NFL: Giants DB Rolle apologizes for military comment
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) – New York Giants safety Antrel Rolle has apologized for comparing fans’ booing players after a bad half of football to fans booing troops returning home from Iraq after a tour of duty.
Rolle says he used a very poor, inappropriate example on Thursday to demonstrate how seriously he takes his job.
“Obviously, there is no comparison between the men and women of our military putting their life on the line defending our country and what I do,” Rolle said in a statement issued by the team early in the evening. “They risk their lives and that gives me the opportunity to play a game for a living.
“After I made my earlier comments, somebody even said to me: how would your father, who is the chief of police in Homestead (Fla.), and puts himself at risk every day, feel about the comparison you made? Again, it was a very poor, very inappropriate choice of words.”
Rolle has been upset with Giants’ fans who booed the team at halftime on Sunday with the team trailing Jacksonville 17-6 at halftime. New York rallied to win the game, 24-20.
The six-year veteran criticized the fans in a paid radio interview earlier this week and he was asked about it again in the locker room on Thursday after the Giants (7-4) practiced for this weekend’s game with Washington (5-6).
“They want to make it that guys paid this much money for a ticket, yeah, I understand that, I understand completely,” Rolle said. “We risk ourselves out there on the field each and every day also. When soldiers come home from Iraq, you don’t boo them. I look at it the same way. I take my job seriously.”
Rolle signed a $37 million, free-agent contract with the Giants in the offseason. Ever since, he has been blunt in answering questions with the New York media. Though a newcomer, he even questioned Justin Tuck’s leadership abilities earlier in the season after a loss to Indianapolis.
“You ask me a question I am going to give you an answer, an honest answer,” Rolle said. “My coaches ask me, my girlfriend asks me, I am going to give them an honest answer, I don’t sugarcoat anything.”