New York Giants: The 4 Biggest Misconceptions in Giants History
The New York Giants are one of the most storied franchises in NFL history. They have seven NFL championships (four pre-Super Bowl era, three Super Bowls) and have really only one period when they were considered one of the NFL's lower tier teams (1970s).
For all of the good this franchise has brought, what are some of the common misconceptions about this team that have manifested over the years.
It could be something about one particular team, player, or a player's ranking among the all-time greats.
Let's take a look.
Jeremy Shockey Is the Best Tight End in Franchise History
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This is particularly for the younger generation since most people who've been around long enough know that the name Mark Bavaro holds much more water in the Giants organization than Jeremy Shockey.
Though Shockey did put up impressive numbers in his time with the Giants, his attitude was nothing short of embarrassing. He whined way too much about not getting the ball and it hindered Eli Manning's growth.
It's not a coincidence that the Giants put it all together in the playoffs the year Shockey was lost for the season with an injury, and Manning subsequently has had his best three seasons since Shockey left.
Bavaro was a beast and when Rambo caught the ball, defenders were not looking forward to bringing him down. He still holds multiple franchise records for tight ends, including most receiving yards in a season. Had he not been torn apart from injuries after his first four seasons, he likely would hold all the records for a tight end.
The 2007 New York Giants Were a "Bad" Super Bowl Team
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After the Giants shocked the world and defeated the 18-0 New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII, bloggers went straight to their computers to call them the worst Super Bowl team in NFL History.
Well mostly because they were 10-6, inconsistent, and perceived as having no identity.
That last part couldn't be further from the truth. They knew who they were, the public just didn't realize it. They were a pound the rock, grind it out team who used their defense to fuel their offense.
This was never more prevalent than in the Super Bowl when the Giants knew the best way to stop Tom Brady was to keep him watching from the bench and—when he was on the field—put him on his rear.
They may have not been the sexiest team who would air it out all over the field and win 40-something to 30-something each week, but they had enough to get through three road games and beat the anointed best team in NFL History.
I'm not sure how that qualifies as "bad."
The fact of the matter is, the Giants had everything you want from a champion. A great defense (ranked seventh), a great running game (ranked fourth), and a quarterback who finally learned how to take care of the ball (one interception in four playoff games).
I'm not going to sit here and tell you the Giants were one of the better champions we've seen—they did have a lot go their way. But they were far from bad.
They won 11 straight road games. Enough said.
Phil Simms Is the Best QB in Franchise History
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Most people would have you believe that Phil Simms is the best quarterback in franchise history. That's not true.
While he did lead the Giants to their first ever Super Bowl win, there was a better player back in the 40s and 50s that should get the title of GOAT.
His name was Charlie Conerly.
Now, looking at the stats, you wouldn't agree with me, but you have to take in to account the era that each of these guys played in. By the time the 1980s rolled around, we had much more complex offenses and it is commonly known as the era of the quarterback.
Simms was never an elite quarterback of his time, whereas Conerly was one of the best back then.
Simms only finished in the top five in passing touchdowns once, passing yards twice, and passer rating three times, whereas Conerly accomplished those feats seven, two, and seven times, respectively.
They each made the Pro Bowl twice and each led their team to one NFL championship. Ironically, neither won the AP NFL MVP award, which is the main recognized award, but both were given the National Enterprise Association MVP award.
However, Conerly gets the edge since he led his team to three title games in four seasons and was an unquestioned leader on that team. On a team full of Hall of Famers, there was little doubt who the captain was.
The Giants team of the 80s and early 90s were a dominant defensive team and Phil Simms was never asked to do too much. The fact that Jeff Hostetler was able to step right in and lead the Giants to their second Super Bowl win after Simms got hurt doesn't look good.
So while Simms will always be a favorite among fans and one of the better quarterbacks in Giants history, he's not the best.
Eli Manning Is Overrated
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I'm sure you saw this one coming. The most common misconception in Giants history, though admittedly I'm limited in my knowledge of this since I was born in 1986, is that people seem to think Eli Manning is overrated.
Let's first examine the definition of overrated.
To be overrated you have to have your front office or coaches peg you as one of the best at your position, have multiple analysts from various media outlets peg you as a top three or top five at your position, have fans anoint you as one of the best in the league, or win multiple awards you didn't deserve.
Then, the player has to play beneath those expectations.
When has that ever happened with Eli?
Most people, including myself, do not consider Manning to be a top five quarterback in the NFL. The Giants organization has never come out or came out when he was drafted and expected him to be just as good as his brother or even an elite quarterback, and most logical fans know what we have in Eli, a good quarterback who puts us in a position to win most games.
People that overrate Eli spend way too much time concentrating on his last name. The ones that upset me the most are those that say "He will never be his brother."
Really. Thanks for letting me in on that secret. So you're saying he's overrated because he will never be as good as the greatest regular season quarterback in the history of the NFL.
Just the fact that he is Peyton's brother doesn't mean they have the same abilities. No Giants fan expected him to be that good, if anything his last name is a reason he's underrated because he always overshadowed by Peyton.
People also point to how much media attention he gets and how many commercials he's done. He's the starting quarterback for the New York Giants in the biggest media market in the world.
Eli is definitely not overrated, I'd go so far as to go the opposite way and call him underrated. If you disagree, feel free to comment below.