It looks as if every year Tom Coughlin is on the hot seat, after the Giants go through a losing bend; they did it in 2011, when they lost 5 out of 6 games. They did it in 2007, when they were only scoring 17/game during a 6 game stretch, and both of those years they went to the playoffs and, oh by the way, won the Super Bowl, beating the New England Patriots, both times. Regular season record combined 19-13, nothing fabulous.
This season the New York Giants came into the year with aspirations of hoisting the trophy again, like every other teams hopes it can perhaps do. Then there are the handful of teams that really have that proper likelihood of actually hoisting it at the end of their season. But the Giants have been playing down as of late, scoring only 33 points in their last 2 games combined. Opposed to the 30 a game they were putting up in the 1st 5 games of the season. Clearly they are doing what the Giants tend to do every year. Slump.
Eli, who was superb last season with his 8 game winning drives, has been less than impressive in the last 5. With only 2 TDs to 6 Ints, and a putrid 46% completion percentage, and has not thrown a TD pass since week 7 vs Washington. He is playing once more, to the unpredictable Eli of old, when he was just “Peyton’s little brother” not the guy we all effortlessly said was an elite, top shelf QB that the majority felt he had evolved into. But, then again, this has been Eli’s approach for years.
The Giants running game has been destitute, seemingly a ghost of what kind of team they intend on being. What is their identity? Is it Ahmed Bradshaw and his RB crew running the ball 33 times/ game or Eli slinging it 45 times/ game? Granted an even balanced attack of course is always best, but a team needs an identity, something that they can rest back on when they know they need to get things done on the field, and it appears neither is working fluidly right now.
New York’s defensive line has been bringing it better. With studs like Jason Pierre-Paul, Justin Tuck, and Linval Joseph on the line, they can get always apply pressure, and beat a QB into mercy, over the last 4, getting 11 sacks, a solid pace on this season, when they were previously only looking at a probable 30-32 sack team on the year, opposed to the promising 45+ now.
The secondary is sufficient at best; Corey Webster has been playing good, with 3 picks and 35 tackles. But otherwise, they have been insubstantial overall, allowing 17 TD passes through the air, allowing QBs to complete 64% of their passes, and giving up 258 in the air to opposing QBs on the season.
Is there something to worry about in New York? The surprise for me, for myself, was Victor Cruz, who legitimately showed countless that he wasn’t just a 1 year fluke guy who came on and surprised teams in 2011. This year teams knew what he was and what he could do, and he is having an excellent season nevertheless, with 60 catches, 743 YDS and 7 TDs, all team bests.
The Giants are the team that characteristically does this, seemingly every year, making their fans nervous and leaving them sitting on the edge of their seats hopeful that they can slip into the playoffs. I have seen too much from the Giants in history to write them off yet, though their slumps are bad, and Eli has been playing terrible, they still have big plans in New York, step one is just making the tournament.
Written by Frank Jordan for VegasTopDogs.com