As we say goodbye to this edition of Giants Stadium, I think it is fair to also say goodbye to this edition of the New York Giants.
In one of their most pathetic displays of the season, the Giants were crushed by the Carolina Panthers, a team who came into the day eliminated from the playoffs but a team the Giants seem to always struggle against. The Giants beat Carolina last year but it took an extra period to do it. And I think we all remember the playoff game in this very same Giants stadium.
To make matters worse, this was a game that for many fans in attendance, was the last game they will see live in a long time. It is their final game performed in front of true fans.
Beginning next year many of the fans in attendance will be the higher ups that are a part of Exxon-Mobile, Wal-Mart, Chevron, Concoco-Phillips, General Electric, General Motors, Ford, AT&T, Hewlett-Packard, Valero Energy and so on and so forth. Those are the only guys who can afford tickets with the new seat licenses.
What an awful way to say goodbye to many loyal fans.
In the opening drive of the game, the Giants looked ready to get into the playoffs. Eli Manning marched this team down the field and then on a 3rd and long, Eli Manning continued to look good finding Mario Manningham across the middle. However, Manningham fumbled the ball and that took the momentum out of the game.
The defense continued to look awful and could not make a stop. The performance last week against the Redskins appeared to be a fluke.
The Giants however could not get anything going offensively either. Eli Manning and the offense have been the reason the Giants are still in the playoff picture. Brandon Jacobs had 6 rushing attempts for a total of 1 yard. He was seen walking off the field with some kind of injury. Steve Smith after a touchdown completion was also injured.
Michael Johnson to make matters worse on defense was also seen getting hurt early in the game. It is almost like the Giants were faking injuries just so they wouldn’t have to play anymore.
At the end of the first half when the Giants were looking for points, Eli Manning was forced to throw up a hail mary with just 2 seconds left. But just like against the Eagles, the pass was never heaved. Eli decided to run with the ball and hopefully find someone to lateral it to. The only problem was, he sent everyone on his team to the end zone. The only people he could lateral to was his offensive line. The ball ended up being fumbled and recovered by Carolina.
On the Steve Smith touchdown, a botched snap didn’t allow the Giants to even convert on the extra-point.
The team started the game with no emotion and in the second half, they didn’t even want to play anymore. Rather than coming out with emotion and trying to mount a big comeback, the Giants legitimately gave up. The Panthers started the second half with the ball and put a 2 minute drive together and another touchdown drive at that. This was the same drive that Michael Johnson got hurt on. Nobody on defense made legitimate tackles. They just ran their bodies into the Panthers hoping they would just fall down but that was not the case as Jonathan Stewart ran himself to a career day rushing for over 200 yards.
41-9 was the final. It can be argued that the last game of this season was the worst game ever played in Giants Stadium.
And so was the story of this Giants season. They began 5-0 and then the loss to the Saints and all the injuries killed them. At the time of this blog post, they are not mathematically out of the playoffs unless Dallas wins tonight. But they do not really deserve a playoff spot and still the chances of them making it are oh so slim.
When you look at the first five games of the season, and the game last week against the Redskins, it is hard to believe that this would not make the playoffs. It’s also a shame that Eli Manning’s best season (in terms of QB rating, touchdown passes, and completion percentage) will go unnoticed as the Giants along with their stadium disappear into oblivion. Defensive coordinator Brian Sheridan will most likely disappear as well.
Hopefully next year, this Giants team can impress all the executives and land themselves a lot of spots in more commercials.
– Mark Elliot Wishnia –