Tom Coughlin, NY Giants players split over Antrel Rolle's latest 'passion' rant

Antrel Rolle may be in reruns, but his teammates are still tuning in.

The latest from the always-chatty safety came Tuesday, when he criticized his 3-5 Giants for a lack of passion and fire during his weekly paid WFAN radio spot. And on Wednesday, several of his teammates couldn't help but agree.

"Antrel Rolle is a great guy, and I am with him, I am going to ride with him regardless, and I do feel like we can play with more intensity," said defensive lineman Robert Ayers, one of the few Giants who showed intensity in Monday's loss to the Colts. "This is a game of passion, this is a game of intensity, this is a game of want-to and will. We definitely have to display some of that, we have to play with a lot of that."

Added linebacker Jameel McClain: "Antrel is the general, and whatever the general says, it goes."

It's the third straight season that Rolle has felt the need to question his teammates' intensity, and it's the third straight year that the Giants seem set to miss the postseason. But coach Tom Coughlin insisted that fire is not Big Blue's main issue, and he added that he doesn't mind his team's lack of passionate presences.
"I know he (Rolle) is an emotional guy and he does wear his emotions on his sleeve," Coughlin said. "Not all people are the same.

"It wasn't a 'rah-rah-rah' situation most of the time on the sideline," he added of Monday's game, "but people were into the game and they were playing hard."
McClain said that the main issue with the Giants is that they don't consistently play with passion.

"People are what they are, and that's not taking anything away from it," he said. "We fly around at times. The goal is to keep it consistent. I don't know how you create it (passion)."

Ayers, however, seemed to have an idea for that, and it comes down to the team wanting to maintain its energy, something that's far more challenging amidst a season of struggles.

"It is easy to be intense when things are good . . . when you lose, it is tough, but we have to keep working at it," he said. "It starts with the players, it starts with the coaches, and we just have to keep fighting and keep wanting it."


From the challenge flag incident to the blowout loss, the Giants have few happy memories from Monday's loss to the Colts, and Coughlin was tired of taking questions about that game Wednesday. He grew snappy when asked about Eli Manning's performance in that game.

"I thought we were moving forward," he said before answering the question. "Are we done talking about the other night or not?"


Running back Rashad Jennings, who has missed three straight games with a sprained MCL in his left knee, did not participate in the Giants' short jog-through practice, dimming his hopes of a return this week in Seattle. But he is progressing, Coughlin said.

"I think he started to do some cutting, but I don't know if there is a full menu or diet of that coming," Coughlin said. "He is running though."

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