Perhaps the most overlooked aspect of the New York Giants second half slide has been Lawrence Tynes' inability to stay consistent kicking some very makable field goals. Tynes is 33 of 39 on field goals this season; however, Tynes has had a miss from inside 40-yards in each of the Giants last two games. For the Giants to have a chance to make a postseason run, Tynes is going to have to get back to being nearly automatic from anywhere inside 50-yards.
It's possible that Tynes is merely reverting towards the mean at this point of the season. He hit 29 of his first 31 field goal attempts of the season, including games against the Panthers and Cowboys in which went 5/5 in each contest. Tynes' numbers benefited greatly from the Giants redzone woes, but he was able to minimize those struggles by making sure the team came away with points on nearly every drive inside the 35-yard line. As of late, that consistency has waned.
"You can sit there and slump about it and be mad about it, but it's not going to do you any good," Tynes said. "I've done that very, very well in my career. I think I've missed two kicks three times in my career and I've played over 120 games. So you just got to look at it for what it is and kind of just move on. I think I do a good job of that. You get (peeved) off a little bit, but you just got to move on."
Tynes is not the only player on the Giants who needs to step his game up for the team to advance any further than their regular season finale at home against the Philadelphia Eagles. That distinction rightfully belongs to Eli Manning, who by all accounts has had a down season. However, football is a team game and it takes a team effort to emerge from a game victorious. Tynes must be able to do his job effectively and put points on the scoreboard for the Giants to have a successful season.
Head coach Tom Coughlin realizes that the Giants are going nowhere without Tynes' hitting the very makable field goals that he has missed in recent weeks. The entire process, from the snap to the hold and to the kick has to be cleaned up if Big Blue is going to win the close football games they will inevitably encounter if the team is going to make noise in the postseason.
"We need to be able to come away with points each and every time we’re down there," Coughlin said. "Obviously, we’d like touchdowns, but you’ve got to come away with points and we can’t afford not to and we would like to feel that no matter what the distance is, if it’s within our range, our makeable range that we’re going to come through and I have to believe we will."
The Giants are ranked 20th in the NFL in red zone efficiency, as the team has scored a touchdown on just 50 percent of their trips inside the 20-yard line. On the road, the Giants have scored a touchdown on just 37 percent of trips inside the 20 yard line. Lawrence Tynes is going to have his number called again in a crucial situation and the team is going to rely on him to come through. History has shown us that he will, but 2012 is a new season and Tynes has given the team three consecutive shaky performances. It's now or never for the nine-year veteran.
Also…Eli Manning, Football, Lawrence Tynes, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Philadelphia, Philadelphia Eagles, Tom Coughlin