Saturday, March 6, 2010

"Best In The League"

Give Antrel Rolle this. There's no shortage of confidence there.

The just-signed safety from the Cardinals left little doubt what he thought of combining with Kenny Phillips in the middle of the defensive backfield.

"Best in the league, hands down," the 27-year-old Rolle said of that potential combination. "I know what we're capable of. And I know, as a unit, what abilities we have to get things done.

"It'll be up to us to establish that chemistry and relationship, and make sure we're on the same page. Make sure we're all one within that secondary. The sky's the limit for us. We're definitely going to go out there and make things happen."

That, of course, is assuming Phillips' rehab from microfracture surgery is as on-schedule as the third-year safety recently indicated in his blog. But the fact is, Rolle is a dynamic player, and the Giants seemed to have little problem with offering him a five-year, $37 million deal, $15 million of which is guaranteed.

Giants fans got an idea of just how much of an impact Rolle can make at Giants Stadium Oct. 25, a 24-17 Giants loss in which Rolle wrestled the ball out of Steve Smith's hands for an interception on Eli Manning's final pass of the game. Playing with a torn plantar fascia, Rolle said he tweaked the Cover-2 coverage himself to facilitate the pick.

"I was limited in what I could do," Rolle said. "It was supposed to be a typical Cover-2 coverage, so I got my corner and my nickel together with myself and I explained to them exactly how I wanted it to be played. We definitely tweaked the Cover-2. We didn't play it the way it was initially supposed to be played, and it worked out for the best. Sometimes you have to take a gamble."

Rolle also had a monster helmet-to-helmet hit on tight end Kevin Boss that cost him a league fine.

Take a look.

Though Rolle said he didn't mean to go helmet-to-helmet with Boss, he didn't exactly apologize for it, either.

"We're all men in this league. It can be your brother out there, but we all have to go out and compete.

"You never try to hurt anyone, and it wasn't intentional. But I was coming to make a statement. I was definitely coming to make contact. Still, I hold no pity for the next man. But at the same time, I never try to go out and hurt any opponent because his career is just as valuable as mine. I'm not that kind of player. But when I'm coming, I'm definitely a head-hunter, and I definitely want to make sure my presence is felt.

"That pretty much is what all took place on that play. I was just trying to make a play, put my team in the best situation. That's all that boils down to."

Ought to be a pretty interesting conversation when the two meet up again.


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