Misc from the Web and the Niner game

Mark Weinstein of Bluenatic shares a very good story about a run-in with Al Davis.

Boley and Bradshaw not practicing

Steve Smith worried about his return to the Meadowlands? Nope, he is going to get a good reception by the loyalists who recognize that this guy brought us a Super Bowl title.  All you need to know is 3rd and 11.

With 1:19 left, the Giants blew a 3rd and 2 at the SF 10.  With 0:37 left, the Giants blew a 4th and 2 from the SF 10.  How about this playcall to get 2 yards- line up the spread offense with 5 wide, empty backfield, and your QB Eli Manning, who never runs, executes a QB draw and goes ahead for the 2 yards.  We have proffered the view here on this site many times that Eli Manning needs to run the ball ONCE per game.  Sometimes 0, sometimes 2.  But on average once.  In this game he had two runs, but they were not planned.  Do the unpredictable, run Eli because no one on the defense takes responsibility for covering him.  On 4th and 2, Ware peels out to the right side and there is no one behind the 4 man defensive line of the 49ers.  Eli will get those yards.  Is this 20-20 hindsight?  No, because on 4th down I like the idea of throwing to the TE as well, which is what is done. 

Let’s go back to 3rd down. As many here have noted, the hand off to Ware was uninspiring.  Where did the play go wrong?  David Baas did a horrible job on his assignment.  Beatty and McKenzie did fine on their edge blocks.  Snee did fine on his block, pushing him forward and to the left, exactly where he needed to go.  Diehl pulled to the right and filled the hole vacated by Snee, but his block was less than inspiring.  But it was Baas’s assignment that blew up the play.  Ware was actually handed off the ball as a sprint draw, to Manning’s left on a mini delay.  By the time that Ware is getting to hole behind Diehl, it is Justin Smith shedding his block from Baas and he is the first to arrive along with a LBer (Bowman) and a Safety (Whitner).  Even if Baas did his job and kept Smith off Ware, Whitner or Bowman would have still stopped Ware short.  FYI, it is Justin Smith one play later on 4th and 2 that bats the ball down for an incomplete pass.

Speaking of the unispiring Giants’ run game, Newark Star-Ledger’s Mike Garafolo points outAnd the running game just isn’t good enough right now. It’s not being blocked well up front and the backs aren’t getting enough space with which to work. It’s just odd to see the Giants see as many seven-man fronts as they saw Sunday and not be able to run for over 4 yards per carry. We’re so used to seeing that happen and it’s just not there right now.  

Pro Football Weekly believes the Giants will bounce back this week. 

Assuming the Giants can overcome the hamstring injury to LB Michael
Boley
, who is having a comeback season, they should rebound nicely from
the loss out in San Francisco. They came up a few plays short against an 8-1
team in a playoff-like atmosphere. This is a close-knit group. Considering the
job the defense did against Frank Gore (zero rushing yards
Sunday after a string of five straight 100-yard contests he had coming in), you
can bet they’ll take similar measures to contain Eagles RB LeSean
McCoy
. If Vick is out, the deep passing game is minimized, and McCoy
stands as the biggest concern on the field by a long shot. Plus, they could get
reinforcements in the form of DT Jimmy Kennedy, who was
reinstated after a four-game suspension on Tuesday. We also could see the debut
(stop us if you’ve heard this before) of first-round CB Prince
Amukamara
, whose presence might be needed with Aaron
Ross
(thigh) leaving the 49ers game.  

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