Something Is Slightly Amiss with Eli Manning and the Giants' Passing Game
I don't want to sound the alarm, because the New York Giants still have the second-highest-scoring offense in the NFL thus far in 2012 and Eli Manning is still completing over 62 percent of his passes at a solid 7.8 yards per attempt.
But while the Giants have won each of their last three games and scored at least 26 points in each of those matchups, it's hard to argue against the notion that Manning and his receivers left quite a few opportunities unfulfilled.
During that stretch, Manning has completed 57 percent of his passes, has a 2-to-3 touchdown-to-interception ratio and has gone over 200 yards passing just once.
So what's been happening with this passing game? Let's look at some factors.
Lack of Chemistry with Hakeem Nicks
Nicks has been easing himself back from ankle and knee injuries, and that has seemed to hurt his timing with Manning. Over the last three weeks, Nicks has just 12 catches on 21 targets, according to Pro Football Focus.
Nicks was able to beat Chris Culliver on a nice move early against the 49ers. See the separation...
Late in the first half against San Francisco, Manning had Martellus Bennett on an out-route and no pressure. Had he stepped into this throw and led Bennett, the tight end would have only had to beat one man to pick up the first down and possibly more. But instead, Manning threw a pass that was low and short of Bennett, incomplete. They'd have to settle for a field-goal attempt, which would be blocked.
Manning had little reason to throw this ball at Cruz deep over the middle. Carlos Rogers had great coverage, and Cruz had to become the defender to break it up.
Not sure what he was seeing there...
His Receivers Haven't Been Great
We've already gone over Nicks' issues as he gets up to speed, but Manning's receiving corps as a whole dropped four passes against the Cowboys. I counted three alone in the first half, and all three would have been first-down completions to Nicks or Cruz.
Even Eli's lone interception against the Cowboys wasn't really his fault. He made a tight throw to Cruz, but a big hit jarred the ball loose and into the arms of Danny McCray.
Combine that with the fact Dallas also did a great job in coverage in that game, and Manning at least has some excuses for a below-average outing. I couldn't find any incomplete passes in that game that were blatantly on him, but he wasn't exactly making heroic throws down the field, either.
It's easy to find examples of plays like these from any NFL quarterback, no matter how good. But there were a few too many ducks from Manning against the Niners and Redskins, and the Cowboys played too well on defense for us to be able to tell if he had snapped out of it or not in that game.
What is the duplicate article?
Why is this article offensive?
Where is this article plagiarized from?
Why is this article poorly edited?