Saturday, September 28, 2013

N.Y. Giants: Underwhelming Defense Getting Overwhelmed

From the desk of:   DO IT FOR THE DUKE

New York Giants @ Kansas City Chiefs

NEW YORK FOOTBALL GIANTS: The Defense Must Do More Than Offer Yet Another Yawn Inspiring Performance.

17th In NFL Against Pass
Watching Peyton Manning and Cam Newton dissect the secondary
makes it seem much worse.
27th In NFL Against Run
Denver and Carolina ran outside their Tackles at will,
and with great success.

In Week One, Dallas showed the Giants defense was flawed.  In Week two, Peyton Manning stripped them down and left the defense exposed.  Last Week, Cam Newton and the Panthers finished them off by thoroughly demoralizing them.  All told, the Giants got out-scored by a 115-54 margin in three games to date.  They will now face the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium, where the defense can either put forth a formidable Big Blue effort for a change, or continue to devolve.

Adversity is supposed to reveal character, but in the Giants case they are facing something much more primitive - the instincts to fight or flee.  Game Four is the crucible of their season.  And so begins the conversation as to whether this assemblage of defensive players is finished.

If I were drafting a defense from the pool of current Giants players, my first two selections would be JPP and Prince Amukamara.  My next two picks would be Mathias Kiwanuka and Linval Joseph. Everyone else you can have.

Jason Pierre Paul is getting a little healthier by the week.  He made five tackles against the Panthers, but still can't generate a pass rush.  Mathias Kiwanuka has suffered from what I'm calling the Joba Treatment (as in the Yankees handling of Joba Chamberlain), which was failing to establish him at one position or another.  This season he is back to being a lineman.  Mathias wouldn't have had to be moved to linebacker in the first place if GM Jerry Reese had paid more attention to the position.  There is still a lot of potential in Prince Amukamara's game, and with the departure of Chris Canty, Linval Joseph has not embarrassed himself one bit.

We all know the Giants present linebacker situation can be described as pedestrian at best.  Jesse Armstead was the last linebacker of impact drafted by the Giants.  A long succession of superior linebackers ended with him.  Antonio Pierce was a very good acquisition along the way.  But outside of the recent surprise seasons provided by Kawika Mitchell and Chase Blackburn, the position on the whole has been impotent.  The Giants caught a bad break when Dan Conner went down for the season in Week One.  He was supposed to solidify the middle.  But his injury only magnified how thin the Giants already were to begin with.

In the secondary, Ryan Mundy continues to play well, while Antrel Rolle continues to talk-up a good game. Injured - Corey Webster will sit out Sunday's game.  Truth is, he has looked no better getting burnt on deep plays, than say Aaron Ross or Terrell Thomas have.  Speaking of which, Terrell Thomas' knees just may be two years past their usefulness.  That's just speculation on my part, but talk is he's already wearing down.  The Giants corners haven't gotten help from the defensive line this season either, and that's not about to change unless Justin Tuck starts to play elite football.

The naysayers have already lined-up against him, saying Justin Tuck can't.  After a supposedly superior off-season training program, Tuck led us to believe he would be playing rejuvenated and inspired football this season.  So far, he's been perpetrating a daydream and making Subway commercials.  He has exactly one-half sack this season, and last week only made two tackles all game, which ranked eleventh on the team!  His sub-par play is now bleeding into its third season.

As a whole, the Giants defense is understaffed, and the offense currently has them overburdened, as offensive time of possession has been terrible this season.  At the same time however, the defense is collectively underachieving and has been underwhelming to say the least.  The once mighty sack machine is now among the worst pass rushes in the league.

There are many fans who would agree the Giants have enjoyed success in spite of Perry Fewell.  He continues to assemble yawn inspiring defensive game plans.  Coach Fewell believes in winning individual battles up front that the Giants defensive line have been increasingly less able to do over the last two seasons.  Don't expect any creativity on his part to compensate for depleted or compromised ability.  Coach Fewell has never been that "wiley" before.


1 comment:

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