Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
January 9, 2006
FOOTBALL: Men Among Giants

Yesterday's playoff defeat for the Giants could hardly have been more humiliating or demoralizing - I think Eli Manning may have passed for more yards to Panthers than to Giants. The Giants became the first playoff team to be shut out at home in 26 years (the last was Doug Williams' Buccaneers). What was particularly frustrating was that ex-Giants defensive coordinator John Fox did it by playing classic Giants football, munching the clock and stifling the Giants' running game. Take-home lesson: the single most essential element of a successful playoff team is the ability to stop the run. (#2 is a good offensive line; #3 is a kicker who is at least adequate; only after that can you start talking about skill positions, the pass rush and the secondary).

While the Giants were never the same this season after Antonio Pierce got hurt, and the injuries to the defense were clearly a factor yesterday, the defeat was too complete to blame on any one factor.

One result of this debacle, of course, will be to ratchet up the playoff pressure on Peyton Manning, since Eli's Jay Schroeder-ish performance only underscored the perception that the Mannings don't show up for big games.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 8:54 AM | Football | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
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