Being a professional athlete in New York isn't a job for everybody. Some stars will fall short of high expectations, while unknowns can become heroes overnight and thrive in the spotlight. Certain players would want to play for no other city, while others can't wait to collect their money and get out.
In their past few seasons the New York Giants have had more drama than the soap operas on the Lifetime channel.
During their Super Bowl run last year, the Giants lived by the motto: "Just shut up and play the game."
They ignored all of the critics and fans who were calling for Tom Coughlin's head and the large horde of fans who wanted Eli Manning out of town. They just went out there and played their best every single game.
And that wasn't all.
Before the miraculous season even began, the Giants had extremely low expectations due to the retiring of Tiki Barber—one of if not the best Giants running back. But in the end the Giants triumphed over every obstacle and challenge that they faced, proving everybody who doubted them wrong...which happened to be practically every football fan in America.
With an impressive 11-1 start after winning their championship, the path to a back-to-back Super Bowl victory seemed to be well paved. I'll even admit that the thought of a possible Giants Dynasty may have slipped through my mind a few times.
But last Friday night, a terrible incident occurred which now presents this Giants team with their third and most challenging obstacle they have yet to face this year.
This team has prospered despite losing team leader Michael Strahan to retirement and the only Giants pro bowler Osi to a season-ending injury, but now they have to deal with Plaxico Burress and his unfortunate accident.
As I've mentioned, the Giants have endured so much during the past few years that I don't think that this will affect them the way the media is expecting. The Giants are a TEAM. One of the players remarked that there is not just one star on their team, every individual on the team is a star and they all pick up each other's slack.
I don't think the loss of Plax will be one that's missed. Remember Jeremy Shockey last year? He was a big troublemaker the whole season and when he went down the team took off. Maybe that will happen again this year now that Burress is gone. Don't forget that he has been a distraction for the entire year, with his contract demands in the offseason.
People are already getting worried that without Burress, the Giants don't have a big play-maker which they will need to go far in the playoffs.
I say: Don't worry!
This team will find a way, and here's why:
5. Our running game is phenomenal.
4. Dominick Hixon has been superb for the Giants so far, and I think he may rise to stardom in the postseason.
3. Amani Toomer is getting up there in age, but he's still a solid receiver. He's very clutch and a veteran leader.
2. Steve Smith is pretty damn good as well.
1. But the No. 1 reason why the Giants will not succumb to the Plaxico Sage is Eli Manning.
With Plaxico out, I feel that this offense is now fully under Eli's control. As with Shockey, sometimes Manning would pass to Burress just for the sake of trying to get the ball to him. When he came back from injury earlier in the year, Eli seemed to try extra hard to get Burress into the game, which led to a bad game for Eli.
Now Eli can spread the ball around more and get everybody involved, which is the style he likes to use.
And if I'm wrong, please, Giants fans! Don't start calling for Eli's head again!
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