During his 11 years in the NFL, New York Giants backup quarterback Colt McCoy has seen and experienced almost everything.
But as the former Redskin transitions to playing for what used to be his NFC-East rival and is tasked with learning a new system via Zoom meetings, he is certainly out of his element.
“Right now, we’re seeing guys faces as two-inch faces on a computer screen,” McCoy said on Sirius XM Big 12 Radio on Wednesday morning. “I think for us, that’s all we can do right now is show up and try to learn as best we can and work hard at it.”
“Playing in the NFC East, you get a pretty good feel for players and coaches,” McCoy said. “I just looked at it as an opportunity to play for a Giants team that has a new coach and a new system and a lot of guys that I’ve played against, but I don’t really know personally.”
Any Giants players who do not know McCoy surely remember his days with the Texas Longhorns.
McCoy started at Texas from 2006-09 and earned 45 victories to earn a spot as the winningest quarterback in NCAA history at the time. He completed 1,157 of 1,645 passes for 13,253 yards with 112 touchdowns and 45 interceptions, while also recording 447 rushes for 1,571 yards and 20 touchdowns. His 13,253 passing yards ranked sixth in college football history and his 112 passing touchdowns ranked seventh all-time in NCAA history.
“I’m grateful for the opportunity to stay healthy and play and be on some successful teams,” McCoy said. “I feel like that’s kind of rare these days. Once a Texas Longhorn, always a Texas Longhorn. I wear that proudly.”
McCoy is the first to remind anyone who asks though that he had big shoes to fill when it came to replacing former Longhorns quarterback Vince Young. He credits his first season as a redshirt freshman with a lot of his eventual success.
“It wasn’t just handed to me,” McCoy said. “I focused on taking what I had done my whole redshirt year to prepare to be the starter. I was competing against the No. 1 recruit in the country. And I knew every year that Texas was going to get who it wants at quarterback. So what do I have to do to not only win the job now, but give myself an opportunity to play over the next few years? I focused on getting an edge.”
That edge is what helped McCoy lead the Longhorns to the 2008 National Championship game against Alabama - a game McCoy admits that he tries to forget. An injury early in the first quarter prevented McCoy from leading the Longhorns to victory.
McCoy insists that moments such as those have made him a stronger player throughout his career.
“But 11 years later, I’m still playing in the NFL,” McCoy said.
Though there were low’s in his college career like the 2008 championship loss, McCoy ultimately had a successful season that year. He completed a school record 332 completions on 433 attempts, setting an NCAA season-record with his completion percentage of 76.67 for a career-high 3,859 yards and 35 touchdowns.
More than the statistics though, McCoy remembers games such as the Red River rivalry against Oklahoma as some of his favorite college memories.
“When the schedule comes out, that game is highlighted or circled,” McCoy said. “That’s why you come to Texas is to play in that game. Fans are split right down the middle. When the flyover comes, it’s ultimate chills. I haven’t gone back since. I’m sure I will someday. As a player, I don’t know if it gets any better than that.”
McCoy said that he continues to keep in touch with his college coaches. After his playing career is over, McCoy added that he could see himself coaching down the road.
“My dad is a high school coach,” McCoy said. “I was passing out water bottles when I was 3 on the sideline. I love the in’s and out’s of the games. Every time I learn a new system, I think about it from a coach’s perspective. I surely don’t want to close that door.”