Premature party planning
Giants won't discuss parade options until after game
Updated: Tuesday January 16, 2001 8:21 AM
New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and officials from New Jersey have offered to stage celebrations if the Giants win their third Super Bowl on Jan. 28 in Tampa, Fla.
"One of the trademarks of this organization and this team has been its ability to focus on the task at hand," Giants spokesman Pat Hanlon said Monday. "At this point, parades are not part of the task at hand. But we certainly appreciate the offers."
"If we win, we're having a parade, right?" Collins recalled asked the mayor.
Giuliani said the city would do whatever the Giants wanted, Collins added.
Michael Strahan seemed excited about the prospect of a parade in New York City, noting the Knicks, Yankees and Mets have had recent successes. He did not mention the Stanley Cup champion New Jersey Devils, who like the Giants play at the Meadowlands sports complex.
"If we win a Super Bowl, there is no party like New York City, and we all know that," Strahan said. "I mean, heck, there's been no Super Bowl here in the past and we've had great parties. I can't imagine if we won the Super Bowl how it would be. That's the ultimate prize, to bring the championship back here to New York and then we'll enjoy it."
Following a prayer breakfast at Gracie Mansion on Monday, Giuliani was hesitant to talk about a parade.
"We're not going to discuss a parade," Giuliani said. "Except to say that when I was in the locker room yesterday, several of the players told me that one of the things that was motivating them was the idea of coming up the Canyon of Heroes."
Giuliani said the Giants heading to the Super Bowl is good for the city.
"It brings a great deal of interest and focus on New York," he said. "On their helmets it says N-Y ... N-Y. They've been part of New York City, the New York area, the New York-New Jersey area, for a very long time."
Giants used lottery for Super Bowl tickets
The New York Giants used a weighted lottery to distribute about 8,000 Super Bowl tickets to their season ticket holders.
Spokesman Pat Hanlon said the team got about 10,000 tickets for the game against the Baltimore Ravens in Tampa, Fla. on Jan. 28. It made 80 percent available to season ticket holders, which coincides with NFL recommendations.
Season ticket holders with the greatest seniority had a better chance of winning the lottery, which was conducted a few weeks ago, Hanlon said.
"The people who won have already gotten letters," Hanlon said.
The 2,000 tickets that the Giants kept will be distributed among staff, players and business partners, Hanlon said.
Coordinators not contacted yet
Head coach Jim Fassel said no teams have approached the Giants to talk to either offensive coordinator Sean Payton or defensive coordinator John Fox about a head coaching position.
Collins says Sunday's game was his best
Quarterback Kerry Collins said his five-touchdown performance in the NFC championship game was his best as a pro.
"This was one of those days that everything seemed to work," Collins said Monday. "I was in tune with the game, the flow, the rhythm. It was one of those days where everything went right, and I was thankful it was in the biggest game of my career.
Collins hit 28 of 39 passes for 381 yards in a performance that broke almost every postseason passing record for the Giants.
Collins said he makes about four mistakes in a game in which he plays very well. He only had two on Sunday in the 41-0 win against Minnesota.
One was a third-down pass that was intercepted deep in Vikings' territory.
"It was my best punt of the season," Collins quipped.
The other came on a pass to Joe Jurevicius. A Vikings defender was called for two penalties on the play, including pass interference.
While the play gave the Giants a first down deep in Minnesota's territory, Collins said he failed to see Ike Hilliard wide open on the play.
Collins got philosophical when asked why he had his best day in his biggest game.
"It was real bad for me at times," said Collins, who has battled alcohol and other off-the-field problems in recent years. "I think things come full circle. Through all the days, I kept thinking because it got so bad, it's going to be that good someday. So yesterday, maybe, was that day."
The Giants usually script their first 15 plays on offense. They followed the script on the four-play opening drive that ended with a 46-yard touchdown pass to Hilliard.
After safety Lyle West recovered a fumble on the ensuing kickoff, the Giants dropped the script and went right to their red-zone plays -- inside the opposing 20-yard line. Collins threw a touchdown pass to Greg Comella on the first play.
Clearing up a rumor
Collins also decided to clear up one erroneous report that had surfaced in recent days.
He doesn't drink 20 Diet Cokes a day, only three to five.
Strahan lives up to his word
Giants defensive end Michael Strahan has gone to the last seven Super Bowls, but last year was the first he actually went to the game.
"I had told myself I wasn't going to go to a game until I was in it," Strahan said. "But last year I had a chance to go and my wife wanted to go, and you always do what the woman wants."
Strahan also accused his fellow linemen of being greedy for sacks, particularly tackle Keith Hamilton, who led the team with 10 in the regular season.
"Oh trust me, they are greedy," quipped Strahan, who had 9 1/2 sacks. "You're taking a guy down and Hamilton touches and says: 'Oh yeah, I got half of that."
Strahan said nothing short of a win will make the season a success.
"Anything short of that makes it a great story without a good ending and that's no good for us," Strahan said.