EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Giants coach Tom Coughlin was hit with a 15-yard penalty in a preseason game against the Colts Indianapolis in August for straying onto the playing field during the action. He was not fined $100,000, as Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin was for the dance he did with Baltimore Ravens kick returner Jacoby Jones on Thanksgiving night, but Coughlin said coaches these days are well aware of the importance of staying where they're supposed to stay.
"Right now, there's such a premium on 'You'd better stay off the white, you'd better stay off the white!'" Coughlin said. "We're all yelling and screaming that. We're reminded about that by the officials every week, too. You find yourself sometimes running down the sideline on the white, but you're not even supposed to be on the white because the officials have to have access there. And that is a most difficult penalty to absorb."
Coughlin is well known as a coach who spends as much time with his foot on the field -- either throwing a challenge flag or trying to grab the officials' attention about something -- as any coach in the league. But the parallels to Tomlin's situation aren't there because he has yet to have an incident where he's affected or nearly affected a play in progress. It may well be, for Coughlin, about knowing how to pick his spots.