When Giants safety Logan Ryan made the game-sealing interception Sunday against the Washington Football Team with just under a minute-and-a-half to play in the game, he was wearing cleats that had the name of his wife, Ashley, written along the side.
Ashley nearly lost her life to an ectopic pregnancy at the start of the week.
Ryan explained earlier this week that his wife flew to the family’s offseason home in Florida in order to vote Tuesday in the presidential election, after the Giants lost to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday Night Football.
“I was leaving the stadium around 1 a.m. and she was telling me about some pains she had in her stomach,” Ryan said. “I told her she wanted to sleep it off. She said she was in extreme pain but she would wait until the morning. I talked to one of our trainers about the symptoms and he said, ‘No, she needs to go to the [emergency room].’ ”
Ashley went to the emergency room that night and was diagnosed with an ectopic pregnancy. The condition is caused by a fertilized egg growing outside of a woman’s uterus and can lead to life-threatening bleeding.
“A trainer on our team, Justin Maher, telling my wife to go to the ER at 1 a.m. could’ve saved her life — or saved a lot of internal bleeding there,” Ryan said. “That’s the type of organization we have here.”
When speaking to the media after New York’s 23-20 win over Washington, Ryan expressed his gratitude for his wife and for the Giants.
“[I’m] extremely grateful to the organization and to my wife,” Ryan said. “She’s a fighter, to not lose her there in that situation is very fortunate.”
According to safety Jabrill Peppers, Ryan remained strong throughout the week, not telling teammates about his personal situation. Peppers called Ryan a “pro’s pro.”
Near tears, Ryan said that it is easier said than done to separate football and family. He spoke to his wife before Sunday’s game and she said that she was doing ok. Ashley is currently resting at the couple’s home in New Jersey with their two children. Both are still grieving the loss of their child.
“At the same time, my wife and I mourn in silence of our lost child during that process, too, so we had a loss, as well,” Ryan said. “Although it’s a great story, it was an emotional week for me and her, and that game was definitely for my wife, definitely for my family.”
But because Ashley said that she felt OK, Ryan decided to play. Ashley told him to bring a ball home for her and the kids. So, that’s where the ball he intercepted is going.
“That ball is for her, she told me to bring one home for her, so I was able to do that,” he said.
Ryan explained that the team added the interception play to the game plan late on Saturday night. He was upset with himself for not making a play on Alex Smith’s 32-yard completion to Terry McLaurin in the first half. Ryan asked coach Patrick Graham if they could run the play again in the final minutes. The Giants had never practiced the defense they were in when Ryan made his interception.
“The play that we ran is something that I talked to Pat Graham about doing and putting me in that position to make that play,” Ryan said. “In two-minute, we’d been struggling all year and it was just a play that we put in. In the first half, I messed up...I told Pat, I said, ‘Hey, that’s on me. Call it again and I’ll be there, I’ll make it right,’ and at least he thinks it’s going to be there, so he called it again and the next time we ran it was at the end of the game and I was able to make the play.”
Now more than halfway through the season, Ryan said the team is done coming up short.
“We had eight games to learn how to win, we had eight games to get to know each other, we had eight games with a first-time head coach and all that stuff,” Ryan said. “That’s all great, but it’s just time. This end of the season, we’re playing extremely hard to win every game and it was just time. I said that winning is a mentality and it starts in your mind, and I felt like we played like winners there. It wasn’t perfect, but ‘well done’ is better than ‘perfectly tried,’ so we got it done.”
As for his wife Ashley, Ryan dedicated the game to her. He’s bringing a ball home.
“No one really knows what I went through all week emotionally, but the team supported me great and I definitely wanted to do something for my wife and kids in that situation,” Ryan said. “I can’t say to break it all up is the right thing to do, I tried my best – I don’t think I was perfect – but I tried my best to separate it and make my family proud.”