It was no secret that the New York Giants praised the talents of Robert Griffin III leading up to their game with the Washington Redskins new superstar but now, after the Giants 17-16 loss to their division rivals, one New York player thinks his team showed too much respect.
On Tuesday, Antrel Rolle jumped all over his Giants teammates for showing too much love for RGIII even before the two teams hit the field.
"I think we need to start giving more credit after the game as opposed to before the game," Rolle said during his weekly appearance on WFAN radio. "Personally, that's not anything I've been too fond of. Do I respect my opponents? I respect them. You know, I'll give credit when credit's due. But I'm not going to kiss anyone's butt before the game. That's something that I'm never, ever going to do as long as I'm playing the game of football.
"I think we just need to get back to being a little nasty, having a nasty attitude, get a little more dog in us, and go out and play the game."
The Giants (7-5) have squandered a 2-1/2 game lead in the NFC East and now hang on to a one game lead over both the Redskins (6-6) and Dallas Cowboys (6-6) with four games to play.
The Giants face one of the toughest stretches of their schedule during what Rolle is calling a "dogfight."
Rolle is under the impression that the Giants have lost their edge and "at certain times we did get pushed over" by the hungrier Redskins on Monday night.
"Play the game physical, play the game tough, play the game hard and we'll give hugs and kisses after the game," he said. "But while that game is going on, we respect no one. That's how the game of football needs to be played."
At times, the Giants have looked like the best team in the NFL — as a 26-3 win over the 49ers and 38-10 beat-down against the Packers can attest. But when Rolle says he doesn't see enough "dog out there on the field," he doesn't mean poodles.
Some of the Giants players were criticized for seemingly sucking up to the Redskins quarterback after the game as well — looking more like the lapdogs than the junkyard breed.
"I don't see enough manhandling out there on the field," he said. "And I don't see us putting opponents away when we know we could.
"We need to go out there and just play ball, man," added Rolle. "Go out there and have that dog mentality and go out there and make it happen."