Justin Tuck was asked about the home crowd booing Matt Dodge on his first punt attempt last Monday night when the defensive end referred to the stadium as “Giants Stadium.”
Of course, Tuck knows that the New Meadowlands Stadium is now called MetLife Stadium and that it is home to the Giants and Jets, who play each other this Saturday.
But he prefers another name.
“Giants Stadium,” Tuck says. “I’m glad that MetLife came forward as a sponsor but to me it will always be Giants Stadium.”
Of course, at least one Jet didn’t appear to appreciate that.
The rivalry between the Jets and Giants will heat up this year since both teams play each other on Christmas Eve.
Rex Ryan has also taken shots at the Giants in his book and called the Jets “the big brother” in the city.
“The whole talking thing is just more fun for me than anything else,” Tuck said. “We are going to go ahead and try to win the football game, you can believe that. But is it more intense than the rivalry was before Rex got here? In a preseason game? No. But come that game right before Christmas, that might be a different story.”
Tuck said that playing the Jets reminds him of playing in a high school All-Star game where you know everyone because the players on both rosters know each other well from living in the same area.
“It makes the game that much more fun,” Tuck said. “[It’s] bragging rights and having the opportunity to call the guy after the game and tell them that I whooped your butt on that play.”
For Eli Manning, the Jets game means one thing –- a chance to improve on offense against an elite defense.
“There’s always buzz and that is a good thing,” Manning said of the rivalry. “It is the third preseason game, the one where the starters play the longest. But we are trying to go out and execute and try to look sharp.”
“There couldn’t be a better team to play than the Jets, defensive-wise they do some different looks, very talented and got good players all around,” Manning added. “Our technique has to be perfect and our execution has to be very sharp.”