The Green Bay Packers made sure the New York Giants wouldn’t be playing in Super Bowl LI, but a few ex-Giants will be taking the field for the New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons in Houston, Texas.
I counted five not-so-obvious players and one super-obvious coach between the two teams who once donned Big Blue — three for New England and three on Atlanta’s roster.
HC Bill Belichick
He of the sleeveless hoodie and notoriously dry sound bites coached the secondary, special teams, linebackers and was the Giants’ defensive coordinator from 1979-1990 (no, he didn’t hold all of those positions at once). Belichick was an integral part of the Giants’ Super Bowl championship teams in 1986 and 1990.
TE Martellus Bennett
Some Giants’ fans still wonder: what could have been had Bennett stayed in New York? Bennett spent the 2012 season with the Giants and set then-career highs in receptions (55), yards (626) and touchdowns (5). He gelled nicely with Eli Manning and the Giants haven’t been able to find an answer at tight end since his departure.
WR Chris Hogan
The Wyckoff, N.J. native has flourished catching passes from Tom Brady but he never got the chance with Manning. Hogan was released from the Giants’ practice squad after a 10-day stint in 2011.
PK Matt Bryant
Bryant spent his first two seasons with the Giants (2002-2003), connecting on 37-of-46 field-goal attempts. He may best be remembered for not getting off the potential game-winning field goal in the Giants’ 39-38 playoff loss to the San Francisco 49ers in 2003 after a bad snap from fill-in long snapper Trey Junkin.
WR B.J. Daniels
The only interesting part about Daniels’ cup of coffee in New York was his position — he played quarterback. He was cut long before the start of the 2016 season.
DT Jimmy Staten
The Giants picked Staten up off waivers in August of 2015. They cut him less than a month later, before the start of the regular season.