Monthly Archives: November 2015

Despite What You Read, The Season Isn’t Over

The Giants blew it on Sunday, but that doesn’t have to mean the season is over. That’s because they are blessed to play in the mediocre at best, NFL East.

What can you say about that game other than it was painful to watch. By halftime I was disgusted with the simply awful play and I missed most of the third quarter because I simply couldn’t stand it. But, I tuned back in for the fourth quarter, and while I appreciated the comeback, I didn’t believe the defense was capable of providing a stop when it was needed.

Some other observations about that game.

1- I understand the offensive line was banged up, and the Giants fell behind, but 13 rushing attempts is ridiculous. And why do they try and spread the ball out to four-different running backs in that scenario?

2- Injuries happen to every team in football, why aren’t the Giants better prepared for them? Where is the depth on this team?

3- In the last three drafts, the Giants have selected five defensive linemen in the first three rounds. Yet, their pass rush in nonexistent.

Ok, back to the present. Before you bury the season, remember that the Giants are tied for first. Furthermore, Washington still has three division games left, and the Bears and the Bills left to play. That doesn’t mean they will lose, and it certainly doesn’t mean the Giants will win, but it is silly to say the season is over. Some more efforts like yesterday though, and that will be an accurate statement.

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Just Win Baby!

The Giants haven’t played in almost two weeks, but they have had a great two weeks.

Since the Giants left the field that Sunday night the Cowboys are 1-1, the Eagles are 0-2, and Washington is 0-1. A Giants’ win on Sunday would put them up by 2 games in the division over Washington and Philly, and they would hold the tiebreaker with Washington.

But, this is going to be a very tough game. They are going to play without two starters on their offensive line, including their center. They are already starting a rookie at left tackle, and he will now have to adjust to two new guys next to him on the line. Add in the fact that they are also missing their starting tight end, and this could be a great day for a Washington pass rush that doesn’t often get to the QB.

But, the Giants have had two weeks to get ready for this game, and they are the better team. The football gods have given them a chance to seized control of a bad division, will they take it?

 

 

Why Pass?- Volume 46

The Giants have once again shown that they are masters at bad play calling in the 4th quarter.

Let’s start at the beginning of the quarter, 1st-and-10 from the New England 31 with a six-point lead. The primary objective here should be to get a score, field goal or touchdown, just a score. Yet, the Giants try to pass on first down and get sacked. They try to pass for the first down on second down and third down and end up punting. Dumb play calling, but just an appetizer for the main event.

1st-and-goal with 2:06 left in the game and the Giants trailing by 1. New England has only one time out left, so forcing them to use that is a priority because if you don’t score a TD, you have to leave them with very little time on the clock. You have to run the ball here because that gets you to the 2-minute warning. You then run or pass on second down, and do the opposite on third down. (assuming you didn’t score a TD) Worst case scenario is that you leave New England with no timeouts and 80 seconds to work with.

Instead they passed and the incomplete ruling left them with 2:01 on the clock. The passed again, not questionable from a clock standpoint, but maybe from a play-calling one, and took it to two minutes. Eli at least had the sense to stay inbounds on third down and they took the clock down to 1:50 and forced New England to take their last time out.

Yes, maybe that should have been enough to win the game. Collins had the game-winning interception in his hands and couldn’t complete the play. They forced the Patriots into 4th-and-10, but couldn’t stop them. Ultimately, it was a 54-yard field goal that settled things. But, is New England had 30-less seconds to use things might have ended differently. For now the only thing we can say is that the Patriots and their fans will pray that the Giants don’t make the Super Bowl this year.

Tomorrow Is The Trifecta

You could attend three-different games in New York tomorrow, without too much trouble. Start at MSG for the Knicks at noon. Leave that game and head to Snoopy Stadium for Giants-Pats at 4:25. Head back to MSG for the Rangers at 7:30. Realistically, if you use public transportation, you should probably get to the Rangers game after the first period is over, and that would be the only game action you would miss.

I can’t do it tomorrow, but if the scheduling gods give me a chance again, I am doing it. I came close to a mini one of these years ago in 2003 when I was living in Boston. I went to Foxboro and watched the Giants play the Pats and held tickets for that night’s Yankees-Red Sox playoff game at Fenway. But, the weather was terrible and the ALCS game got rained out.

I’ll watch from the comforts of my living room tomorrow, but someday soon, I will complete the trifecta.

Better Than I Hoped, But A Long Way To Go

I’m already on record for predicting the Giants will lose to New England this weekend. That was before the season started, and I thought they would be 4-6 heading into the bye. Assuming I am right about this weekend, they will be 5-5.

That’s good, but the rest of the schedule, even after this weekend, isn’t encouraging. They have to play @Washington, Jets, @Dolphins, Panthers, @Minnesota, Eagles. That’s an undefeated team, two legitimate playoff teams in the Jets and Vikings and the Eagles, who alway give them fits. 2-4 to close the season seems about right because the flaws everyone thought would be there are there in bunches.

They can’t rush the passer. They can’t play defense. This weekend could be an amazing display of offensive firepower by New England. Probably the only thing that will keep things reasonable is Belichick’s respect for the Giants’ organization. Short of Belichick calling off the dogs, I think Brady&Co could put up 70 on Sunday. We shall see.

*****

On a separate topic, there seems to be a lot of talk this week about how New England “should have” won their two Super Bowls with the Giants and they should have six Super Bowl rings now. To me that is the dumbest form of sports argument because you play the game and the winner is the winner.

Clearly, New England was the better team in 2008, but I would not agree with that  in 2012. Furthermore, you can play this argument from two sides. Who should have won the Rams-New England Super Bowl? So do you take that one away from New England? Of course not. New England won four Super Bowls and lost four, those are the facts and we should leave it at that.