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Trey Junkin still loses sleep over his final snap

treyjunkin AP

The Giants heading to San Francisco to meet the 49ers in the playoffs has brought back painful memories for Giants fans of the last time that happened, nine years ago, when New York lost thanks in large part to a bad snap from a new long snapper, Trey Junkin.

But if those memories are painful for Giants fans, they’re haunting for Junkin.

It still jolts me from sleep,” Junkin told the New York Daily News.

Junkin had a long and largely successful NFL career as a long snapper, but he knows most people only remember the last snap he ever made, a bad snap for the Giants on what could have been a game-winning field goal.

“For 19 years I tried to be invisible in my profession,” Junkin said. “Once I put my hands on that ball that day, that sh—y snap was my fault. I think about it every day.”

Junkin had already retired from the NFL before that playoff game nine years ago, but when the Giants’ regular long snapper was injured, they gave him a call and he came out of retirement for the playoffs. Maybe if that playoff run for the Giants had earned him a Super Bowl ring he’d feel differently, but Junkin doesn’t sound happy about his career in hindsight. He said he’s had six surgeries on his left leg and several surgeries on both shoulders.

“I took Vicodin pills on game days just to make sure my only focus would be on winning, never any pain,” he said. “I wanted to get hit in the head. Please! Hit me in the head. Just not the shoulder or anywhere else.”

Junkin was far from the only reason the Giants lost that game. The officials missed a blatant pass interference call after Junkin’s bad snap that should have given the Giants another chance, and the Giants’ defense gave up a 24-point lead. But Junkin accepted the blame for that game then, and all these years later, he still does.

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28 Responses to “Trey Junkin still loses sleep over his final snap”
  1. joetoronto says: Jan 18, 2012 6:48 AM

    “The officials missed a blatant pass interference call after Junkin’s bad snap that should have given the Giants another chance, and the Giants’ defense gave up a 24-point lead.”

    Saying the officials “missed that call” is being really nice about it.

    You can’t “miss” a play like that, that was way worse than the non fumble call by Leavy.

    It was THAT bad.

  2. joetoronto says: Jan 18, 2012 6:55 AM

    Here it is….

  3. rugdaniels says: Jan 18, 2012 6:59 AM

    Yes, the missed call was terrible, but the Giants never should have let it get to that point. One of the worst losses I can recall as a fan, I know we’re going to have to relive it a few times this week.

    Still, that game is far enough in the past that I don’t really resent this 49ers team for winning just like I don’t blame this Giants squade for losing it. That’s the best part of Sundays game, Giants / 49ers rivalry rebooted.

  4. flyerscup2010 says: Jan 18, 2012 7:10 AM

    is it overly insensitive or tasteless of me to wonder what caused a long snapper to need so many surgeries?

  5. jaymac515 says: Jan 18, 2012 7:22 AM

    Wasn’t there another play just this season with a pass on a fake kick where we learned that out of a kicking formation there is no pass interference penalty? May have been a Raiders game if I remember correctly.

  6. breastsmoosh says: Jan 18, 2012 7:24 AM

    Trey was a good player for a lot of years, I met him once and he did smell very nice and was wearing very cute jeans

  7. indywilson40 says: Jan 18, 2012 7:38 AM

    As Steve Mariucci once said ,”Bummer”.

  8. indywilson40 says: Jan 18, 2012 7:41 AM

    The thing that disturbed me about that game was the way the idiot holder/punter threw Junkin under the bus. That guy was a punk.

  9. canetic says: Jan 18, 2012 7:44 AM

    You give up a 24 point lead in the playoffs, the last person who is at fault is the long snapper.

  10. raiderguy10 says: Jan 18, 2012 7:53 AM

    Punt….stupid phones

  11. justwinbaby29 says: Jan 18, 2012 7:55 AM

    Butterfly effect: Giants beat SF, Giants beat TB, Philly beats Giants, Raiders beat Philly.

    Damn, Junkin cost the Raiders a ring!!! :)

  12. pixelito says: Jan 18, 2012 8:06 AM

    Replays showed the entire officiating staff running to the tunnel with their backs to the field before time ran out.

    Kind of like a certain Italian ship Captain.

  13. manureman says: Jan 18, 2012 8:08 AM

    check the rules there can’t be pass inerference on a botched fg attempt.

  14. blackqbwhiterb says: Jan 18, 2012 8:09 AM

    Get over it, Junkin. You got paid to play football for 19 years!! Somewhere out there, Scott Norwood has your back!

  15. docredskin says: Jan 18, 2012 8:28 AM

    Imagine if Tony Romo agonized over his mistakes that cost his team games like this. He’d have self-destructed three Jerrah plastic surgeries ago.

  16. dwinsgames says: Jan 18, 2012 8:47 AM

    It was a blatant PI and yes, there can be PI on a fake (see the NFL’s apology to the Giants). But as a Giants fan, I blamed the holder. The Giants were kicking on 3rd down, so all he had to do was spike the ball and they would have had another chance at it. But the dumbass panicked and ran the fire drill. He has to know BEFORE the snap that if there is a problem he just spikes it and gets a do over. No surprise he was out of the league after that season.

  17. autumnwind999 says: Jan 18, 2012 9:04 AM

    jaymac515 says:
    Jan 18, 2012 7:22 AM
    Wasn’t there another play just this season with a pass on a fake kick where we learned that out of a kicking formation there is no pass interference penalty? May have been a Raiders game if I remember correctly.

    —————————-

    That happened in a Raiders game on a fake punt. Lechler threw a strike down field to Ford at the goalline who was tackled right before the ball arrived.

    I know the defender in that instance realized it was a pass, but the rule sort of makes sense because the guy blocking the gunner can’t reasonably be expected to not block until somehow confirming it’s a punt. Don’t know that the same rule applies on fake/botched FGs though because the same logic doesn’t apply. Out of a FG formation their is no reason to block offensive players down field.

    Wouldn’t make any sense to apply that rule to fake FGs and I don’t think it is. Never heard anyone suggest that at the time or since when rehashing that blown call.

  18. buckybadger says: Jan 18, 2012 9:10 AM

    I would gladly take his career as many would and still have end the same way. Toughen up. Felt sorry for him after it happened but there are bigger things in life than a football game. If this keeps you up at night just be thankful of how easy a life you have had.

  19. autumnwind999 says: Jan 18, 2012 9:11 AM

    manureman says:
    Jan 18, 2012 8:08 AM
    check the rules there can’t be pass inerference on a botched fg attempt.

    —————————–

    Watch the clip posted by JoeToronto above. Head of officiating Mike Pereira said it was a blown call. Says the officials knew right after the game that it was a blown call. And the league issued an apology to the Giants saying it was a blown call.

  20. roadtrip3500 says: Jan 18, 2012 9:13 AM

    manureman says: Jan 18, 2012 8:08 AM

    check the rules there can’t be pass inerference on a botched fg attempt.
    —————————-
    The NFL admitted it should have been defensive pass interference and not ineligible player downfield. The Giants player who was tackled downfield was lined up in the tight end position, and he is eligible for a pass reception. If the snap is bad and the kicking team chooses to become an offense, all regular offensive rules apply. Same on a PAT… if the snap is bad and the holder gets up and runs or throws a completed pass to the end zone, it’s a successful conversion.

    manureman, if there couldn’t be pass interference on a “botched” field goal attempt, there also could never be a fake field goal play, because your logic would make all kicking team members ineligible. All teams practice bad snap plays – they have a verbal signal that tells all eligible players to break out on a route for a possible pass.

  21. autumnwind999 says: Jan 18, 2012 9:18 AM

    justwinbaby29 says:
    Jan 18, 2012 7:55 AM
    Butterfly effect: Giants beat SF, Giants beat TB, Philly beats Giants, Raiders beat Philly.

    Damn, Junkin cost the Raiders a ring!!!

    ——————————-

    LOL. Or, you could just say that the refs cost the Raiders yet another ring. Add it to the list:

    - Immaculate reception
    - 1977 AFC Championship game
    - Tuck Rule
    and now …
    - Junkingate

  22. godofwine330 says: Jan 18, 2012 9:24 AM

    You can’t beat yourself up over it. Not all these years later, that will cause for a short life. It happened and all the belly-aching in the world can bring it back. Sad to say, but if this was one person’s fault in the death of another then I would understand waking from sleep thining about it all these years later, but this is a game we are talking about. He was largely invisible his entire career except for that one play. I hope fans are not still giving him the blues because I have hated the way fans have treated players like Bill Buckner after one bad play after a stellar career.

    Please, Trey. Get over it. For the sake of your health and family, get over it.

  23. edgerules says: Jan 18, 2012 10:42 AM

    Trey, I agree with godofwine330 here. There are so many things in life to worry about. Please let it go. What is done is done. Besides, you didn’t play as a member of the defense who choked away that 24 point lead. It should not have come to that play you were involved in anyway. If anyone should be losing sleep it is Strahan and that vaunted Giants defense.

    Please,, and I know we live in an era where fans, and the media like to hold bad plays and mistakes against athletes/teams forever, but your family and health are more important and this guilt won’t help either.

  24. nineroutsider says: Jan 18, 2012 11:34 AM

    Obviously I’m a 9er fan but bro – the 9ers got away with one in that game! Yes, the snap was horrible, but the refs stole your chance at redemption. Sleep well bro, get over it! They were up 38-14, so it wasn’t all your fault.

  25. waxedagain says: Jan 18, 2012 11:49 AM

    “The officials missed a blatant pass interference call after Junkin’s bad snap that should have given the Giants another chance…”

    That should have been in the first paragraph of your story. If Giants rekick, they probably win the game and this story is merely a footnote of the game. Officials should be fined for blatant miscalls. Call it the Levey Fine.

  26. jdillydawg says: Jan 18, 2012 11:50 AM

    Dude, time to move on with your life? Nightmares nine years later over a bad snap? It’s a game. Focus your life on healthier pursuits and let the past die. You care about this way more than anyone else does, and there’s no reason for you to carry that burden.

  27. mrgrant23 says: Jan 18, 2012 4:55 PM

    everyone who still hates on this needs to get over it. Giants you have a rematch on sunday forget about what happened, its what will happen that counts. that being said Go 49ers!!!!

  28. jaymc1988 says: Jan 19, 2012 2:42 AM

    trust me i think i stayed up for a month cringing after that play. i still remember that play full in its verision..between that game and eagles game.. ahh smh hurts

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