New York Giants

New York Giants: A Team Apart

CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 22:   Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants is knocked to the ground during their game against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium on September 22, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Dan HiergesellFeatured ColumnistSeptember 23, 2013

Remember when you found out Santa Claus wasn't real?  Or when you counted your game room tickets and discovered you were just a few short from that awesomely dumb prize?

Take that crushing emotion, combine it with real life, and you have exactly how every New York Giants fan is feeling right about now. 

It only took three weeks for some of the team's most faithful followers to question all levels of the organization.  From the front five to the front office, a media-crazed city has had all the ammunition in the world to pick apart an ineffective group of athletes.

Has Eli Manning suddenly declined in the eyes of finally being recognized as an elite quarterback?  Is Tom Coughlin too old and too run down to manage a team of riddled screw-ups?  Can Jerry Reese be put to blame for his perennial denial to sign the market's best free agents?

To ask these questions seems downright silly, doesn't it? 

Remember, this is a team that has graciously captured two Super Bowls in the past five years, capping off some of the best playoff runs in NFL history.  But for the talent they have positioned on paper, along with the market they play in, the Giants have to answer for their horrendously improbable drought of not producing even mediocre football.

CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 22:   Justin Tuck #91 of the New York Giants sits on the bench during their game against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium on September 22, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Now while angry fingers can be directed at a defective offensive line better suited for a beauty pageant, there are just too many problems to go ahead and blame one gaping hole for a sinking ship.

To cap it off, forged by ill-advised play-calling and foolish turnovers, the Giants don't even seem fazed by their misfortunes.  They seem somewhat content.  Looking at their lack of effort and unwillingness to battle this past week in Carolina showcased just how focused this team is under a 10th year head coach.

But why is that?

Is this a similar result like the tenured faction Andy Reid let slip through his hands in Philadelphia a few years ago?  Or is it strictly due to a team possessing so many nails, but no hammer?

Whatever it is, whoever it is, the Giants don't seem able and ready to climb their way out of this divisional quicksand.  They've dug their own grave so early into the 2013 season that the only reasonable thing left to do is jump in it.

But for a polarizing team that has such a storied history of turning things around, don't we owe them a little gratitude?  Shouldn't we overlook a few weeks of atrocity and give our beloved Big Blue the benefit of the doubt?

To be honest, in respect to every diehard fan who has sympathetically reached deep inside over the past few weeks: No.  This team stinks and it's time to think about alternative options.

Now, sure, the Giants have a chance to turn things around and win a few games here and there, but they aren't making the playoffs to save their lives.  Only a handful of teams have ever made the Big Dance after starting a season 0-3.

USAtoday.com
USAtoday.com

They honestly have a better chance of overtaking the city of Miami and signing LeBron James this offseason.

So what is to be done about this squad of uninterested veterans running around the field looking for clues?  Simple: it's time to disbar Coughlin, completely reshape both fronts and teach David Wilson how to not carry the football like he's sprinting into battle with a live grenade.

Now I know it may come off as a little harsh to let old Tommy Boy go, but at some point you need a fresh face managing the things that are, well, not being managed.

The run game looks like a wild pack of housewives sprinting into the supermarket for the last Thanksgiving Day ham.  It has been downright chaotic.

Sep 8, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA;  New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (90) on the sidelines during the fourth quarter of the game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. The Dallas Cowboys beat the New York Giants 36-31. Mandatory Credit:
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The passing attack has been there when Eli gets protection, but even our beloved two-time Super Bowl MVP has discovered yet another way to turn the ball over like he was playing hot potato.

Justin Tuck can't sack a six-inch cold cut combo, Jason Pierre-Paul has the stamina of John Goodman and the secondary continues to jump head first off the first cliff they see.

This team, for the lack of a better word, is bad. 

They don't seem to have the drive that fueled all those prolific playoff victories in the past.  They seem disinterested about anything football related and it's really starting to rub off on the fans.

We deserve better than this.  We deserve a coach that can instill determination into his players and players who can get behind their coach.

We don't need this circus.  New York is a strange enough place already that scratching your head week in and week out is going to leave plenty of disgusted viewers concussed.

ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 8:  Head Coach Tom Coughlin of the New York Giants watches his team walk off the field during a game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on September 8, 2013 in Arlington, Texas.  The Cowboys defeated the Giants 31-36.  (P
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

So for the fans that support these words and accept this 0-3 start as a metropolitan apocalypse, understand this: Finding a quick fix isn't going to be difficult.  The Giants aren't going to finish the season winless.

But you have to realize one thing: The reign of overcoming adversity and challenging the league's best under Coach Coughlin is over.

Give us Bill Cowher, a first-round linebacker, five city dump trucks up front and all will be good.

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