The New York Giants‘ fall from grace has been more of a plummet. The G-Men hoisted the Lombardi Trophy just two years ago, yet they find themselves with a record of 0-6 here in 2013.
Perhaps the most blatant and fundamental change in the team’s performance has been the on the defensive line. The Giants now rank last in the NFL in sacks. Players who were formally labelled as “studs”, like Jason Pierre-Paul and Justin Tuck, are now non-factors who can’t come within spitting distance of an opposing quarterback.
It’s hard to fathom, but the numbers speak for themselves. Pierre-Paul has just one sack. Tuck has half of a sack. Mathias Kiwanuka has one and a half sacks. And Cullen Jenkins has half of a sack. As a team, New York has recorded only five sacks.
In 2011, the Giants compiled 48 sacks in the regular season alone.
This year, nobody on the defensive line can manage to win a one-on-one battle. The major problems seem to lie with the players, but defensive coordinator Perry Fewell must be held responsible as well.
Fewell has been the defensive coordinator for the Giants since 2010. He helped engineer the pass rush during the Super Bowl run in 2011, which makes this problem even more puzzling.
With the Giants’ failures Fewell has tried to open up his blitz packages, but somehow New York still can’t buy a sack. The defensive line has forced Fewell’s hand with their inability to win individual match-ups, however, if Fewell conjures up a blitz, the Giants should be able to at least disrupt the quarterback’s rhythm. The blame should be dished out pretty equally and failures of this magnitude are inexcusable.
Fans have been calling for the firing of offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride, and soon they may be rooting for the departure of Perry Fewell as well.