While former player Tiki Barber took the opportunity during the Giants’ two-game losing streak to make headlines by saying that the players have stopped listening to Coughlin, Friday night the coach had about a dozen of his veteran players there to support him.
To Justin Tuck the actions of the players giving up a Friday night and showing up for the coach means more than Barber’s words.
“This means a lot of people don’t know what they are talking about,” Tuck said with a laugh. “Look he’ll be the first one to tell you, this even bigger than Tom Coughlin, it’s about helping kids out. It doesn’t matter whose name is on it, it’s a great cause.
“But he is also our leader, this is something he’s very passionate about, and we definitely want to come out and support him on and off the field.”
Kareem McKenzie said that supporting Coughlin’s foundation is part of building a team.
“We do it for the cause and to support one another as a family,” McKenzie said. “It’s important that we go ahead and come together as a team and not pay attention to opinions of outsiders who try to say he’s lost the locker room or try to detract from what we are trying to do and accomplish goals.
“We have to be realistic and understand that it has only been three games into the season of a 16-game season. To go ahead and formulate that opinion this early, I think is premature.”
Eli Manning also said that the foundation is important, but it’s just as important for him to show support for his coach.
“He’s our coach, we have total faith in him, confidence in how hard he works for football, his great commitment and have total respect for him,” Manning said. “We also know how hard he works for the Jay Fund and how important it is to him. I’ve been coming to this for a number of years, it’s a great night, a great success for him, helping out a lot of people, glad to be here and support him and his cause.”
Coughlin’s Jay Fund raises money to support families of children with cancer. It is a great cause, regardless of anything going on with the Giants right now. Fans can hope, though, that the support shown for the coach helps lead to some victories on the field.