Wednesday, October 29, 2014

N.Y. Giants: They Are What Their Record Says

From the desk of:  DO IT FOR THE DUKE

Being outdone by Jerry Jones?

New York Giants Football: John Mara makes it difficult to determine whether or not Jerry Reese is on the hot seat.

With Monday night's loss to the D.C. Hogs, the Dallas Cowboys graciously afforded the Giants one last chance at turning their season around, albeit a slim one.

Of course, good teams do not rely on their competition for creating their opportunities.  Good teams create their own situations and opportunity.

So what does that make the Giants?

At 3-4, Bill Parcells would say - you are what you're record says you are.

Their in-conference record says they are not contenders.  Losses to the Eagles and Cowboys were preceded by losses to the Lions and Cardinals.  Their two conference victories came against the lowly Falcons and Hogs, whom sport a combined 5-11 record.

Although 3 of their next 4 games are at home, they must face the COLTS, @Seahawks, 49ERS, and COWBOYS.  That's four weeks against top contenders.

The last five games:
D.C. Hogs

If the Giants season didn't end in Dallas last week, it could very well be over by the time the Cowboys come to Giants Stadium.

The Giants need 5 more victories (in 9 games) in order to finish the season with an 8-8 record.

Catching up with the Eagles and Cowboys is obviously priority number one.  Otherwise, they need to keep pace with the Packers/Lions, Panthers/Saints, and Cardinals/49ers/Seahawks.

At 3-4, the Saints find themselves in the same predicament as the Giants.  But, in order for the Giants to run with the pack, they must overcome much.

This is just the very short list:

I. Offensively
  • an ineffective offensive line;
  • Rashad Jennings still injured;
  • no tight end to speak of;
  • No Victor Cruz.
II. Defensively
  • no pass rush to speak of;
  • Jon Beason is out for the rest of the season;
  • a beleaguered secondary;
  • a defensive coordinator that needs to be replaced.
Giants Football was devolving even before their Super Bowl XLVI victory.  That was just their last hurrah.  

They no longer have that stable of talent they once did (on either side of the ball) which they built primarily through the draft.  Free agency was always used to fortify the roster.

In previous years free agency indeed proved a much more effective tool as they relied on it less.   However, since their last ring, Jerry Reese has annually shuffled the deck in an attempt at keeping the team competitive during Eli Manning's remaining years.  There's the rub.  If it weren't for Eli, a full blown rebuilding would be in order, lest we forget Manning was a rookie on a very veteran team.  

That said, Jerry Reese's reliance on free agency has increased every season since 2011.  He was clearly at his most aggressive during this past off-season, and was generally commended for addressing specific needs.  Above all, he managed to purchase fan confidence heading into the 2014 season.  

At 3-2, they looked fine heading into Philadelphia.  Or, so we thought.  They got shut out 27-0 by the Eagles, and looked even worse than that.

So, the question again begged to be asked - how good are the Giants?

We should look no further than at the NFC East division leading Dallas Cowboys for the answer.   Plain and simple, Dallas' offensive line, back field, tight end, and receivers, are all superior to those of the Giants.  And it showed in a 31-21 defeat in Dallas.

That must have had Jerry Jones doing cartwheels in the hallways of AT&T Stadium.

That should have had John Mara contemplating his general manager's future as well.

During the pre-season Coach Coughlin said he had no plan on retiring.  But at this rate, this is likely his last season as Giants head coach.  The Giants are also in dire need of a change in defensive coordinators.

Giants ownership, we know does nothing hastily.  And, Reese is widely believed to be held in high esteem by the organization.  One can't help but wonder, however, if Jerry Reese will be the one making those determinations heading into next season.

As a result of their most recent defeat against the Cowboys, the Giants are now 19-20 since winning their last Super Bowl.  They only posted a  9-7 regular season that year, and followed that with another 9-7 record in 2012 before falling to 7-9 last season.

The Giants haven't fired a general manager since Wellington Mara replaced Andy Robustelli after the 1978 season with George Young.  The baton was then passed, so to say, to Ernie Accorsi, whom then passed it to Jerry Reese.

Giants history says Reese will still be calling the shots next season.  But John Mara was born into this game, and perhaps knows better than anyone when to make such a move.


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