Thus far into the season, the New York Giants offense hasn’t looked particularly sharp outside of the running game on occasion. The unit is still a work in progress; with a lot of new faces and concepts both on and off the field its not astonishing that the team has struggled early, and the issues don’t seem to be anything that they cannot workout. Nonetheless, there has not been much to celebrate on the offensive end of the ball, but there is one element of the new offense that will be of tremendous significance in the Ben McAdoo era.
Despite his two super bowl rings, any consistent Giants fan could tell you that former offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride was often very slow or late in getting his plays to Eli Manning. Often it was assumed that poor communication or technological issues were to blame. However, McAdoo’s offense has been quick to expose this folly of the old giants offense where not only were countless delay of game penalties called but also countless time outs had been wasted trying to avoid such penalties.
Early in the first quarter of the Pittsburgh Steelers game, the Giants faced a 3rd-and-8 and because they were able to get the play in quickly, Eli had time to set the offense, examine the defense, work both the play clock and defensive line, and then would eventually coerce Steelers’ defensive line into an encroachment penalty. On what a year ago would likely had been a loss of five yards can now potentially be a gain of five yards. That 10 yards may not seem like a lot, but considering how often the Giants struggled with this problem in the past, most Giants fans will be content just keeping the timeouts and five yards let alone gaining five additional yards.
As the offense becomes smoother and settles in, the up-tempo play calling will be a valuable resource at Eli Manning’s disposal as he is already considered one of the more intelligent pre-snap quarterbacks in the league. The additional time to examine defenses and manipulate encroachment penalties will tremendously help Eli where in the past he was often caught snapping the ball with a second left on the play clock, allowing the opposing defensive linemen to get a great jump on the snap and place further pressure on the offensive line.
It may just be a byproduct of the new system or it could be a strategy that was discussed in the offseason as another means of protecting Eli Manning. Either way the up-tempo play calling will be incredibly beneficial on many fronts. It will also make any substitutions made by the defense slightly tougher as well; yielding fatigued defensive linemen and potential 12 men on the field penalties.
Unfortunately, this will all be irrelevant if the offensive line cannot do its job and protect Eli. There is no advantage to a permeable and fickle offensive line regardless of what plays are being called or how quickly the plays are coming in. Luckily it’s still early and if there were ever a time to make mistakes it would be now. The Giants just better hope they can minimize the mistakes soon or it could cost them.
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Tags: Ben McAdoo, Eli Manning, Football, Kevin Gilbride, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Steelers