Will Tye had long forgotten about the play.
Larry Donnell made sure he remembered it this week.
Donnell reminded Tye early in the process of preparations for Green Bay about the play in October against the Packers when Tye was wide open down the middle of the field, Eli Manning lofted a pass to him, and it went through his hands.
“I’m gonna tell him,” Donnell said. “We hold each other accountable. I expect him to make that play and I’m gonna get after his [butt].”
For those who forget — or are like Tye and would like to — the Giants had just closed to 14-6 late in the first half of their Oct. 9 game at Lambeau Field. The Giants had the ball at their own 39 and on first-and-10 Manning threw the seam route to Tye. The ball was slightly overthrown, but Tye did manage to get a hand on it before it fell to the ground. On the next play, Manning was sacked and fumbled, the Packers kicked a field goal to end the half, and wound up winning, 23-16.
“I thought about it for about a week after that, but after that you have to move on eventually,” Tye said on Wednesday. “You just try to do better the next game.”
Tye said he will use the drop as motivation this week, which is what Donnell hoped would happen when he brought up the sour memory. Tye said he’s hoping for an opportunity not only for himself to have a big play at Lambeau, but for the Giants to avenge the loss in which his drop was a key play.
“We want to go back and make it right,” Tye said, “and this is where it matters most.”
SBU represented. Tye will be the first player from Stony Brook University to reach the NFL playoffs when he takes the field on Sunday, but he may not be the only one to do it this season. Fellow Seawolves product Victor Ochi, a rookie defensive end and pass rusher, was signed by the Chiefs off the Jets’ practice squad on Monday. He’ll be on their active roster when Kansas City plays in the divisional round next weekend.
As for the first Stony Brook player to reach the Super Bowl, the race is on. And it could end in a tie if the Giants and Chiefs meet in Houston.
“I’m ready for it,” Tye said.