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Looking Back, Forging Ahead – Eli Manning Needs To Take His Own Advice

Way back in 2009 – Eli Manning quietly had a break out year in a brand new offense without Plaxico Burress that featured Steve Smith, Hakeem Nicks, Mario Manningham, and Kevin Boss. At the time of this next quote I’m about to post, the Giants had started 5-0 and looked as good as any team in the league before the Giants defense completely collapsed:

I think we have receivers who can make plays. Guys who can get down the field, guys who can break tackles and we are going to see what the defense is doing and make our adjustments. If I can get us in and out of good plays, I think we have the guys out wide who can be explosive and get down the field and do some great things. It’s not like to hit big plays you have to throw it fifty yards down the field, you just have to hit guys on the move and guys have got to break tackles and you have to be effective blocking up front and throwing the ball. It is a combination, we are going to have a great mix of run and pass, but we have to be able to do both well

Right now, the Giants aren’t running the ball well, aren’t blocking well, and yet Eli is still looking way down field for plays to develop. For the Giants to be effective on offense, Eli needs to stop the 7 step drop nonsense and get the ball out and get into a rhythm. Negate the rush with short passes, commitment to the run, and get some first downs and sustain a drive. That will tire the defense out, you control the clock, and the game.

Right now Eli is still trying to hit guys way down field, a trend that has gotten way too much credit since Victor Cruz’ second big play year in 2012. Make no mistake, when the Giants are doing everything well they do tend to lead the league in big play execution. But all the ingredients to opening up big plays down field aren’t there, and Eli doesn’t have time to let them play out. Priorities should be getting the ball out quickly, hitting guys in motion, relying on catching and running if the run blocking game continues to struggle – which it most likely will.

Short passes, short passes, short passes – deep gash when the defense softens up. We’ve seen this offense do it well since 2009, the Giants just need to remember variety, not a 1-2 balance, in the offense needs to be there to be effective.

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