Troy legend Lawrence Tynes shares message of team unity to Trojans
Published 1:09 pm Friday, August 4, 2023
Troy University Sports Hall of Famer – and Super Bowl winning kicker – Lawrence Tynes was in town on Friday and made sure to stop by Troy Football practice and deliver a message to the 2023 Trojans.
Tynes played college football at Troy – starting out as a walk-on kicker – and ended his Trojan career ranked third all-time in field goals made (44) and second all-time in field goal percentage (77.2). His 98.2 PAT percentage is a Troy record, as well. Tynes said being back in Troy was special.
“It feels really good,” Tynes said. “It feels the same, other than all the new structures everywhere. Football feels the same, but it feels good to be back now since my kids are 16 years old. They’ve been here before but I think they appreciate it a little more seeing where I played college football.”
Tynes went on to play professionally for more than 10 years. He started his career with the Kansas City Chiefs practice squad. He then played for the Scottish Claymores – having been born in Scotland – for the NFL Europe and one season for the Ottawa Renegades of the CFL.
Tynes got a second chance with the Chiefs and became the team’s full-time kicker from 2004 through 2006.
Tynes is most known for his time as a New York Giant, however, playing there from 2007 through 2012 and winning two Super Bowls during that timeframe. During his Giant career, he hit game-winning field goals twice in overtime of NFC Championship games to send the Giants to their Super Bowl appearances.
“One of the great things we have here at Troy is history and tradition and a long lineage of guys that have gone on to play the game at a high level and he is one of them,” Troy Coach Jon Sumrall said of Tynes. “It’s an honor for him to be able to come spend some time with us and for our guys to get to see you can go to Troy and be a walk-on and become what he became, which is really special.”
Tynes spoke to the Trojans following Friday’s practice and delivered a message to the team.
“For me, it’s always been about the team from Tom Coughlin to the Super Bowl teams we played on,” Tynes said. “There was such a camaraderie amongst those groups. I think sometimes we can get blown away by the measurables and talent, but at the end of the day it’s all about team and camaraderie.
“If you’re building what Jon Sumrall did last year, that’s big. You don’t win 12 games by accident, I don’t care what league you’re playing in. It’s all about the team, I’ll never deviate from that. Talent is talent but team is the ultimate thing for me. I told them to make sure they meet a new guy today. This team is new; this is the first version of this team. Go spend lunch with a guy you don’t know on the football team. That’s how you start to build camaraderie.”
Trojan players were thrilled to get the chance to meet and speak with Tynes.
“It was pretty cool,” quarterback Gunnar Watson said with a smile. “He graduated from Troy the year I was born, so that’s crazy and it was really cool. He knows what he’s talking about. He’s played on some great teams (in the NFL) and played on some great teams at Troy.”
Tynes has been able to develop a relationship with Sumrall in the past two years.
“He’s great. We visit during the season by text,” Tynes said of his relationship with Troy’s coach. “I’ll text him and mess with him and jab him a little bit if a play didn’t go well or if they won a close game. He’s great, though. He took me in like I played for him. I appreciate that and I think any former player would.”
Tynes said the way Sumrall welcomes alumni back at Troy is special.
“When you have a coach that respects the tradition of Troy University and all the great players that came before me and after me it says a lot,” Tynes emphasized. “You always feel welcome coming back and seeing friends here. Troy is home, I don’t care how long you’ve been away, it will always be home.”
OTD Lawrence Tynes sent us to the Super Bowl (again!) pic.twitter.com/LukeEsa9bL
— New York Giants (@Giants) January 22, 2021