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Post-Practice Interview Transcript (Fri. 11/14)

Head Coach John Harbaugh

Opening statement:"Good to see everybody. The pros are here, the ones that really care. It's good to have you here."

On how WR Derrick Mason looks for Sunday:"He went through practice, I wouldn't say full-speed. He's just a little sore. I'd say he's working through the injury right now. He looked OK for practice. We'll see how he is for Sunday on Sunday."

On the status of T Willie Anderson:"[He] did not practice, and we'll see how he is for Sunday on Sunday. We're trying to get him there. He's trying to get there."

On what T Oniel Cousins has showed him as a backup:"Oniel is a young guy who's developing. He's available to us. We think he's ready to play when called upon. He's made a lot of strides in the last two or three weeks. He's improved tremendously. We think he's ready to help us if we had to put him in there."

On if G/T David Hale is still moving from guard to tackle"Well, he's been mostly on the inside, but David plays everywhere. He's learned all the positions. He's learning how to be a center, too. He's our emergency center. He's done a good job of that."

On if he feels comfortable with rookie WR Marcus Smith:"Yeah, Marcus is getting to the point where we would feel comfortable with him in there. He's worked extremely hard at practice. He's really made some strides the last two or three weeks, again. For whatever reason, these guys the last couple of weeks have taken it to a little bit of a different level. And you never know until you put them in. And that's the thing as a coach – you've got to be confident enough to put those young guys in there and see how they do. And you might be disappointed, but you might go, 'Wow, we've got ourselves a player here.' And we think those guys are getting to the point now where it's time to get them in there."

On his thoughts on the growth of G Ben Grubbs with him having just entered the league last year:"Ben coming into the league in one year… I didn't see him as his rookie year. So to me, Ben was a veteran. You come in and you look at Ben as a veteran because he's been here before, and I would say he's playing like, beyond a second-year guy. He's playing like a five- or six-year veteran right now, which is a credit to him. He's physical, he's smart, he's a leader, he knows the offense inside and out. I just think he's going to have a really, really great career as an offensive lineman."

On if Sunday's game will feature "old school" football with both offenses and defenses focused on the run:"I think it's a game that people are looking forward to watching, because you have two teams that do play good, sound, fundamental football. And throwing the football is fundamental football, too. But two teams that like to run, two teams that stop the run, two teams that are going to need the passing game, probably, to make a difference in the game. So it will be a fun game to watch."

On his expectations for WR Terrance Copper:"Copper we're not as encouraged about right now. I would say that he's got an outside chance, at best, [to play]."

On if he's heard his name being brought up as a possible Coach of the Year candidate:"No, it's not something we'd even begin to think about. I think the fact that there's even discussion about that… Just like Ray Lewis for Player of the Year or for the Pro Bowl or Joe Flacco for rookie… Or guys who make Rookie of the Week – and Ray has been Defensive Player of the Week – those are team accomplishments in our mind, and those guys are the fist to say that. So any kind of individual award that anybody gets up for, that's a team accomplishment. And I think the fact that Ray won Defensive Player of the Week, was that last week? This week? This week. There we go.... See, obviously, I haven't been thinking about it too much. That's an accomplishment for Ray, but it's an accomplishment for our whole defense, and it's an accomplishment for our team. So guys are proud of that for the rest of the guys."

On if there's a sort of coaching fraternity between him and other first-year head coaches:"We were the guys at the NFL meetings that didn't know where to go, didn't know where to check in, didn't know who to talk to, standing over there kind of shuffling our feet in the lobby, waiting for someone to throw us out. So that's probably our fraternity, but I haven't really talked to those guys for a while. Everybody is busy taking care of other business."

On what happened with the Giants to transform them into the team they've become:"The Giants have been a good football team for a long time. They've been on that roller coaster ride from year to year, but they've been right in the playoff hunt. They've been physical. And even before coach [Tom] Coughlin got there, with coach [Jim] Fassel, they were having a good football team. Coach Coughlin has built on what they had accomplished there before. All of a sudden, the team takes the next step, and that's what they did last year."

On not hearing about Giants head coach Tom Coughlin being as much of a disciplinarian anymore:"If you look at it from our perspective, some of the values and principles that we have in place – guys learning how to control themselves and what they're doing and focus on the job at hand – that's not old school/new school. That's just good work ethic. And I think they have a good work ethic up there, and we have a good work ethic down here."

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