We probably thought New York Giants’ QB Eli Manning and his slump were over after the Giants handled the Green Bay Packers easily after their bye week. Then their offense played well but were only able to get 16 points in a loss to the Washington Redskins. Then they turned it back up and rang up 52 points against the New Orleans Saints.
So what were you expecting in this one? I was expecting for it to be a hard-fought game, with Manning struggling a little against that stout Atlanta Falcons’ defense. What we saw yesterday was far from what I imagined. It was definitely far from what head coach Tom Coughlin imagined.
The Giants were shut out for the first time since 1996, but the Giants had several opportunities to get some points and gain momentum. Manning threw two early interceptions, which were costly as the Falcons were able to get rolling very early. However, Manning was solid afterwards, but the Giants just couldn’t generate much against that Falcons’ defense.
The Giants failed two fourth-down conversions in the first half, but the first one was a smart idea. The Giants had the ball in field goal range but K Lawrence Tynes does not have a strong leg. The Giants were moving the ball again right before halftime when the drive stalled. Instead of getting three points, Coughlin decided to go for it again.
The second half was worse, as there were few opportunities for the Giants to score. On one pass Manning threw, WR Victor Cruz appeared to be afraid to catch the pass over the middle as he short-armed the pass. He ended up receiving a helmet shot anyway, in which the referees threw a flag.
Simply put, this disaster wasn’t much of Manning’s fault as it was the rest of the offense. Cruz and WR Hakeem Nicks simply didn’t play well and Manning actually connected better throwing to WR Domenik Hixon. No one wants to get this straightened out more than Manning. No one needs to get it more straightened out than Manning. This team goes as he goes.