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On Second Thought: Giants misfortune first to blame?

I know I know, the Giants played horribly the other night. Everyone wants to blame the game plan, the coaches, the players — it was a disaster. They hit bottom. But as I rewatch the first half of action, I can’t help but think what might have been if the ball bounced a bit differently for the Giants on Thanksgiving night.

While the Giants confidence is clearly shaken at every level, and while we the fans want to hold the organization’s feet to the fire, as I try to unravel what truly went wrong for the Giants it’s becoming more and more clear that the Giants had one of those perfect storm games where some small missteps here and there became magnified throughout the course of the game.

So, before I get into my weekly long and ranting Unpacking The Loss post I want to first go on the record and say this: what clearly may be the final nail in the coffin for the Giants season is not clearly the fault of any one person, it was a bunch of little things that went wrong — some controllable, some not — and it added up to a big stinking loss.

Specifically, a different outcome to these plays may have changed the tone of the game for the Giants — and thus our feeling about how badly the team played in general:

• Mario Manningham’s first down catch that wasn’t

• Travis Beckum’s 9 yard pickup sent backwards 20 yard by Brian Dawkins’ helmet

• Danny Ware’s fumble

• Steve Smith’s dropped cross off his hands

What is represented here is 4 separate Giants drives that ended in punts or turnovers — obviously which effected the offensive production for the Giants or lack thereof.

However, each of these plays on a different day or different field or with slightly different timing could have changed the outcome of the game for the Giants. It just so happened that these micro-disasters all happened in succession and incrementally made the day impossible for the Giants to turn things around and come out on top.

An analogy is like a real life plane crash — an engine doesn’t fall off, or explode, or get sucked into a portal a la Donnie Darko. In real life, plane crashes occur when a bunch of little mistakes happen oddly in succession to create one big circumstance of disaster. Some of these mistakes are controllable, some aren’t. Some mistakes were great defensive plays by Denver, some were uncharacteristic drops from perfectly thrown balls, some were just dumb luck with Dawkins’ helmet ending up right on the ball. This was what forced Big Blue’s jumbo jet from the sky Thanksgiving night… a series of little mistakes adding up to a huge failure that left them unable to maneuver and save the craft.

I’ll have more on the breakdown this weekend – but I think a little optimism will serve us well. All is not lost. Next Sunday is a new day, a new destination – and a renewed focus on the mission… winning games and making it to the Playoffs.

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2 Responses to “On Second Thought: Giants misfortune first to blame?”

  1. mike n. says:

    Shoulda,coulda woulda….It doesn’t matter if a few bounces go the Giants way, the result would still be the same. Last in red zone offense, last in red zone defense. There’s no spark, no fire in this team. The defensive line is not the dominating force they should be. The secondary looks confused as evidenced by a number of wide open receivers due to blown coverages. is it the coaches fault or the players fault?, i believe both should accept the blame. The offensive line is not imposing its will on the opposing team. Jacobs is not punishing defenders, rather gets dropped, it seems, to easily when hitting the line.Manning will be Manning, a constant roller coaster ride of good and bad decisions. His play clock management is awful at times resulting in untimely delay of game calls. A burning question i have is Why haven’t we seen Barden when we’re in the red zone. i’ve heard he hasn’t grasped all the nuances involved in the offense but how much schooling does he need to run a fade route. My god, the guy is tall enough,just get him in the end zone for a jump ball. Let’s see what he can do. Up until the last couple of games you couldn’t do any worse with him in the game in the red zone…I don’t believe the defense is really behind Sheridan. I wonder if his play selection is partially to blame for the Giants poor showing on defense. In ending, i believe the Giants have lost their direction and their desire. Both coaches and players are to blame. Someone needs to step up and lead this team out of the black hole they seem to have fallen in….

  2. I dont believe that. 4 separate drives with something that goes wrong each time is a bad day for anybody. It was a confluence of issues, like rolling the dice 4 times and having them come up snake eyes each time. Can’t happen again — that was the bottom of the barrel.

    It reminds me of the 2007 season before the Buffalo game… no one thought they were going anywhere after they lost to the Skins.

    The Giants are capable of playing great football, time to see it manifested on the field.

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