Eli: Giants must make improvements

Associated Press  |  Last updated July 23, 2012
With the Super Bowl celebrations over and training camp on the horizon, Eli Manning believes the New York Giants will have to improve if they want to repeat. Speaking in a telephone interview with The Associated Press Monday, Manning said he was anxious to get back to work despite an offseason shortened by the Giants' impressive run to a second title in five seasons, culminated by their Super Bowl win over the New England Patriots in Indianapolis. Manning was happy the Giants will report to training camp at the University at Albany Thursday without controversy. He even laughed about former teammate Amani Toomer's recent comments that Dallas' Tony Romo was statistically the best quarterback in the NFC East, quipping that he has played with better receivers than Toomer. ''Hopefully, guys have the right mindset and know we have to get better,'' Manning said from the site of a Gatorade promotion. ''We need to make improvements because we have to become a more consistent team. ''If we do, hopefully, we'll have a good shot.'' The Giants, who finished 13-7, have question marks on offense despite posting their best season in terms of yards gained. They have holes at right tackle, tight end, backup running back and even at receiver, considering Hakeem Nicks is coming off a broken foot. ''That why this sport is special,'' Manning said. ''There are new challenges and new guys and different situations you have to overcome. We have some young guys who have to step up.'' In April's draft, the Giants selected Virginia Tech running back David Wilson and LSU wide receiver Rueben Randle. ''We have a lot of young guys who don't have a lot of game experience and will have to come in and play for us,'' Manning said. ''We have to get them ready in training camp and preseason games, and get them performing at the level we expect them to, so we can be at our best.'' Repeating won't be easy. No one has done it since the Patriots finished off the feat in 2005. The Giants had a shot in 2008-09, but things fell apart after Plaxico Burress shot himself in the leg in a New York nightclub in late November. ''It's just hard to win a Super Bowl,'' Manning said. ''It's just difficult. A lot of things have to go your way. You have to be playing at a very high level, guys have to stay healthy. There are a lot obstacles and different things that can go haywire and make it difficult. Other teams are getting better and you lose guys each year in free agency. You have new guys coming in who have to step up at a young age. ''All you can do is work as hard as you can through this offseason to try to become a better player.'' Manning also feels it's his responsibility to make sure the offense is making strides and the new players are up to speed. ''You can't worry about the things you can't control,'' he said. ''If someone gets banged up and misses a game, you kind of hope for the best and compete and give it your best shot to make it to the playoffs. Hopefully, we can get hot again in the playoffs.'' The key though will be staying healthy, and Manning believes the collective bargaining rules adopted last year to limit practices to once a day during training camp will cut down on nagging injuries that get stressed with two-a-day workouts. ''This is a chance to see which teammates are going to fit in our system and who is going to step up and who is going to be a key player for us,'' Manning said. ''That's the fun part of competition and football and doing this job. I look forward to going to training camp and living in dorm rooms and working hard, but also at night there are always a few pranks going on. This year, with the summer Olympics going on, it will be nice getting a bunch of guys in one room and rooting for our country. The Olympics are an exciting time and a good bonding experience with the team.'' It's also a time for Manning to spread the word about eating right, staying hydrated and maintaining the proper electrolyte balance, something he was helping Gatorade to promote. While NFL teams and players have trainers and nutritionists to help them along, Manning admits his message is directed to another audience. ''This message I am giving is obviously for the kids and for people who are working out or outside working or doing things in hot weather, and the importance of staying hydrated,'' Manning said. ''Kids right now playing or practicing sports outside need to know the importance of what they eat and what they drink and the importance of having electrolytes in them throughout the whole day.''
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Best athlete by state all time
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Yordano Ventura killed in car accident

Falcons benefit from questionable call after turnover

Report: Tomlin, Steelers fined Antonio Brown $10,000

Ten biggest winners and losers from NFL Championship Sunday

Luke Walton rips Lakers after 'embarrassing' 49-point loss

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Oregon firing OC David Reaves after DUI arrest

Report: Colts hired psychologists for Pagano-Grigson relationship

Report: Kelly a candidate to replace Shanahan as Falcons OC

Baron Davis blames Russia for Westbrook All-Star snub

Reason Jabari Parker was benched revealed

Sanders, Ware think Romo would be good fit for Broncos

Best of Yardbarker: Roger Goodell does what we all expected him to do

Eat, Drink, Watch for Jan. 20-22, 2017: Dips, rye, football and Death Race 2050

Box Score 1/20: 37 years ago today, Carter said no to Moscow

NFC & AFC Championship preview: We love scoring

Roger Goodell is a coward, but then we knew that

TailGreater: Picking the conference champions by their signature cocktails

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Ranking the top three conferences in college basketball

The NFC Championship’s two most important players

Eight bold predictions for second half of NBA season

Box Score 1/19: Happy anniversary to the 'Tuck Rule' game

Clarification Please: Why college basketball needs to ditch the possession arrow

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Roger Goodell does what we all expected him to do

Eat, Drink, Watch for Jan. 20-22, 2017: Dips, rye, football and Death Race 2050

QUIZ: Name the owners of these 50 famous NFL nicknames

NFC & AFC Championship preview: We love scoring

Roger Goodell is a coward, but then we knew that

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

TailGreater: Picking the conference champions by their signature cocktails

The 'What's a Romo worth these days anyway?' quiz

Clarification Please: Why college basketball needs to ditch the possession arrow

NBA hotline bling: Derrick Rose gets disconnected

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker