On Oct. 30, 2002, then-New York Jets head coach Herm Edwards came to a press conference three days after watching his team lose at home to the the Cleveland Browns by blowing a 15-point, second-half lead to fall into last place in the AFC East. What ensued became one of the most memorable coach press conferences of all time.
New York Times reporter Judy Battista asked Coach Edwards if he needed to talk to his team about not giving up on the season. His answer was the now-legendary, “You play to win the game! Hello?!?” This line still resonates, is still referenced, and footage of Edwards’ exasperated utterance of it even famously found its way into a Coors commercial.
As we near the 10th anniversary of that press conference, this Sunday’s edition of ESPN’s Sunday NFL Countdown, on Oct. 28 at 10am ET, will feature Edwards — who is now an ESPN analyst — revisiting his moment in history, and sharing the stories behind the rant.
“I don’t know if Herm realized this is going to be the moment that defines my career, and when people think of Herm Edwards, this is what they’re going to think of,” says Judy Battista, the reporter who asked him the question that launched the tirade, in the report.
Edwards says in the report, “Everything I know about football, and love about football — when you’re asked a question, ‘Are you gonna quit?’ — that’s not an option. It’s never been an option in my life.”