In advance of the big Giants/Cowboys match-up on Monday Night, I got a chance to talk to the outspoken Giants safety, Antrel Rolle. Some of the topics covered include Rolle’s adjustment to Tom Coughlin’s system, his thoughts on playing for the second most popular team in New York, and, of course, the NFL’s new devastating hit rules.
Listen to the entire Antrel Rolle interview here (Total running time:12:38). Excerpts are below.
On the new NFL hit rules: Naturally I’m not for the suspension of the helmet-to-helmet contact. This is a very fast game; we’ve been taught to play the game extremely fast, and sometimes things of that nature are going to occur. I don’t feel that players should be suspended for something that is not intentional.
On whether the new rules will affect his play: There kind of isn’t really any way you can alter your game. You can try to find new fine points or things of that nature, but when you’re playing the game, honestly, that’s the last thing you’re thinking about. When you have the helmet-to-helmet contact nothing intentional, so you’re not even thinking about the helmet-to-helmet contact when you’re actually engaged in helmet-to-helmet contact.
On whether he feels the importance of the Giants/Cowboys rivalry: Absolutely (I feel the rivalry). I’ve been a fan of watching their games for a number of years now, so I understand the rivalry and competitive nature of it. The guys are pumped up and fired up and eager and determined to come out with a win.
On the intensity disparity between Whisenhunt’s system and Coughlin’s system: Things are extremely different (in New York). But we’re all men in this league and some things we’re definitely going to have to adjust to, and Coach Coughlin’s system is one I definitely had to adapt to. But it’s nothing as a professional and a man that I can’t handle, and I’m just keeping my eye on the prize.