Things are good for the New York Giants now.
But it wasn’t that long ago they weren’t, and those are the thoughts that haunt Giants president and CEO John Mara.
He vividly remembers the stretch from 1964-80, when he was growing from a boy to a man, with just two winning seasons among them.
“It makes me feel good, believe me, because those were some pretty difficult years and I cite those often when people ask me about our team,” Mara told Gary Myers of the New York Daily News. “It serves as extra motivation for me because I still haven’t forgotten those years. Every once in a while, I wake up in the middle of the night with a nightmare thinking about some of those teams we had in the 1970s.
“So, certainly our franchise is much stronger now than it has been in quite some time. That is due to the fact we have a solid organization, we got a franchise quarterback and we got a franchise head coach.”
Mara’s not thinking about a repeat, saying that’s “when you end up 6-10.”
But he does know his franchise is on stable footing, thanks to Eli Manning, Tom Coughlin. Only Tom Brady and Bill Belichick have won multiple titles among the current group, and the fact both the Giants titles came over the Patriots makes it sweeter.
“The quarterback gives us a chance every week,” Mara said. “I used to feel that way when we had Phil Simms and I certainly feel that way now. If the game is on the line in the fourth quarter, you know that he believes he’s going to go out there and win the game.
“It’s nice to see your best player have that kind of confidence. It makes the rest of the organization believe that you have a chance to win, too.”
For all his rivals in the NFC, Mara still considers Wednesday’s opponent the Cowboys the biggest.
“Just because of the incredible fan base that they have and the visibility that they have,” Mara said. “There is something special, and all those years of getting our butts kicked by them, it makes it special there.”
Here we go with butt-kicking talk again. Somebody get Jerry Jones on the phone.