State of offense: Gilbride talks Diehl, Eli

With six brutal games remaining, offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride has some issues to resolve with his unit.

The offense has often stalled out in the red zone. The line has been shaky as of late and, most important, his star quarterback is in a bit of a funk.

Here are some highlights from Gilbride's chat with reporters earlier this week:

What's the Diehl: Gilbride said the pass protection has to give Eli Manning more time to throw.

He was asked if the insertion of right tackle David Diehl into the starting lineup has been a factor in the protection.

"You would love to say it's this one thing or one person or one aspect," Gilbride said. "But it doesn't work out that way. Believe me when I tell you this, it's all of us. We all have to do better.

"Sometimes it's [Eli] trying to force the ball because he's trying to make a play to get us going," Gilbride continued. "Sometimes it's the protection just not being quite as solid as it needs to be. Sometimes it's the receivers. Sometimes it's the call that's not the best call for that defense. It's everything."

Offensive line coach Pat Flaherty also stuck by the veteran Diehl on Monday.

Eli's arm: Gilbride was asked if he sees a tired arm on his quarterback.

"I haven't seen a deadening of the arm, to be honest with you," Gilbride said. "I don't think that's a problem at all. I haven't seen that."

Gilbride said it might be a good thing that Manning is getting away from football for a few days during the bye week.

"I think that's good," Gilbride said. "He's not going to lose his mechanics throwing the ball in that short of a period of time. I think it's all part of the comprehensive 'let me get away from this' thing."

Second-half struggles: Gilbride said the Giants constantly are trying to figure out a way not to fall into their seemingly annual November slump that always seems to happen after quick 6-2 starts.

"Obviously, we haven't quite figured it out yet, or we wouldn't be going through another one that we're looking forward to ending after two games," Gilbride said. "It's something that we look at all the time. You're constantly evaluating everything that you're doing, whether it's a practice structure, whether it's schematic adjustments that can be made.

"Maybe it's the use of different personnel," he continued. "That's something that goes on continuously. We've come up short the last two weeks, so that's what I go by -- not the years past, but what has happened the last couple weeks. And the last couple weeks we haven't played well offensively, so that's been the biggest disappointment for us."

Brown's usage: The Giants opened Sunday's game against Cincinnati with Andre Brown in a hurry-up mode. They did the same in the second half.

Brown was in due to the offensive package the Giants had in.

Gilbride said Ahmad Bradshaw is his starting back.

"We thought Andre has deserved some chances," Gilbride said. "When we've given him an opportunity to carry the ball, he's done well. He's catching the ball extremely well. I think it's more a matter of him earning that chance to get on the field. So far, every time we've given him chances, he's come through for us."

No bombs: The Giants have seen defenses trying to take away the deep ball from them recently.

Gilbride was asked how that affects his scheme.

"It just forces you to go to a different facet of it, and that's where the running game needs to come to the fore," the offensive coordinator said. "I think you look at us statistically, although it wasn't near where we need it to be, you're gaining about six yards a carry [against Cincinnati].

"Problem was it all happened in the second half," he continued. "You have to be able to throw underneath, you have to be able to run the ball effectively. You have to be able to do things where they're more vulnerable defending against the deep stuff, and when you get the chance for the deep stuff, you have to catch the ball."