Justin Tuck is excited about this year’s New York Giants. Tuck was on hand Tuesday to discuss his forthcoming induction into the Giants Ring of Honor. He’ll be enshrined in Giants’ lore at halftime of their game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday Night Football, alongside Tom Coughlin and Ernie Accorsi. Tuck’s enthusiasm is centered around the Giants’ ability to win close games this season, games they’d found ways to lose in recent years.
“They’re finding out ways to win in the fourth quarter. That’s been the Achilles heel the last few seasons. I think it reminds me a lot of some of my Super Bowl years. We weren’t winning games in a great fashion, but for the majority of the year we were winning football games,” he said. “I think that bodes well when you come to playoff time. I’m excited about that fact. I think there’s still things that they need work on. I think they’ll continue to improve. I’m excited for this run here. They’re 5-3 heading to the midway point in a league and a division where anything can happen. Everything is still up for grabs.”
The Giants aren’t necessarily on anyone’s short list of Super Bowl LI contenders, but the same rang true in their two most recent championship seasons, 2007 and 2011. Tuck’s close-game parallels between those Giants’ teams and today’s version hold water. The Giants (5-3) are 3-0 in games decided by five points or less. Tuck’s 2007 and 2011 championship teams were a combined 8-2 in those games. Big Blue was 1-7 in the same scenario last season.
“I always say to myself that when you have a veteran quarterback like Eli that’s been there, done that, you always have a chance. I’m excited for this second half of the season,” he continued.
Tuck heaped praise on some of his old teammates and other great Giants for helping him earn Big Blue’s highest honor.
“Every time I look up there I’ll never really think of myself in that same category as Michael Strahan or LT (Lawrence Taylor), so on and so forth. What I’ll always think of when I look up in those rafters is guys like Dave Tollefson, Corey Webster, Rich Seubert, all the names of guys that helped me along the way. I don’t make plays; you don’t make plays in football by yourself. You could be the best athlete in the world. You have ten guys that create opportunities for you to do what you do. You’re just another guy. I’ll always look at Justin Tuck in those rafters and think of all the other names of guys that helped me along the way.”
In all, Tuck played nine seasons for the Giants (2005-2013). He won two championships, was selected to two Pro Bowls and ranks sixth on the Giants all-time sack list with 60.5.