Giants vs. Eagles: Why This Game Is a Must-Win for New York

Tamer ChammaContributor IIDecember 28, 2012

One of the 19 post-game handshakes Tom Coughlin and Andy Reid have exchanged over the last nine seasons.
One of the 19 post-game handshakes Tom Coughlin and Andy Reid have exchanged over the last nine seasons.Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The New York Giants need to beat the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday for reasons that go far beyond keeping their faint playoff hopes alive.

For starters, it's a chance to beat the Eagles at home for the first time since Sept. 30, 2007. The last time New York beat Philadelphia at home it hadn't won a Super Bowl in 17 years, George W. Bush was still president and the New York Mets had just finished blowing a seven-game lead in 17 games. That's a long time ago. 

The five home losses since that September day have included a crushing playoff loss in 2008 that ended the Giants' chances to repeat and the collapse in 2010 that likely cost them a postseason berth. 

It's time for Big Blue to beat their hated rival in its own stadium. Now is the perfect opportunity to do it since the Eagles enter the last game of the 2012 season with a pitiful 4-11 record.

The Giants can also give a proper send-off to Andy Reid, the coach that has owned the Giants in the Tom Coughlin era. Since Coughlin took over in 2004, New York is 7-12 against Philadelphia, including 0-2 in the playoffs. Reid has been a lame-duck coach for two months now. Ending his career with a loss against the team he has dominated over the last nine seasons would be sweet for the Giants organization and the fanbase alike.

Speaking of send-offs, the Giants can also end Michael Vick's stay in Philadelphia with a loss. Vick will be starting against New York because rookie starter Nick Foles suffered a broken hand last week against the Redskins. Along with Reid, Vick will be shown the door in the offseason. Big Blue can batter the guy who orchestrated the 21-point comeback two years ago as he looks to audition for a new team next season.

Finally, there is also the matter of getting revenge for the Week 4 loss to the Eagles this season. Trailing 19-17, New York had all but won the game when it moved to Philadelphia's 26-yard line with less than a minute left in the game. However, an offensive pass interference call and an incomplete pass set up a long 54-yard field goal attempt for Lawrence Tynes, which he missed short to end the game.

If the Giants had beaten the Eagles that Sunday night, they may be in a win-and-get-in situation this week rather than a win-and-hope-we-get-in scenario.

The Giants should have a division title locked up heading into Week 17. Unfortunately for them, their poor play in the second half, again, has put them on the fringes of the playoff picture. Winning Sunday, however, would be sweet, even if it is their last game of the 2012 season, because it would be against the Eagles.