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Isn't it bizarre how the Giants lately seem to have at least one of these games a year where the wheels just completely fall off and they look ridiculously bad. And it often happens in a prime time game (or at least it seems that way). Also, something weird always seems to happen against Philly. Again, at least it seems that way.
I agree on the lack of small ball to get some momentum. It is hard to understand why McAdoo didn't go to that approach, especially since that is his specialty using the west coast offense. I really don't get it. Next week's game against Dallas will tell us a lot about this team. I'm hoping this was one of those yearly aberrations. They aren't as good as they were looking the last 3 weeks but I have to believe they aren't as bad as they showed last night either. Somewhere in between.
The sickening thing about the Cruz injury is that play should never have happened. Larry Donnell makes this incredible catch in the end zone and it is called back for holding. Then the old 20-20 hind sight, Coughlin should have just kicked the field goal to get some points on the board and get a little momentum. If they kick a field goal that 4th down pass to Cruz in the end zone never happens and probably Cruz doesn't get injured. Ugh........
1 month, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/2014-articles/oct/phl-27-nyg-0.html
Good write up. I have said since they hired McAdoo - as long as I am seeing progress most every game this year, I am encouraged. I felt like the Giants were stuck in neutral with Gilbride. My preseason guess was 7-9.
I am encouraged that they came back from the early game mishaps. I am also very encouraged by Eli and the offensive line. A lot of Eli haters will have to get back in the weeds this morning.
2 months ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/2014-articles/sept/nyg-30-hou-17.html
Andy - the strength and condition component is something I have been frustrated about for quite a while. Do you know is there a 'salary cap' for coaching staff? I have always wondered why a team wouldn't research which team consistently has the fewest injuries, investigate why, then hire that strength and conditioning coach and his approach. Even if you doubled his salary seems like it would be worth every penny.
I read reports that the Giants had changed some of their stretching regimen this year. Have you heard that?
2 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/2014-articles/sept/the-palmieri-factor.html
Andy, thank you for giving us some honest hope. What are the chances Fewell sees the error he made in using the Tampa 2 so much and goes away from that approach? The Giants finally have 2 very good corners. Its hard to believe he would decide to go away from press coverage now that he has the corners to do it.
I'm glad you saw some hope in the offensive line. I like the uptempo nature of the offense. I worry that the receivers seem to not be getting any separation. Randle really worries me. I think I'd rather see Corey Washington in there rather than Randle at this point. Even considering Washington's rookie mistakes. At least he fights for the ball.
This next game against Arizona, at home, will tell us a lot. If they can keep improving each week, I can handle the 'under construction' situation the Giants have.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/uncategorized/det-35-nyg-14.html
Definitely agree Andy. We have to give this team time. May not be pretty starting out but I don't mind growing pains if they long term result is a better team.
Last week when Eli said it will be a learning process 'all season' I thought most of the media misinterpreted what he was saying. The heading was something like "Eli says it could take all season to learn new system". Something like that. I listened to the press conference and what I heard Eli say was it will be a learning process all season, as you would normally expect. I don't mind that it is a learning process. Better that then to continue in a system that was no longer working well, at least with the personnel the Giants currently have.
Great to have football back! Let's see what the Giants can do tonight.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/uncategorized/at-long-last-the-beginning-of-2014.html
Andy, not to beat a dead horse to death here, but how much of the offensive line woes is just bad luck and how much of this mess is the fault of Jerry Reese's for letting the offensive line get to this point? I tend toward the side of this being Reese's fault, big picture. Other than Pugh, he has a track record of taking 'shiny toys' in the first round that can't get on the field or have not lasted long before injuries got the best of them. I hate to always harp on Reese's draft choices, but.......
The thing that makes me really ill is that the lack of attention to the offensive line is going to ruin Eli's best years. I think that will go down in Giants history as a huge mistake.
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/2014-articles/schwartz-lost-for-7-weeks.html
Either the Giants get real unlucky with their first round picks or there is something wrong with how these players are brought along as rookies. I have always wondered about the Giants strength and conditioning program with so many soft tissue injuries. I would love to see a team comparison of these type of injuries and see where the Giants rank among other teams. If anyone knows of a source that tracks this, pass it along. I can't believe this is just Giants' bad luck. I know last year the Giants had the most games missed by starters of any team in the league.
Giants had 91 missed games by starters. Philadelphia had 29 games missed, by comparison. And the other team that shares Met-Life stadium only had 20 missed games. I guess we can't blame the Met-Life turf.
If you could figure out which team consistently has the fewest injuries of the hamstring type, I would offer that strength and conditioning coach a job on the spot.
3 months ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/2014-articles/reese-and-palmieri-in-round-1.html
I look at this season as a work in progress. Even if they they end up with a losing season, if they are improving as the season progresses and building towards a solid team in the future, that is WAY better than going with the status quo of Gilbride's offense, with no hope for improvement. That is my approach this season. Hopefully I will remember this view of the season once they start playing for real. I think we are all going to need to be patient with this, let's just call it what it is - a "rebuilding year".
3 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/uncategorized/nyg-27-ind-26.html
@russellreisman I have been surprised by how much the plays look like Gilbride's playbook also. The only thing that seems better from Gilbride days is I don't see the clock counting down near zero very often or at all. I am not seeing any indications that Eli is taking to this new offense. Hard to imagine it improving that much between now and opening day. Hope I am wrong.
Andy, I appreciate whenever you can add an entry to this blog. I totally understand not being able to add entries as often as before. Life gets nuts! Thanks for whatever you can post. Always great stuff.
The two people I am the most concerned about are (1) JPP as you have mentioned. The other one being Will Beatty. if he does not come back and play at a high caliber at left tackle, the Giants line is in trouble. Of all the moves the Giants made in the offseason, their lack of addressing left tackle bothers me the most. They did great in other areas, but really blew it at left tackle. They are taking a HUGE gamble that Beatty comes back like his old self. He better because the other options are pretty bad.
Thanks again for this article.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/2014-articles/nyg-20-steelers-16.html
Andy, really good perspective on Wilson and the running back situation in the NFL today. As an aside, isn't it refreshing to see a new offensive approach this year, finally!
As far as the this blog and twitter, just my two cents here. I follow twitter and see your posts there and follow many people related to the Giants. Great stuff. But I also really enjoy this blog because you can write longer pieces such as the one you wrote here about Wilson. Twitter is great, but you can only pack so much into 140 characters. I don't really see Twitter as a replacement for this blog. But I realize there are only so many hours in the day to commit to this stuff. So I look forward to each article you write on this blog. As I said, just my 2 cents.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://ultimatenyg.com/2014-articles/david-wilson-retires-from-football.html
@CommanderShepard @jfoster I agree that I am also cautiously optimistic with Gilbride gone. That is the silver lining for me. I am anxious to see what the offense looks like.
It would be great if they could either sign a better center or draft a center in the 2nd or 3rd rounds. I would love to see them solidify that position for the next few years at least.
Who would have guessed that the defensive would now become an issue, as good as it potentially looked at the start of last year.
8 months, 2 weeks ago on SLAM DUNK SUCCESS FOR GMEN THRU 2 DAYS OF FREE AGENCY
What does everyone think of the Justin Tuck situation? Did the Giants make the right offer? Seems Tuck is upset that the Giants didn't make what he considered a legitimate attempt to keep him. Not sure what I think on that.
And what about the news that Hakeem Nicks is joining the Colts on a 1 year deal worth 3.5 million? Wow, that is some come down from what he was probably expecting.
It will be very interesting to see how Tuck and Nicks do this coming season. I wish I was as ecstatic as Andy. I like the signings the Giants have made (especially Schwartz, Jennings and Beason) but with all the players leaving it feels like 2 steps forward and 3 steps backwards. I hope I am wrong but this still feels like the makings of a mediocre team.
What do you think - have the Giants taken steps forward, backward or just treading water?
@the mayor I couldn't have said it better! Amazing that he is the 2nd highest paid center. That one move hurt the Giants in multiple ways. The really irritating thing is the financial situation will keep Baas around and the Giants will continue to have trouble at center.
9 months ago on NFL Offseason Observations
Great post, Andy. Definitely agree with your comments on Baas and Reese. When you look at the past several drafts since 2007 and who is still on the team and how those drafted players have fared for the most part, I don't see how you can look at Reese as any more than a mediocre general manager. At least as far as the draft goes. And what are the Giants right now? Mediocre. Coincidence? Don't think so.
Ingram is also gone. It will be interesting to see how this all shakes out. This should send a signal that no one is safe if they let go Mike Pope. He has been a great coach for the Giants.
10 months, 2 weeks ago on Ben McAdoo named Giants OC
I am very encouraged by this move. It tells me that John Mara truly believes the offense is broken (great first step), as he said, and is willing to make major changes in the offense. This is highly encouraging from a big picture perspective.
I also just saw where Mike Pope, the tight ends coach, is expected to be released. On the surface, it would appear strange to fire Pope, one of the best TE coaches in the league, and yet retain Tom Quinn as special teams coordinator. I'm sure we will learn more soon enough. But it appears to be a strange move. Maybe McAdoo, being a TE coach, has a different approach to coaching the tight ends and wants a coaching change.
@ultimatenyg @dbs50 Definitely agree both with the post and this comment about Sullivan. I am expecting that we may have to wait for a new head coach before we get that 'young guy with a lot of energy' as OC.
10 months, 3 weeks ago on 10 Years of Coziness with Kevin Gilbride
@ultimatenyg @CommanderShepard If Will Hill had not made that interception the story might have been the Giant only having 8 yards of offense in the 2nd half (or close to it). What a shame if that one interception is enough to somehow get Gilbride off the hook. Surely the front office took notice of those 8 yards of offense, right? I would have thought that might be the last straw.
11 months ago on The Case for Replacing Kevin Gilbride with a new Offensive Coordinator
Great post Andy. This is a post I am going to pass around to my friends who have heard me rant about just about every one of your points.
One point I would like to highlight - "struggles to find rhythm". This is something I have 'sensed' for at least the last 2 years and have had a hard time putting into words. When you watch other offenses around the NFL there is rhythm or pace to their offense that you never see out of the Giants. The Giants feel all start and stop. Eli has been sticking up for Gilbride lately (what else would he do) - but he MUST watch other teams, such as his brothers' team or the Seahawks or the Saints or others and drool over the possibility of the Giants having a pace like that.
Great article Andy. The sad thing is we are getting at least another year of Gilbride if not more. I don't understand why John Mara stands for it. Feels like the Giants are stuck in a different decade.
Great write up Andy. When Will Hill intercepted that pass one of the first things I thought was that a win would be enough to keep the status quo for the Giants coaching staff. It is very discouraging to think about.
I also agree with buljos comment about strength and conditioning. At the very least, the Giants should hire the best S&C coach available and get up to date on S&C approach.
Also agree with thoughts on QB coach. Eli obviously needs help getting his mechanics straightened out (maybe he should sign up for that Manning QB camp.....). It seems ludicrous to me to invest so heavily in a QB (salary cap hit) and then promote the receiver's coach to QB coach? Eli needs a top-notch QB coach to get him straighten out. And an Offensive line wouldn't hurt either but he now is throwing above or behind his receivers even when he has time to throw it.
So what if the Redskins beat the Giants in the last game? Will that make any difference in coaching changes? Probably not....
11 months, 1 week ago on NYG 23 DET 20 OT
@mkdrep @the mayor Somewhere I read that one of the most important things to Mara is that the Giants are still playing meaningful games in December. In recent years even thought they didn't make the playoffs the final game still meant something - there was a chance to get in the playoffs. This year, by early December the Giants are of totally out of the playoff picture. So based on that, would that be enough to make Mara decide to make coaching changes?
If Seattle comes into Giants stadium (Metlife) and embarrass the Giants, then the stadium is half empty for the Redskins game (even with the seats being paid for) - you would hope that would be enough for Mara to say, "That's enough...."
11 months, 2 weeks ago on SD 37 NYG 14
@capt george I will always be a Giants fan but that would come close to doing me in.
11 months, 3 weeks ago on SD 37 NYG 14
@capt george I was just listening to the Giants morning call-in show (Big Blue Kickoff) and I can already hear them setting up the OL as the fall guy. The OL has been a mess but that is just one cause for the Giants state of affairs. It is even more depressing if the Giants management doesn't see that there is something inherently wrong with the offensive system.
Andy, I agree with the 3 coaches you point out that need replacing. Since no one has commented on the strength and conditioning coach, I agree with your point on changing the strength and conditioning coach. The whole S&C program needs to be revamped. Similar to the OC, I am guessing the S&C program is out of date. ACLs and broken bones are one thing. But all of the ham strings, groin injuries, etc - I would like to see a statistic as to how many of these type of injuries the Giants have compared to other teams.
If the Seahawks come into Giants stadium (ok, Metlife....) and really embarrass the Giants in front of the home crowd with Mara in attendance, then lost to Washington on the last game of the year, would that be enough embarrassment to the owners to convince them that coaching changes need to be made? Will that be enough? Like many of you, I think this team is just spinning its wheels until Gilbride and his offensive system is shown the door.
@ultimatenyg @jfoster @mezzanine I agree. Eli is not the problem. It feels like he has lost his confidence and some of his ability to throw as well under pressure. Understandably so, as many times as this OL has changed this year. And Gilbride's play calling is not helping matters.
12 months ago on Odds and Ends at 4-7
@mezzanine Here's something I almost hate to ask - have we already seen the best of Eli? This is now his 2nd year that has been sub-par, at least compared to 3 years ago when they won the super bowl. I think we assumed that he would continue to get better as his career continued in the NFL. But maybe we have already seen the best Eli. Don't misunderstand - that is not a knock on Eli - he has been a great QB for the Giants and I would still take Eli over at least 2/3 of the QBs out there. But I'm just wondering if we have already seen his best.
This goes along with the criticism of Gilbride. I would love to see how Eli would do under a new OC that had some progressive, forward thinking approaches. Like has been said in different places, the Giants often win in SPITE of Gilbride. In the same way, I think Eli has done well, in SPITE of Gilbride's play calling at times. I just hope that by the time the Giants finally go with a new OC, that it isn't too late for Eli.
Great article. A little clarification. When I said that the 2 superbowls cover a multitude of problems, what I was referring to was when people defend Gilbride, for example, by saying, 'hey, he brought us 2 SUperbowl wins. Often when players or coaches are criticized the 2 superbowls are brought up. I think the Giants earned those superbowls and weren't just lucky as some history revisionists now try to say. But at the same time winning those 2 superbowls doesn't give the coaches or players involved a lifetime free pass. That was my thought when I said that
@I Bleed Blue Great post! Yours is one of the best comments I have read all week.
You would hope that having meaningless games in December (and half empty stadium?) would prompt Mara to make changes. I have this sinking feeling its not going to happen though. The Giants will do just enough so that no one loses their job. I am also interested to see how these players perform when they have no shot at the playoffs.
12 months ago on DAL 24 NYG 21
I hated all the 'trash talk' before this game too. You would think a 4-6 team would have enough sense to not do that. Now that there chances of making the playoffs are pretty much nil, I will be interested to see how this group of players react. There will be a lot of new faces next year.
1 year ago on DAL 24 NYG 21
Reading this article and the comments so far - I agree with all the sentiment. The worst result of this season would be to do just well enough that the coaching staff stays intact and we are stuck with more years of mediocre football. The two Superbowl wins cover up a multitude of mediocre football. Depending on your age, you have seen, like me, a lot of mediocre to bad football in the Giants past. My fear is that the Giants get stuck back in that mode.
Like many of you - I have just had it with Gilbride. There is plenty of other blame to go around, but when I see other offenses in action around the league it makes me realize how antiquated and predictable Gilbride's approach is. When the Giants win, it seems to be in SPITE of Gilbride, not because of some good approach he takes to a game.
Looking at the schedule I predict 6-10 for a finish. Is that bad enough to cost Gilbride his job? My fear is that it is just good enough for him to stay.
We probably all 'roll our eyes' when they players insist they are taking it 'one game at a time', but with the way the Giants' season has gone, I find myself doing just that. At this point, it seems unrealistic that the Giants win enough games with the remaining schedule to make the playoffs. At this point, I just want to see them play better each game. So from that perspective, I have really been enjoying these last few games. I love seeing the effect Beason has had on this team (note to Reese - llnebackers ARE important), and I love the combination of Brown and Jacobs. I am really impressed on how the team has stayed together after an 0-6 start. That's my take anyway!
1 year ago on NYG 27 GB 13
How large of a load is realistic for Brown to carry the rest of the season? We saw what happened to Jacobs after his big day. I don't think Brown is on the injury report this week, so hopefully he will be ready to go this Sunday. But expecting him to carry that size load every week seems unrealistic. If Jacobs can get healthy do you think the load will be split more between Brown, Hillis and Jacobs? Maybe 2/3 for Brown and the rest for Hillis and Jacobs? I worry about Brown carrying that much every week. Seems like it is asking for trouble.
1 year ago on Andre Brown Continues to Push Through Obstacles
@capt george @jfoster Totally agree on the OC comment. The inability to run a decent screen is mind-boggling. I hope we will eventually see what Eli can do under another OC.
1 year ago on NYG 24 OAK 20
@capt george @jfoster I agree with what you are saying. I guess the only thing is it seems like the pressure is getting in Eli's head more this year than in the past. Understandably so, but it seems to be a cumulative effect.
I agree that Philly looks like the main contender for the NFC East now. Dallas had the division gift-wrapped to them and haven't been able to run away with it. Got to love that!
Eli worries me. I have always been a staunch supporter of Eli (for younger brothers everywhere!) but he seems to have taken several steps backwards this year. I know the line has been terrible and still isn't great, but the continued pressure seems to have gotten to him. Even when he has time back there now, he seems to rush his passes. And screens - the Giants haven't run a decent screen in years and now I am wondering if the common denominator in their inability to run a screen might be Eli. It just isn't something he does very well.
In general, It just seems like Eli has lost his mojo. I have a hard time imagining him bringing this team back in a 4th quarter situation right now, like he has done in years past.
I would be interested everyone's take on that.
Who would have thought when the Giants beat the Eagles the last game of last year, that the Giants wouldn't win another game when they play the Eagles on the the fifth game the following year!
I hope this is finally a wake up call to Reese about the importance of putting together a top-notch offensive line (if Reese is still the GM next year). Pugh will probably turn out to be a solid lineman but it is too little too late. None of Reese's mid to late round OL picks have panned out.
The really sad thing is they are going to waste the prime years of Eli's career because they let the foundation of the offense rot. Sickening...
1 year, 1 month ago on KC 31 NYG 7
Great article. It doesn't say much about the offense when Blackburn can be gone since last season and still be able to tell so much. Also, it doesn't say much about the offense that so little has changed that Brandon Jacobs can fit right back in so easily. This next game will tell us a lot about this team in multiple ways.
1 year, 2 months ago on Chase Black-burned
@CommanderShepard @RichConforti Next week's performance will tell us a lot. This was the first game this year that they were literally embarrassed. Let's see how this Giants team reacts to that. That will tell me a lot about this team.
1 year, 2 months ago on CAR 38 NYG 0
@Dminches That would be even MORE disturbing if the receivers were not getting open against a secondary group that was supposedly so beaten up.
My biggest beef is they appeared to make so few adjustments once they saw what was happening. One obvious approach would be to take more short passes to Wilson, Cruz, Myers to move the chains. So why aren't they doing it? Does Eli not check down to those type of plays? Are they not an option? At this rate Eli won't make it through the season without getting injured.
I hate to look too far down the road as depressing as that is but at this rate are they looking at 4-12? 5-11? I don't see many teams they can beat.
If the offensive line is really as bad as it appears, it could take multiple years to fix it, especially as inept as Reese has proven to be in putting together an offensive line. You would think after the money they have invested in Eli, a top notch offensive line would be #1 on the priority list. Going to be a long year....
Ah, Homer Jones! I remember Jones also! Going along with what Steve writes - this seems all the more reason to go for shorter passes that move the chains and gets the ball in Nicks' hands. Seems like they too often go for the home run ball (deep down field) and end up in 3rd and long. Just doesn't seem to be in Gilbride's playbook very often.
1 year, 2 months ago on A Closer Look at Hakeem Nicks' Return to Form
One of my pet peeves (preaching to the choir here, I know...) is the lack adjusting to game situations by Gilbride. I don't understand why they continue to try to go for the big yardage when Eli has like 2 seconds back there to get rid of the ball. I just don't get it. Even with the running game almost non-existent, at least move the chains with short yardage passes.
Ok, I'll stop now......
I would not be surprised at all to see the Giants lose to the Panthers next weekend. We will see who is the most desperate for a win.
1 year, 2 months ago on DEN 41 NYG 23
@Paddlepedal Another pet peeve of mine - 3rd and short and Gilbride has Eli chucking down field 30 yards instead of going for the short pass to move the chains. Drives me NUTS. Those long passes work every so often but opposing defenses must see them coming a mile away.
1 year, 2 months ago on Giants Roster, Odds in Game 1
I also totally agree. It has been my pet peeve for awhile now. The have an over-abundance of good player at defensive line and end up having to cut good players that will play on other teams. Seems a waste. Its as if Reese has a blind spot when it comes to DL/LB. This seems very strange for a team that was known for its linebackers for so long. I just don't get it.
I have also been screaming for them to take a linebacker or offensive lineman in the first round or at least the first 3 rounds for years. I don't understand why they don't seem to value linebackers more than they do. They continue to 'get by' with mid-level talent at that position. I just don't get it. And they are very fortunate they have a top-notch offensive line coach or they would be in even more trouble on the OL.
I would be very happy with either Ogletree or Fluker. Which you know means they won't take either one of them.....
1 year, 7 months ago on 2013 NFL Mock Draft
@ultimatenyg Just read your article from 2009. Amazing. So why would the Giants management not see this as an area that needs working on in a major way? I just don't get it. It seems like they would be looking for any way they can get an advantage on the competition. i just don't get it. This could also at least partially explain why Coughlin has a track record of Giants team doing worse in the 2nd half of the season - once these injuries start piling up.
I also think it is because the NFL know the Giants are big ratings draws and stack up tougher matchups for them late in the season. I mean, come on - New Orleans, Atlanta, Baltimore and Philadelphia (as they were predicted to be...) all in December? Did any other team have a December any place close to that?
I think I digressed... Sorry about that....
1 year, 10 months ago on NYG 42 PHL 7
@ultimatenyg @pdmeyerh I would love to see them draft a 10 yr staple Pro Bowl guard or tackle in the early rounds. Come on, Jerry, you can do it! Please.....
Great article. Great note on the Giants' training system (#2 above). Thanks for pointing this out. When I have asked this question on other sites, the answer is always that all teams have injuries, no better or worse than the Giants. It always has seemed like the Giants have more than their fair share of certain types of injuries.
I heard a similar comment from a member of the 49ers secondary on a Peter King podcast - how their training program had a big effect on the team staying as healthy as possible. One of the best things the Giants could do in the off-season would be to go out and hire the best possible conditioning coach that is available. Or hire him away from another team (can they do that?). The Giants seem to be way behind the curve on keeping players healthy. There are always going to be injuries but when you see injuries consistently like pulled hamstrings, quad and calf pulls, you start to wonder about the conditioning program.
I would love to see the Giants hire a new OC but that seems unlikely so I would start with a new conditioning coach. And draft a top-notch offensive lineman early in the draft that will be a solid starter for the next several years.
I know - fat chance of any of that happening....
As was said below last year the Giants were in a similar position but this feels different. The Giants had no ability to come back yesterday. That is very disturbing. There is something fundamentally wrong with this team when they have such wide swings in performance. Score 52 against the Saints last week (granted they are not a great team this year but the Saints have almost always been a tough matchup for the Giants) then get skunked in this game. I really don't understand it. And now the GIants face 2 more teams that they typically don't match up well against. I hate to be so negative but I could easily see them losing both of these games. I hope I am wrong.
1 year, 11 months ago on ATL 34 NYG 0