The move was officially tabbed a joint decision between he and team management, but it always seemed clear that Tom Coughlin never actually wanted to give up his job as New York Giants head coach. He hinted as much during his goodbye press conference and appeared to snub Giants president and CEO John Mara following his remarks.
But some recent comments from Coughlin, as well as a new report about his interview with the Eagles, show that Coughlin is even more bitter than he originally let on.
Just weeks after stepping down from his position with the Giants, Coughlin interviewed for the Eagles' head coaching position, only to reportedly later decide not to pursue the job. That, however, doesn't appear to be the way things actually played out.
According to the New York Daily News' Gary Myers it was the Eagles who rejected Coughlin, and they did so because Coughlin spent the entire interview ripping his former team.
The interview was a disaster. Coughlin acted like a 20-year old whose girlfriend had dumped him and he was trying to make her jealous by dating her No. 1 enemy on the rebound. NFL sources say his hard feelings for the Giants came through loud and clear in the interview with the Eagles brain trust, which included owner Jeffrey Lurie, and he was obsessed with how he felt wronged by the Giants. He was not forthcoming about his plans for his staff. He came off more concerned with making the Giants look bad than being consumed with coaching the Eagles.
This hasn't been confirmed or reported by anyone else. But it does vibe with Coughlin's comments during a media run earlier this week.
First he appeared on Jay Mohr's Fox Sports Radio show where he was candid about his reaction to the Giants asking him to step down.
"Hey, do I agree with the move? Of course not," he said on Tuesday, via Big Blue View. "I don't, it hurts, it hurts. 'Former' is not a good word. I don't like the word. But, nevertheless, that's the way it is."
Coughlin did backtrack his comments a bit during an appearance on ESPN New York's Michael Kay Show, but he acknowledged that he wasn't happy with how things played out.
"Let's put it this way: It's always a discussion between ownership and the coach," Coughlin said, via Big Blue View. "It was a decision on both our parts to part ways. I always believed we could win, and I still do. Don't think there aren't some hard feelings there; there certainly are. That's just natural. But I try to control them when the moment is right."
Coughlin, 69, spent 12 years in New York and led the Giants to six winning seasons, five playoff appearances and two Super Bowl titles. He also failed to reach the playoffs four years in a row and went 6-10 last season.
Before joining the Giants, Coughlin spent eight years coaching the Jaguars. He has a career record of 170-150.