The defending Super Bowl champion New York Giants are just past the midpoint of their season. They sit at the top of the NFC East with a 6-3 record and have a three-game lead over Dallas, Philadelphia and Washington.
But head coach Tom Coughlin is not happy, specifically with his run defense, which he called “soft” after its dismal performance against Pittsburgh last week. In the last six games, the Giants have yielded rushing totals of 191, 84, 80, 248, 19 and 158 yards. The numbers speak volumes. The defensive line and linebackers are getting pushed off the ball and are missing tackles.
The relentless QB pressure that Justin Tuck, Jason Pierre Paul and Osi Umenyiora were supposed to provide has been sporadic at best. If it weren’t for takeaways (17 interceptions and nine fumble recoveries), the Giants would be in trouble.
Here are midseason grades for several key players on defense, as well as defensive coordinator Perry Fewell.