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3 Reasons You Can Never Dismiss Eli Manning and the New York Giants

CINCINNATI, OH - NOVEMBER 11:  Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants passes the ball during the NFL game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on November 11, 2012 in Cincinnati, Ohio.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images
Gary DavenportNFL AnalystDecember 14, 2016

You know, you'd think by now we wouldn't even buy into it, that it would just come and go without notice, especially given how long it's been going on now.

No, I'm not talking about Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh's annual holiday performance, although this year's rendition of the holiday classic "The Nutcracker" was lovely. Really.

I'm talking about the New York Giants annual yo-yo of a regular season.

Stop me if you've heard this before. The New York Giants get off to a good start, get a nice lead in the NFC East, then stumble, raising doubts about the team before rallying just in time to advance to the postseason.

Sound like this season? Sound like every season?

Sure enough, after a bye week filled with naysaying about the Giants' two-game losing streak, Big Blue came out on Sunday night and dropped a piano on the Green Bay Packers, demolishing a very good Green Bay team 38-10 at home.

Granted, I'll give you that the score was a little surprising, but the outcome really shouldn't have been, for a number of reasons.

First, there's the not insignificant fact of the matter that the Giants have done this before...repeatedly.

In 2007, the Giants sat at 7-3 after 10 games and appeared to be sitting pretty in the NFC East. Then a blowout loss at the hands of the Minnesota Vikings started a 3-3 finish that cost the Giants the division title.

A year ago, the Giants came into Week 10 at 6-2 and once again appeared to be cruising towards the NFC East crown. That is, of course, until the team dropped four games in a row before managing to squeak into the playoffs only after downing the Dallas Cowboys in the season's final game.

Both years the Giants went on to win the Super Bowl, so we should know that the Giants, after two losses and sitting at 6-4, had everyone right where they wanted them.

Kidding aside, it's a lot easier to make these sorts of runs late in the year if you have a strong corps of veterans and a no-nonsense coach. It still doesn't explain why the Giants take the middle of each season off, but with a very experienced offensive line and one of the NFL's most underrated head coaches in Tom Coughlin, the Giants seem to be able to hit the "on" switch when they need to.

That most definitely goes for the third, and likely most important reason, why the Giants have a seemingly endless supply of rabbits to pull from their proverbial hats.

As much as it drives me crazy to admit that one position is that important in the NFL, the fact is that as long as you have a good team that can hang in games, then all it takes is one drive from the right quarterback.

If there's one thing Eli Manning has shown, it's the ability to lead that drive. Twice. In the Super Bowl.

So, next year when the surge is followed by the swoon, let's just all carry about our business as usual instead of lamenting what's "wrong" with the New York Giants.

Because we all know another surge is coming.

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