Sometimes great teams and great people have bad days. Not everything goes as intended.
Evel Knievel didn’t make it to the other side of the Snake River Canyon. The Summer of George didn’t go off as planned.
You launch your balloon-like contraption in your backyard, forcing your six-year-old son to hide in the crawl space of your garage while alerting the authorities that he’s trapped inside your homemade UFO as it soars across Colorado, and the next thing you know you’re being arrested.
The 2009 Giants probably aren’t as good as they looked beating Oakland 44-7, and they’re most likely not as bad as they looked yesterday, losing to New Orleans, 48-27. Should we just chalk it all up to a bad day and move on?
In honor of his homecoming and as a tribute to his father’s career in New Orleans, Eli Manning gave an impassioned pregame speech imploring his teammates to play like the 1970s Saints. And play like the ’70s Saints they did.
Would the old-time Saints have been completely shredded and given up almost 500 yards to a 4-0 team that was an offensive juggernaut? Yes, they would have. And so did the Giants.
Would the old-time Saints have put almost no pressure on the opposing quarterback making him look like Roger Staubach (or making Drew Brees look like, well, Drew Brees)? Yes, they would have. And so did the Giants.
Would Archie Manning have thrown an interception, fumbled the ball away, chewed out his teammates and gone 14-for-31 for only 178 yards? Yes, he would have. And so did his son.
Would the old-time Saints have made a goal-line stand only to turn the ball over seconds later, allowing the opposition to score another TD right before the half? Yes, they would have. And so did the Giants.
Would the old-time Saints coaching staff have the offense and defense looking like they were absolutely unprepared and discombobulated, turning what should have been one of the great games of the season into a noncompetitive nightmare? Yes, they would have. And so did the Giants.
Only two good things came out of yesterday:
1) Domenik Hixon amassed 281 yards returning kickoffs and punts.
2) The Eagles lost to the Raiders.
The Giants stomped all over the bad teams they’ve faced this year, but have now failed their first real test against a good team (or was the Cowboys game their first test?).
Hopefully, this is just one of those days, and Big Blue will shake it off and return to playing solid, winning football. But maybe Tom Coughlin should have launched his own UFO, had Eli hide in his garage and postpone the game until the whole distraction blew over.