Judging by safety Antrel Rolle’s comments this week about a team he thought lacked effort, the Giants could be primed for the taking in Seattle.
Linebacker Jameel McClain is only in his first year with the Giants, but he’s a veteran who has been a part of many locker rooms. And the man asked to fill leader Jon Beason’s shoes was happy to follow in line with the team captain.
“Antrel Rolle is the general [and] whatever the general says, it goes. I am a part of this battle with him and if he feels that way, I feel that way with him. [But] I also see passion in guys, and I play the game with passion. I play it with everything that I have. My goal is to leave that field empty and my teammates share that,” said McClain. “Whatever Antrel Rolle sees, I take it as a challenge for us to step it up, for me to give more. When I hear things, I look at myself. I try not to look at other people. I look at, ‘what more can you do, Jameel? What more can you do to make it better?’ That is how I look at it [and] that is how everybody else should take it.”
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Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul has taken the grumblings to heart and basically agreed with Rolle’s statements, but added he’s still playing hard and expects to perform well. The loquacious Pierre-Paul added he can only take care of what he can control — his own play.
“I know what it takes to play and you have to have heart, [and] a lot of guys don’t have it. I can sit here and tell you we all do but we don’t. It’s definitely been missing from a lot of guys,” said Pierre-Paul. “But it doesn’t bother me [because] I do my job. But we need everybody.”
All hands are certainly on deck for the Giants if they’re to buck the recent losing trend. New York has struggled with the league's best teams, going 0-5 against squads that currently have winning records.
Playing the Seahawks in Seattle, not faring well against the upper-echelon, the grumblings in the locker room and mounting injuries all seem like obstacles too difficult to overcome.
Pierre-Paul said he knows it’s looking bad right now, but he still thinks guys have enough pride to fight.
“If you don’t have no heart to play this game then you’re going to continue losing. That’s with every guy. You just have to have it,” said Pierre-Paul. “We can’t lose no more, otherwise we’re just going to be coming in here to play the game and get a check. And I don’t want that.”
Big Blue notes ...
» Players limited in Thursday’s practice included defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins and cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.
» Wideout Preston Parker practiced fully.
» Running back Rashad Jennings, defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka and punter Steve Weatherford did not pracitce.
»Cornerback Zack Bowman was not at practice Thursday, as he was sent to a local hospital with abdominal pain.
»Head coach Tom Coughlin said he actually expects guard Weston Richburg (ankle) to play this week, as the rookie was limited on Thursday.
» Rashad Jennings (knee) took some scout team reps at practice, but he still seems unlikely to play on Sunday. Jennings, though, did leave the door open when asked if there’s any chance he suits up and plays: “There’s always a chance.”
Follow Giants beat writer Tony Williams on Twitter @TBone8.