Tom Coughlin tried to get out of the way of D.J. Ware, who barreled into him, appearing to hyperextend the coach’s left knee with a little helpful shove from Aaron Maybin on Saturday afternoon. Afterwards he was too happy with the win to be feeling much pain – “Never better!” he said – but this isn’t the first time he’s been involved in a sideline collision.
When Saints coach Sean Payton tore ligaments in his knee earlier this season, Coughlin discussed the sometimes physical perils of coaching with Giants.com.
“A defensive back came flying off the field and got me,” he said in October, referring to an incident that happened at Boston College when he was knocked over on that sideline. “I tried to get away, but I couldn’t quite get back far enough. I remember the first thought I had was, ‘How the hell am I going to get off the field? How am I going to walk out of here?’ Because I thought I tore my ACL.”
Coughlin said he never had the knee looked at.
“I didn’t ask anybody and I didn’t do anything,” he said. “I just went to work, took a couple of aspirin, and the trainers came around the next day and tried to figure out what happened. They asked me, 'Do you need anything?’ I said, ‘Nope, you’re not touching me.’”
He said roughly the same thing on Saturday.
“I’m not going anywhere or checking anything,” he said when asked if he needed an MRI. On Saturday he spent a few plays on the bench being looked at by trainers and team physician Russell Warren, but was back on his feet soon after the incident.
The Giants were off on Sunday to celebrate Christmas -- and their victory -- and did not provide an update on Coughlin's injury.
“Let me tell you something, it is so easy to get caught, you can’t believe it,” Coughlin said back in October. “Suppose one of your own guys distracts you. I mean, if it’s a punt, you better pay attention right now. I’ve had gunners go behind me – behind me! Oh yeah. The ball is coming at you on the sideline, it’s a wide play, and you’re thinking, ‘Yeah, you’ll have time.’ Phew. All of a sudden they’re right in your lap. You’ve got to be aware. You don’t want to be distracted one second.
“And it usually is friendly fire. That’s what it was with me (at Boston College). It was our own kid flying off the field, missed tackle kind of thing. Before you know it, there they are.”
After the game on Saturday, Coughlin told the players what time the facility would be open for treatments. Then admitted that he might be joining them.
“Nobody is worried about how fast I am,” Coughlin said in his press conference before joking about his own playing career at Syracuse. “Nobody was ever worried about that, as a matter of fact. I got it on the knee but I think it is up higher. You can imagine what the players said when they went by. ‘No toughness, no championship.’ I said, ‘You are exactly right.’”