So much for getting off to a good start and being a tough team to go up against. So much for changing results. So much for things being different under new management.
Giants general manager Dave Gettleman and Giants head coach Pat Shurmur were desperate to make their mark on the Giants in their first year after their predecessors ex-Giants general manager Jerry Reese and overmatched ex-Giants head coach Ben McAdoo fielded a horrible product. They certainly created a professional environment where players focused on football rather than engaging with nonsense such as talking about how great they are.
Instead, the Giants are 0-2 under their watch after a listless 20-13 loss against the Dallas Cowboys Sunday night at AT&T Stadium. This is the fifth time in six years that they are 0-2. It has become too familiar for Giants fans, and that’s why it’s a discouraging start to the season.
Gettleman and Shurmur did not know what they got themselves into with the Giants. They thought their presence itself would change the team around. It turns out they did not realize how bad this football team is. Now after two games, they have their work cut out for them.
The Giants are a bad football team. Their defense does not scare anyone, their special teams leave so much to be desired and their offense is offensive to watch. This has a making of a four or six-win team. It’s no wonder why Giants fans are somber on a Monday morning. They know now nothing has changed under new management. It was hard to think things were changing with these same cast of losers the last few years, so it was amusing to think Gettleman and Shurmur thought they can change all that and Giants fans were desperate enough to believe this spiel.
After watching Sunday night, the Giants can be best described as a dumpster fire.
It was a start of a long night when Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott threw a 64-yard touchdown pass to Tavon Austin from the Cowboys’ 36 three plays into the game. It was a challenge Prescott happily accepted right away when Giants linebacker Landon Collins was stupid enough to engage with him by talking about his lack of passing game this week.
When the Giants had the ball for their first possession of the night, Shurmur inexplicably decided to punt at 4th and 1 at the Giants’ 48 rather than have Saquon Barkley run for the first down and give the Giants momentum on offense. This is a head-scratcher because the Giants drafted Barkley for plays like this. There’s no question Gettleman couldn’t have been happy with his head coach’s decision.
From there, Giants quarterback Eli Manning became a punching bag for the Cowboys defensive line. He never had time to make a throw since he was worried about being sacked. How bad it got for him? In the third quarter, he tried to scramble for a first down just to be tripped by Cowboys linebacker Jaylon Smith. Overall, he was sacked six times, but it sure looked like he was sacked 12 times. Either way, one had to feel sorry for him since his Giants career could end after this season because of his awful offensive line.
The Giants defense did not make plays in this game. They did not get to Prescott, and the Cowboys offensive line destroyed the Giants defensive line.
The coaches left so much to be desired. The Giants were unprepared for the second straight week, and Shurmur and his staff never made adjustments to get the offense going or stop Prescott. It’s the second straight week that the Giants coaches have been playing checkers while their counterparts have been playing chess.
No one is saying the coaching is why the Giants stink. It’s more on the roster, but it’s on the coaches to maximize the most out of a limited roster, and they haven’t done it. Shurmur’s playcalling resembles a dink and dunk offense, and that’s alarming considering he was hired to make the most of his offensive playmakers. It’s like McAdoo’s offense was more entertaining that the Giants are seeing out of their current head coach.
Shurmur was supposed to be part of the solution, but he isn’t so far.
Gettleman tried to address the offensive line by signing Nate Solder to a four-year, $62 million contract this offseason and drafting Will Hernandez as the second-round pick. Neither has made any impact so far. It’s still a overmatched offensive line just like the last few years. It’s been a riddle Gettleman tried to solve like Reese with no results so far. It’s hard to believe it will get better from watching the two games.
These two games mean reality has set in for the Giants. This is not a playoff team. This is not a winning team. This is a team that needs several years of good drafting before they can be good. They are so bad that they can be getting a top five pick.
This season will be about now who the Giants should draft in 2019. Will it be a quarterback or an offensive lineman? There won’t be an easy answer just like there is not an easy answer to solve the Giants’ woes in 2018.
Gettleman and Shurmur thought this was going to be easy.
After two games, they now realized this is going to be a project.
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