NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Forgive Brandon Marshall if he doesn’t want to answer too many questions about the Giants descending into a losing environment.
After all, the 12-year veteran who has never been to the playoffs signed with the Giants in the offseason in large part because they were considered Super Bowl contenders. So naturally, despite their 0-4 start, he doesn’t want to concede this is a lost season.
“We’re hungry,” he said. “We’re working hard. We’ve got a great attitude. And we’ve got to figure it out.”
Marshall fully recognizes his performance is among the things that must turn around if the Giants — who host the Los Angeles Chargers, also winless, on Sunday — are to go on a winning streak and make an improbable run to the postseason.
The six-time Pro Bowl wide receiver has been targeted 30 times and caught just 16 passes for 139 yards and no touchdowns. His 8.7 yards-per-catch average is by far the lowest of his career. And he’s dropped a couple of passes, most notably a third-down toss in Week 2 against Detroit.
“I haven’t played the way I wanted to play,” Marshall told reporters Tuesday. “I hold myself to a high standard. The guys around here hold me to a high standard. There’s high expectations on all of us. And looking at myself in the mirror, I want to pick up my play, and I’ll do that. But I’m not going to waste too much time thinking about the past. If I do that, then the future’s going to be really ugly.”
Giants coach Ben McAdoo suggested Marshall’s struggles could be psychological.
“I think catching is confidence. Confidence is catching,” McAdoo said. “He seems to be double catching a little bit, and we just need to get through a clean game with him. He’s been catching it well in practice. We need to carry it over to game day. And that’s a part of the game for receivers.”
McAdoo also said Marshall is still adjusting to playing in a new offense and with a new quarterback.
While Marshall doesn’t deny that he needs to play better, he said repeatedly he’s mostly concerned with the Giants finally cracking into the win column.
“Football makes you tough. Football helps build your character,” Marshall said. “You come in a boy, and you leave a man. Being 0-4, it stinks, but there’s worse things in life. And half the guys in this room have been through (what I have). This is our job. We’re paid to do a job, and we’ve got to get it done. We just need to find a win. We find a win, the environment will be so much better.”
Marshall knows winning that first game will be a bit easier if he does his part.
“The … Chargers, they present a lot of challenges, but there’s also a lot of opportunity,” he said. “So I’ll have my chances to help out the team and be a solution, instead of a problem.”