The most important thing is to look at the Giants objectively. When I do that, I make this observation: The Giants have not and cannot beat a team with a good QB and an OC who exploits their weaknesses.
What you saw this past weekend was a pathetic Redskin team with a QB who was done before he was traded. Andy documented that well yesterday.
A big part of Donovan McNabb’s game was his ability to scramble. He was never a prolific passer but he could beat you to death by rolling out and either throwing it or running with it. We thought he had lost a step last year and even the year before. Reid is a tier one coach and he lives like Belichick in so far as making moves that give him the best chance to win. All very good coaches do that as that is why the Patriots and the Eagles are always competitive. No one does it better than Belichick as we witnessed Monday night.
The Giants have NO linebacker who can even remotely cover a TE or anyone else in pass coverage. The best one would be Michael Boley. He has played well but he is a complimentary player . I think Goff could be better but he is nowhere near dominant. There really is no third backer, which is why Fewell cleverly uses Grant to bolster the others. Fewell is getting the most he can out of what he has but we have only faced two legitimate quarterbacks this year. We lost to both.
Fewell seems to have the need to go to cover 2, even though it never works against the best. We have some very good d.b’s but they cannot cover the 15-20 yard free zone the cover 2 creates. What you saw was a broken down qb, unable to take advantage of what the Giants gave up. He just doesn’t have the players around him to protect him or catch the rock. He threw so much for two reasons: the Skins have no running game and that is how you beat the Giants.
The NFL has devolved into a lot of very bad teams with only a few one could call good. The Giants, by the luck of the draw are in contention for the playoffs. I believe that Brady, Brees, Manning, Roethlisberger, a healthy Favre, Rivers and maybe Flacco on a very good day would dismember our guys.
The Giants have to play pressure defense to win and it has to be overwhelming. We have had success because of Osi, Tuck, Cofield and recently JPP are putting immense pressure on the opposing QB. We blitz every DB we have during the course of a game with different packages. We bring Grant and it has worked but if you look closely you will see that if the blitz doesn’t get there we are exploited.
The cover 2 never works when the DB’s are actually forced to cover zone or man on man. The 15-20 yard pass over the middle, in the flat, to a running back, a TE and/or a wideout is “always “ open. That is what you see but few have been able to exploit it.
We have witnessed what happens when the opposing QB has time as did Kitna in game two. That is what few others have been able to do.
A lot of credit goes to Fewell. One cannot however, overlook who we have played and how incredibly weak our schedule has been thus far. No one would have imagined the Cowboys to collapse or that the Redskins would be this bad. No one knew what to expect of the Eagles or that Michael Vick would rise from the dead. The NFC East is comprised of two o.k. Teams and two surprisingly bad teams.
As you well know luck plays a big part of the ultimate outcome. The Giants have had a lot of it this year. How would they do if they played the Bears now? Cutler has adapted to Martz and the defense is still great. I would love to see a rematch.
We play Green Bay which will tell us a lot more. Rodgers is one of the ones who could embarrass us. The Vikings are playing better but without a healthy Favre it is not possible to know what they bring. They have a very good defense and Peterson was just great last week. Frazier wants the job and his players want it for him. They just don’t have a QB who can really challenge us.
I would do exactly what McNabb was unable to do. I would exploit the middle of the d with quick outs, over the middle, in the flat and only run to keep it honest. I think a team like the Steelers, the Ravens, the Patriots, likely Green Bay, possibly Phillip Rivers and yes, the St. Louis Cardinals under our boy “Spags” would all have the tools to beat us.
In the end,one cannot take lightly the improvement we have seen. I would say that although Fewell has this Tampa Two obsession he has done a good job and the intensity of the defense is huge. We have stayed relatively healthy on defense, which is also huge. The flaws we pointed out before the season began are still there. What we did not know- could not know- is how good Cofield would be, or how well Osi had healed in his head and his knee. We could not know how incredibly well Grant would play and the role he ultimately would fill. We knew we had a good defensive backfield but Rolle has made a big difference and Phillips has come back better than anyone might have hoped. Tuck has played well although he could be better and the recent emergence of JPP is a big plus.
Let’s not get too excited because we are winning despite a Beatty who s*cks and an o line that playing to it’s max. Will Snee, Seubert and McKenzie burn out? Snee has played all pro. Could we run at all against the Ravens or Steelers? Will Vick and/or Rodgers expose our weakness as a 38 year old Kitna and a mediocre (for him) Manning did? Have/will the Giants be able to beat a team they are not supposed to beat? They haven’t done it yet.
Anything is possible. The Giants won’t face the Pats, the Ravens or the Steelers unless they go super. The NFC is such a pile of do do that anything can happen. The Giants have a very good defensive line and a very good bunch of db’s and receivers when healthy.
There is still a quarter of a season to go.