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New York Giants Welcome Challenge of Winning Final Two Games to Make Playoffs

December 18th, 2012 at 8:15 AM
By Casey Sherman

'Eli Manning' photo (c) 2012, Mike Morbeck - license: For the New York Giants, it's simple, win your last two games and you're in the playoffs. Though the concept is straightforward, it won't exactly be easy. The Giants face the Baltimore Ravens (9-5), a team loaded with talent, and the Philadelphia Eagles, who despite having a 4-10 record, will be looking to spoil their division rival's season. For Big Blue, it will be a challenge, but one they're certainly up for.

"This is an opportunity you ask for. A situation you want to be in," quarterback Eli Manning said. "We like our chances. We know what we have to do and it's right in front of us, and we have to go win this game this week."

The Giants don't control their own destiny in terms of winning the division, though it's still possible. However, the Giants can clinch a wildcard spot by winning out. If they were to lose one of the next two games, there are still several scenarios that would result in them making the playoffs, but would need other teams to lose.

This is a situation the Giants are accustomed to being in. Last season, the Giants needed to beat the New York Jets and the Dallas Cowboys in their last two games to advance to the postseason. They would go on to defeat both teams and wound up winning the Super Bowl. However, the players don't find that experience to be comforting.

"Everything is different year to year, and though we've been in this circumstance before, we just can't rely on just kind of turning it on," defensive tackle Chris Canty said. "We have to make sure we continue to go back to work and continue to prepare. Bring more effort and more energy and focus on the details so we can put ourselves in the absolute best position for Sunday."

If the season had ended last week after the team's debacle in Atlanta, the Giants would not qualify for the playoffs. But for head coach Tom Coughlin, the next two games give the team a sense of "hope."

"Hope is the word. Hope is a nice word," Coughlin said. "When you create the scenario of hope, hopefully it's going to be an uplifting thing, and when we do come back on Wednesday we realize where we are and there's a little bounce in our step and we get back to work."

Canty knows the defense needs to improve for the next two games if the team wants to return to championship form.

"We need to be more physical. We're not knocking anybody back right now. We're not shedding blockers," Canty said. "We're not tackling. I think we said we had 18 missed tackles yesterday. That's not championship defense."

Those who watch Giants football know the team plays better, and collectively step up when their backs are against the wall. We'll see if the Giants can repeat last year's late season success.


Tags: Chris Canty, Eli Manning, Football, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Tom Coughlin

21 Responses to “New York Giants Welcome Challenge of Winning Final Two Games to Make Playoffs”

  1.  Begiant says:

    Has Antrell Rolle said anything about our two game season?

  2.  James Stoll says:

    They’ve been in this exact position the last 3 years running
    One time they rose up to take advantage
    So history is not the best guide
    The difference with last year, at least in part, is that after weather significant injuries on the defensive side all season long – most notably to Osi and Tuck – both got healthy and elevated their play at the very end; plus JPP was an unstoppable force the entire season and Canty was stout
    This year Osi and Tuck have been healthy and invisible so it is hard to imagine them elevating their play here at the end
    JPP has been pedestrian and gets all the o-line attention so he’s completely neutralized
    And Canty after being injured for the first half of the season has flat out stunk in every game but one since he’s come back.
    With KP and Prince out in the secondary, there is no help anywhere on the defensive side of the ball. The defense is getting worse week to week, not better.
    That puts it all on the offense and as everyone has acknowledged, Eli looks more like his 2006 self than his 2011 persona. Lots of reasons for this aside from Eli’s inherently inconsistent play. The o-line is god-awful and now Snee (who stinks by the way) may be giving way to a far inferior player — Cordle and Diehl on the right side? Look out!
    Nicks and Bennett have played with injured knees all season and there is not a 3d WR on the team worth spit. So like JPP, Cruz gets all the attention. And while he’s performed admirably this season in that role, there’s only so much one can ask.
    And now our RB position seems to be most capably manned by a JAG signed off the street 3 weeks ago named Lumpkin; a guy the coaches believe is more capable than our Number 1 pick (thank you Mr. Reese)
    And finally, there is the Errant Scot. 3 for 6 in his most recent tries. Oh he of Mr. weak leg can no longer reliably kick from the 30.
    There is lots to look at and dislike about this team right now. And their 34-0 no show versus a truly mirage like team, is just further evidence that top to bottom, players coaches and management, this team is in serious trouble.
    2012 will most likely whimper in at a dissatisfying 9-7; a playoff miss; and a rousing Kiss my a$$ by the beloved leader of the Irish Mafia — Tommy Cough
    It ant dark yet, but it’s gettin’ there

  3.  Dirt says:

    Dan, I was just trying to make light of politics on the last thread without talking about politics. Please don’t hate me!

  4.  kujo says:

    I’m sorry, but did I just read Jim comparing Morris Claiborne–the 6th player selected in the 1st round, who was roundly considered one of the best defensive prospects in that draft– to Jayron Hosley, a 3rd round pick out of Virginia Tech? I may be Tiny Tim, but that sentence is more lame then my leg!

    •  James Stoll says:

      Easy now bro. I was just making a larger comment on the contributions made by our 3 top picks this season. They’ve been non-existent to bad in all but the New Orleans game. Just one of the many reasons why 2012 is going to be compared to 2009 when all is said and done (most likely)

      •  kujo says:

        Agreed with that point, but comparing the contributions made by the best cornerback in the draft to those made by one taken at the bottom of the 3rd round isn’t quite the best way to articulate that argument.

        •  James Stoll says:

          True perhaps, but his stock rose quite high on this site in the pre-season, and before his self imposed exile, I’m pretty sure FF waxed eloquently (and at some length) about his jewel-like qualities — which by and large received nods of approval following the pick-6 in the preseason

          •  kujo says:

            He’s got a lot of talent, is reminds me a lot of Asante Samuels, in terms of his stature and the way he plays ball. But he’s still a rookie, and he’ll still need time to “arrive,” jewel-like qualities or not.

          •  Levito says:

            Like I said last night. He’s looked no worse than Prince looked last year. Prince was the other teams’ punching bag for most of last season; one short year later and he’s the best CB on the team. Hosley was a ball hawk in college. Sure he’s had a tough year. Bue I’m not going to torch the guy for not being able to cover Julio Jones on a day when the rest of the team was sleeping and he was left alone with Jones.

  5.  James Stoll says:

    So if we finish an embarrassing 8-8 or playoff missing 9-7, is there anyone aside from me willing to entertain a coaching staff house cleaning? I know it won’t happen in light of the two magical ( and either miraculous or lucky, depending on your point of view ) supes, but this will make the third year in 4 of epic second half collapses, and when coupled with the 3 second half fizzles (’05, ’06, ’08), make for a ton more disappointing football than satisfying. It’s impossible to put ones finger on a cause for this team’s consistently inconsistent play, but it’s a fact. And if Andy Reid finally got old and tired in Philly, perhaps the same can be said of TC/Genius and the rest. Even TC’s most ardent supporters such as DEMO, concede that these clowns are running an offense conceived in the 80′s and changed barely a wit since then.
    There is obviously very little motivation on this team. And Eli seems to need someone new to remind him how to play QB.
    At any rate, think of the excitement 2013 would bring with an entirely new regime.
    A boy can dream.

    •  Levito says:

      You know as well as everyone else that it would never happen. Coughlin is a made man at this point. And he’s won 2 of the SBs with Gilbride and another one with Fewell. Maybe if Fewell gets a head coaching gig somewhere else we’ll see some turnover. But Coughlin goes nowhere, and for some reason, nobody else wants the self-proclaimed best OC in the business.

    •  James Stoll says:

      As a follow up, the TC era has been a study in contradictions. Crazy fast starts; horrible finishes; epic collapses; incredible and unlikely super bowl runs. There has been a lot of player continuity over the past 5 seasons so one cannot simply point to turnover as a reason for the more recent ups and downs.
      So here is what I think is at the root. George Younf once declared Bill Belicheck to be the worst human being in football. And 20+ years later that is pretty much a universal sentiment. Bill is not the devil, but certainly he has made a pact with the devil, hence the Patriots incredible 12 years of high octane success.
      But making a pact with the devil has it’s price: gods wrath.
      And so God searches for ways to make the perils of dancing with the devil apparent to all. How does he do it? He pits the best QB in the history of the game against the most erratic QB ever spawned. It pits a genius against a befuddled if good-hearted dimwit. He sends an undefeated team plaing always at home against a barely .500 team who has to travel and travel and travel. And then he takes the game down to the final drive, nay the final play, and has that play be the most unthinkable, unimaginable, incredible play possible, which cuts the heart out of the devil’s angel for at least a moment. In short, makes the hapless Giants the foil for the perfect Patriots.
      The problem is that for those whimsical Giants, their annual fate is tied directly to that of the Patriots. They exist only to combat the greater evil. If the Patriots are derailed anywhere along the way, the Giants are not needed. As this year winds to a close there is Houston in Houston and Denver in Denver that stand in the Patriots way. Their ability to return to the super bowl is at issue and should they not the Giants are not needed. If god has already knows that the Pats will fall short this season, and we know he does, then the giants are not needed and the embarrassing brand of football they otherwise play can be mercifully ended in 2 weeks.

      •  kujo says:

        I sure hope this post was meant to be funny, because it has me in tears. But if you actually believe in this “annual fate is…to combat the greater evil,” then I think I might cry.

  6.  PittJim says:

    Like to have Ken Whisenhunt as our new OC

    I can dream….

  7.  PittJim says:


    with talent (he has none in AZ) he’s a very good coach.

    No delayed draws that I’ve seen. You can’t judge him this year.

    No QB, no RB, and one WR…..

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