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  • Fri., Sep. 19, 2014 4:00 PM - 4:30 PM EDT Live Big Blue Hits Big Blue Hits is a thirty minute video wrap up show that airs at 4:00 PM every Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday on Giants.com. Roman Oben, Paul Dottino, Anita Marks and John Schmeelk give the latest news from practice and sound from the locker room. It’s the best way to end your day and stay up to date on Big Blue. They will take your questions and comments on twitter at #giantschat and on the phones at 201-939-4513.
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Despite great numbers, stats don't define 92

Posted Jan 28, 2014

Michael Strahan and Warren Sapp were both great NFL defensive linemen who now have successful broadcasting careers. Despite those similarities, the two former players have long had enmity between them, and it was on display in two states today.

NEWARK, N.J. – At the Prudential Center in Newark – site of Super Bowl XLVIII Media Day – Sapp, who was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame last year, dismissed the qualifications of Strahan, who almost went in with Sapp and is one of the 15 finalists this year. Voting for the 2014 Hall of Fame class will take place on Saturday.

Hours after Sapp sounded off, continuing a feud that has run for more than a decade, Strahan voiced a few opinions of his own at a news conference to promote Fox’s coverage of the game.

“I don’t respond to him,” Strahan said, “because the tiger does not pay attention to the opinion of sheep. That’s just the way I look at it.”

Strahan, one of the greatest players in Giants history, had a lot more to say than just that. He can, after all, spend an hour talking about anything from finance to furniture. So he wasn’t going to let Sapp get in the last word. One moment he was blunt, the next sarcastic, as when he responded to Sapp’s claim that Strahan holds the “mythical” single-season sack record (22.5 in 2001).


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Giants All-Time Sacks Leaders

“I’m all hype,” Strahan said. “I lasted 15 years on all hype. I have 141.5 career sacks, all hype. I was always a starter. Coaches put me out there because that was hype. I played left end and that made me get sacks. Reggie White, he was hype too but didn’t he play left end? Yeah, I was all hype.”

Sapp claimed Strahan’s credentials for the Hall do not measure up to several other finalists.

“I don't think his resume stacks up when you put Tony Dungy, Walter Jones, Marvin Harrison and Derrick Brooks up,” said Sapp, neglecting to mention that Brooks was his former teammate and Dungy his former coach with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. “Those are four first-ballot Hall of Famers.”

Sapp called Strahan’s sack record a “travesty” (because Brett Favre allegedly went down for Strahan on the record-setting sack) and called Strahan a name we can’t repeat here.

“When you stack it up,” Sapp said, “he only has four straight Pro Bowls (in truth, Strahan was elected to seven Pro Bowls, including three in a row twice) and a mythical sack record that y'all still walk around like it's something to be praised. I mean y'all have got to get off your high horse in New York and speak about the real. And when you really measure him up, he comes up short.”

Someone suggested to Strahan that perhaps Sapp should be happy he’s in the Hall of Fame and not worry so much about a contemporary who has a good chance to join him.

“I would imagine so,” said Strahan, who retired on top in 2008 after helping the Giants win Super Bowl XLII. “This is how I look at it –football is a great part of my life and I am so grateful for everything. I lasted 15 years and I didn’t finish my career as a guy who people looked at and said, ‘He’s done.’ They never looked at me and said, ‘He should give money back, he’s stealing.’ They never looked at me and said, ‘Why is he still in there? It’s his name because this guy’s much better.’ You never did that with me. I took a lot of pride in everything that I did. With that being said, I did it as hard as I could do it, the best that I could do it for 15 years. I left it and that’s a part of my life, that’s not my entire life. So for some guys, maybe that is their life. That’s all they have to hold on to.”

Hours after Sapp sounded off, continuing a feud that has run for more than a decade, Strahan voiced a few opinions of his own at a news conference to promote Fox’s coverage of the game.

“I don’t respond to him,” Strahan said, “because the tiger does not pay attention to the opinion of sheep. That’s just the way I look at it.”

Strahan, one of the greatest players in Giants history, had a lot more to say than just that. He can, after all, spend an hour talking about anything from finance to furniture. So he wasn’t going to let Sapp get in the last word. One moment he was blunt, the next sarcastic, as when he responded to Sapp’s claim that Strahan holds the “mythical” single-season sack record (22.5 in 2001).

Strahan currently has two high-profile jobs. During the week, he is co-host with Kelly Ripa of “Live with Kelly and Michael.” On Sundays, he is a studio analyst as part of the FOX Network’s NFL coverage. FOX is broadcasting Super Bowl XLVIII on Sunday from MetLife Stadium.

“My life is beyond just being a football player and sacking quarterbacks,” Strahan said. “I did it, I moved on. If I make it into the Hall of Fame that would be a great thrill. It’s kind of like in college, when I was playing and I wanted to be an All-American and I thought it was for me. I thought I wanted to be an All-Pro. I thought I wanted to be everything but then I realized once I got the trophy that it didn’t mean anything until I gave it to my mom and I gave it to my dad. That’s what this is. This is about my family, this is about my kids, this is about my teammates, this is about my coaches, this is about the people who helped me get to this point in my life. It’s not about me, because none of us do anything by ourselves. Some people may seem to think that they do and if they do they’re an idiot because nobody has anything just by doing it themselves.”

Someone told Strahan he seemed angry.

“No, I’m just trying to give a lesson here,” he said. “Life is not about yourself, careers are not who you are, careers are what you do. For me, I don’t hang on to stats and football. It’s great. I did it and I moved on. I won a Super Bowl, I’ve been to Pro Bowls, I’ve been an All-Pro, I’ve been Player of the Year. I’ve done everything I can do, so it’s not up to me to vote and see if I’m in the Hall of Fame. It’s not up to the opinion of another player if I’m in the Hall of Fame or not. We could argue back and forth all day, because there are certain guys who aren’t there who I think should be there. It’s just, to me it’s just like howling into the wind. Who really cares?”

Sapp’s beef with Strahan stretches back many years and the former Giant seems a bit baffled by it.|

“The funny thing is he would reach out to me when he was in New York,” Strahan said. “(He’d say), ‘Where can we go? Do you want to go out?’ But I’ve always respected him as a player. He would reach out to me. I was never one to reach out to him. But like I said, I always respected him and I think it’s a certain respect you have from player to player. I don’t know where it gets personal with him, because I’ve never had a personal issue with him.”

It’s certainly personal for Sapp, who doesn’t want Strahan to join him in the Hall of Fame.

“I’m glad,” Strahan said, “he doesn’t have a vote.

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