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Tom Coughlin says current Giants need to 'hang in there'

Tom Coughlin looks on before the start of

Tom Coughlin looks on before the start of a preseason game between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on August 22, 2019 in Miami, Florida.  Credit: Getty Images/Eric Espada

Tom Coughlin has some advice for the 2021 Giants.

"It’s 17 games," he said. "It’s a long season. Hang in there."

The two-time Super Bowl-winning coach of the Giants knows all about that. In fact, he was reminded of it quite a bit on Friday night when he hosted the 17th annual Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Champions for Children Gala in Manhattan, an event that this year honored the 2011 team that won it all.

As he saw the faces of the players and coaches (some for the first time in 10 years) who brought home that championship, Coughlin said the word that came to mind was "perseverance." Those Giants are remembered as winners, but there was a time during that season when they lost four in a row.

"They have to keep believing in themselves," Coughlin said of how he steered the 2011 team through its doldrums. "They have to face reality but they have to keep believing in themselves. And when everybody is on the same page and you start seeing the kind of balance we had, the contributions from all three phases, then you win. You win a little bit. It tastes pretty good to win. Gimme a little bit more of that."

The Giants haven’t eaten that meal in a long time, and this year is shaping up to be another without sustenance. The current team is 1-4 and in last place in the NFC East.

Coughlin does not spend too much time worrying about the Giants. He said his relationship to the current team is "from afar" and added that he has a "respectful" relationship with Joe Judge.

On Sunday, he will be back at MetLife Stadium for the first time since he was inducted into the team’s Ring of Honor in 2017. He and the rest of the 2011 team will be honored at halftime of the game against the Rams, completing a weekend-long reunion that began on Friday.

"It’ll be fun," Coughlin said. "It’ll be a great opportunity for the fans to come together and recognize that team again after 10 years and remember some of the things that they had to cheer about. And boo about."

That’s because 2011 wasn’t always a special season for the Giants while they were going through it.

And if some of the lessons from that team can be imparted to this one, that might be Coughlin’s final impact on the organization.

New York Sports