Giants looking for a win, O-D rift is forgotten

Antrel Rolle didn’t want to hear anything about the rift between

the New York Giants’ offense and defense.

Three days after the so-called schism was the biggest thing to

come out of the Giants-Seattle Seahawks game this past weekend,

Rolle didn’t want to have anything to do with it.

When the question about controversy arose, the safety and

defensive co-captain shut it down quickly.

Rolle’s focus, and that of most of his teammates, was playing a

better game on Sunday against the Detroit Lions (7-7).

”I think you are playing for pride each and every week no

matter what is at stake,” Rolle said Wednesday. ”We are all men,

we are all competitors. We play the game because we love it and no

one likes to lose.”

Rolle wasn’t so kind Sunday after a no-show effort by the

Giants’ offense in a 23-0 loss to the Seahawks. He questioned the

offensive players’ heart, passion and whether they had a pulse.

The issue was forgotten by Wednesday, at least according to

defensive end Justin Tuck.

When asked if the players had cleaned the air, he quipped that

he thought the recent snow had cleared the air, noting the flakes

were white.

”Honestly I don’t think we even had to,” Tuck said when

pressed. ”I don’t think it was that much of a big deal.”

The Lions need to win to keep their playoff hopes alive. The

Giants (5-9) need to win to restore some pride and to start feeling

good about themselves after missing the playoffs for the fourth

time in five seasons. New York has lost three of its last four

games after putting together a four-game winning streak following a

0-6 start.

”I’m not thinking we need a win, we just want one, period,”

defensive tackle Mike Patterson said. ”We don’t want to out saying

our record is this or that and say let’s forget it. We want to go

out there and win. We want to go out there and compete.”

With two games left in the season, the Giants, especially the

veterans, know this isn’t the time to mail it in. Coaches and front

office personal are looking to see who plays hard in meaningless

games.

”That is important,” safety Ryan Mundy said. ”Our film is our

living, breathing resume. Every time we step on the field it is

documented and that is noted by everyone on this team and in the

league. Whenever you step on the field you want to give your

best.”

The defense also realizes that the Lions have the capability to

embarrass them if players like receiver Calvin Johnson, quarterback

Matthew Stafford and running back Reggie Bush get loose.

Mundy also said the Giants are not worried about how their

offense plays a week after it was limited to 181 total yards by

Seattle.

”We need a W,” Mundy said. ”We can’t control what goes on in

any other facet of the game. We have to focus on our performance

defensively. Hopefully, we can get in sync as a team, offense,

defense, special teams, helping each other out. That’s how you win

ballgames in this league. You have to be clocking on all cylinders.

It can’t just be offense is playing well this week, special teams

is so-so and the defense is trash.”

That consistency has been lacking all season.

NOTES: Injuries kept 10 players from practicing Wednesday, the

most notable being receiver Victor Cruz (concussion, sprained

knee). Cruz is two yards shy of his third 1,000-yard season in

receiving yards, but it does not look like he will play this week.

Also not working were starting guards David Diehl (knee) and James

Brewer (ankle); RB Peyton Hillis (concussion), DT Cullen Jenkins

(shin/quad), WR-KOR Jerrel Jernigan (knee), DE Jason Pierre-Paul

(shoulder), S Cooper Taylor (hamstring) and CBs Trumaine McBride

(groin) and Terrell Thomas (knee).

NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org