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Coughlin on Burress: 'It is what it is'

Tom Coughlin said he hasn’t paid any attention to Plaxico Burress’ take on their relationship.

Burress called his relationship with Coughlin “ambivalent” earlier this week.

“I don’t pay any attention to it. It is what it is,” Couglin said on Wednesday at Yankee Stadium. “Maybe he’s sending me a long a badge of honor, how do I know.”

While Coughlin’s comment was vague, Burress left little to the imagination in his description of his relationship with Coughlin.

"My situation in New York, me and my coach had an ambivalent relationship to say the least," Burress said. "Some things that I didn't agree with, with the way he went about things. And the only way to show my way was to just rebel. Is that who I am? No."

"That was one of the biggest problems when I left Pittsburgh when I came here," Burress continued. "I had a relationship with Bill Cowher inside of football and outside of football. He always had an open-door policy to where you could come talk to him or tell him what was on your mind. When that was taken away from me, I kind of felt it was like: I'm the coach, you are the player. It doesn't matter what you have to say. You just do what I tell you to do."

"This is not college," he added. "This is professional sports. If you can't sit down and go talk to a man that you are busting your tail for, not even have the respect for anything that you have to say, like I said, the only thing I knew then was to rebel."

Coughlin reiterated that he hoped Burress could regain a sense of normalcy after his release from prison.

Said Coughlin: “I hope he gets some normalcy in his life and has a chance to spend some time with his family and that he gets to know his kids once again and his wife whose done a tremendous job of holding that family together for the last two years – she deserves some help.”

TC ON LOCKOUT: Coughlin is ‘optimistic’ that there will be an end to the lockout in the near future.

“I’m real optimistic,” Coughlin said. “I knew that going into this week that they had had a good couple of days the week before. From what I understand there may have been a little tension mounted a little bit today but I’m hoping that it has nothing to do with the optimism and the good feelings that have been created.”

He admitted that the lockout – and the lack of offseason workouts that come along with it – will affect the Giants training camp, whenever that starts.

“You’re going to have to gauge the level of conditioning, of course. No one’s had any contact work in the spring,” said Coughlin, who said he saw value in the Giants’ voluntary workouts. “…. But you trust the fact that they’ve lifted and they’ve conditioned. But you’re going to have to be in position where your gauging the level of conditioning before you start the real intense physical work.”

ALBANY OR N.J.? Coughlin said that if the lockout delays training camp past a certain date – he did not specify the date – that the Giants would be forced to move training camp from the campus of the University of Albany to their team training facility in East Rutherford, N.J.