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Pretty Good Sintim Article


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By Dave Fawcett

 

Published: May 15, 2009

 

Clint Sintim first wore No. 51 at Gar-Field when then-Indians head coach Jim Poythress sug-gested Sintim switch to that number in honor of former Chicago Bears great Dick Butkus.

 

Sintim took to the idea and developed such a deep attachment to the number that he not only wore it as an all-state defensive end for the Indians, but also as a pass-rushing linebacker at the University of Virginia.

 

Clint Sintim and No. 51.

 

One was synonymous with the other until last weekend when Sintim began life as a New York Giant, wearing No. 97 during the team's three-day mini-camp that wrapped up Sunday.

 

It was a minor adjustment compared to learning the complexities of an NFL playbook. Sintim knew beforehand he had a different number after checking the Giants' roster; third-year line-backer Zak DeOssie already had the number.

 

But the change still served an important purpose. It reminded him of his place in the pecking order as an NFL rookie.

 

"I'd be lying if I said I didn't want to wear No. 51, but in college I was a big fish in a small pond," Sintim said. "Here you are paying your dues so you keep your mouth shut. If they gave me No. 66, then I would have taken it. You just roll with it."

 

During three days of practices and meetings, Sintim did just that as he got a taste of what to ex-pect as an NFL player in one of the league's most prestigious organizations.

 

Going without pads and playing against other rookies and undrafted free agents, Sintim soaked in as much as he could at the Giants' practice facility in East Rutherford, N.J. before heading back to Charlottesville and then going home to Woodbridge Monday for a brief stay.

 

He leaves Sunday for New York to participate in the Giants' off-season workout program for five weeks.

 

"The experience is still surreal," Sintim said.

 

Sintim said there were four NFL teams he wanted to play for and the Giants were one of them. New York coveted Sintim as well, enough so that they considered taking him with their first-round pick.

 

New York ended up selecting North Carolina wide receiver Hakeem Nicks at No. 29 instead, in part because the Giants needed to fill a void caused by the departure of Plaxico Burress.

 

But the vote inside the Giants' draft room between picking Nicks or Sintim was close.

 

"I had heard it was 6-5," Sintim said.

 

With the opportunity to draft Sintim in the second round, the Giants wasted no time when their turn to pick came at No. 45. A few minutes before the selection was broadcast on television, New York officials called Sintim and told him they were drafting him.

 

Soon, Sintim fielded numerous phone calls and text messages from well-wishers as the news quickly spread.

 

The day after the draft, Sintim even got a call from Giants' quarterback Eli Manning.

 

"He told me how excited they were to have me there and that it was a great organization and they were glad I was a part of it," Sintim said.

 

Before leaving for the mini-camp, Sintim received more encouragement from Virginia head coach Al Groh. Groh and Giants head coach Tom Coughlin were assistants under Bill Parcells when New York won the Super Bowl in 1990.

 

It was Groh in fact who compared Sintim to former Giants star linebacker Carl Banks when Groh first saw a tape of Sintim during Sintim's junior year at Gar-Field.

 

"He told me you have to take a professional approach and be ready to perform and leave a good impression," Sintim said. "He said for me to be the type of player I was in col-lege and he told me who the Giants were and what it meant to play for them."

 

When Sintim arrived last Thursday for camp, he saw the similarities between Groh and Coughlin right away when Coughlin addressed the players.

 

"The perfect word for him is that he's a disciplinarian," Sintim said. "He's all about business. He's a no-nonsense guy. It's similar to the type of model Coach Groh ran at Virginia. You want to stay on [Coughlin's] good side."

 

Sintim said the biggest challenge for him is learning the terminology and the schemes. In some cases during the practices, he understood the scheme, but didn't know the name for it because it was called something different at Virginia.

 

"I need to play with more confidence," Sintim said. "I knew what I was doing at Virginia. Right now, I'm not sure what I'm doing."

 

During his five-week stay in the New York area, Sintim will devote most of his time becoming familiar with the Giants' playbook.

 

Contract negotiations are not expected to heat up until closer to training camp, Sintim's agent Michael Perrett said. The Giants will open up at the University of Albany (N.Y.) the first week of August.

 

Perrett said that typically teams start negotiating first with the seventh-round picks and work their way back to the first round, meaning some deals may not get done until the day training camp begins. Perrett said other things like market value will also factor into determining the time frame for signing.

 

The only thing in place right now is an injury protection letter from the Giants that allows Sintim to attend workouts on the understanding that if he got hurt before he signs, it would not affect his contract negotiations with the team.

 

"The team would view it as though he wasn't injured," Perrett said. "That way, he can't lose any money."

 

Sintim won't take too much with him when he leaves Sunday: some clothes and his car, a Mitsubishi Galant dubbed the "Silver Bullet."

 

He gave the car that nickname a few years ago because it was silver, but also because some of his friends at U.Va. had names for their cars as well.

 

It's a small thing now, just a connection to his past when he played at Virginia.

 

But Sintim can't help but catch himself when he realizes how quickly things have changed in such a short period of time.

 

"A lot of things are coming along and I am understanding more and more," Sintim said. "When I get back up there, I'm going to learn more and more to build on what I can."

 

http://www.insidenova.com/isn/sports/local..._athlete/35778/

 

 

if thats true about the draft room vote thats pretty sweet we ended up with both of them

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Maybe someone should give Zak a call and remind him he's the team long snapper. Zak, do us all a favor, and give the boy his 51 number. You're the long snapper for crying out loud.

 

A Sintim is an unproven rookie *shrugs*

 

Maybe once Sintim is a solid starter for us we can see a switch in numbers but in all honesty I dont see the big deal with players and numbers, Sintim is just being a bitchy about it. After he lines up on the field in Giants blue I dont think he will care what number is on his chest.

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Sintim said there were four NFL teams he wanted to play for and the Giants were one of them. New York coveted Sintim as well, enough so that they considered taking him with their first-round pick.

 

:)

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Soon, Sintim fielded numerous phone calls and text messages from well-wishers as the news quickly spread.

 

Yo man, how come mad people get to text players and we don't? Ha? We mad royal man; we deserve more respect from our players. Who got any players' numbers.. post 'em so we be texitn' .. holla

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Yo man, how come mad people get to text players and we don't? Ha? We mad royal man; we deserve more respect from our players. Who got any players' numbers.. post 'em so we be texitn' .. holla

 

Somehow KiwisTucked was able to hack Nas's account....this should be reported.

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Somehow KiwisTucked was able to hack Nas's account....this should be reported.

 

Give me credit my Canadian friend. Who would've thought I'd go from "Tank u cam agan!!" to "holla" in such a short period of time only to be followed with a 12 page rebuttal to the New York State Commission of Human Rights.

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