Andre Brown knows what he’s in for this week.
“I know I can be in the doghouse when you fumble the ball, especially with Coach Coughlin, I know he’s going to be on me this week about holding onto the ball and my protection,” he said. “I mean, you know, I’m gonna look at it, learn from it, stay positive and make sure I go out here and be effective this week.”
Brown’s fumble in the second quarter on a toss to the right from David Carr set the Steelers up at the Giants’ 44 and allowed them to kick a field goal that cut the Giants’ lead to 10-6. The initial drop of the pitch was bad enough, but Brown had a chance to recover the ball and was unable to secure it before a group of Steelers fell on him and stole it.
“His eyes never went to the ball,” Tom Coughlin said. “He never looked at the ball. He was looking at the rush and fumbled the ball. By the time he got to where he started looking for the ball, the defenders were on him. That was disappointing.”
Brown remained in the game and on the next series caught a pass from Carr.
“It got me right back in the flow,” Brown said. “You know you’re gonna have a fumble, but, you know, what you do the next play. How do you respond? I felt like I responded well.”
One person who knows what it’s like to fumble and not get the opportunity to make amends is David Wilson. Last year in the regular season opener he coughed up his second NFL carry and it was months before he was trusted to be in the backfield again. So it’s notable that one of the first players to approach Brown with words of encouragement after last night’s fumble was Wilson.
“Dave came over there and gave me a ‘Forget about it, put it behind you, make sure you go out there and run the rock,’” Brown said. “And I did it. If there’s one play I could have back, it was that play.”
The play, though, may further the bond between Wilson and Brown.
“We’re going to need each other,” Brown said. “We’re going to feed off each other this whole entire season. We’ve got to have each other’s back and it’s going to be a long season. At the end of the day, I know I’ve got a good teammate and a good running back mate, and I know what we’re capable of doing and I know we’re going to be able to produce.”