Did someone give Kevin Gilbride a brain transplant? Someone must have read the Giants/coaches the riot act, because we saw wholesale changes last night everywhere.
The result was a thrashing of the Skins. Seeing the Giants destroy an opponent (for the first time since Week 5 vs the Raiders) is refreshing. We have been talking all year about so many failings, so many things absent that winning teams do which the Giants were not doing. Last night we saw the Giants do many of those things, and they did them right:
Good FOR A CHANGE
1) GILBRIDE’S PLAYCALLING WAS EXCEPTIONAL. 3 or 4 screens in the FIRST HALF! We have not seen 3 screens from the Giants in a single game the entire SEASON.
2) MANY THROWS to the TIGHT END. The best play of the day was an incomplete pass, but it showed a willingness to box, not just punch… the Giants get to 1st and goal on their first drive and they run a play action to the TE Boss. The pass is out of his reach for an incompletion, but it is a great playcall. It sets the tone and makes it harder for the defense to guess about ANYTHING ANYTIME.
3) PASS RUSH BY THE DEFENSIVE LINE. Granted, the Redksins OL has been beset by injuries, but Kiwanuka, Tuck and Umenyiora were able to get constant pressure. Robbins had a late sack.
4) Good specials team play.
5) The Giants went an entire half w/o missed tackles.
6) Jacobs is running north-south for the 3rd consecutive game.
Plain Good this season
1) Eli Manning’s highs are higher and when he has time like in this game, he can pick you apart. The future with these weapons in the aerial attack is here.
2) Goff is a hitter. You need hitters. He is learning how to play MLB. He needs a few pounds. But if Coughlin is going to be patient with Sheridan, Sheridan better be patient with Goff. Let youth be served.
3) Bradshaw has no wheels yet keeps playing. He’s the energizer bunny.
1) Seubert out, Nicks hamstring out. McKenzie, Webster, Ross… the Giants are once again on the second wave of injuries.
Yes, there is hope for the Giants. And yes, there is hope for Giants fans… next season. This is a very good win. But the Dallas win was a very good win too, so the Giants have to follow this up by playing well again. It was really encouraging to see the Giants fight. They could have packed it in but they played for Coughlin. The Giants, playoffs or not, are not going to be able to do anything this (post) season because their defense is not good enough. There is enough time and enough games to build on this and keep playing better. If Gilbride and the offense attack with the TE and screens, it opens up the rest of the playbook for a very effective attack. We have been asking for that for a season and a half. A strong offense can keep that vulnerable defense off the field and help them play better too. Let’s see if Umenyiora and Tuck and Kiwanuka can get after the Panthers. As the Giants DL goes, so goes this team.