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Interesting Takes From Warner & Coughlin

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  • WisRamsFan
    Warner in the correct forum
    by WisRamsFan
    Warner becomes caretaker QB until Manning ready

    By TOM CANAVAN, AP Sports Writer
    June 3, 2004
    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- The New York Giants are taking some of the pressure off Eli Manning , signing Kurt Warner to be their caretaker quarterback until the top pick in the draft is ready to take over.

    While the two-time MVP got a two-year contract late Wednesday that will pay him a minimum of $3.5 million this year, there is no guarantee the two-time NFL MVP will play for the Giants for more than a year.

    When Manning is ready to go, he will be the Giants' quarterback.


    Until then, the job seemingly belongs to Warner, the soon-to-be 33-year-old who led the St. Louis Rams to Super Bowl appearances after the 1999 and 2001 seasons. Injuries and the emergence of Marc Bulger earned him a pink slip on Tuesday.

    ``I am looking to come in and to play and to re-establish myself,'' Warner said at Thursday, hours after his first practice. ``I would love this to be where I finish my career.''

    Warner has incentives that can push his salary to $8 million this season. However, the second year of his contract is voidable and his tenure may well be determined by Manning's progress in his rookie season.

    ``I don't want to keep moving and picking up my family,'' Warner added. ``I want to continue to have success. I would love it to be here in New York and I will do whatever in my time here to be successful. We'll just see what happens.''

    ``Obviously Manning is there, but this is New York and if Kurt wins, they are not going to want him to leave,'' said Mark Bartelstein, Warner's agent.

    The signing takes a ton of pressure off Manning.

    The son of Archie Manning and the brother of Colts quarterback Peyton Manning became the Giants' starting quarterback when Kerry Collins refused to take a pay cut and was released less than a week after New York got the No. 1 pick in a draft-day trade with San Diego.

    Manning, who has known for weeks the Giants planned to sign a veteran, still plans on competing for the starting job.

    ``I don't know if this takes the pressure off,'' Manning said. ``I don't know if anything has changed in my view. I am still going to practice just as hard as ever. I want to be ready.''

    Manning and Warner spoke for a few minutes on Thursday. Warner plans to tutor Manning, just as he did with Bulger in St. Louis.

    ``To teach a guy the little things and have him become a better quarterback was fun for me, as frustrating as it was not playing,'' Warner said. ``But I look forward to helping any way I can.''

    Warner also is looking forward to playing again. He suffered a concussion in a season-opening loss to the Giants last season and did not start for the rest of the year. He...
    -06-03-2004, 02:58 PM
  • Guest's Avatar
    QB Kurt Warner is set to leave the Giants and become a starter for another NFL team.
    by Guest
    December 29, 2004

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Kurt Warner believes he can and will be a starting quarterback in the NFL.

    QB Kurt Warner is set to leave the Giants and become a starter for another NFL team.
    Eli Manning is the Giants’ starter. Therefore, the Giants’ Sunday night season finale against the Dallas Cowboys could well be Warner’s final game in a Giants uniform.

    “Very possibly,” Warner said today. “I think everybody would foresee that being the case. Who knows what’s going to happen? You never know what the future has in store and what could transpire. But I think that’s everybody’s thought process right now.

    “I want to be somewhere starting next year. They know it’s not here with the New York Giants. And they understand my point of view 100 percent.”

    Warner, who was signed as a free agent on June 2 after a record-breaking six-year run with the St. Louis Rams, started the first nine games of the season. The Giants were 5-4 in those games and Warner completed 62.8 percent of his passes (174 of 277) for 2,054 yards, six touchdowns and four interceptions. Warner’s quarterback rating of 86.5 still ranks seventh in the NFC.

    After a 17-14 loss in Arizona on November 14, coach Tom Coughlin named Manning the new starting quarterback. The first pick in this year’s NFL Draft – and a player the Giants obtained in a trade of draft choices, including this year’s first round pick -- Manning was the quarterback of the future. The only question was when that future would arrive.

    Since it did, Warner has played just once in relief, an appearance in a hopelessly lost cause in the fourth quarter of a 23-point defeat in Baltimore, where he led the Giants to their only offensive touchdown.

    Throughout what could have been a difficult or uncomfortable position, Warner has carried himself with dignity and grace. He has helped Manning whenever possible. Warner has publicly advocated that Coughlin stick with Manning, even when the youngster struggled, and it seemed he might have a shot to play again. And Warner has never hidden from the media. Today he entered the locker room and said, “Does anybody need me?”

    While Warner is an exceptional gentleman, he is also an intense competitor. It is that fire that helped him win two NFL Most Valuable Player awards and twice lead the Rams to the Super Bowl, including a victory five years ago. At 33, Warner insists he has plenty of good football left in him, a notion that was cemented in his own mind by his play early this season.

    “I’m not going to be content, right now in my career, where I am and what I believe I can do, being a backup next year,” he said. “It’s just the bottom line. It’s nothing against the New York Giants, it’s nothing against the situation, the coaches, the organization. I love my year here. But I’m not content being a backup. I think...
    -12-29-2004, 06:57 PM
  • Nick
    Warner must prove he can still produce - Pasquarelli
    by Nick
    Warner must prove he can still produce
    By Len Pasquarelli

    The Giants are hoping that Kurt Warner will take better care of the ball.

    On the New York Giants' Web site Thursday morning, a hastily photographed digital image of the franchise's newest starting quarterback appeared -- Kurt Warner in a red practice jersey bearing his familiar No. 13.

    Given the recent performance of the all-time league leader in passing efficiency -- remember, this is a player who hasn't won a game as a starter since 2001 -- both the color of the practice shirt and the numerals emblazoned on the front and back of it might, alas, prove pretty appropriate.

    The Giants are hoping that Kurt Warner will take better care of the ball.
    The Giants wear blue uniforms, of course, and the red practice jersey is a universal "don't touch" cautionary measure designed to keep pass rushers from jostling the quarterback. As for the No. 13, well, surely the most non-superstitious among us understands its ominous implications. Even the great Dan Marino, who also thumbed his nose at fate by donning No. 13 for all 17 of his mostly brilliant seasons, eventually could not elude the misfortune attached to those dire digits.

    And so, while we hope we're wrong about this, given that Warner is a good guy and one who couldn't depart St. Louis before first passing through the Rams' complex to visit with the people who served as his support group for six seasons, that red practice shirt and the No. 13 represent an ominous beginning to the next chapter of his career.

    During an afternoon news conference, a smiling Warner noted Giants officials were kind enough to allow him to retain his favorite uniform number. Maybe a change of scenery, though, begged for a change from the recently cursed 13. Warner also noted that, after starting just one game in 2003, it is time to get his feet wet again. But should he spend much of '04 submerged beneath the opposition pass rush, desperately trying to tread water behind New York's remodeled offensive line, Warner might someday look back on the irony of his words.

    Make no mistake, signing Warner to a two-year contract worth $9.5 million -- which, in reality, is a one-year deal at $3 million, since the second year is voidable -- was a solid enough gamble by New York. But there is no mistaking as well that Warner, who will turn 33 in a couple weeks and who was sacked six times while throwing but one touchdown pass in 2003, isn't the same guy who claimed two league MVP awards and led the Rams to a Super Bowl XXXIV championship.

    Once the ego of Kerry Collins kept him from collecting a $7 million paycheck this year for introducing the Tutor Dynasty at Giants Stadium, serving as a grizzled starter/mentor to Eli Manning, the team sought Neil O'Donnell for that position. When he declined, and it became clear Warner...
    -06-08-2004, 09:52 AM
  • Yodude
    Why Coughlin Picked Warner....
    by Yodude
    Horrible game with Rams opened door for Warner to sign with Giants
    Friday, October 22, 2004
    By Tom Kowalski

    ALLEN PARK -- Kurt Warner has won a Super Bowl, a couple of NFL Most Valuable Player awards and has set all kinds of passing records, but he's currently the New York Giants quarterback because head coach Tom Coughlin was impressed with one of Warner's worst-ever games.

    In last year's season opener, when he was quarterbacking the St. Louis Rams, Warner had a horrific game against the Giants. He was sacked six times, fumbled six times (losing three) and was intercepted once in New York's 23-13 win against the Rams.

    Coughlin, who became the Giants head coach this year, remembered that performance (after watching game films) when he was deciding whether to sign Warner as a free agent in the off-season.

    "I looked hard at the game," said Coughlin, whose 4-1 Giants host the 3-2 Detroit Lions Sunday at Giants Stadium. "He had the turnovers, no question, but he also performed with outstanding toughness even well into the fourth quarter, despite the statistics, the turnovers and all of those things. He was battling and competing and had a high percentage completion rate even deep into the fourth quarter."

    Coughlin, who is a hard-nosed throwback coach, wanted a competitor and that's what he got in Warner, who only wanted an opportunity to play. After his glory years in St. Louis, Warner stumbled hard with the Rams and it appeared his career might be over.

    "I never had the doubt, from a personal standpoint, about my skills and that I could play at that level," Warner said. "I had some doubt about whether I'd get a legitimate chance to do it. That's where the doubts were. I always felt that if I ever got that opportunity, I could play this game as well as I've ever played it."

    That's why Warner didn't want to sign with the Lions as a backup to Joey Harrington.

    "It was kicked around and talked about a little bit but, obviously, they have a young quarterback who they've put some stock in and given him the opportunities to continue to progress," Warner said. "It wasn't the most conducive situation to what I was looking for, but I definitely considered it.

    "(Lions) Coach (Steve) Mariucci is an old friend of mine and I really love the guy. That would've been a great fit, other than the standpoint that they have Joey there and he has so much talent and he's proven that's the right direction to go."

    After a close training camp battle between Warner and first-round draft pick Eli Manning, the Giants decided they wanted to go with the veteran. Warner has responded with solid performances, completing 65 percent of his passes and throwing just one interception in five games. However, Warner -- and his three touchdown passes -- is...
    -10-22-2004, 04:57 PM
  • Nick
    Warner wows his receivers
    by Nick
    Warner wows his receivers
    Accurate with passes


    ALBANY - When the ball comes out of Kurt Warner's hand, more often than not it wobbles. It's not a bad throw by any measure of an NFL quarterback, and it's obviously worked for him in the past.

    It just seems to pale in comparison to the perfect spiral rookie Eli Manning throws time after time.

    But the beauty of Warner's arm and his wobbly passes are in the eyes of his receivers. And so far Warner's new teammates on the Giants love what they see.

    "It doesn't matter what his passes look like because the stat sheet doesn't show the aesthetics of a pass," said running back Tiki Barber. "He's smart. He knows how to throw the ball where it needs to be."

    That's what Warner always did best in St. Louis, where he threw for 14,447 yards and 102 touchdowns in a mostly remarkable six seasons. And by all accounts that's what he's done in his first week of training camp with the Giants as well. Warner has an uncanny knack for being accurate in both his decisions and where he places the football. And even though he's still in the early stages of learning the Giants' new offense, there's been no evidence that he's lost his touch.

    "Kurt is a great anticipator," receiver Ike Hilliard said. "He's seeing the offenses and defenses and routes and schemes to where he can see it open up. It's almost like second nature. Regardless of how the ball looks, as long as it gets to us it's OK. He doesn't have to throw a dart all the time because he's anticipating a second or two ahead. That's all that matters."

    Warner has always been good at anticipating where a play is going. He may have had great receivers in St. Louis in Isaac Bruce and Torry Holt, but the Rams' offense wouldn't have been The Greatest Show on Turf if Warner hadn't been able to constantly hit them on the run.

    In fact, no one has ever done that better. Warner's career completion rate of 66.1% is the highest of anyone who's ever thrown 1,500 NFL passes. For four straight years in St. Louis - 1999-2002 - his percentage never dipped below 65.1. And even last year, when the Giants beat him up in the season opener and forced him to play through a concussion, he still completed 62.9% of his throws for 365 yards.

    And yet, Warner believes this year he could be even better.

    "I'm smarter," Warner said. "I see the field better. I make better decisions than I did before. Through the years, I just feel every year I've gotten better from a mental standpoint. I've been able to slow the game down and I'm able to react to things better than I ever did before."

    That, of course, is what the Giants are counting on, and it's exactly why they signed Warner in June. The strong-armed, 23-year-old...
    -08-09-2004, 10:01 AM