Giants reluctant to call themselves ‘spoilers’ ahead of Seattle game

Wide receiver Victor Cruz may miss the rest of the preseason with his heel injury. Credit: Getty Images
Wide receiver Victor Cruz said he has no interest in using the term “spoiler” the rest of the season.
Credit: Getty Images

Giants wideout Victor Cruz has been steadfastly against calling his squad “spoilers,” noting the negative connotation it has.

But with the realization that the Giants (5-8) are officially eliminated from playoff contention, following last week’s loss in San Diego, and the next two weeks will feature teams prominently in the postseason race (the Seahawks and Lions), Cruz may have to rethink that label — begrudgingly.

“I still wouldn’t say spoilers. Nobody’s excited or happy to be in this position,” Cruz said. “[But] everybody’s gonna have a little edge about them, naturally.”

That edge could help add a little more juice to a Giants team that needs something to match the intensity of a Seahawks (11-2) team poised to pounce on a banged-up squad playing out the string.

“This would definitely be a signature win for the season, I think,” linebacker Jon Beason said. “You go up against a great team — the No. 1 seed if the playoffs were today — and because you don’t have those playoff hopes, hopefully you can go out and win the game. It would be a good end to the season.”

The Seahawks would indeed be the best conquest on Big Blue’s schedule, as Seattle is just a win away from wrapping up homefield advantage for the NFC playoffs.

“The last thing you want to be is embarrassed, and this is a team that, if you’re not ready to play, they will embarrass you and laugh about it,” said defensive end Justin Tuck. “But I’m not in the business of being embarrassed. I’m in the business of going out there and putting a great show on for our fans … and I think that’s what we’ll do.”

Running back Andre Brown agreed with Tuck, saying the coaching film is always running, so Big Blue might as well finish strong and try and gain momentum for next year.

“To go up against the best team in the NFC, to go out there and fight and give them a good hit, a good lick, and try to bring back the season and make a name for ourselves is important,” said Brown. “We’re playing for pride, and as a man, that’s just what you want to do and just go out there, make plays and have fun out there. Because what you put on tape is eventually what can set up your next job. … Just go out there and put your best foot forward and make plays and show that you belong here.”

Big Blue notes …

» Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll, who once coached at the University of Southern California, said he’s proud of another former Trojan, Giants cornerback Terrell Thomas. Carroll beamed when talking about Thomas and the way he’s battled back from three ACL injuries, saying Thomas’s recovery is “extraordinary.” Carroll added, “Man, that’s amazing he could pull that off. … It just represents the ‘Fight On’ spirit.”

» Giants head coach Tom Coughlin noted it may not be “evaluation time” but he wants to see his players continue to play hard.

“I’m confident that we’re gonna play the best we can and win with our roster, the roster that we have,” Coughlin said. “If the opportunity is there [to play more backups], then so be it. That’s not going to be the No. 1 thought on our minds … [but] we’ve already been playing a lot of people [due to injuries].”

» Running back Brandon Jacobs was officially placed on season-ending injured reserve (IR). Jacobs finished the season with 238 rushing yards on 58 carries, with four touchdowns in seven games.

The fact that the Giants are no longer in the playoff hunt had nothing to do with Jacobs going on IR, as Coughlin reasoned his running back was “incapacitated” and would have gone on IR regardless.

Jacobs is a free agent next season, but was clear when he said there’s only one team for him in 2014-15.

“There is no place in the National Football League that I’d rather be than right here at 1925 Giants drive. Nowhere,” Jacobs said. “We could’ve went 0-16 and I would be happy and smiling in this locker room because I’m a Giant at heart. I love this organization, I love the fans [and] I love that ‘NY’ [symbol on the helmet], so there’s not a better place for me. I’d rather be here than go somewhere and be undefeated. This is where I belong.”

» The infamous Super Bowl countdown clock was officially taken down off the wall inside the Giants’ locker room, and Tuck understands why:

“I don’t know if it’s a tangible reminder, but I know there’s no need for it to be up right now,” Tuck said. “We can’t reach that goal, so for us we move on to our next goal and that’s just trying to win some football games.”

» Practice squad linebacker Marcus Dowtin took Jacobs’s place on the active 53-man roster.

» The Giants released linebacker Darin Drakeford from the practice squad and signed defensive end Kendrick Adams and defensive back Chaz Powell to replace Drake and Dowtin.

» Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (shoulder), defensive lineman Cullen Jenkins (shin/quad), safety Cooper Taylor (hamstring) and Thomas (knee) did not practice. Cornerback Corey Webster (ankle) was limited, while cornerback Prince Amukamara (illness) gutted out practice despite being on the pre-practice injury report.

» Safety Antrel Rolle remains the only Giant in the Top 10 in Pro Bowl fan voting at any position. He’s currently third among strong safeties with 99,667 votes.

» Only seven teams have won a Super Bowl and missed the playoffs the next two seasons — and this will be the third time it’s happened to the Giants. Big Blue won it all in 1986 and sat out the postseason in 1987 and 1988. And after winning again in 1990, they were non-playoff teams in 1991 and 1992. Since their 2011 championship season, they have gone two years without making it. The only time they made the playoffs after a Super Bowl was in 2008, and they were eliminated in the divisional round.

Follow Giants beat writer Tony Williams on Twitter @TBone8.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

California passes 'yes-means-yes' campus sexual assault bill

Californian lawmakers passed a law on Thursday requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on…

National

Syrian refugees top 3 million, half of all…

By Stephanie NebehayGENEVA (Reuters) - Three million Syrian refugees will have registered in neighboring countries as of Friday, but many remain trapped by the advance…

International

North Korean leader's money manager defects in Russia:…

A senior North Korean banking official who managed money for leader Kim Jong Un has defected in Russia and was seeking asylum in a third country, a South Korean newspaper…

Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 29,…

The Department of Transportation and NYPD said there may be residual delays near all of the street closures on August 29, 31 and 31. Several streets and avenues will be…

Going Out

'Friends' coffeehouse Central Perk coming to NYC —…

"Friends" is coming back for a one-off special: "The One with the Free Coffee." Warner Bros. is bringing a pop-up replica of Central Perk, the…

Movies

Interview: 'As Above, So Below' directors: 5 ways…

The fraternal directors of the found footage horror "As Above, So Below" dish on the best ways to frighten the bejesus out of audiences.

Movies

Criterion's new Jacques Demy box mixes the light…

Jacques Demy, the most effervescent of French New Wave filmmakers, gets a Criterion box all to himself, with classics like "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg."

Entertainment

Comedian Joan Rivers, 81, rushed to New York…

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Acerbic comedian and fashion critic Joan Rivers was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital in New York on Thursday after she reportedly…

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…