Catching up with Former Giant Stacy Robinson

During his six seasons with Big Blue, receiver Stacy Robinson was arguably the Giants' fastest player. Now, as Robinson explains in this exclusive interview with The Giant Insider, he's still in a major rush to help out current NFL players. Read on as TGI catches up with old number 81, who played in New York from 1985-90 and still proudly wears his Super Bowl XXI championship ring.

Q: So, Stacy, what are you up to these days?

A: Right now, I'm director of player development for the Players Association. Obviously I deal with players and helping them prepare for the transition into life after football. But I also wear a couple other hats. I oversee the drug policy and the steroid policy. We collectively bargain those and I oversee it from our end. That means I'm present at every appeal. If a player tests positive, he's either fined or suspended. We don't represent the players, but we'll be present to ensure the policy is being interpreted the way that we negotiated. I serve in that capacity. We'll assist the agent or attorney of the player as they prepare for the appeal.

Q: How has it gone for you? That's quite a lightning rod topic you're dealing with.

A: I've enjoyed it. It's different because you just hate to see guys get involved in something that could potentially end their career. You hope that once a guy gets involved with it that he learns from it and kind of moves on. But otherwise I've been pleased with my transition after football. When I was here, I finished my MBA when I was playing. I went into higher education and worked at Southwest State University, then moved to Minneapolis and worked at Minneapolis Community College as the director of student services for a while. Then I took the position with the Players Association. I've been there 12 years now.

Q: You're obviously in a position to come under a lot of criticism. How tough has it been at times?

A: It is tough, but on the inside you're seeing things differently than former players who are on the outside. You understand their plight and their frustration, but I think a lot of times guys are lacking a lot of information. Information about how things are, information about the whole process of how active players are making decisions. The feelings that these players are not astute enough to be very involved in the decisions they're making is definitely unfounded and very untrue. Q: We hear a lot about guys like Alex Webster and older players struggling and it sure sounds like they're getting a bum rap from the Players Association. Your thoughts?

A: Like I said, people really don't understand what goes into it. I think the one thing that's tough to understand is that if and when you do something for people you're kind of in a no-win situation where it's never going to be enough. I think you have to have thick skin and fortunately Gene (Upshaw) has thick skin. He's doing the right thing.

Q: How important was it for you to stay involved in football?

A: You know what, I never really looked at it and sought out a profession where I had to be involved in football. It played out well; I enjoy what I do. I'm passionate about what I do. But there are also other things that I'd be happy about doing outside of football. I think that's the key. Guys have to find other passions outside of football.

Q: Where are you located now and how often do you get back to this area?

A: We're based out of Washington, DC so unfortunately I don't get back too often. This time I'm here for a life skills meeting between the league office and player development. I get around to some of the clubs and take a look at them. I obviously always take the opportunity to come up here when I can.

Q: It's Dallas week; you wish you were playing Sunday?

A: You know what, after a while it gets out of your system, believe it or not. I have three boys and two of them I coach right now, they're 10 and 11. They just won the Maryland state championship and they're in the regional playoffs right now and they'll be playing to go down to the Pop Warner Super Bowl in Florida. I actually think we'll be playing up here in New Jersey at some point so that'll be fun.

Q: At least one must be a receiver, right?

A: Actually one's a running back and the other one is a defensive back.

Q: Looking back, how do you remember your Giants career?

A: I remember it as just being fun. When you leave the game that's the one thing you miss, the locker room. It's hard to replace that camaraderie; you just never get that anywhere else. That's the one thing you miss. I still keep in touch with a lot of the guys. Zeke Mowatt and I talk on a regular basis. George Martin and I talk. As a matter of fact, George just walked through DC a few weeks back on his cross-country march (hoping to raise $10 million for medical care for the first responders during the 9/11 attacks) and we put together a nice presentation for him at the Lincoln Monument. We had some retired players come out for it; it was a really good time. Robbie Jones, Ottis (Anderson) and I still talk. You've been through some times together and obviously there are relationships that are just there forever.

Q: Was there one particular game during your Giants career that still stands out in your mind?

A: It's hard to top that first Super Bowl. I still wear this ring and I never wear the other one. The fact that it was the first; the first is always special. There were just so many more memories with the first one. That's the only reason. I don't know if I even know where the other one is.

Q: What stood out about that first title for you?

A: The whole experience. It's the Super Bowl. The experience of winning, the emotions. I'll never forget the feeling of going into that game. There's usually some ambiguity regarding whether or not what you did in preparation was going to work. But it was interesting going into this game because I knew we were going to win. I just knew we were going to win. The feeling after was just unbelievable. And it's funny because even now when you come back through town it just brings back so many memories. Not just on the field, but also what your life was like back then, relationships outside of football. It was fun and interesting. It was a time I'll never forget.

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