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The Giants are currently undergoing maintenance – please stand by

John Mara once said in 2009 after a failed defensive season “we cannot maintain the status quo”. Defensive Coordinator Bill Sheridan was fired shortly thereafter.

Interestingly, Kevin Gilbride said this about his offense earlier in the year when talking about Eli Manning and whether he could maintain his current level of play:

There is no such thing as ‘maintain.’ You have to get better all of the time or you are going the wrong way. And you have heard it as a cliché, said many times, what I firmly believe and I think that good players all know it, as you physically get older, you have to compensate for that with continued growth with technique, continued growth in the deepening of understanding of what is taking place out there, so that you can compensate for whatever that loss of skill level is. So as a receiver, as a running back, as a lineman, if you are not doing that, then pretty soon you are going to be on the bench.

In short, the Giants went the wrong way this year.

They tried to maintain their offensive philosophy while not having the necessary pieces in place to execute like they once could. 5 and 7 step drops weren’t possible behind this disturbingly awful offensive line, yet the Giants defaulted to them routinely this year. Even after seeing first hand in 2012 what happens when you live and die by the deep ball, the Giants failed to adjust adequately to short passes when a winning season was still in reach. To make matters worse – and why I think John Mara has a right to be angry when he sees his stadium 1/3rd full – is what came out about the Giants play calling after the Giants beat the Lions a couple weeks ago:

Offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride knew his shorthanded unit would need a special plan to counteract the Lions’ strong defensive front. What he brought to the table in the Giants’ 23-20 overtime win in Detroit was a smart bevy of rollouts and quick-hitters for quarterback Eli Manning to execute.

“We just kind of changed it up a little bit. We have them in our playbook. We just called them more,” tight end Brandon Myers said. “We had a lot of guys that it was their first time in the lineup. We just kept it simple with quick-hitters and stuff.”

The plan was quite successful in the first half. The Giants had 145 total yards. They were 5 for 8 on third-down conversions. Manning was 12-of-20 passing for 137 yards with a touchdown, no interceptions and a QB Rating of 97.3. Some of that success came on the high volume of rollouts. Gilbride had Manning on the move four times in the first half. Manning went 3-of-4 passing for 32 yards, which included two key third-down conversions.

So, essentially, it took until the 15th game of the season to design a scheme that worked against a tough defensive front. Quick passes and rollouts. ‘We have them in our playbook. We just called them more.’ If he get’s credit for wins, he sure as hell better get the criticism for the losing season.

That to me seals Gilbride’s fate.

I don’t know what in the world the Giants front office is talking about right now, we know they are in meetings today for scheduled maintenance. If John Mara doesn’t break out pictures of the empty stadium and go on a rage filled rant against this offense for not adjusting sooner, I know plenty of fans that will on his behalf.

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5 Responses to “The Giants are currently undergoing maintenance – please stand by”

  1. Tony Bonno says:

    Good article Andrew but I still can’t get over all the people who blame Kevin Gilbride when the teams leader is Tom Coughlin…Coughlins office and Gilbrides are not in different states just different floors. I mean what does 7 million buy you as a head coach today.

  2. Coughlin will not throw anyone under the bus. His guys are his guys, and even if Mara did say “Gilbride needs to go” i have no doubt Coughlin would fight for him. We don’t truly know what the specific % of blame should be for the offensive failures — we can speculate of course. To me when Mara said the offense was broken, you look at the Jernigan example, the play calling as relayed to us from Brandon Meyers — it seems to me that Gilbride and ultimately Tom Coughlin should be fixtures under the microscope this offseason. I don’t know how it takes 15 weeks to get to what should have been a week 2 adjustment. It’s totally unacceptable to continue the insanity of another season doing the same things expecting different results.

  3. Kevin says:

    Hey did Tommy or Kevin throw a career high interception rating? Fuck no, it was that piece of shit Eli. Ugh, cant stand the guy. Its time to draft young, hell lets go high and make a trade for Rivers…..the guy we were SUPPOSSED to get. Yeah yeah he won us two superbowls, but his day is over.

    TRADE up for Bridgewater.

  4. Ron J. says:

    I think Mara is about to box himself in with his own team by not letting Coughlin go. The Mara’s always remain loyal to their coaches that is until they dragged their feet giving Parcells an extension.
    Who is going to take a job for one year except a coach looking for another chance and I sure hope it’s not Sullivan. Poor Eli must be struggling through all this

  5. […] scenario was on full display in the microcosm of the Detroit Lions game — which we critiqued here as to why Kevin Gilbride was most likely out as the OC. It came to be later that day — he […]

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