Rolle: Eagles were 'cheap-shotting'

Michael Vick gets hit by the Giants' Kenny Phillips and Antrel Rolle during the third quarter. (Ron Cortes/Staff Photographer)

The back-and-forth between the Eagles and Giants began during the lockout and continued all the way up to kickoff Sunday at the Linc.

Even now that the game is over, it's clear the two teams don't like each other.

During one stretch in the second quarter, Giants defensive back Antrel Rolle was in the middle of a couple scuffles. On one play, he and DeSean Jackson mixed it up after Michael Vick completed a 17-yard pass to Clay Harbor for a first down.

On the very next play, Brent Celek and Rolle got tangled up after a LeSean McCoy run, and the officials whistled Rolle for an unnecessary roughness penalty that set up the Eagles touchdown.

So what's Rolle's take on why things got heated?

"I felt like they were cheap-shotting a little bit, they kept trying to put their hand up in my facemask and kept grinding after the play," Rolle said, per Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN New York. "I just had to let them know that I am not a pushover, I am not a punk under any means and sometimes you have to put your foot down. Even if it costs you a little bit, sometimes it has to be done."

"I just felt like sometimes it is bigger than the game," Rolle continued later. "I don’t want them to get that attitude over us, that they have more swagger than us or they have more passion or more desire or even more toughness."

The Eagles had won six in a row over New York prior to Sunday, and some players clearly thought they had a mental edge after last year's comeback victory, but that didn't help the Birds much Sunday in the 29-16 loss.

Meanwhile, Giants defenders don't think Vick has much of a case about not getting calls from the officials. As Eagletarian points out, the New York Post went as far as to depict Vick as a baby on its back page.

And in an interview with WFAN, Justin Tuck talked about his neck injury, but referenced Vick's comments, saying opponents were going at his head too.

"I think a lot of teams know I have been having a little issue with it," Tuck said. "I don’t want to be Michael Vick here but they are kind of going at my head a little bit too. It is going to be something that we can battle through and it is something that I can battle through right now. As long as I can battle through it, I am going to continue to play and hopefully we can get it quieted down here."

The injuries seemed to slow Tuck down on Sunday. He finished with no sacks, no QB hits and one tackle, which came on a run play where the Eagles tried to block him with Harbor.

If you missed my posts from Monday, I published Man Up on the Eagles' defense and took a closer look at the 13 times the Giants hit Vick on Sunday.

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