Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Giants prepare for Bucs ... by watching Rutgers tapes - USA TODAY

By Mike Garafolo, USA TODAY

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Tom Coughlin and the New York Giants have much more than only one game tape of Greg Schiano's Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

"We watched all of the Rutgers film in all three phases," Coughlin said Wednesday, as his team continues preparation for Sunday's game against the Bucs. "And of course, we watched all of the preseason games. They continue to have a good scheme."

Coughlin knows all about taking college schemes and adapting them to the NFL. He was the head coach at Boston College from 1991-93 before joining the expansion Jacksonville Jaguars. He also made a similar jump from being an assistant coach with Syracuse (1974-80) and B.C. (1981-83) to coaching wide receivers for the Philadelphia Eagles, Green Bay Packers and Giants.

So Coughlin realizes the battle Schiano, the head coach of the Scarlet Knights for the previous 11 seasons, is undergoing. The Buccaneers beat the Carolina Panthers 16-10 in Week 1, thanks in part to suffocating defense and a ball-control offense Schiano prefers.

"I can imagine, yeah, I sure can," Coughlin said. "I've been there a couple of times. Thank you very much for the reminder."

And what does it mean to get a win in the opener?

"Oh, it was obvious. They were a team that had lost 10 straight games the year before, so their program is obviously being accepted," said Coughlin, whose Jaguars lost their first four games in 1995.

"They made a lot of changes. They changed better than half the offensive players on their team, period. That was an exciting win for them at home and provided everyone there with some confidence and obviously they're doing things the way they want to do them."

Schiano's Jersey connections aren't the only close ties in Sunday's matchup. Bucs offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan was a Giants assistant from 2004 through last season, and Tampa's defensive coordinator (Bill Sheridan) was the Giants linebackers coach from 2005-08 and the defensive coordinator for one extremely rocky season in 2009.

Coughlin said on Monday he's seen similarities between the Bucs' and Giants offensive schemes. Defensively, Sheridan's knowledge is a bit limited because he did not work with current Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell, though he's familiar with a few key pieces on defense, such as passrushers Justin Tuck, Osi Umenyiora and Mathias Kiwanuka.

"They both know the way we operate, they both know some of our terminology," Coughlin said of Sullivan and Sheridan. "So we're aware of that."

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