Giants defensive end Osi Umenyiora has only had two fights in his nine-year NFL career -- and Patriots left tackle Matt Light has been involved in both.
“Me and him, we have history, and we’re gonna rekindle that on the football field,” Umenyiora said Friday. “I don’t know what it is that he does, but there’ something that he’s doing that really gets under my skin, and we just fight.”
Umenyiora and Light’s on-field bouts came in Week 17 of the 2007 season and Week 9 of the 2011 campaign.
Their first fight came following a 13-yard run by Patriots running back Laurence Maroney in the second quarter on Dec. 12, 2007. Umenyiora was pushed in the back by Light. As a result, the defensive end tripped over linebacker Antonio Pierce. Umenyiora went right to Light and got in his facemask.
Their second fight came late in the second quarter on Nov. 6, 2011. The two began scrapping after the whistle, and Light ended up on top of Umenyiora, pinning him to the ground. A pile-up ensued, and somehow Umenyiora’s helmet got thrown off. They continued going at it before Umenyiora back-pedaled away and began laughing and smiling.
Umenyiora said Light wasn’t as bad in Super Bowl XLII, though.
“I’m not that type of guy. He’s the only person I’ve ever fought on the football field,” Umenyiora said.
What happens if he squares off with Light in Round III on Feb. 5?
“I think he’s more important to his team than I am to mine right now,” Umenyiora said. “So if we both fight and we both get kicked out, JPP and Tuck will have a field day.”
Defensive end Justin Tuck joked, “They’ve got in a fight twice. I have very vidid memory of those two fights and we give Osi a little flack for it because I tell him Matt beat him up both times.”
After their first fight, Umenyiora insinuated that he thought Light was a dirty player.
“Hitting after the delay and trying to ...I don't know if he was trying to intimidate me,” Umenyiora said. “I don't know what he was trying to do. But he did a couple things that he shouldn't have done and, you know, now we are really going to go at it this time.”