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Defensive captain Justin Tuck said Blackburn is one of those veterans with the ability to step in and get the job done without much practice or film time.

“As he has gotten back and gotten accustomed to it, he has been a great addition for us,” Tuck said. “I wish we could have had him all year.”

Blackburn was ready to come back at any time. He stayed in shape after no one signed him as a free agent and didn’t slack off until the beginning of November when his wife Megan gave birth to their second child - a son named Bentley.

“I was in the hospital with my wife, and bringing them home and helping out, that was the hardest part,” Blackburn said. “Once he was born, I wasn’t worried about not getting the opportunity, that wasn’t what made me frustrated. It was more I had a family and I have to work.”

Blackburn, who graduated with a math degree, came close to working in Dublin, Ohio, where one of his former coaches was a principal at a middle school.

“We talked about it and he thought I would be good for the job,” Blackburn said. “He was trying to get the ball rolling because there was a job that was about to be available because of a maternity leave. It wasn’t a done deal, but we were trying to get the ball rolling.”

The ball is now rolling in a different direction and there is a chance Blackburn could follow it all the way to Indianapolis for a second shot at the Super Bowl with the Giants.