On Sunday afternoon, the New York Giants lost an extremely winnable game to the New Orleans Saints 18-33. The Giants had their most impressive defensive showing of the season thus far absolutely shutting the Drew Brees down on 3 straight trips to the red zone resulting in only field goals for one of the most dynamic offenses in the league.
After charging down the field in their first possession, the Giants offense fell off a cliff. The Saints came into Sunday’s game allowing 34.3 points per game to opposing teams. The Giants couldn’t get 20 on the board. This team hasn’t scored 30 points since The Simpsons were still funny.
What is going on?
Odell Beckham is the best wide receiver in the NFL. Saquon Barkley could easily become the best running back in the NFL. On paper, the offensive line shouldn’t be THAT bad especially now that Ereck Flowers has been demoted to tackle sled.
So who is to blame for the New York Giants embarrassing offense?
Everyone and their mothers want to just shrug off the Giants problems by saying ‘well, it’s the offensive line. Eli Manning doesn’t have time’. And that’s certainly true. I’m not about to sit here and praise those guys.
But after Week 3, PFF ranks the Giants offensive line at 23rd in the league, which again is bad, but there are still teams with way worse situations. We literally saw what an actual awful line looks like last week when Deshaun Watson was nearly sacked every single time he dropped back.
The Chargers, Bengals and Vikings all have lower ranking offensive lines and those are probably 3 playoff teams that can score 30 points when they feel like it. I don’t want to hear about the offensive line anymore. It’s now the equivalent of throwing out the word ‘Russia’ in any political debate. Everything said after ‘Russia’ is now nonsense.
Pat Shurmur is a new head coach and got this job because he made Case Keenum a top 12 QB last season. He was one play away from the NFC Championship game as the Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator. I trust him.
Having said that, if I see one more 3rd and long bubble screen to the wide receiver I’m going to kidnap Shurmur’s family. The wide receiver has no blockers. Do you honestly expect him to break a 10-yard run with a cornerback and a safety standing on his shoelaces when he catches the ball? The Giants might as well be punting on every 3rd down.
Shurmur’s lame playcalling is really obvious after watching the Los Angeles Rams call up the perfect play all game long on Thursday Night Football against the Vikings. There were no wasted plays. Every run and pass had a purpose.
Giants just run Saquon Barkley up the middle for 1 yard. Then throw the ball to Saquon running out of the backfield for another 2 yards and then it’s 3rd and 7 where the Giants will inevitably call a play where the primary receiver catches the ball short of the first down marker. All. Game. Long.
But is it Shurmur’s gameplan or does Eli Manning stink? Spoiler: It’s Eli.
This season specifically points out Eli’s biggest flaw. Manning refuses to throw the ball down the field. EVERY quarterback is launching it and taking shots downfield this year and Eli is underhanding 3-yard slant rants to Sterling Shepard to get his completion percentage stats up.
Patricks Mahomes, Jared Goff, Big Ben, Joe Flacco, Andy Dalton, Matt Ryan, Drew Brees, even rookie Baker Mayfield and Ryan fucking Fitzpatrick are taking more shots launching the ball down the field than Eli is.
You want to know why Eli refuses to chuck it? It’s not because he doesn’t have time in the backfield. It’s not the defense is lined up in a zone. It’s because *whispers* Eli Manning knows he can’t make that throw.
Eli knows it’s a wrap and you can tell from his inability to take chances. Eli’s entire career was made on him closing his eyes and praying to the football gods that the football leaving his hands would end up in Plaxico Burress’s but now, his testicles are gone. He’s an old conservative man just trying to get little completions to pat his HOF resume.
I love Eli Manning. I also love winning football games. Yesterday I flipped a coin. It landed on winning games. Eli Manning stinks and I want Kyle Lauletta out there crossing linebackers out of their ACLs.