"Losers" he said with a straight face.
I agree. And this year's Giants - for many reasons - may end up being losers. Yes, that means 8-8 or less, Giant fans.
Yesterday's frustrating loss to the Chargers at home is not an easy pill to swallow today. The game was a very winnable one.
The pre-game objectives were all met: control the clock, win the field-position war and create turnovers. They accomplished all three and still lost the ballgame.
The Giants held the ball for over 37 minutes. The Chargers had only one drive that began in Giants territory and that was at the 45-yard-line. The Giants defense had two key interceptions plus a forced fumble by Osi Umenyiora on Philip Rivers that killed another drive.
How did they lose this game, then..? On offense, not defense. The Chargers' final drive to win the game should have been moot. The Giants should have been up at least two scores at that juncture of the game. Too many FGs and not enough TDs.....
Exhibit 1 - The opening drive of the game started like gangbusters. The Giants began at their own 11 and drove deep into Chargers' territory. The drive ended with Jeff Feagles fumbling the snap on a 37-yard FG attempt.
The Giants held the ball for 7:37 and had nothing to show for it. Key plays: 2nd and 2 from the SD 22.....Jacobs goes left tackle for one yard. On 3rd and 1, Bradshaw goes left guard for no gain. Coughlin opts for the FG, which the Giants botch.
Exhibit 2- With 3:51 remaining in the third quarter, the Giants took possession on the Chargers' 21. San Diego had just gone up 14-7 on a scoring drive fueled by a pass interference penalty. 10 plays and 60 yards later, the Giants narrowed the Chargers' lead to 14-10 on a Lawrence Tynes 38-yard field goal, instead of answering with a touchdown.
The last series of the drive began on the SD 20-yard-line (you are all aware of the Giants' red zone ineptitude). On first down, Danny Ware (remember him?) ran for 3 yards. Then, Manning threw an out to Manningham, who was immediately slammed down by Eric Weddle for a loss of two. On third and 9, Manning hit Steve Smith, who seemed to have enough for a first down. The play was reviewed and the officials ruled "no catch". The Giants were stuck with a FG.
Exhibit 3 - Late in the fourth quarter, with the Giants leading 17-14, Terrell Thomas picked off a Philip Rivers pass and returned it to the SD 4-yard-line.
The rest went like this......on first down, Jacobs takes the ball down to the one. A holding penalty is called on Chris Snee, negating the play and moving the Giants back to the 14-yard-line.
On first-and-goal from the 14, Manning throws the ball out to Hakeem Nicks in the right flat, where he gets smothered by two Chargers for no gain. On 2nd down, Jacobs goes up the middle for 5 yards. On 3rd-and-goal from the nine, the Giants call a draw for Jacobs, who gets stopped on the 4. Tynes kicks a FG to put the Giants up 20-14.
The playcalling on this possession (and others) draws many questions. Last time I checked, a player must cross the goal line and get into the end zone to score a TD. Not once did the Giants take a shot at the end zone. Why?
What good is the out pass to Hicks on first down? That play should not be called inside the 20. And.....a draw play to Jacobs on 3rd and 9? This is a player who has issues getting his legs moving. I'm baffled.
I agree with the other writers on this site. The coaching may be a problem here, not just the players.