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Talking Points: Giants-Chargers

Hey, didn’t you use to be the New York Giants?

For much of the game last night, I saw the team that use to be  the New York Giants. BUT there were only glimpses of that team. The New York Giants team I have loved has found ways to win games the past few years, not any way possible to lose games.

I live in Rochester, and THIS New York Giants team looks an awful lot like the Buffalo Bills teams I’ve watched the past few years.

EVERY game, they are in it, but they invented TWO! new ways to lose the game.

Let’s start there:

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A Terrible Botched Field Goal attempt

Everyone watching the game on both sidelines and in the stands and on watching at home was thinking “What the @@#$ Just happened?”

Explanation: Tynes said, ““I was there when I thought I should’ve been  and the ball wasn’t.”

Phil Simms said something to the affect of: “The kicker chose not to participate in the play”

It’s somewhere in between here and there. Tynes obviously didn’t think he could make the kick becaues the hold wasn’t great (looked like Feagles had two hands on the ball). During the game it looked like San Diego was playing the fake so it looked like Tynes still had time to make a kick.

I don’t know it was terrible. And it cost the Giants the game in the end.

#2 Inventive Way to Lose 8 penalties for a 104 yards

Under Tom Coughlin the Giants are one of the LEAST peanlized teams in the league.

Team’s don’t win Football games when they are penalized for 104 yards.

The most crucial of all the penalties was clearly the 1st and goal from the four hold call that turned the Giants into a convervative-run the clock out and kick the field goal call.

The Giants lost the game for these two reasons above all else.

There was some good during the game though. So let’s look at that.

The Giants Can Still Make the Playoffs….Really, They Can. It’s Not Even as Bad as It Seems, Yet!

Four straight loses is terrible. I get that. But the Giants are in a fine position to make the playoffs….Really. I’m not kidding.

Let’s look at the logitics.

Right Now there are Five Teams vying for two Wild Card Spots.

The Eagles, Giants, Falcons, Packers, and Bears.

Thankfully ALL these teams get to beat up on each other! Meaning the Giants can possibly make the playoffs at 9-7. But would almost certainley make it at 10-6. (that means’ go 4-3 or 5-2 the last 7 games)

Let’s look at all these individually.

First the Eagles (only 1 game ahead of the Giants). The Eagles Beat the Giants, but lost to the Cowboys. IF the Giants beat the Eagles, Washingon and Cowboys again. They move ahead of the Eagles.

The Cowboys (2 games ahead of the Giants).

Guess who just became a Cowboys fan for the rest of the season?

That’s right. YOU! Giants fan.

The Cowboys play the Packers next week. And the Eagles later on in the season as well as the Giants in Giants Stadium. They also play San Diego and at New Orleans as well (that’s 5 loseable games).

IF the Cowboys beat the Packers next week the Packer would move to 4-5. BEHIND the Giants. Speaking of the Packers (4-4. 1/2 game behind Giants) they also get to play: Cowboys, 49ers, Ravens, Bears, Steelers, and Arizona. Which are definitely all loseable games.

The Bears (4-4 a 1/2 game behind the Giants). The Bears play the 49ers, Minnesota, Eagles, Packers, Ravens, Vikings again. (6 loseable games left).

The Falcons (5-3 1/2 game ahead of Giants).

THIS is the team Giants fans need to most worry about. I think the playoffs will come down between the Giants, Eagles, and Falcons.

The Falcons have some loseable games though as well. Next week they travel to an improved Panthers team, than AT NEW YORK GIANTS, (who will be coming off a bye), they also have games with the Eagles, Saints, at Jets, with the Bills and Tampa Bay twice. To me that’s f5 loseable games.

If the Flacons lose Three remaining games, they’ll have six loses, if one of those loses is to the G-men. The Giants can easily make the playoffs.

Giants can EASILY Make the Playoffs Becuase all the teams invovled in the playoff race Play Each other! If the Giants beat the Eagles, they will be ahead of the Eagles (because Eagles will have 2 divisional loses, not one). If the Giants beat the Falcons they will also hold that tie-breaker. And the rest of the teams: the Packers, Bears, Cowboys Eagles, and Falcons play each other, which means two or three of these teams will knock each other out of the playoff race.

Eil Manning’s Back!
The Quarterback I love is back. Eli played GREAT yesterday. People won’t think so, but he really did.

25 for 33 for 215 yards and two touchdowns.

He had 8 incompletions and I can remember at least four of them that came from him scrambling and throwing the ball out-of-bounds.

Then there were two crucial drops I remember. One from Bradshaw on the final drive where he could have gotten out of bounds and given the Giants a chance to throw the ball down in the end zone.

And another by Brandon Jacobs were Manning ducked away from the pass rush and hit Jacobs in the hand, which he proceeded to drop.

Which brings me back to one bad thing again:

My Worst Fear has Come True. The Giants Offensive Line are No Longer Getting By Guile. And Their Lack of Athletic Ability has Them Playing At An Average Level.

It’s true folks. I’ve been harping on this for three years. The Giants offensive line was severly (and still is) overrated. They have TWO good players on the line. Shaun O’Hara, and Chris Snee. The other three players would be average on any other team with any other group of guys.

There are two reasons this is obviously true. First The New York Giants are THE most blitzed team in the league (according to the telecast last night). This indicates that we can’t handle the blitz. If the Giants did handle the blitz well, people would stop doing it.

And secondly: Eli Manning has been getting pounded three of the last four games.

This week: Eli could actually scramble well.

And his mobility is severly underrated. Eli had pressure all day. He made smart decisions and played well enough for his team to win.

Michael Boley CAN play

Every time he plays he leads the Giants in tackles. He’s fast, aggressive, and a smart player.

A great signing by the Giants. He had seven tackles last night and was around all night in pass coverage. In four games he has three passes defensed (which is good for a linebacker) Pierce and Clark had 5 combined in 18 combined games.

Chris Canty played well also.

The one thing the Chargers are is a good offense. And last night the Giants played well on defense for 99% of the game (of course not big when it mattered).

Chris Canty played well. He looked explosive off the ball…unfortuantely, both Canty and Boley are not completely in game shape.

Fred Robbins Sighting!

I’ve said this a few dozen times too, but Fred Robbins the past three season (prior to this one) has almost as many sacks as ANY defensive tackle in the league over a three year stretch, with the exception of Tommie Harris. He was tied with 16.5 sacks for second with Kevin Williams and Haynesworth.

Last night was his first sack since Week 7…of 2008!

That’s a big problem as to why the Giants defense hasn’t been great. The interior Dlinemen have quite frankly played beneath their standards.

Hopefully last night was a sign of change.

Clint Sintim Sighting!

He didn’t do much other than get his feet wet. BUT he wasn’t exposed in pass coverage, which is suppose to be his biggest weakness.

I’ve said this copious times as well, but to reiterate. Tom Coughlin does a WONDERFUL job of developing young talent. Couhglin’s method invovles this:

He sets up players for success and makes sure they don’t fail often. Because of that he plays them selectively when they are young. Builds their confidence before he unleashes them.

It’s effective. I mean I’m sure Jerry Reese and his staff are good at drafting, but sometimes it’s the way they are developed as well. Think about how good most of the young Giants players have become under Couhglin. It’s not a conincidence.

Coughlin’s method however takes two things: time and more time.

Right around weeks 10-12 Coughlin starts really plugging in the young players to let them loose.

Sintim’s starting to play more, and I think we’ll see Nicks starting somepoint soon (0r at least playing a lot in the first half and not worry about Domenik Hixon’s feelings) and I think you’ll see Beckum and Barden more invovled as well.

Bruce Johnson has been playing a lot this year out of necessity, not because that’s Coughlin’s way. But he’ll continue to play.

Bruce Johnson made some nice plays. Aaron Rouse is better than C.C. Brown. And Terrell Thomas makes plays.

What a find on Bruce Johnson.

Aaron Rouse didn’t make any plays, BUT he wasn’t chasing any wide open guys either, which had become a familiar sight with Brown.

Terrell Thomas is young and inconsitent at times, but he makes a lot of plays on the ball. He’s a bit of a gamble in the Asante Samuel mode. I think he’s going to be a fine cornerback in the league (because he has ball awarness it also makes me think he’d be a very good coverage safety).

Another Nice Play By Nicks

I thought he might break that screen for a touchdown. He’s fun to watch once he gets the ball in his hands.

Jacobs 6 yards per carry.

Here’s the weirdest thing. Jacobs has averaged over four yards per carry for four straight games. All Giants loses. The better he runs the more the Giants lose. Who would have figured?

Osi quitely up to five sacks on the season.

Osi is playing much better in run support than he did early in the season, and likewise he’s also making plays on the ball in the Quarterbacks hand. They say it takes sometimes two years to get back to 100 percent. Osi’s not there, but he’s getting there, I think.

The Giants are a Talented Young Team! (emphasis on young)

Last week I posted a blog entry about how the Giants have only 14 players who have more than 5 full years of experience in the league. That’s one of the lowest totals in the league.

The Giants are a very young, and talented team.

But Young and talented also lends itself to young and inconsistent.

This team is built for now AND the future. Unlike a team  like the Saints who have like about half of a roster of old players and are built to win now.

Hopefully that’s a comforting thought to remind yourself about through this difficult stretch.

But remember, IF the Giants play like they did vs San Diego, minus the turnovers they have a GOOD Chance of making the playoffs, not just a chance. Because they play the two othe rmost viable playoff teams in the Falcons and Eagles.


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7 Responses to “Talking Points: Giants-Chargers”

  1. buljos says:

    They played much, much better last night than they played against the Saints and Eagles. They certainly turned the corner if they can hold and build upon what they did last night. With Boley and Canty back, Sintim getting experience, and Ross due back after the bye, this team should be able to go 4-3 or even 5-2 down the stretch. As each week goes by it becomes more apparent how much we miss Ross and Phillips. Coughlin and Reese went into this season light at Safety, and they knew they were taking a chance… and they rolled craps. I also submit that Papa’s correct in his thought that the success of the young WRs is both a blessing and curse – Eli and Gilbride are passing to set up the run because Smith, Manningham, and Nicks have proven to be more than capable. They’ve migrated away from the running game as their primary weapon that this O-line was built to exploit. The Charger defense was on the field for a long time… but not enough reliance on the running game. Gilbride is still holding onto his old roots with those slinging offenses he coached way back when… will Gilbride ever understand and accept Giants football?

  2. andrew ilnicki says:

    this was a really great rundown jesse. i comforted myself with that playoff gnosis as soon as i ripped off my jersey…. but the ride still sucks right now.

    from the second to last drive to the last drive, the Giants defense looked like it went from 100mph to up on a rack — a pitiful effort all around from the D when the game was on the line.

    Who would have thought that two 4th down field goal attempts from inside the redzone would have decided such a victory anyway?

    oh thats right — WE DID!!!!!!!!


    you want to rely on your defense? then go for the 4th and inches next time. CRIPES!

  3. CMH says:

    Seubert looks overmatched. Constantly getting overpowered.

    Can we move Diehl back inside and put Beatty at Left Tackle?

  4. andrew ilnicki says:

    BTW — Who is saying Eli didn’t play great?

    He played his game!!! That was 2007-2008 superbowl/playoff material for Eli.

    Let me quote Herm Edwards from yesterday’s pregame:
    “A goal without a plan is a wish”

    This sums up all the Eli haters out there — he is not his brother, he is not Drew Brees, he is not Joe Montana. But what he is is a great game manager a la Joe Namath.

    He is not stats man, he’s an efficient team leader that gets the job done when the plan is followed… and that plan is short passes, high percentage plays, minimizing turnovers, and running the football.

    The Giants offensive players delivered a game good enough to win yesterday, period. The Defense is responsible for yet another loss… particularly Corey Webster who was clearly gassed at the end of the game. They made him pay for it.

    Aaron Ross better be good to go in two weeks and help out his team.

  5. BlueManFla says:

    Jesse……Although I have been an ardent Giants fan since 1952, and with the way the GMen have lost the last 4 games, I am a realist and must state that your article neglected to mention that there are 6 games which are very loseable for the Giants. I shutter at the though but the performance of the team these past weeks gives me pause to think that possibly the only geame we win down the stretch is Washington.

    I hope I am wrong, but I have been around for many moons and remember the horrible stretches of bad football through the years.

    • They are all winnable/loseable games.

      I should clarify that I think there are two HUGE games.

      Vs Atlanta and Vs Philly. Both are at home.

      They win those two they are in, if not chance.

  6. bigblueindc says:

    It shoudl really also be noted in the playoff discussion that the Giants are still only 1.5 games behind the Cowboys and the Cowboys still have to come to East Rutherford. So i’m not sure if I’m quite ready to throw in the towel on the division and start rooting for the Cowboys. Particuarly with the bye week coming up, I think the first two games back after that will be very telling as to whether we should get ready for the move across the parking lot, or whether there will still be good/meaningful football in 2009.

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