Brian Daboll is about one step away from seating an elephant between Saquon Barkley and Daniel Jones in a team meeting and carrying on with film reviews and game-plan installations. 

The Giants can clinch their first playoff berth in six years with a victory in either of their final two regular-season games — beginning Sunday against the Colts — but their first-year head coach was an impenetrable wall of consistent messaging Monday when asked about handling elevated stakes. No need to address the topic that is on everyone’s mind but no one wants to prematurely discuss. 

“We just try to control our own destiny each week by trying to win a game,” Daboll said. “The goal is always to try to go 1-0, and that’ll be no different this week.” 

The only indication of anything out of the routine was a tweet from Barkley urging fans to create a home-field advantage. He deftly avoided mention of the playoffs. 

Brian Daboll refused to talk Giants’ playoff scenarios on Monday.
Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

“Home Finale at MetLife [Stadium] this Sunday, Giants fans NEED YOU THERE!!! NEED YOU LOUD!! Merry Christmas,” Barkley wrote late Sunday night

Daboll granted one minor concession while absorbing what he called repeat “body blows” — the same question posed in various forms by different reporters — when asked about fan support. The Giants last played a win-and-in game at home in the finale of the 2011 season, clinching the NFC East on the way to a Super Bowl XLVI title. 

“We work extremely hard each week to put a good product on the field, and one of the reasons is for our fan base,” Daboll said. “So, to play at home in late December [actually, Jan. 1] in an important game, it’s important to us. I know it’s important to them. And we’ll do everything we can do to be ready to go.” 

Oh, so it is an important game? Judging by the stoicism on Daboll’s face and in his voice, even the most skilled playoff-scenario mathematicians couldn’t be certain. 

“Thinking about what’s going to go on a week from now or [in] two weeks, or what happened five weeks ago, you learn lessons from those things that happened in the past,” Daboll said. “And I certainly have in my years watching how different coaches do it and watching how different teams react. But every team is different. Every season is different. Heck, every week is different. So, what I’ve learned — not just in this business, but each day — is to just try to win the day.” 

The Giants refused to treat a Dec. 18 game against Washington as a playoff game — even though the outcome offered an approximate 50 percent swing in playoff probability, according to — because there still were paths into the postseason after a loss. And they weren’t focused on clinching Saturday in a loss to the Vikings because other results around the NFL needed to happen, too. But this game has to be treated with playoff-like intensity because it is win-and-in, right? 

“No, it’s our next game,” Daboll said. “I think everybody knows what you just said. But what we can control is the same stuff we try to control each week — making sure we’re prepared, ready to go and put our best foot forward.” 

Barkley’s feet are saying what his mouth won’t. He is averaging 8.6 yards per carry with a touchdown and four first downs gained on 10 fourth-quarter carries over the last two games, setting a tone for how to handle pressure. 

NY Post illustration

“He runs hard,” Daboll said. “He makes good decisions with the ball and where to run it, and he’s a talented player. Good players have to play well, particularly in the fourth quarter of close games.” 

The Giants have a 91 percent chance to make the playoffs and actually could clinch Sunday even with a loss to the Colts if one of these three scenarios happens: The Commanders and Seahawks lose; the Commanders, Lions and Packers lose; the Lions, Seahawks and Packers lose. If the Giants lose and none of those three happen, then it’s just about do-or-die in Week 18 at the Eagles. 

“I’m thankful for the position that we’re in, but there’s a lot of work that needs to be done,” Daboll said. “It starts this week, just like every other week we’ve had.” 

But what’s that elephant doing over there?