Eli Manning: Giants behind Coughlin

— -- EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Some people think it's time for the New York Giants to make a coaching change.

Eli Manning is not one of them.

The quarterback came to the defense of his coach Wednesday, two days after former Giants running back Tiki Barber went on a radio show and said it's time for Coughlin to go.

"Coach, he's doing a great job," Manning said. "He gets us ready, and we just gotta perform better. But it's not a lack of effort. Guys are practicing hard, guys want to do well, guys are into it, they're in tune, they're excited about the week and doing all the right things in the preparation. We just gotta keep doing the right things and take it over to game day."

Barber has made a habit of criticizing his former team since retiring in 2006, particularly Coughlin and Manning.

Asked if he heard about Barber's latest comments, Manning drew big laughs from the reporters gathered around him with his sarcastic response.

"Yeah. Very nice of him," Manning said. "It's good to hear from ol' Tiki."

But Manning isn't concerned about Barber's take.

"Everybody has their opinions," Manning said. "We never let it affect the locker room. I know it's not gonna affect the players, and I know it won't affect the coach."

Earlier in the day, Coughlin was asked if the players are still getting his message and being attentive.

"Yeah," Coughlin said. "Ask [the players], though."

In addition to Manning, Antrel Rolle, another team captain, affirmed that Coughlin and the players are still on the same page.

"Yeah. Coach is a guy, we all understand where he's coming from, what his message is and so forth and so on," Rolle said. "He's our guy. So we're gonna go out there, we're gonna play ball, try to get a win at all costs."

The Giants (3-7), losers of five in a row, will try to snap their skid and keep their slim playoff hopes alive Sunday night when they host the Dallas Cowboys.

Manning applauded his team's effort in last Sunday's close loss to the San Francisco 49ers and expects the same this week.

"Guys are fighting," Manning said. "Guys want to win, and guys believe in this team. So the message is getting across. It's just obviously the execution has to get better."