Giants' Fewell faces Bills team that passed over him

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell isn't putting any extra emphasis on coming up with a gameplan for the Buffalo Bills this weekend.

Forget that Fewell was the Bills' interim coach for the final seven games of the 2009 season, or that they passed him over and chose Chan Gailey to become the coach the following season.

The only thing of importance for him is that the Bills (4-1) and their high-powered offense are coming to MetLife Stadium on Sunday to play the Giants (3-2) and Fewell needs to get his inconsistent defense to start communicating better in order to shut them down.

"It's just a game that we have to win," Fewell said Thursday after practice. "I just happen to know those guys on the other side though."

While Fewell didn't admit it outright, he left the impression that he didn't get a fair shot at keeping the head coaching job after posting a 3-4 record in Buffalo.

"It's been two years and whether I did or didn't, I think that's irrelevant," Fewell said. "I'm happy to be where I am now."

Fewell took over as the Giants defensive coordinator last season and the unit rebounded after a dreadful 2009 season, finishing ranked in the top 10 in many categories.

This year has been more of a struggle and injuries have played a big part.

Terrell Thomas, who was the Giants' top cover cornerback, and middle linebacker Jonathan Goff were both lost before the start of the season with knee injuries. Defensive captain Justin Tuck has only played two games because of neck and groin injuries and fellow Pro Bowl defensive end Osi Umenyiora missed the first three games after having arthroscopic in the preseason.

The results aren't surprising. The defense is ranked 20th overall. The run defense has been horrible the past three games, yielding an average of 160 yards and the pass defense has blown coverage after coverage, including a total bust on Charlie Whitehurst's go-ahead touchdown pass to Doug Baldwin late in the fourth quarter of Sunday's 36-25 loss.

On the play, cornerback Aaron Ross and safety Antrel Rolle thought the other was going to take the receiver and no one did.

"It's about communication," Fewell said. "I think we weren't communicating. When you use that form of communication verbally everybody doesn't always get it at the same time. I think I need to do a better job and maybe (put) wristbands on the guys so that everybody knows what the call is. If one person doesn't know then he has to say it to everybody else. I think I can do a better job and help our players if I do that for them."

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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