Two-time Super Bowl winning Head Coach Tom Coughlin stepped down from his position on what is known as “Black Monday” in the NFL. The news was predictable given the Giants disappointing season and the fact that the franchise had failed to make the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season. Giants’ star defensive end vocalized his thoughts on Coughlin’s departure as well as his potential offseason moves with the Giants Beat.
“He’s a great coach,” JPP said praising Coughlin. “He’s determined, motivator, father figure and consistent at everything he does since the day that I got here…I learned and actually got to experience Coach Coughlin for who he is.”
Pierre-Paul was not shy about expressing the connection he had made with Coughlin over the course of his NFL tenure. To not only praise him for his coaching ability but also to call his former coach a father figure is very powerful. When the USF alum was asked about whether Coughlin deserved to be let go, he gave an expected follow-up answer.
“I don’t think so,” JPP stated. “At the end of the day it’s all about players and we didn’t do a great job this year. We didn’t give the extra effort and we didn’t finish those close games that we had.”
JPP is admirable for accepting the responsibility of the losses on the players’ behalf but of course Coughlin shoulders a portion of the blame as well. That being said, the former pro bowler still had to hype himself up during the interview when asked about potential suitors for his impending free agency decision.
“Who knows? I don’t know where I’m going to be,” The defensive end stated honestly. “Hopefully I am [here] but wherever I am at I’ll be ready to go in full effect.”
Unfortunately the wounded star will have some further rehabbing to do before he is “full effect.” Aside from the permanent damage done to his right hand, JPP will be having another surgery on that hand during the offseason; ideally to improve it to a better state.
“I have one more surgery, I don’t know when I’m going to do it, but I’m going to do it as soon as possible,” then joked, “I’m pretty sure you’ll hear about it.”
As far as Coughlin’s farewell to the team was concerned, JPP said the long time Giants coach gave a very serious final team meeting.
“He talked to us as a group, thanked us for everything saying we were great players, the effort was there, but we just didn’t get the job done.”
JPP also noted that Coughlin’s tone was the same as it always was during that final meeting.
“Coach Coughlin is always Coach Coughlin. He’s going to be straight blunt with it, he’s not going to sugarcoat anything, he’s going to keep it original and that’s what he did.”
Only time will tell where the former pro bowl defensive end winds up, but it is clear that JPP grew a strong admiration of Coach Coughlin during his time as a New York Giant.