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David Carr recalls silence was golden for Giants before Super Bowl XLVI

New York Giants' David Carr answers questions during

New York Giants' David Carr answers questions during a news conference, Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012, in Indianapolis before Super Bowl XLVI. Credit: AP / Eric Gay

HOUSTON — When players recall their Super Bowl-winning moments, they often think of the confetti, the fireworks and the celebrations that come after the end of the game. For David Carr, he thinks instead of the stillness of the beginning.

“It was dead silent in the locker room two or three minutes before Tom [Coughlin] came and talked to us,” Carr, a backup quarterback for the Giants in Super Bowl XLVI and now an NFL Network analyst, said on Thursday. “It had never really been like that before. Not in a high school or college locker room. Guys were so locked in. I think they started to realize the gravity of the moment they were about to go be in, and that was a pretty cool experience. Never in my life have I been around 60 football players and it’s been quiet. That never happens. That moment was pretty neat.”

There were other memories that Carr shared of that game and that weekend. He said he recalled sitting in Eli Manning’s hotel room in downtown Indianapolis the night before the game watching every Patriots defensive play they had run for the previous five years. “We knew how they’d line up against every personnel group,” Carr said. “Everything they had ever drawn up.” He also recalled the iconic throw to Mario Manningham in the fourth quarter. “We practiced that play 10 times that week, he never threw it to him,” Carr said. “But he just saw something with the Pats being a little tight getting to the numbers and he made the incredible throw routine.”

Carr didn’t play in the Super Bowl, but he can call himself a Super Bowl champ.

“It’s cool to be able to bust out the ring,” he said.

But what that experience showed him was more important than actually winning the title.

“What really did it for me was coming from where I did in Houston, how we struggled so much, and how hard it was to win a football game, and then to see the flip side and see how an organization is run from the top to the bottom,” he said. “There’s just so much history with the Maras and the New York Giants that everything was just different.

“I say this and people laugh at me, but it was easy to play with those guys. We had one of the best offensive lines in football, we had some great targets and solid defense. My first year there in New York [in 2008] we had the best football team in the league, went 14-2 and ended up losing in the playoffs, but I got in half of those games because they were blowouts and we were running people over. I was like, ‘Wow, it really isn’t that difficult.’

“I remember sitting in Houston thinking, ‘I don’t know if it’s possible to win a football game. I really don’t know how, as a human, you can win a football game.’ Because I was doing everything I could think of. Then I get there in New York and I’m out there and it’s like preseason football. It was great for me personally to see that it is possible.”

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