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Mathias Kiwanuka Says There is “Absolutely” Tension in New York Giants Locker-Room

December 18th, 2013 at 9:00 AM
By Dan Benton

Remember on Tuesday when it seemed like the New York Giants had successfully squashed all the negativity that had been drawn to them following a 23-0 loss to the Seattle Seahawks, in which a postgame meltdown was the headline? Well, it's not quite dead yet as defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka took to ESPN Radio on Tuesday evening, admitting that there is "absolutely" tension in Big Blue's locker-room.

“Yeah,” he said. “Absolutely there’s tension. We’re human. We’re a team. We consider ourselves a family. Any family there are going to be issues that come up. It’s about how you deal with it.”

How the Giants dealt with it on Sunday, unfortunately, was by pointing fingers at each other without actually naming any of their teammates publicly. Case in point: tight end Brandon Myers and his tweets that indicated a huge locker-room blowout. Of course, Myers later said the tweets were taken out of context because he's "not good with words."

"I think where it starts to get into trouble is where you get into things that are said, not behind somebody’s back, but when the other person isn’t there or [you] say something to somebody else about another player," Kiwanuka added. “That becomes an issue because that can get misconstrued and it takes a lot longer to get resolved whereas if you just go to somebody’s face … you can get it settled much faster.”

Hm. Wonder what he's referring to?

One thing Kiwanukla also admitted he was shocked to see was head coach Tom Coughlin during the postgame press conference in which he lit into certain units, calling the offensive performance "pathetic" and saying he "felt sorry" for some players who didn't appear to give it their all.

“It was real,” Kiwanuka said. “He was speaking from the heart. That’s somebody’s real heart, real passion. You see how much he cares and how much he loves this game. He meant it."

Coughlin, of course, went back on that statement on Monday, saying the offensive futility was much more about execution and far less about effort.

Ho hum. Just another day in Giants (5-9) land.

photo credit: Nic Taylor Photography via photopin cc


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Tags: Brandon Myers, Football, Mathias Kiwanuka, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Tom Coughlin

52 Responses to “Mathias Kiwanuka Says There is “Absolutely” Tension in New York Giants Locker-Room”

  1.  Syed Sohail Shah says:

    The team is a complete mess. This is the lowest the team has been in the last 10 years. Time for an overhaul. Def think with the right moves, we can be contendenders again

    •  Krow says:

      “You don’t understand. I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender. I coulda been somebody, instead of a bum, which is what I am, let’s face it.”

  2.  skinnydoogan says:

    Well it appears I missed a spirited debate last night.

  3.  skinnydoogan says:

    Pretty clear this team is broken, I am not expert, but it needs to be fixed.

    •  JimStoll says:

      the team is now where it was in 2003 under Fassel
      injury riddled; performing far below expectations

      in ’03 Wellington couldn’t wait to fire Jimmy and in fact did so about 2/3′s of the way through the season but allowed him to stay until the end to finish the year

      Wellington always liked Coughlin and wanted to hire him

      11 years later, Wellington has gone to the super bowl in the sky, John has expressed openly no misgivings about either head coach or GM, and there is no obvious coach in waiting as there was in ’03.

      thus I expect what is broken and what needs fixin’ will be diagnosed and remedied solely as player based.

      I think we can all agree that in an ideal world we would add 3-4 o-linemen that are a significant step up from what we have; at least one TE who can both block and catch with athleticism; 1 WR with the talent to replace Nicks; 1 RB who can be a reliable lead guy; 1 DE to replace either Tuck or Kiwi (or JPP if injuries are too serious); 1 DT to replace an expected departure by LJ; 1 top LB to team up with Beason (assuming the latter is re-signed); 1 top corner to replace Webster plus 1 corner to be the nickel; 1 Safety to be the the replacement in waiting for Rolle; and a new placekicker.

      that’s about 14 players. Obviously no single off-season can replace 1/3 of those guys, let alone all of them.
      Realistically we can expect 1, maybe 2 quality FA signings – that is stud guys who will be an instant upgrade the way Beason was when he was inserted this year.

      At best we can hope for the draft (including UDFA’s) to yield 2 or 3 upgrades to current positions (no guarantee they play as rookies).

      If you except that premise — that is, 2-5 new faces that are significant upgrades over what we now have — where would you want them?

      I think the easy answer is 2 on the O-Line; 1 LB; and 1 DE; and if you have a 5th, a WR

      Can that really happen in one year?

      •  JimStoll says:

        accept not except

      •  skinnydoogan says:

        You pretty much wrote what I don’t have the energy to today.

      •  GOAT56 says:

        Your point is well stated but I think there’s one factor you forgot. I do think there are some answers to the positions we need in house. For example the DE we need could easily be Moore. The TE you speak of could be Robinson or even Donnell. Some of the OL players we need could be Mosley and/or Herman. The safety in waiting could be Taylor or even TT. The CB we need could be Hosley.

        Clearly all of these guys won’t be answers. Probably not even most of them but a some of them will be. Add that with some free agents and 3-4 draft picks that contribute heavily on offense or defense and we can have a lot more fixes than it appears.

        I think the issue in terms of winning at the SB level is more that I think we will be too young. But a 9-7 type of record with the youth the roster will probably have next year would feel a lot better than some of these past 9-7 records.

        •  JimStoll says:

          I think the guys you mention are the guys that dictate most immediate need and hence draft/FA strategy

          the o-line is such a mess right now there seems to be little argument to look anywhere but there first

          Mosely got a bunch of snaps last week after Brewer once again flamed out
          He didn’t do much but it was Seattle and we were already whipped by the time he played
          but still, given how bad Brewer has been all season, for Mosely to be behind him on the depth chart doesn’t speak well
          Hermann was a 7th rounder who has been injured all year, right?

          hard to see those guys being the solution for next year

  4.  JimStoll says:

    Krow says:
    December 18, 2013 at 8:44 AM

    We had a hell of a run. Every franchise in the NFL would trade their next 7 years for our past 7. Two Superbowls. That’s amazing. What an era. But like all good things it’s come to an end. Now we have to move forward and build towards another one.

    We are woefully short on talent. There’s no magic answer except to go out and get more of it. Until we do we’re not going to be seriously in the playoff picture. It won’t matter who coaches … or what schemes we run. We need an infusion of talent. A big one. It’s not one or two guys. It’s a dozen. And it’s going to take time.

    JimStoll says:
    December 18, 2013 at 9:33 AM
    without getting into another debate about the coughlin era, what we all can agree on now is that the team needs a lot of talent infused
    my question is that looking back over JR’s body of work, does everyone feel comfortable that he is the guy to do the job

    he got A+ marks for the ’07 draft on the strength that virtually everyone contributed to that run, even though almost none of those players ended up with a lengthy or productive career
    since then, outside of the No. 1?s, and the occasional No 2?s, his body of work has been increasingly less impressive

    is that bad luck (i.e., injuries), roll of the dice, or lack of acumen?

    moreover, this is at least the second time in his 8 years that he has allowed a unit to wither and die without any decent depth — Safety in ’09/O-Line now

  5.  Krow says:

    To be clear I’m not trying to say that discussions on scheme and coaching and attitude and leadership are invalid. They’re all very worthy topics. But they pale next to the startling lack of talent on our current roster.

    Look at the facts. We won in 2007 with a short passing, ball control offense and a blitzing defense. We won in 2011 with a long-ball offense and a coverage defense. But in both those years we executed those very different schemes at a high level. Like them or not we did win Superbowls. Why? Because our roster was a lot stronger and deeper.

    I’m a believer that styles of play can make a difference. But it’s nuanced. First you have to build the foundation. We’re at that stage now … close to a ‘from scratch’ restart. If you add in the IR’d players we’ve got about 60 guys under contract … and I think we should turn over around 20 of them by the end of camp next year. Yes, it’s that bad. And none of that is on the coaching staff.

  6.  skinnydoogan says:

    “I’ll think about coming back next year when I am healthy, I am not even close to that yet” Chris Snee The Bergen Record today. That doesn’t sound like somebody who is going to retire to help the team.

    •  Krow says:

      If wasting $7,000,000 on Cap-Killer Chris is part of the Coughlin package then Tom has to go. I have no issues with TC returning, and I don’t blame the current meltdown on him. But $nee is way too big a chunk of nepotism for us to absorb. That’s two free agent starters we WON’T have if he returns for another welfare check.

    •  GOAT56 says:

      Snee not returning would probably be based on health and the fact that he’s not close to healthy after 3 months says a lot. I think there’s a good chance Snee is not back but because he can’t get healthy or healthy enough to pass a physical. We will be forced to cut him if he’s not healthy. Cap wise retirement is better for us but it’s hard for me to see a player just walking away from that money. Maybe a buyout at some points makes sense so Snee doesn’t have to rehab anymore and we can save some of the cap hit we will get from Snee.

      •  Krow says:

        Stop thief !

      •  skinnydoogan says:

        The article goes on to say that Coughlin wants him to return to the field.

        •  Krow says:

          At this point it’s just looting.

          •  skinnydoogan says:

            It sure seems that way.

            •  Krow says:

              $nee knows he’s never going to play football again. He knew it last year. Which is why he grabbed that Hawaiian vacation. Because it didn’t matter how long he had for rehab. He knows he’s finished … too beat up to last. And that means it was all a con job … a money grab … a rip off of the organization that made him rich and famous. Just his way of saying thanks I guess. Anyway, it never would have worked except he’s the royal son-in-law. So Reese and Mara ate it for Tom’s grandkids. Now he’s teeing up the disgusting scam for another run in 2014. Hard to believe that anyone is stupid enough to go along with it again. But for those of you who remember the 1970’s it’s this sort of ‘good old boy’ favor that turned a slump into a 15 year rebuilding project.

              •  skinnydoogan says:

                You are exactly right. The article went on to describe that his elbow was so bad (what forced him to get ir’d) that his right arm was 3 inches shorter than the left. Was full of bone chips.

  7.  GOAT56 says:

    Great discussion last night. A few points:

    TC and Eli can be less then the Bellichik, Brady etc. and still be HOFers. Bellichik and Brady are in the mix for GOAT so not being as good as them is nothing to be ashamed of. TC is with question a HOFer because not only what he did here but his strong work in Jacksonville. Eli is going to cause endless debate because QBs in his era like River and Romo have better stats. What if either or both adds a SB to their resume and Eli doesn’t add anymore. With Peyton, Brady and Brees HOF locks and Rodgers on that path being a HOF QB in this era will be tough. Eli definitely needs some more high octane years.

    I think even what TC has done here he deserves to remain our head coach. But if it were my call I would find a way to have him retire. I think we are in a rebuild on the fly mode and now if we are going to make a change in the next 3-5 years is the time to make the change. I clearly understand that we will be lucky if we end up with a coach close to as good as TC has been. But I think it’s better to make the change a year too soon than a year too late with Eli only having so many prime years left. TC could be successful next year but given how young and inexperienced this roster will likely be in what we do I don’t think we have a SB roster TC or not next year. So the idea is building towards a SB level teams in 2015-17 IMO and by then I think we do need a new coach.

    There should be tension in the locker room. I would have much more of an issue if there wasn’t with the way our season has played out. That means players care that a few players are not giving it their all which is a good thing.

    I wonder the way TC works if he would make Nicks inactive the last two games? I have long been a Nicks fan but the effort he has given this year even if Cruz is out makes me think this is a good move for team moral going forward.

    I have long said I thought Jernigan could be a good slot WR. I think he’s showing he could be but with Cruz around next year he’s almost a waste if he’s not a returner. Cruz is clearly much better in the slot so it just doesn’t make much sense to play Jernigan more than mix him in here and there going forward.

    •  Krow says:

      Nicks … he was always one of my fav players. And I’m the first to criticize the team for how they handled him this season. But to be fair Hakeem and his people have done and said nothing to make his situation better. Both sides have screwed the pooch. So yeah, bench his a$$ and let someone play who might appreciate the opportunity.

      •  skinnydoogan says:

        Dumb question but it’s hard to tell, does Louis Murphy just flat out stink? Why does he get so few opportunities? I know he botched a route or two but could that be because he doesn’t get a chance. I remember all the hype about him being a long ball threat.

        •  BigBlueGiant says:

          yes. There’s a reason why teams like Oakland and Carolina had him as their 4th-5th on the Depth chart. he can burn for sure, but that’s about it.

          FF55 made him seem to be this really amazing off season pick up that will booster this top 3 offense.

          the kid doesn’t see the field because he’s not that good.

          •  skinnydoogan says:

            Ok then, I never followed him on those other teams. I figured as much.

            •  Krow says:

              There waqs reason to believe that Murphy might flourish given the chance. He was down as the #4 … and signed for the minimum. Not a bad gamble, but was always a long shot.

              •  BigBlueGiant says:

                looks like the house won again with another one of JR’s gambles.

                but according to some people on this site, Murphy was another amazing addition to this offense and he’d “stretch” the field to free up Cruz underneath, or Nicks on the other side, or Myers..etc, etc, etc. Blah blah blah.

                I’m done wasting time talking about Louis Murphy.

            •  JimStoll says:

              you guys should all know never to listen to FF’s assessment of talent in the off-season — everyone is on his hall of fame list then and then he walks it back as the season progresses

              I’m not criticizing FF — it’s just that he is the super glass half full entrepreneur type who looks at the world that way until forced by facts to see it otherwise

              I happen to be the glass half empty guy in case anyone was confused

              •  BigBlueGiant says:

                Hey, alot of time FF55 is pretty on point with evaluating talent. But there’s been a lot of times he was wrong as well.

                i was blasted for saying Murphy wasn’t that good, and won’t get much PT. Buried on the depth charts in Oakland, Same with Carolina (then got cut), But the excuse was that he didn’t have a

              •  Kettles78 says:

                At times Jim I think you are about a glass 3/4 empty :)

    •  BigBlueGiant says:

      again with JJ? The kid blows. Stop.

      Also, Eli a HOF QB? I’m not so sure anymore.

  8.  skinnydoogan says:

    Jeez the more I look at Sunday, the more I get worried. We basically have nothing on offense right now, what exactly are we going to do? Jim’s plan does not seem so outlandish when you consider what we are working with while Suh and Co are running unfettered and free in the backfield.

    •  skinnydoogan says:

      Now would be a good time to put Painter or Nassib in, let the cart pick up one of those guys.

      •  JimStoll says:

        I just hope Diehl comes fired up to punch Suh in the mouth the first time Suh kicks Eli in the head after he sacks him, which based on the last few games should be the first pass play of the game

        •  skinnydoogan says:

          We have zero answers for this pass rush. Looks like we will run the shotgun draw for the majority of the game.

    •  BigBlueGiant says:

      What are you so worried about?

      Another loss is a good thing where this team is headed.

  9.  GIANTT says:

    Wow is the sky falling ? It took me this long to post
    FF55 , Jim Stoll and Krow all agreeing ? be still my heart !
    Re Snees comments – I can hear from his comments that he was injured in a way that couldnt help but severely inhibit him doing his job . Ive always wondered about the level of injuries to some of these players and the lack of info forthcoming from their team about it . Maybe an uninjured Snee can be useful next year if he takes a pay cut . I can see this as the settlement between pragmatism and nepotism if he shows that he is healthy next year

    •  JimStoll says:

      Snee has not been “uninjured” since 2008
      he’s 33
      he’s a fat o-lineman with bad hips

      there are very few universes in which that make-up plays another year in the NFL without further injury

      •  GIANTT says:

        Im not disagreeing, but since hes TCs son in law I feel that at the minimum the Giants are going to reward his loyalty and give him the chance to come back

  10.  GIANTT says:

    If Kiwi says that there is tension , I can hope that the offense takes offense and comes out and performs next week .
    I also have a question – In the NFC East , with the problems that each team has , Im thinking that the Giants problems are much more easily fixed than the other three .OK its not a question , more a topic .

    •  skinnydoogan says:

      Well The Cowboys have as little defense as we have offense, but that is because of key injuries, add the fact that Jerry Jones is a megalomaniac who doesn’t know how to run a football team, so I would say they are worse off than us. The Redskins will also be mired in futility as long as Dan Snyder is in charge. The Eagles are in better shape than us I think, they are on the upswing.

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