Tuesday, December 15, 2015

If the Giants Don't Make the Playoffs This Year, it's not Eli Manning's Fault

There has been talk about this being it for coach Tom Coughlin. Last night the NY papers helpfully compiled a list of coaches who could succeed him.

Steve Tisch, part owner of the Giants said the Giants need to make the playoffs this year or else. Or else was read as or else Tom is gone.

I sure hope not. Look I get it, believe me as a Giants fan I'm as sick as anyone that the team since its last Super Bowl in 2011 hasn't made the playoffs once and that the last two years were losing seasons.

Still this is Tom Coughlin. He did win that Super Bowl in 2011 and that other one in 2007. True this doesn't mean that I don't ever need the Giants to win anything again, to even make the playoffs-though the way the Giants work, if they make the playoffs with a not great record they then run the table.

And I really think his team loves and plays for him. So what is going on, why hasn't that been reflected in the bottomline? Well, Jerry Reese, the GM had a couple of bad drafts in 2012 and 2013. But they say that firing the GM and letting the coach stay is not the Tisch-Mara way. We'll see.

For now the Giants despite a losing record and finding novel ways to lose close games week after week are still in this. Even after their three game losing streak at 5-7 they were still tied for first with the Eagles and Redskins.

Whoever, you blame for this year's disappointment, I don't see how you blame Eli Manning. Going into last night's game in Miami against the Dolphins he had 24 TDs and just 10 INTs for the year, with for him a very high completion rate of close to 63%.

Then there was last night. He completed 27 of 31 passed with 4 TDs and not a single pic. He had perhaps his greatest regular season game ever right when the G-Men most needed him. And that's always been Eli's think-the big performance the big throw, the big TD pass when its needed.

When it's not needed-sometimes not so much! LOL.

UPDATE: Of course, it helps for Eli to have a once for the ages talent like Odell Beckam, Jr. to throw to. He is already setting records and again had 100 yards; indeed, he had two TD catches for 161 yards and again made a few catches that the highlight reels will be playing for years.

Eli and Beckam are about as great a tandem as you can find.

I've always loved Eli and will defend him against anyone. The knock on him used to be that he wasn't a team leader-this was before 2007-remember Tiki Barber. Tiki writes this book that says Eli was laughable when he tried to speak to the team after Barber retired at the end of 2006.

Then Eli and the Jints win the Super Bowl the first year after he retired. Sure, Tiki, you have a point.

But now I have to say I love Eli more than ever. Even I'm surprised about this:

"Eli Manning might not have as many funny commercials as his brother, but he still has a sense of knowing when it’s time for lights, cameras and action."

"According to Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News, Manning brought his Giants teammates in for a speech last week, stirring his troops to action with a “passionate speech.”

“Everybody respects Eli, the things Eli’s done, everything he’s been through,” defensive tackleCullen Jenkins said. “You’ve got to be motivated by those things he says.”

“This week was just about having a sense of urgency about where we are,” tackleMarshall Newhouse said of Manning’s message. “It was kind of a do or die thing. That’s kind of what he was trying to convey: ‘We’re in playoff mode right now. Everyone’s going got to have a fire lit under them. Let’s start this run now. There’s no waiting around. We’ve given too many games away this year. There’s no waiting around anymore.’”

"But rather than just talk, he showed leadership by playing last night, completing 27-of-31 passes (a franchise record 87.1 percent) for 337 yards and four touchdowns. And he wasn’t just chunking it up for Odell Beckham, as four receivers caught at least five passes."

“He played superbly tonight,” Tom Coughlin said. “I had a good feeling that he would. He had a nice week of practice. He again was in command of everything out there.”

"Manning downplayed his own role in things, as he does. But there’s no doubt the Giants looked like a different team last night — one which had a leader."

At this point he has 28 TDs and 10 INTs. If things don't go well in the last three games-their road isn't an easy one with the undefeated Carolina Panthers coming in on Sunday-it sure isn't because of Eli Manning. 
What is the problem? Well it has to start with a defense that is 32nd the NFL in passing yards allowed.
Still this team has a shot even at just 6-7 they are tied with the Eagles and Washington. I'm not saying this year is like 2011 but it's worth remembering that no one saw that team as in anyway Super Bowl material either. 
Yes, this team lost three in a row to drop to 5-7-had they won just one of those games they could have taken over the division. But the 2011 Giants lost four in a row in midseason. 
Has any other team ever won the SB after losing 4 in a row during the season? The Giants are just 6-7 now but were only 7-7 in 2011 before never losing again. 
Sure if you try to tell anyone the Giants are going to win the SB this year they will think your nuts. But they would have seen you as no less nuts in 2011. 
That doesn't mean the Giants win it all this year. Honestly, my expectations are not nearly so high-they weren't then either. I Just want to see them in the playoffs. But you can't help but notice to make the playoffs they probably need to run the table which would leave them again at 9-7. 

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