clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

VIDEO: The MNF play that still haunts Lions coach Dan Campbell, 22 years later

Dan Campbell talked about an unhappy memory from his playing days, and we tracked down the exact play.

Super Bowl X Campbell

As the Detroit Lions prepare for their “Monday Night Football” clash with the Las Vegas Raiders this week, coach Dan Campbell was asked if he had a favorite Monday night memory from his playing days. Like many former NFL players, the first memories that come to mind are the bad ones.

He immediately recalled a moment that—in his mind—lost the New York Giants the game.

“Not favorite experience, but I remember when I was with the Giants playing the Eagles,” Campbell said. “And I had an MA (missed assignment) on a critical down there in the fourth (quarter). I was supposed to release, but I blocked down. It cost us the game.”

Campbell didn’t provide a ton of other details of the play, but we managed to track it down. It’s a Week 6 loss in the 2001 season between the Giants and Eagles. New York lost the game 10-9 at home after holding the lead for nearly the entire game.

The moment in question happened with 6:15 left in the fourth quarter. The Giants were holding a 9-3 lead and had the ball third-and-4 at their own 23-yard line.

And, yes, there is a YouTube video of the entire game. You can see Campbell’s mistake at the 1:55:40 mark in the video below.

As you can see, Campbell—lined up inline next to the right tackle—blocks instead of immediately releasing, and as a result, he’s not open, the ball falls incomplete, and the Giants punt the ball away. The Eagles would score on the ensuing drive to take a 10-9 lead with under two minutes left.

Campbell not only remembers the play, but he also remembers the long walk to the sideline to have a chat with his then-offensive coordinator Sean Payton.

“I just remember I came to the sideline, and Sean looked at me and he said, ‘What’d you do?’ And I go, ‘Man, I f’ed up.’ What are you going to do? Anyway, it was awful. I was a young player. So... that’s not my favorite, but it’s the first one I thought of.”

Sorry to dig up a bad memory, Dan.

Pride of Detroit Direct

Sign up now for a 7-day free trial of Pride of Detroit Direct, with exclusive updates from Jeremy Reisman on the ground at Allen Park, instant reactions after each game, and in-depth Lions analysis from film expert Jon Ledyard.