EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The New York Giants insist their new offense is coming along, even as all external visual evidence continues to suggest otherwise. And it's not crazy to think they could be right, since a lot of what new coordinator Ben McAdoo is installing is based on nuance, footwork and small details. The idea that the Giants themselves are seeing improvement on film that doesn't show up in productive, on-field results isn't an inconceivable one.
But even quarterback Eli Manning admits it would be nice to see some of it start working.
"We have to play better," said Manning, who was 0-for-2 across four possessions in Saturday's preseason game against the Steelers. "Offensively, we have to just get in a rhythm, start calling plays and making things happen. Sometimes you try to make everything perfect and maybe think too much. So, hey, let's run the plays and make the best decisions depending on what the defense is."
Manning and the starters could play more in Saturday's preseason game in Indianapolis than they have in the two preseason games so far, if for no other reason than to give the first-teamers a chance to have some success together. At this point, the notion that this will be a productive offense rests on little besides faith.
"We have good receivers, we have good players," Manning insisted Tuesday. "We have running backs who can run the ball and catch it out of the backfield. It's just a matter of having confidence and trust in the system and fully trusting that it's going to give us an opportunity to get guys open and win those individual battles.
"You have to have the trust before it works. You can't have doubts."
The Giants have 27 days until their regular-season opener in Detroit, which they believe is enough time to get them ready, even if the offense will have to remain a work in progress into the season.
"I hope everything is set and ready for opening night," Manning said. "I think, with any offense and in any season, you still need to improve as the season goes. There will be some concepts I think we'll be better at than others, and I think it's about figuring that out still. I think we have a good idea about it, but you still have to figure out what routes guys run the best and what concepts I feel most comfortable with and things like that."