Mario Manningham Q& A with NY/NJ Media
San Francisco 49ers WR Mario Manningham October 10, 2012
Q: Miss us?
A: No. (Laughs)
Q: How are things going in San Francisco for you?
A: Oh, man. I couldn't ask for a better team. Better teammates, better coaching staff, equipment managers, everybody else. Everybody over here is real cool, and down to earth.
Q: So, Prince Amukamara said that he heard through the grapevine that you're already talking about this game. When we pressed him on it, he suddenly played dumb. Have you been contacting some of your old teammates about this game?
A: No. The only ones I talked to over there is Bradshaw and Hakeem. We don't even really talk about football, man. I talked to Hakeem for like two hours after our game. Talking to him. We talk back and forth. Ain't nobody going to say their team is going to lose. So, I wouldn't expect that to come out his mouth, you know what I'm saying? I don't even know what you're talking about, about that Prince stuff. We'll see on Sunday, though.
Q: Can you talk about just the opportunity and how it's been going for you, personally? They've been using you a little bit on reverses and whatnot and putting you in good spots to make plays.
A: I just want to go out and do what I have to do to make us come out with a 'W.' Knowing that I get the ball a little bit more than I did over there, I'm involved more over here. So, just try to take it step-by-step. Just trying to knock down whoever is in our way.
Q: Do you feel that you were able to contribute a little bit more to helping your teammates prepare to face the Giants' defense, based on your knowledge of when you went against them in practice and also, your knowledge of the Giants' offense?
A: Oh, yeah. No question. No question. I talked to the DBs and talked to my teammates, and stuff. Let them know, to give them heads up, what's going to happen here, things like that.
Q: Were you able to share a whole lot, as to how Eli thinks?
A: Oh, yeah. I know. I know what's going on. I share it with them.
Q: What do you remember about that touchdown catch you made in the NFC Championship Game?
A: What do I think about it?
Q: What do you remember about how that play unfolded?
A: Eli threw a great ball, and I went up to get it.
Q: How special was that play? It seemed like a pretty good read by Eli, and a good catch by you.
A: It was special. It made us come closer to going to the Super Bowl.
Q: Was it a pretty well-designed play?
A: Yeah, yeah. It was. We drew it up in the dark.
Q: Were you disappointed with the way that the business thing worked out over the off-season?
A: Oh, no. I wasn't. I wasn't mad, or nothing. It's business. It's all a part of football. That's how it is.
Q: When did it become clear to you that you weren't going to be coming back here?
A: When free agency first started. When it first, first started, I knew I wasn't coming back.
Q: What was it about San Francisco? Was it the opportunity?
A: Yeah, opportunity. I knew that they needed help at wide receiver. Not saying that they were terrible, but I feel like they needed help, and that's why I came over here to try and contribute.
Q: Does the fact that they didn't make a big effort to bring you back, does that give you motivation to show the Giants what they're missing by not having you?
A: Oh, yeah. I'm going to go out there and play my butt off. That's just plain and simple. Do I have a grudge? No. But, am I motivated? Yeah. I'm motivated by every game, especially this game. Who wouldn't be motivated by their old team?
Q: Just being on the other side of the match-ups between these two teams. These have been the best of the NFC teams. What's it like, being on the other side?
A: Just knowing that you've got a defense that's going to back you up every Sunday. You want to go out there and play as an offense. Play good as a unit. One that your defense can get a turnover at any time, knowing that they've got people that play wide receiver on the other side, better have their head on a swivel, or they're going to get hit in their mouth. That's how it is over here. I mean, you want to go out and play like everybody's playing together as a unit.
Q: You have a lot of friends on offense over here, obviously. Do you think that they're going to find themselves having a hard time with the (49ers') defense?
A: I'm not going to say that, because anything can happen. We're going to be well prepared, and execute right.
Q: Has it worked out the way you had hoped with the opportunity? Obviously, a lot more playing time, and production?
A: Yeah. It worked out. It worked out more than I thought it was going to work out. I'm just glad to be blessed and be in this situation. I left a good team, and went to a good team, also.
Q: Why "more than you thought?" Why do you think this is exceeding your expectations?
A: Because, I know the position that I was playing, and I know the position that I'm in, now. And, I know that I can go out there and go against any corner and win. And, I'm confident about that. Whoever plays wide receiver and goes up against a corner, and says the corner going to shut them down? What type of pride would you have? So, me leaving there, and coming over here, and getting more chances to get the ball, I mean, a player really can't ask for more than that.
Q: How confident are you against this group of defensive backs? You know them pretty well.
A: Yeah, I'm confident. I'm confident every week. Like I said, I'm gonna be ready to play against my old team.
Q: How's Brandon (Jacobs) handling this week?
A: You're going to have to talk to Brandon.
Q: Is he there? Can you put him on? (Laughs)
A: (Laughs) I think he's eating lunch right now. You want me to go get him for you?
Q: If you get in the end zone against the Giants, are you going to pull out a salsa for (Victor) Cruz, or what?
A: No, man. I don't salsa. I don't have any Spanish in me at all. So, there's really no reason for me to be salsa-ing.
Q: Do you wear your Super Bowl ring around there at all?
A: No. I just tell my ring to try to hold tight, I hope another one comes near you, that's all. Try to wipe the dust off of it, I've got it hidden right now.
Q: Do you think this Niners team right now is a little bit ahead of where you guys were with the Giants at this point last season?
A: It's hard to say, man. We took a loss against Minnesota and nobody thought we were going to lose to them. So, you know, anything can happen.
Q: When you went over there and saw the schedule, and saw the Giants, could you talk a little bit about the anticipation of, even months ago, of having a chance to face these guys?
A: I mean, that's a player's dream. To go out and beat their old team. That's a player's dream, to go there and beat their old team. We play the Dolphins, that's Ted's (Ginn Jr.) old team. We play New England and Minnesota, that's Randy's (Moss) old team. Now, it's my time up. So, I'm going out there and do what I've gotta do and give it my all. I know they're going to be ready. I know how they roll over there. So, I know they're going to be ready to play.
Q: Ahmad (Bradshaw) mentioned that you and him keep in touch, you guys are good friends. How is it, seeing him run for 200 yards on Sunday?
A: Me and him joke around a lot. I told him, 'Yeah, you're trying to make up for when we play y'all, huh?' Just playing with him, and stuff. Joking around with him. He said, ' Yeah, right.' So, I know he's going to be ready. If nobody else out there is going to be ready, I bet you four-four is going to be ready.
[ Edited by JTsBiggestFan on Oct 10, 2012 at 16:22:17 ]