Player Spotlight: Bill Ard, New York Giants
We recently had a chance to catch up with our New York Giants player representative, Bill Ard. This is Ard’s 5th year of involvement with the Taste of the NFL; he is excited to be back! After playing for both the New York Giants and the Green Bay Packers, Ard went into a career in the financial services industry, where he is still working after over 20 years. Ard grew up in New Jersey as a Giants fan; his father was a longtime Giants season ticket holder. Luckily he got the chance to not only play for the Giants, but to accompany them to Super Bowl XXI where they secured the World Championship title. Ard shared his excitement in winning the NFC title game that season. Comparing the two victories, the one advantage that the NFC title game had was that the Giants could continue their journey to the top; he remembers the Super Bowl as being a bit anticlimactic—it meant the end of football season. While with the Giants, he also had the opportunity to be coached by Bill Parcells, one of the great coaches in NFL history. Ard still finds himself using “Parcell-isms” in his daily life and spoke of the coach with great admiration. Both of the last two Super Bowl champions are teams that Ard belonged to during his career. He is extremely happy for both organizations, sharing that they’re both full of solid people playing for passionate fan-bases. Ard pointed out that it used to be easier to predict which teams would make it to the Super Bowl. Now, it seems that it is just whichever team gets hot at the right time. The Giants, Packers and the Atlanta Falcons are all strong possibilities for Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans. Ard knew after his first experience with Taste of the NFL that it was something he wanted to be a part of for as long as possible. He thinks it’s a great party for an outstanding cause, calling it the “Party with Attitude.” Ard encourages fans to attend this year’s event because there is nowhere else to get the best food from around the country, a great atmosphere with great music and a celebration that benefits a great purpose. We look forward to seeing you in a few months, Bill!