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David Tyree: “I Would Absolutely Support Any Player on the Giants Who Identified as Gay”

July 25th, 2014 at 1:00 PM
By Dan Benton

The New York Giants' decision to hire David Tyree as their new Director of Player Development — a move that was announced earlier this week — has ignited a firestorm across the league and throughout the LGBT community. It has twice drawn the ire of the Human Rights Campaign — once when the hire was first announced and then again when the hire was defended — and even drew some criticism from former members of the Giants.

"Number one, he was qualified for the job. He is a terrific fit for us and we're happy to have him on board," General Manager Jerry Reese said earlier this week. "Sometimes you say some things that maybe you don't want to say or shouldn't have said and things can get blown out of proportion to a degree. But I'm not here to talk about social issues or somebody's personal opinion about their beliefs.

"I believe everybody should be treated equal, I believe everybody should be treated fairly, I believe everybody should have an opinion on what they want to say. Most of all I believe I should mind my own business and try to keep the plank out of my own eye."

Despite the Giants' very public equal rights stance, which includes support of the LGBT community, critics of this hire refused to focus on anything other than David Tyree's religious beliefs and comments he made in both 2011 and 2013, which included a willingness to hypothetically trade the Super Bowl XLII title for the elimination of gay marriage and a belief in conversion therapy.

"When did Tyree decide to be straight?" Human Rights Campaign president Chad Griffin asked in the statement. "The idea that someone can change their sexual orientation or gender identity is ludicrous, and the New York Giants are risking their credibility by hiring someone who publicly advocates this junk science. His opposition to basic legal equality aside, David Tyree's proselytizing of such dangerous practices goes against the positive work the Giants organization has done in recent years."

One person who wasn't so quick to express an intolerance of Tyree's religious beliefs — although he admittedly doesn't agree with them — was Wade Davis, an openly gay former NFL player who gave Tyree a chance to express his beliefs in a way that opened the door to not only positive communication, but now, a budding friendship.

"During the current media firestorm surrounding Giants’ hiring of David, I paused to reflect on my initial resistance toward him and asked myself, can we create the space for all individuals to evolve? Have we given up on understanding, engaging, and educating? Are we unwilling to offer compassion to those whose views may shock or offend us? Why has the default response now become to vilify and judge before we seek to ask questions?" Davis recently wrote.

As Davis spent more time with Tyree and his family, he came to realize Tyree wasn't actually attempting to change anyone, but just wasn't expressing his religious beliefs in the most appropriate of ways. But now, with the lines of communication fully open, Tyree has been able to get his message across through Davis.

"Christianity teaches us love, compassion, and respect for our fellow man, and it is in that light that I will continue to work with Wade and others to better serve the gay community. I would absolutely support any player on the Giants who identified as gay, in any way I could. And I will continue to stay in touch with Wade to ensure I am aware of the right ways to do that," Tyree said.

Despite the support of Wade Davis and other members of the LGBT community, the Human Rights Campaign has not removed their multiple statements demeaning the Giants or Tyree, and have not offered any follow-up on Davis' remarks or Tyree's latest statement.


Seeing your team play in the SuperBowl is priceless. Watching the SuperBowl live in the stands for $1 per week is beyond priceless. Find out how at, the future of Championship Tickets. Tags: David Tyree, Football, Jerry Reese, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Wade Davis

43 Responses to “David Tyree: “I Would Absolutely Support Any Player on the Giants Who Identified as Gay””

  1.  fanfor55years says:

    fanfor55years says:
    July 25, 2014 at 1:01 PM
    Does anyone really recognize what has happened to the Giants’ linebackers? Beason looks to be headed toward full health and played at a Pro Bowl level last season. McClain could play SAM for just about any team in the league and play it well. Kennard comes in and looks good enough to get the coaching staff seriously excited about him (listen to Jim Hermann and you’d swear he’s ready to start at MLB if they needed him, and is definitely in the mix to start at SAM as soon as the season starts). Williams looks bigger and reportedly is playing more fluidly and not having to think too much now. Paysinger is just a plain old smart, savvy, talented linebacker who like Kiwi, may not be a superstar but can always be relied upon to play pretty well and make some plays. Fox comes in and surprises everyone with his talent. Herzlich comes to camp quicker, totally familiar with every facet of the defense, and ready to continue to make big plays on special teams.

    It’s time for all of us to stop complaining about the second line of defense. It’s as good as we’ve had since LT retired and, top-to-bottom, probably one of the better crews in the league. Tell me who else has the equal of Beason, McClain, Williams, Paysinger, Kennard, Herzlich/Fox as their top six on the depth chart? Yes, the Niners have the best starters. But starters aren’t the whole story.

  2. Dan BentonDan Benton says:

    Gonna have to reign in some of the political/religious talk. I realize this is a sensitive subject, but some of the stuff has been taken a little far lately. Especially when you see the sarcastic and dismissive nature of these “tolerant” folk who are anything but.

    You’ve all been warned. Don’t be smartasses and ask stupid question. Every single person here knows exactly what I am talking about. Last thing I wanna do is start banning people just as they return.

  3.  Nosh.0 says:

    Good PR move on Tyree’s part.

  4.  Nosh.0 says:

    I see a lot of talk the last 24 hours about Adrien Robinson and I wanted to chime in. You know what AR’s biggest problem is? Tom Coughlin.

    The kid is the longest tenured TE on the roster and by far the most talented. He should have already been named the starter. There is this stupid rhetoric around football that coaches love to use and fans by into, “competition brings out the best in everybody”. Well no, actually it doesn’t. Not when a guy knows he will be seeing limited practice reps.

    Eli and Peyton Manning have never had to compete for a job in their lives. Not their adult lives anyway. Can you imagine if L.T. had to earn a job through limited practice reps and performance in team meetings? The whole thing is a joke.

    Again, he was a 4th round pick, the highest TE investment on the roster. He has the most physical talent, and he’s the longest tenured. I really couldn’t care less how he has preformed in limited first and 2nd team reps and in positional meetings. Put his a-s-s on the field and teach the kid what he needs to know. Un effing believable he hasn’t been named the starter yet.

    •  Nosh.0 says:

      Especially when he’s competing with equal unknowns Larry Donnell, Daniel Fells, Xavier Grimble and Kellin Davis.

      Put the kid on the first team full time and lets finally see what he can do. Coughlin for a smart guy he does some dumb s-h-i-t sometimes.

    • Dan BentonDan Benton says:

      Robinson’s biggest problem isn’t TC, it’s health. He’s been hurt non-stop every moment of his Giants career.

      All the talent in the world, but doesn’t practice, doesn’t play and is constantly sidelined with injury.

      •  skinnydoogan says:

        I tend to agree Dan, the other “unknown” guys don’t seem to have a problem getting on the field, AR looks like a bust to me.

      •  GOAT56 says:

        So are you saying if Robinson stays healthy as he has been thus far during the offseason that he will be the starter?

        •  skinnydoogan says:

          No I am not and I can see how you would think I did say that. My mistake, I think injuries play a role, but I also don’t think he is very good, and I don’t think he will evolve into a serviceable tight end.

        •  Nosh.0 says:

          He was injured last season. He’s been healthy so far in 2014. You made a relatively high investment in him (4th round pick) and it’s basically his make or break year. Why would you not give that investment every opportunity you can to succeed?

          We’ve seen this time and time again with TC. Especially when the OL was failing last year and Brandon Mosley was on the bench. We saw it with Victor Cruz, when he dropped a 3rd down pass against Washington. That could have easily been the end of his career if not for a Mannigham injury 2 weeks later. This idea that the coaches always start the best 22 players is false.

          Name the kid the starter. If he fails then replace him. But lets give him a chance to fail first.

          •  GOAT56 says:

            I don’t care if they name him the starter now but they better give him legit snaps when the season starts. I agree he should be named starter, I’m just not frustrated about it yet.

    •  skinnydoogan says:

      Nosh, I usually find myself in accord with most things you say, but what makes you say AR is the most talented?

      •  Nosh.0 says:

        Jerry Reese. I know people like to joke about “the Jpp of TE’s” quote. But when I hear JR say someone is a great athlete, I believe him.

  5. Anthony Raiaaxr29 says:

    Interesting note from Football Outsiders

    Football Outsiders projects the Giants’ defense in the same tier as the Panthers and the Jets, with all three chasing the Seahawks for the right to be considered the best defense in the league.

    If the defense can be that good, and the offense is better than it was last year I don’t see why the Giants can’t compete and at least give Seattle and San Fran a run for their money

    •  fanfor55years says:

      I’ve been saying this for quite some time (about the defense).

      Read my comment below about the offense.

      This team is for real.

  6.  Kettles78 says:

    I have no idea if Robinson can be any good because he never is healthy. Comes back last year from being hurt and is hurt the very first play I believe.

    So now that Will Hill Multiple offenses 6 games, Rice first offense (I think) 2 games, Gordon multiple offenses many games, I wonder if the commish will start to take some action on the Owners such as Irsay and the Browns owner.

  7.  fanfor55years says:

    You know what I think? I think it’s great that what we’re worried about is the tight ends. Not that many months ago we had to put up with people around here bashing just about every position on the team. The national punditry, and even those who cover the NFC East, don’t seem to even realize yet how many strengths this team possesses.

    The defense really didn’t lose much with the loss of Tuck and Joseph because their production can and will be equaled or bettered by Hankins, Patterson, Kuhn, Moore and Kiwi (all as part of rotations and who will be taking the snaps that Tuck and Joseph took). Many want to pretend that isn’t the case. They will be proved dead wrong. We DID lose a lot with the loss of Will Hill, so we’ll have to count on the delta between Brown and Hill being far less than the positive delta between McBride (as a starter) and DRC and Thurmond. And the linebackers are FAR better with the addition of McClain and the rookies.

    But it’s the offense and special teams that are drastically different and better. Better scheme. Better tempo. Easier reads. Easier blocking assignments (because blocks don’t have to be held as long and the mixture of plays will be better and the defense will tire more quickly). Far better running game. better protection for Eli. No receivers playing to protect themselves so refusing to complete patterns. Defense can’t anticipate the snap. And clearly better personnel on the line and in the backfield. Finally excellent returners from whom to pick (including Wilson for kickoff returns as a possibility again). Far better depth on the roster so far better talent on special teams. And probably most important of all, McAdoo instead of Gilbride. Different voice. Different mentality. Different standards. Enthusiasm instead of perplexity. Variation instead of predictability.

    This is a very different Giants team and I think it only a matter of time before people start realizing they’re for real. It may take a few games into the season for them to click, but this is a team no one will want to play.

    •  Kettles78 says:

      I think Joseph is a huge loss because you knew what the Giants were getting from him. While Kuhn and Hankins are promising, treating it as guaranteed that they will equal Joseph’s production is just a hope not a known commodity in my opinion. With that said I hope they both play really well so it is not a huge loss

      •  fanfor55years says:

        In fewer snaps last season Hankins’ production was BETTER than Joseph’s on a per snap basis. And he, and Patterson will get more snaps this season and I believe Patterson is as good or better than Joseph.

        So not just a hope. It’s really just about a fact.

        •  GOAT56 says:

          I think you’ve always underrated Joseph but that doesn’t mean we can’t replace him. I think Patterson is a guy if we ask too many snaps his performance level will drop. We need to keep him at around last year’s snaps IMO. Hankins did produce those number but my concern is can he continue that quality of production with a huge increase in quantity of snaps. I hope so but just feel it’s a legit question.

        •  Kettles78 says:

          Patterson the same level as Joseph? I disagree with that. Patterson came off a scary head issue to play well last year but the same level as Joseph? Per snap basis is great but that also doesn’t mean the same rate of play would continue when played out over a 16 game schedule as a starter. So fact is Joseph was a really good DT for the Giants and received a nice pay day and Hankins has a lot of potential and Patterson is a solid DT at his state in his career

    •  skinnydoogan says:

      I agree FF and you are also right, nuff said about TE’s. Somebody more qualified than any of us, will decide what is best.

  8.  skinnydoogan says:

    Has anyone heard anything about Bromley? All has been mysteriously quiet in regards to him in camp so far…..

  9.  GOAT56 says:

    I hope that if Kinnard is playing well and Beason returns we just don’t start McClain just because. Look I like McClain and think he was a very good signing but it sounds like we might struck gold with Kinnard. I want to let him start if he looks the part while Beason is out.

    I hope we let Moore play. He doesn’t have to start in base packages but he should be a starter in all nickel and dime packages.

    Let Hankins play. Even if Patterson if every bit what F55 says we need Hankins this year. He should be starting for either Patterson or Jenkins in our base defense because he won’t be getting many id any nickel or Diem snaps.

    Those are addition to previous mentions of letting Williams, Wilson and ODB play.

    Also I hope we go with this kid kicker. His leg when the weather gets bad could help us win some games. It would be good to have a legit chance at a 60 yarder to end the half or win the game. Plus even more touchbacks.

  10.  Nosh.0 says:

    I’ll steal another Jerry Reese quote. If 2 players on this roster have a great season we likely win the division. Eli and JPP. Obviously there is more needed in order to make the playoffs, but those 2 still remain the biggest pieces to the puzzle.

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