Tom Coughlin, technically, stepped down as head coach of the New York Giants. He revealed on Tuesday, though, that leaving was not his idea.
The following comes from a pair of radio interviews Coughlin did, one with Jay Mohr of FOX Sports and the other on the Michael Kay Show. "Kudos" to James Kratch of NJ Advance Media for the find, and the transcription.
"Hey, do I agree with the move? Of course not," Coughlin told Mohr. "I don't, it hurts, it hurts. 'Former' is not a good word. I don't like the word. But, nevertheless, that's the way it is."
That being said, later in the day, Coughlin was asked flat-out by Michael Kay and Don LaGreca on ESPN Radio New York if he was fired.
"Let's put it this way: It's always a discussion between ownership and the coach," Coughlin said. "It was a decision on both our parts to part ways."
He then added, "A few players here, a few players there, who knows. I always believed we could win, and I still do. Don't think there aren't some hard feelings there; there certainly are. That's just natural. But I try to control them when the moment is right."
The impression has always been that Giants' ownership, Steve Tisch in particular, was ready to move on from Coughlin after the 2015 season. Coughlin's remarks make it pretty obvious he knows he wasn't wanted any longer.