Nope, not this one. With the possible exceptions of Larry Brown and Nick Denton, the person who was probably the happiest over this week’s Rex Ryan revelations had to be NY Giants head coach Tom Coughlin, who not only presided over an epic choke job last Sunday against Philadelphia, but has seen his treatment of hapless punter Matt Dodge receive heavy scrutiny. Frequent sideline shots of Col. Coughlin going nuclear on Dodge or others Big Blue Boneheads create, in the words of the NY Daily News’ Bob Raissman, “a portrait of a coach as a lunatic.” And while the Gallagher-lookalike media critic admits such a portrait ought not to impact Coughlin’s job security in and of itself, the question is posed, “will his sideline antics, instability and temper tantrums work against him when the final assessment on his coaching future is made by Giants suits?”
“No, there’s no ‘Coughlin Rule’ in place,” said Richie Zyontz, the coordinating producer for Fox’s No. 1 NFL broadcast team of Joe Buck and Troy Aikman. “We see him enough to tell whatever stories need to be told with the amount of time we see him on the screen already.”
Whatever that “amount” of time actually is, it has been enough to seed the clouds of controversy. The pictures cut both ways. For those who like their coach fiery, that picture of Coughlin getting in Dodge’s face was high art, kinda like the Mona Lisa. It provided a tiny bit of psychological solace after a humiliating defeat.
For those who prefer their coach to appear in control, cool and calm under pressure, it was more than enough reason to suggest Coughlin is nothing more than a two-bit, out-of-control tyrant – a stone bully. These pictures flat out made Coughlin look bad, look like a nut case, in the eyes of millions of viewers.