the Giants last year but had his season cut short by injury.

“We were excited about him, having Walter with us here. We missed and lost a very good football player who would have been beneficial for us in our secondary. What I see this year, the conversion to safety, he’s all over the place. He’s down low, he’s up high, he’s making key interceptions in games. He’s playing real well.”

Manning was informed of Chip Kelly visiting Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz in the hospital after he suffered an injury in the Eagles’ 27-0 win on Black Sunday.

“I was not aware of that, but that’s a classy move. Obviously, in this league, everybody has great respect for players and coaches, and you never want to see a player or anybody get hurt. So I was not aware of that, but it’s a classy move by the coach to go visit an opposing player when they get an injury.”

Coughlin mentioned his attempt to hire Kelly to be a quality control coach when Kelly was at New Hampshire.

“I thought he was an outstanding young coach. One of my assistant coaches was a good friend who had worked with Chip, I thought he was an outstanding young coach who would be an excellent addition to our staff, and it just didn’t work out that way. Chip had an idea of what he wanted to do. I didn’t have that particular job to offer, and I certainly understood.”