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Coughlin says Giants’ run game has to be better at San Francisco

Giants Packers Football AP

Putting 37 points on the board at Green Bay on Sunday was an impressive achievement for the Giants, but that doesn’t mean coach Tom Coughlin is satisfied with his offense.

In fact, Coughlin said that the Giants have to get better on the ground if they’re going to beat the 49ers in the NFC Championship Game.

“We did make some plays, some chunk runs, toward the end of the game and at the half, which substantiated our numbers,” Coughlin said. “But the consistency I don’t think was there to the extent that we would want it. So that would be the number one thing.”

Those “chunk runs” late in both halves were huge: Ahmad Bradshaw had an absolutely brilliant run on the next-to-last play of the first half, winding his way for 24 yards and getting out of bounds with six seconds left. The Giants were out of timeouts, so if Bradshaw hadn’t been able to get to the sideline, the half would have ended. As it turned out, the Giants got one last play before halftime, and Eli Manning threw a Hail Mary touchdown to Hakeem Nicks. And Brandon Jacobs sealed the Giants’ win with a 14-yard touchdown run late in the fourth quarter.

But Coughlin is right that the Giants’ running game lacked consistency. On Bradshaw’s other 11 carries he totaled just 39 yards. And on Jacobs’ other eight carries he totaled just eight yards. Throw in D.J. Ware getting stuffed for one yard on a third-and-2 and getting tackled behind the line of scrimmage on his only other carry, and the Giants’ running backs didn’t have a particularly impressive day.

The 49ers have a much better run defense than the Packers do, so it’s going to be tough for the Giants to get better in the running game on Sunday. But Coughlin thinks they have to if they want to get to the Super Bowl.

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34 Responses to “Coughlin says Giants’ run game has to be better at San Francisco”
  1. ZAK says: Jan 18, 2012 12:36 PM

    It will obviously have to be since the Giants give up a full yard more on average: 4.5. They rank nowhere near the 9ers #1 run D in the NFL. Another problem they will have is trying to power downhill on a sloppy wet field which they’re not used to: Jacobs has played only 4 games on grass, Bradshaw only 3. Both backs relying on powering through tackles which becomes a lot more difficult when you can’t keep your footing.

    9ers runners on the other hand are small and quick, relying on weaving around tacklers. The edge unquestionably goes to the 9ers in what will be a running game.

  2. dominicthedonkey says: Jan 18, 2012 12:38 PM

    Gmen need to reach down deep and win the battle in the trenches. The need to be able to punch it in the endzone from a few yards out will be the difference this Sunday. Jacobs needs to play like a beast and stop shuffling his feet when he gets the ball. Hey Rex… I said feet!

  3. eaglesnoles05 says: Jan 18, 2012 12:44 PM

    Last week I said the 9ers were gonna get smoked, this week I need them to win. Need. Please, please, please beat the NYG’s. We can’t take it if they go to another superbowl.

  4. mi6agent says: Jan 18, 2012 12:44 PM

    You will need to do a lot of hail mary passes too Tom.

  5. IMG says: Jan 18, 2012 12:46 PM

    This is a gross understatement – “The 49ers have a much better run defense than the Packers do”.

    The 49ers have the best run defense in the league. As many analysts have commented the speed of the front 7 on the niners defense makes it very hard to get separation from the defenders. Throw in a stout defensive line that controls the line of scrimmage and very sound tackling and its not surprising to see why they are #1 in run defense.

  6. giantfan92 says: Jan 18, 2012 12:47 PM

    I dont see us running the ball against SF very well… On the other hand, the wet conditions will cause a few missed tackles/huge plays to occur. Whoever gets those plays will win the game.

  7. hellawaitsusall says: Jan 18, 2012 1:04 PM

    might need that passing attack to open up the running game. If not, game over

  8. nineroutsider says: Jan 18, 2012 1:06 PM

    He’s right, but it won’t be better. It will be almost nonexistent. The shots on Eli will be fast and furious.

    Going to be one hell of a game that goes down to the wire again. No blowout for those G-Men this week. Good luck.

  9. jakek2 says: Jan 18, 2012 1:07 PM

    1) Agree – Giants need to run better. If TC is listening, we’re begging you to bench that no-talent Ware.

    2) Hail Mary – I wish the media would stop calling this a Hail Mary. For it to be a Hail Mary, doesn’t everyone have to know its coming? I thought (and so did GB) that the Giants would try a quick out first to get in FG range, which is why the secondary wasn’t standing in the endzone in jump ball position. This was nothing more than a 37 yd pass to a WR that got good position.

    3) Back to Ware – Not complaining but he was clearly past the yellow line and picked up the 1st down. This was just another blown call by the refs inexplicably spotting the ball back 2 yds making it 4th and inches.

  10. jakek2 says: Jan 18, 2012 1:11 PM

    eaglesnoles05 says:
    Jan 18, 2012 12:44 PM
    Last week I said the 9ers were gonna get smoked, this week I need them to win. Need. Please, please, please beat the NYG’s. We can’t take it if they go to another superbowl.
    —————–
    LOL. Question. If we somehow pull another rabbit out of our hat and win the whole thing again, will you make the same argument all Philly fans make come week 1 in 2012, “That SB was last year. What have you done lately”? Us Giants’ fans love that one!!

  11. chocolatebaconbutter says: Jan 18, 2012 1:19 PM

    This is where we need the vintage Giants to come out. They need to win in the trenches. Offensive and defensive line. Whoever gets the upper hand here wins the game. Plain and simple. Football at it’s best.

  12. jerrygogo says: Jan 18, 2012 1:20 PM

    Why do the Niner fans beleive they have such a distinct advantage due to the weather?

    It is all about getting open down field since the pass rushes will be slowed to a halt and the running games of both teams will be slowed down as well.

    That seems to put the game more on the qbs, wrs and tes no?

    I think this could be an epic game of mud and slop and cannot wait.

  13. armchairqb says: Jan 18, 2012 1:21 PM

    The Giants have a running game?

  14. anthonykornheiser says: Jan 18, 2012 1:31 PM

    @zak
    bradshaw and jacobs have only played 3 games on grass? You do realize most of giants stadium is natural grass right?

  15. elledaddy says: Jan 18, 2012 1:45 PM

    Whats so funny about all this ” can the giants stop sf run game” is that the Giants outrushed SF in the first game 93 to 77. And of that 77 for the 9ers Alex Smith had 27. And before some 9er fan make the excuse of Gore ” only” having 6 carries and got hurt, remember Ahmad Bradshaw had no carries and didnt even suit up. It’s not about the amount of yards rushing with Giants. As long as they have enough carries to make SF respect play action they’ll be good. IMO

  16. inthearex says: Jan 18, 2012 1:48 PM

    All they need is the “threat” of a running game. Drew Brees was reckless with the ball and still threw for 400 plus yards and 4 tds. 9ers run defense is awesome but that might be a moot point at the end of the game.

  17. hedleykow says: Jan 18, 2012 1:50 PM

    The Giants need to run ONLY enough to keep the 49ers planted exactly where they are supposed to be (in perfect position to be exploited by Cruz and Nicks). And if the 49ers start cheating on defending the run, Jacobs and Bradshaw will get their couple of big plays to seal it. It’s a pretty simple formula, when playing a team that employs such a simple approach as the 49ers do. Niners will be embarrassed in this one, boys.

  18. zaggs says: Jan 18, 2012 2:00 PM

    “nineroutsider says: Jan 18, 2012 1:06 PM

    He’s right, but it won’t be better. It will be almost nonexistent. The shots on Eli will be fast and furious.”

    That didn’t happen last time. I believe that was the game that Beatty hurt his back so they had to shuffle the line again mid game and the niners only recorded 1 sack. Smith was sacked more times.
    Take away the niners trickeration or just have manningham lay out for a pass and the Giants would have won.

  19. franknunley57 says: Jan 18, 2012 2:04 PM

    giants fans just 6 weeks ago called wfan all day: coughlin is too old,fire him. gilbride is too predictable,fire him.fewell’s defensive schemes suck,fire him.jerry reece did nothing in the off season,fire him.rolle talks too much,get rid of him and jacobs is a dog and a cancer,get rid of him.

  20. unomasmore says: Jan 18, 2012 2:16 PM

    True, but not exactly what I want to hear. Coughlin doesn’t need to revert to his old running ways now. The passing game is what got you hear and it is what will propel you to a win. Mix in a few runs, but now is not exactly the time to get your run game going, considering you are playing the best Run D in the league. Use the pass to set-up the run in this one, Coach.

  21. sonoco says: Jan 18, 2012 2:17 PM

    It won’t show-up until late in the game, but I think the 49ers having one more day of rest than the Giants and no cross-country travel to deal with will have a significant impact on the outcome.

  22. zaggs says: Jan 18, 2012 2:49 PM

    Funny thing is, you could say the same about the 49ers against the Saints. Half of their rush yardage came from 2 big runs which amounted to 70 yards.

  23. bspurloc says: Jan 18, 2012 2:58 PM

    “Throw in D.J. Ware getting stuffed for one yard on a third-and-2″

    DJ Ware did not get stuffed he got the first down, check your nfl highlights, even Sanders clearly states he has no idea why the refs moved the back a yard.
    He clearly had the first down.

  24. deepbacksidedig says: Jan 18, 2012 3:02 PM

    Accuweather says rain for SF: Thur, Fri, Sat, Sun, Sun Night.
    Mud and guts baby. Advantage, SF.

  25. linkinxr says: Jan 18, 2012 3:02 PM

    Giants scary pass rush. Secondary an linebackers Not so much.
    49ers pass rush scary. Linebackers scary. DBs good in coverage.
    Offense Eli manning elite. Wr elite. Running backs. Average.
    49ers. Alex smith good enough. Running back elite. Wr. Average. Tight ends absolute beast.
    Giants have no beast tight ends.
    This is an even match with few difference makers. 49er fan and I am not scared or confident. I think this game is gonna come down to coaching and I believe home field.

    Go 49ers

  26. dolphins4 says: Jan 18, 2012 3:16 PM

    Someone has to remove the button from Brandon Jacobs leg that when touched Jacobs falls down.

  27. skinsfantom says: Jan 18, 2012 3:52 PM

    The weather does not favor sf. the gmen play in ny. the gmen will pass successfully, and rush for more yards. they almost always come up big in these games. i like the way both teams play but cant go against giants in this one. great game. 1 of my sons is a 9er fan 1 is a giant fan. gonna be awesome f ball. i remember when the skins used to go to these games regularly, OY!

  28. jdandcoke says: Jan 18, 2012 3:56 PM

    a sloppy field means that the niners lb’ers, the strength of their D, have trouble making the quick adjustments necessary to make the plays that they do….especially when going out into coverage. anyone who thinks a sloppy field isnt a good thing for the giants isnt thinking things through. im hoping for a torrential downpour.

    oh…and if vernon davis doesnt line up as a wr, jpp will smack him around at the line all day, just ike he did to finley. he’s bigger, stronger, and darn near as fast.

  29. 1historian says: Jan 18, 2012 5:01 PM

    SB XLVI, II/V/MMXII

    NE – XXXV

    NY – XXVII

  30. SOBEIT says: Jan 18, 2012 5:05 PM

    anthonykornheiser says:
    Jan 18, 2012 1:31 PM
    @zak
    bradshaw and jacobs have only played 3 games on grass? You do realize most of giants stadium is natural grass right?

    _______

    What do you mean by “most” of Giants Stadium is natural grass? The sidelines? Are parts real and parts fake…but most is real? All reports are the Metlife Stadium is FieldTurf.

  31. briank1ne says: Jan 18, 2012 9:38 PM

    Are all of you serious? If you all think this comes down to just the running game then clearly sf wins becausw of their run d. But it comea down to much more than that. Field position. Quarterback play. Coaching. Special teams. Defensive front. Pressure on the qb. Ita going to take a complete team effort on both sides of the ball. Ill take the niners in this one though. Homefield advantage and a defense that stopped the mighty drew brees and his 3 probowler offensive line. Very impressive.

  32. billb09 says: Jan 18, 2012 11:35 PM

    The Falcons had a better run defense than the Packers also. Numbers at this time of the season mean nothing. Let’s line em up an oh the only numbers that count are the final score numbers. Go G-MEN!!!!!!!!

  33. bspurloc says: Jan 19, 2012 10:15 AM

    .
    funny how memories lapse, nfl scoreboard week 10…
    bradshaw was benched.
    Eli was doing his typical Eli junk throwing balls to nobody knows where…. like he ALWAYS does, the opponent doesnt matter…

    Eli isnt playing like that right now and bradshaw is going to be allowed to play this time….
    Feel sorry for the niners, Saints handed u a victory to be embarrassed this sunday

  34. Mr. Wright 212 says: Jan 19, 2012 2:43 PM

    bspurloc says:
    Jan 19, 2012 10:15 AM
    .
    funny how memories lapse, nfl scoreboard week 10…
    bradshaw was benched.
    Eli was doing his typical Eli junk throwing balls to nobody knows where…. like he ALWAYS does, the opponent doesnt matter…

    Eli isnt playing like that right now and bradshaw is going to be allowed to play this time….
    Feel sorry for the niners, Saints handed u a victory to be embarrassed this sunday

    ———-

    The OP on this one has lost his mind. There were drops than “junk balls” by Eli, and Bradshaw was HURT, not benched. Fool.

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