the sports section

The Giants: One Month Later


Top: Eli Manning, David Tyree, Plaxico Burress, Tom Coughlin. Bottom: Michael Strahan, Steve Spagnulo, Lawrence Tynes, and Amani Toomer.Photo: Getty Images

On the approximate one-month anniversary of their unbelievable victory in Super Bowl XLII (yes, we’re still reveling), we decided to revisit some key New York Giants players and coaches and look at how their lives have changed. The main undercurrent: redemption. Instead of being unknown or disliked, they’re now widely known, widely praised, and, for the most part, a hell of a lot richer. —Dan Amira

Who? Before Super Bowl Now
Tom Coughlin The Giants' crotchety, mildly successful head coach who had enjoyed little job security over the past few seasons and whose face sometimes melted off in cold weather like he just peeked at the Ark of the Covenant. The recipient of a reported four-year, $21 million contract, which makes him one of the highest-paid coaches in the NFL.
Eli Manning The boyish, underachieving child-man living in the shadow of his accomplished legendary older brother. The epitome of the persevering underdog and the poster boy of miraculous success, as referenced by Sears's Edward Lampert last week. Manning's endorsement money is expected to double.
David Tyree A no-name wide receiver and special-teams player with a past riddled with drug-and-alcohol abuse who had only four catches the entire season. The father of newborn twins is nationally known for one of the greatest catches in Super Bowl history and looking to milk it for all it's worth: He plans on marketing T-shirts, writing a book, and giving inspirational speeches at religious gatherings.
Steve Spagnuolo All that most people knew about Spagnuolo, or any defensive coordinator, was that he was in fact the defensive coordinator. Now people know that after turning down the Redskins' head-coaching gig, Spagnuolo re-signed with the Giants as the highest-paid defensive coordinator in the league, at $6 million over three years.
Lawrence Tynes The unreliable placekicker who, after missing his previous two attempts, barely avoided his inevitable murder when he made a game-winning field goal in overtime during the NFC championship game.  That kick is the only one that mattered. Tynes re-signed with the Giants for five years and $7 million.
Amani Toomer The Giant's all-time leader in receptions was mostly unrecognizable to those who weren't fans. Well, still unrecognizable — Whoopi Goldberg recently confused Toomer for David Tyree on The View, to the visible discomfort of all.
Michael Strahan A fifteen-year veteran who had never won a championship and almost didn't return to play for the Giants last season after holding out during training camp for what many believed was a desire for more money, which he didn't get. A championship has brought Strahan some leverage: Giants owner John Mara is now considering the possibility of giving Strahan a big raise if he'll return for another season.
Plaxico Burress The talented but perpetually injured wide receiver was mocked by Tom Brady for predicting the Giants would defeat the Patriots 23-17 ("We’re only going to score 17 points? Is Plax playing defense?").  Plaxico's prediction was wrong, but in a good way: The Giants upset the Patriots 17-14. Plaxico sealed the game with his winning touchdown catch.
The Giants: One Month Later