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EAST RUTHERFORD Cheap
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, N.J. (AP) With many calling for
wholesale changes on the New York Giants in the wake of a dismal half a season,
a relaxed coach Ben McAdoo took a very positive approach with his team heading
into this week, telling the players he still believes in them.

McAdoo, who has been curt with the media in recent weeks as his team slipped
to 1-7. He opened up a little and showed some personality in discussing this
weekend’s game against the winless 49ers in San Francisco.

That was surprising with the Giants coming off a 51-17 loss to the Los
Angeles Rams, the team’s worst margin of defeat at home since a 37-3 defeat to
Green Bay in 1998. It led many to label the players as quitters; others called
for the firing of general manager Jerry Reese and McAdoo, who last year led the
Giants to the playoffs in his first season.

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”Talked about let’s begin again,” McAdoo said after practice Wednesday. ”That
was really the message for them. Don’t buy into the lies, the lies that your
feelings are telling you. This thing is not about feelings. It’s a decision andimage
let’s make the decision to begin again. We talked about Cheap
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, you know, you may think I’m a little bit out
there, but I believe we have a run in us. I believe to the core we have a run in
us.”

The key, McAdoo told the players, was being hungry in the final eight games,
and playing simple, sound football.

McAdoo said everything the Giants did wrong against the Rams – and there was
a lot – was correctable. The 40-year-old coach said the players were receptive
to criticism going over the game film, and they worked hard at practice
Wednesday.

The coach also realizes his team is fragile.

”They need to believe in themselves. They need to trust themselves Cheap
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,” he said. ”The players know what works. Players
know what got them seats in the room.”

Safety Landon Collins, who was beaten on two deep passes last Sunday, said
the team is sticking together through all this. All it needs is to have some fun
and win a game.

”If we do that, yeah, we can definitely make that run,” Collins said.

The Giants should get some players back this week. Linebacker Jonathan
Casillas (neck) and offensive lineman Justin Pugh (back) practiced on a limited
basis, and both were optimistic about playing Sunday. There is an outside chance
defensive end Olivier Vernon (ankle) can play.

Pugh said the Giants have talent, noting everyone is talking about the Eagles
(7-1) being the best team in the league. He then pointed out Philadelphia needed
a last-second 61-yard field goal to beat New York earlier this season.

”We’ve shown flashes of doing some really good things Cheap
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, but we’ve lost and we’ve turned the ball over
at crucial times and had plays that have really hurt us,” Pugh said. ”We got to
go out there and we got to change those things. We’re going to go out there and
play hard for him, play hard for each other, and try to get this thing turned
around.”

Casillas stated the obvious when he noted the Giants will not win any more
games if they continue to play like they did in the loss to the Rams (6-2).

”Everybody looking at us now: `We’re the losers,”’ Casillas said. ”We’re the
worst team in the league, we’re No. 31. So be it, I am going to take it for what
it is. People don’t expect too much from us, so we can surprise teams.”

NOTES: Casillas raised some eyebrows when he said the Giants finally got the
hot tub fixed. A team spokesman was quick to clarify the statement a few minutes
later Cheap
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, saying the tub was never broken, but it was
not getting as hot as some players would like. Must have been the cost of losing
a lot. …. CB Janoris Jenkins did not talk to the media for the second straight
day. He was reinstated from a suspension on Tuesday. McAdoo said he will resume
his role, which was a starter.

For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and
http://www.twitter.com/AP-NFL

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