Since the New York Giants' win over the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, there's been a decent amount of smack talk coming directly from the Giants' players, which is to be expected. That's who they are, and they're feeling like world beaters right now after sending home the team that was "supposed to win it all."
Generally this season, the 49ers players have shied away from this type of behavior, but this morning, Niner safety Donte Whitner threw up a tweet as a general response to the trash talk coming from New York.
I've been hearing some rumblings since this tweet that the 49ers should just ignore it completely, and not give the Giants any of the constantly mentioned "bulletin board material." While I can see that side of the argument, and why some people feel like this uncharacteristic 49er tweet was a sign that the Niners are taking the bait, I personally don't have a problem with Whitner putting this out there, as long as...
This is the end of it.
The Giants are going to keep talking, and we all know that. It's just what they do, and that's not going to change anytime soon - especially as we get closer to Sunday's NFC Championship Game at Candlestick Park this coming Sunday. What Whitner tweeted should just be the end of the "talk" coming out of the Niner locker room, especially if he means what he said.
But I guess the question that this whole thing brings me to is this - and it's something I really haven't thought about in reference to the 49ers lately, as they really haven't had much room to do much "talking" the past 9 years anyway.
Does all of the trash talk really affect what happens on the field once the game clock starts ticking and the players are on the field?
To me, I look at a team like the New York Jets, and more specifically, their loud mouthed head coach Rex Ryan. It's one thing to be confident, and want to build your team up to give them confidence going into any game. I think there's definitely a point where it becomes "too much" though, and serves as more of a distraction than it does a motivator. A football team's confidence level - or any sports team's for that matter - should come from what they do on the field, not what they say before they even suit up for a game. When the talking gets to reach a ridiculous level, I think it can switch to having a negative effect and cause a team to lose focus by getting too cocky, too arrogant, and possibly give them a false sense of confidence, even a false sense of entitlement, once the opening kickoff is in the air.
I'd be interested to hear some others' thoughts on this stuff. It seems trivial and stupid on some levels, but there certainly is a mental chess game that goes on throughout the weeks before these win-or-go-home weekends. I say, let the Giants keep talking, and let Whitner's sole tweet stand alone. Because if he meant what he said...
Then there's nothing else that NEEDS to be said until Sunday afternoon.