Carucci (2/9/11): “The Giants also were wildly inconsistent, and there was no mistaking that Coughlin got them to play better against weaker teams but usually couldn’t get them to perform as well against stronger opponents.”
UltimateNYG (1/20/11): “Without overgeneralizing, the Giants lost to good QBs >90 and beat weaker QBs <90. Which ones do you expect to find in the playoffs?”
Vic Carucci brings up 5 questions… our answers follow.
1. What to do with key free agents? There will be a land rush after the labor dispute is eventually settled, but Jerry Reese will have ~ 3 key players he needs to bring back and the rest of the list will be manageable thereafter. As an example of “manageable,” I am a Bradshawlic and if Reese lost him to free agency it would not cripple us to lose 6 turnovers. Given that Bradshaw appears to be higher on Reese’s list of priorities, do not be overly concerned about this question.
2. Can Coughlin still be effective? When has he ever been effective? (See previous century and the Head Coach in St. Louis for answer.) This blog believes that Tom Coughlin is as good AND as bad as his coordinators. Right now he has a Defensive Coordinator with schemes that are built to fail against the best teams. He has an Offensive Coordinator who is an underachiever. And he didn’t fire his Special Teams Coordinator, who was even more incompetent than the other two combined.
3. Can Manning reduce interceptions? Coughlin didn’t fire the Wide Receivers coach, er I mean Quarterbacks coach. So Eli is going to get help from…whom???
4. Will running game be dominant again? Jacobs is likely gone. Bradshaw overachieves, but wears down through every season and has not solved the fumbling problem. And the OL looked better with Seubert at Center, Diehl at Guard and Andrews at LT. Beatty regressed. Reese needs to draft RB and OL. Given the Giants drafting history with terrific OLinemen in R2 and terrific RBs in later rounds, stick with that metric.
5. Will Giants tighten up secondary? This is not about the Giants secondary. It is about Fewell’s schemes, and perhaps a little bit more help from a cover LBer. The only question here is how well Phillips can do in the offseason to get healthier and improve his speed/range. Given that Chad Jones imploded at roadside, the Giants WILL draft another Safety this offseason.