EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Prince Amukamara has a video he wants the world to see.
Yet few know better than Amukamara how something like that can bring unwanted attention, which is why he has not uploaded onto the Internet his elaborate marriage proposal to fiancee Pilar Davis.
Because of the starring role that landed him in cold water last summer, he might not ever.
“Coach (Tom Coughlin) doesn’t like distractions, so I probably won’t put it out there; maybe after the season,” the New York Giants cornerback said with a smile. “Been there, not going there again.”
The “other” video — the one in which teammate Jason Pierre-Paul tossed Amukamara into an ice tub — created quite a stir last August, forcing the latter to learn a lesson about fitting in, the fine line between hazing and locker room foolery and the quest to earn respect.
Enduring that reality now has Amukamara in position for a breakout season, his third with the Giants since they drafted him in the first round out of Nebraska two years ago.
His confidence has never been higher, so his decision to join the masked dance crew Jabbawockeez for one night two weeks ago and pop the question fits in with his newfound sense of conviction.
Amukamara might not be ready to put the video of his engagement online, but before practice earlier this week, he gladly took the Record through the details of his plotting and the execution of his surprise. The show-stopping scene culminated with him on bended knee and Davis in tears while accepting his proposal.
Amukamara met the Jabbawockeez during his rookie season with the Giants and had been backstage at their shows several times. He flew to the Sacramento, Calif., home of Davis’ parents — he had been dating their daughter since January 2012 — and requested permission, which he received. He arranged for Davis, her parents and secretly a group of friends and family on both sides to be flown to Las Vegas with tickets to the show.
The only one missing was supposed to be Amukamara, whom Davis believed was in Nebraska finishing his training before camp opened last week.
“You know what? The vision was there. I had been talking to them for a couple months,” said Amukamara, 24. “I kinda had cold feet a little bit, but as soon as the Jabbawockeez got back to me and said we can do it, I knew I had to go with it.”
Finally appearing in a mask and with a diamond ring in his pocket, Amukamara busted a few moves as part of the show and made his way to a stunned Davis, who had been brought on stage as — unbeknownst to her — the soon-to-be star of the show.
“I have serious stage fright, so when they brought me up there, I figured Prince made a call and got them to do it as a practical joke or something,” Davis said by telephone from her home in San Diego. “When he started dancing, I thought to myself, ‘That kinda looks like Prince,’ but it didn’t hit me until I could sorta see his eyes through the mask.
“He pulled it off big time, but that’s just Prince.”
During the next few weeks, Amukamara will start watching video of another kind: that of opposing receivers, whose tendencies he plans on studying.
“In order to be the best and to get paid like the best, that’s one of the requirements: Stop the best,” Amukamara said. “I’m going to look for different tendencies, mannerisms, how guys look like when they’re gonna get the ball and when they’re not gonna get the ball.”
Amukamara has displayed flashes of brilliance so far in training camp, matching up against Victor Cruz, Hakeem Nicks and Rueben Randle, with whom he engaged in quite a practice battle earlier this week.
“I just want to make plays in games, and I know that starts in practice,” Amukamara said. “The guys haven’t necessarily been praising me and I definitely don’t expect it. But I definitely do think they respect me more now and differently than they did before. Maybe they’ve gotten used to my personality.
“Maybe they think I’m starting to elevate my game and they see potential in me.”
As Davis and the Jabbawockeez found out, Amukamara is proving ready for the spotlight of the big stage.