The Giants season is over before Halloween for the second straight season.
The three games against the Philadelphia Eagles, Atlanta Falcons and Washington Redskins in October served as an opportunity for the Giants to assert themselves as a team that can not only make the playoffs, but win the mediocre NFC East. Instead, they showed they don’t have it in them to accomplish both goals. Not only they stink, but they don’t have the character to deal with tough times.
Thursday night’s 34-13 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium illustrated everything that’s wrong with the Giants. Their offense is stupor, and their defense is soft. They also quit in the second half. The Giants fans had the right idea about not going to the game on this foggy night. They have no reason to go to any more games or watch their team in their living room or at a sports bar this season.
The next time the Giants are relevant again is during the NFL Draft in Nashville in 2019. One has to presume the Giants will actually draft a quarterback this time around after not drafting one in the last draft.
The Giants thought Eli Manning still had good football left in him, even though he has been awful for the last two seasons, so rather than draft a quarterback, they drafted Penn State running back Saquon Barkley to make their current quarterback’s job easy. So much for that. He continues to have another awful season to the point he is playing his way out of New York next season.
Manning offered no reason to think the Giants can beat the struggling Eagles. It started when he threw an interception at the Giants’ 40 in the second play of the game. This resulted to the Eagles having the ball and scoring a touchdown when Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz threw a 13-yard touchdown pass to Alshon Jeffery to give the Eagles a 7-0 lead. From there, it was here we go again.
Giants fans knew the score. They saw enough of Manning’s four interceptions this season to know it was going to be another long night. They are already used to it.
When the Giants had the ball after the Eagles scored their first touchdown of the game, Manning had a chance to tie the game after the Giants rookie running back Saquon Barkley broke free on a 46-yard run that put the Giants in the Eagles’ 18. Instead, he threw two incomplete passes to Sterling Shepard. The Giants had to settle for a measly field goal.
For Barkley to have that electrifying run after Manning’s interception just to see Manning not engineer a touchdown drive out of it, it was a momentum deflater. It took the life out of the Giants for good. They knew they did not have a chance when their quarterback couldn’t come up with a big play in that spot. They saw this too often in what already is a long season.
When a quarterback does not give his team a chance to win, it takes a toll on the entire players. This is what Manning is in 2018. He can’t make the big plays like he used to anymore. All he does is throw short passes. It’s no wonder there was a camera shot of Giants head coach Pat Shurmur screaming “Throw the ball!” out of frustration.
If this is the best Manning can do, it is time for the Giants to start this year’s fourth-round draft pick Kyle Lauletta when this month is over. There’s no way they should subject their fans to ineffective play from their veteran quarterback the entire season. He shouldn’t have the right to finish the season just because of his name and what he did in the past. There comes a time for the Giants to say it’s time.
It should have happened this offseason. Giants owner John Mara let sentimentality get in the way by keeping his quarterback for one more forgettable run rather than start fresh with a new quarterback to go along with a new general manager and a new coach. It’s hard to tolerate a losing season when the Giants made a decision that set them even back several more seasons.
The Giants never had a chance this season because of Manning.
Manning’s ineffective play and the losses have made Odell Beckham Jr. a candidate for psychiatric help. So much for this diva Giants wide receiver growing up. He is who he is. When things don’t go his way, he becomes a pain in the posterior.
Beckham criticized his quarterback and his head coach for the reason the offense has been awful and him not getting his plays in an interview with ESPN’s Josina Anderson that was aired on ESPN’s Sunday NFL Countdown. He also talked about loving life in Los Angeles for whatever reason when asked if he was happy in New York.
He was at it again when he walked off the playing field toward the Giants locker room as his team trailed the Eagles, 24-6, with two seconds remaining on the clock before halftime and the Giants with possession of the ball for one more play. It was a message that meant he was frustrated with the way his night has gone and his team’s offensive ineptitude.
Shurmur claimed Beckham went for IV after being dehydrated.
It’s hard to believe anyone is buying it. Not when Beckham went to the locker room frustrated and angry. This is where the Giants head coach loses credibility with the public. Not only he should have called his star out, but he should have benched him.
Instead, he enabled Beckham’s behavior just like his previous predecessors Tom Coughlin and Ben McAdoo. Maybe if he benched his petulant wide receiver for the second half, there would not be another episode where he goes off the deep end by headbutting a cooling fan on the Giants sideline.
Please spare me about Beckham showing leadership. This wasn’t. This was a display of a grown man acting like a boy that did not have his way, so he pulled a temper tantrum because the Giants were losing and Barkley was getting more touches than him.
Barkley showed more leadership than the entire players on the team by playing through a horrible loss instead of quitting. That’s the type of example Beckham should be providing.
Shurmur clearly has no answers as coach. He might be over his head. It was interesting he was hired in the first place after an uninspiring 9-23 record as the coach of the Cleveland Browns. It was hard to sell for this market to bring a coach with that record, and now he is 11-28 overall in his head coaching career.
He is making failed McAdoo look like a successful head coach, and that’s hard to do. He has no idea how to get his players to play together, and his offense is unimaginative whatsoever.
All of this is a poor reflection on Mara. He decided to keep his quarterback rather than draft a quarterback, extended an overrated wide receiver with the idea he would behave himself and hired a coach that has no business coaching the New York Football Giants. Plus, he hired a 67-year-old Giants general manager Dave Gettleman that had Giants ties rather than hire an outsider to rebuild the Giants.
It’s easy to blame Manning, Beckham, Shurmur and Gettleman for what has gone wrong.
If anyone really wants to know why the Giants are where they are today, look no further than Mara.