Monday, February 04, 2008

Congrats Giants/Belichick Spits the Bit

This is my recollection of the last time the Skins played the Giants. As the priceless NFL Network commentary shows, it was a huge game for both teams. It's a reminder of just how close the Giants' season came to ending on that day. But, the Giants fought through what would have been a devastating loss to many teams.

They fought through two missed field goals in Green Bay, stayed in the game, and were given an easy pick from Favre to seal it; they beat a Dallas team that wasn’t very good after all, which the Skins overwhelmingly proved in December; and they beat up on the Bucs.

Maybe most important of all is how they overcame Eli Manning’s five fumbles and two interceptions and a 14-0 Bills lead in Buffalo in the game after their nearly devastating loss to the Skins. The Giants scored twenty-one unanswered fourth quarter points to clinch their playoff spot. If they hadn’t found a way to beat the Bills that day, they probably wouldn’t be Super Bowl champs today and everyone would have pointed to the Skins game as the culprit. That is how close everyone is in the NFL. That is why resilience and persistence are so important, and the Giants had the most of both this year. (Ed Note: Phil Simms just said the exact same thing on the Mike and the Mad Dog radio show (2/4/08). He said that there were a couple of plays in almost every game that the Giants played after the Skins game that if they didn't go the Giants way, they would not be champs today and would probably have been watching the game on TV.)

As for Sunday's game, the Giants can thank three things for the trophy: 1.) their front four put pressure on Brady all day; 2.) Tyree made an amazing catch with his right hand pressing the ball against his helmet to keep the game winning drive alive; and 3.) Bill Belichick made an asinine decision to go for a first down on fourth-and-thirteen when the Patriots were well within Gostkowski's indoor range for a 48-yard field goal;

The loss by three must sting a bit now, huh?

I guess even "geniuses" can make stupid calls. This tarnishes the reputation a bit. I don't believe in luck or karma, but if I did, I would say Belichick had this coming to him for running up the score on the Skins and other teams this year. Shotgun formation, four wideouts, Brady in the game throwing on nearly every down with a 35-point lead and 12-minutes left? The same thing sans Brady with five minutes left? Vrabel on kickoff coverage with a 40+ point lead and two minutes left to play? Belichick deserved this loss.

The Giants and Redskins each showed similar resilience this year. Let's hope that Zorn and Blache and their new head coach can get the same results—Skins 22-Giants 10—two times next year.


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