New York Giants defensive back Logan Ryan dedicated Sunday's game to his wife and came up with the game-clinching interception for her just days after she experienced a serious medical scare that almost took her life.
Ryan had his wife's name written on his cleats when he intercepted an Alex Smith pass in the final two minutes. With it, he was able to bring home the football that his wife requested as she watched the game from New Jersey while recovering from surgery.
It was the perfect ending to a mentally draining six days.
"My wife and I mourn in silence for our lost child during that process too," Ryan said afterward. "We had a loss as well. Although it was a great story, it was an emotional week for me and her. And that game was definitely for my wife, definitely for my family. I had her name written on my cleats. Just extremely grateful that I have a great wife and that ball is for her. She told me to bring one home for her, so I was able to do that."
Ryan finished with six tackles, an interception, a forced fumble and two passes defended. That was the on-field story.
Off the field, after the Giants lost last Monday night Ashley Ryan told her husband she had stomach pains. At the urging of athletic trainer Justin Maher, whom Logan Ryan credited for potentially saving her life, Ashley went to the hospital. She was diagnosed with an ectopic pregnancy and needed emergency surgery.
Logan Ryan remained with the Giants throughout the week as his wife recovered, trying his best to concentrate on his job while dealing with the situation.
"It's easier said than done," he said. "There was no doubt in my mind if my wife was in stable condition that I was going to play this game because I play for my family and me playing ball brings me a lot of joy and brings my family a lot of joy.
"I talked to her before the game. She just got back to New Jersey. She was resting and watching the game and she just knows me. She says, 'Just bring a ball home for me and the kids.' I was able to do that. I visualized it all week. No one really knows what I went through all week emotionally but the team supported me great and I definitely wanted to do something for my wife and kids in that situation."
Safety Jabrill Peppers said after the game that he didn't know about the situation until Ryan spoke publicly during his Zoom press conference during the week. Then Ryan came through when the Giants needed it after they almost allowed a 17-point halftime lead slip away.
Ryan's interception came on a play that the Giants added to the game plan Saturday night. Ryan said he messed it up earlier in the game. The result was a 32-yard gain.
But he would make amends by being in the right spot at the perfect moment. Ryan confused Smith with the game on the line and 1:23 remaining, easily snatching the game-clinching interception.
"I think it's kind of just who Logan is. Logan is a very mentally tough football player," coach Joe Judge said. "He's a great team leader. He does a lot of things behind the scenes that people don't know or see that Logan brings to a team. ... The things he went through -- and we talk to our players about overcoming adversity -- this is a guy who overcame adversity on the field this week. Made big plays. But really off the field is where it started. The things he had away from the building, he never brings it in. He comes on in, you can ask him how it is and he's always going to tell you it's going great, even if you know it's not. He puts the team first when he's in the building. He's all business. And he always takes time to personally check on his teammates. You know, I couldn't tell you how glad I am to have Logan on this team and how valuable he is to us."