An oft-repeated Joe Judge mantra is that actions have consequences. It appears that the New York Giants head coach may not be done proving that to disgruntled wide receiver Golden Tate.
After twice yelling “throw me the ball” during Monday night’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tate was told to stay home from practice on Wednesday. He returned on Thursday, but at least during the portions of practice media was allowed to witness worked with the scout team or did not work at all.
During a videoconference with reporters on Friday, Judge would not rule out the possibility of Tate being inactive on Sunday against the Washington Football Team.
Judge said he would “evaluate everything” after Friday’s practice, which was held after his videoconference. Reporters at the beginning portion of that practice said that Tate once again did not run routes and was wearing a scout team pinny.
Tate’s actions are clearly the first real challenge to Judge’s authority by a veteran Giants player. The rookie head coach has made clear what the expectations are. Here was Judge on Wednesday:
“It has to be team first for everyone in this building. Every coach and every player has to be team first. There’s no exceptions for that,” Judge said. “I’m not going to tolerate and put up with any kind of selfish behavior from anybody, coach or player, it’s not going to happen.”
And on Thursday:
“I’m conscious that my decisions will always be looked at throughout the building and for every decision I make,” Judge said. “The biggest thing I have to do is be consistent in the decisions I make based on the circumstances involved. I have a philosophy, we have team rules that are clearly laid out to our players. There is not a lot of gray area in anything we do as a program. It’s what it is.”
Tate is an 11-year veteran clearly unhappy that he has only 22 receptions this season and has seen his playing time dwindle in recent weeks.
It seems likely that Tate’s Monday night outburst was not coincidental with Tuesday having been the NFL trade deadline. It also seems pretty clear that whatever he was hoping to accomplish seems to be backfiring on him.