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Umenyiora blames missed media session on a misunderstanding

INDIANAPOLIS -- New York Giants defensive end Osi Umenyiora, whom the NFL fined $20,000 on Wednesday for missing a mandatory media session, attributed his failure to appear before reporters to a misunderstanding of the week's rules.

Umenyiora said he wasn't aware he was required to speak to the media Monday through Thursday during Super Bowl week.

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"I chose to hang out with my family," Umenyiora said during the Giants' last player availability before Sunday's game. "I didn't know it was a mandatory media session, simply because we had Media Day (on) Tuesday. I didn't know it was Media Day every day."

Umenyiora wasn't sure what questions he would have faced Wednesday that were much different from Tuesday's Media Day event at Lucas Oil Stadium.

"We hadn't practiced; we hadn't done anything," Umenyiora said. "I didn't really know there was anything that needed to be talked about between Tuesday and Wednesday. It was a mistake, a big mistake, but a mistake nonetheless."

The $20,000 fine didn't come as a surprise to Umenyiora.

"I understood it; I completely understood it," he said. "The NFL has to do what they have to do to protect the brand and get the product out to the people. I understood why they fined me that much, and it's OK."

Giants coach Tom Coughlin likes following schedules and avoiding any off-the-field distractions, especially leading up to a game as big as Super Bowl XLVI against the New England Patriots.

"We weren't pleased with that, but Osi will participate and be there today," Coughlin said.

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