Sunday, May 22, 2011

Off Season Questions: New York Giants

New York Giants

1.     Can Eli Manning Step It Up
For most quarterbacks a season where they threw for over 4000 yards and threw over 30 touchdowns would be cause for celebration. Not for Eli Manning, the Giants quarterback also threw 25 interceptions, which held back a Giants team that just missed the playoffs. If Manning ever wants to see the Super Bowl again (and maybe have something over his elder brother) he’s gonna have to step up his accuracy. The weapons are there in human safety blanket Steve Smith, playmaker Hakeem Nicks and the field stretching presence of Mario Manningham but can Manning deliver?

2.     Do the Giants have a running back they can count on?
Ahmad Bradshaw had a good season rushing for over 1000 yards and being a solid option in the passing game. That being said Bradshaw has proven to be injury prone and the Giants may not be able to count on him to be there every down. Then there’s Brandon Jacobs… Color me skeptical of Jacobs abilities who turns 29 in July and frankly if I was the Giants I wouldn’t have him back. It wasn’t just Jacobs’ less than great production, that he looked tentative at times trying to pick what hole he wanted to go through it was the “Manning Bowl” where I made my decision. It’s generally frowned upon in football to act like a 2 year old. Lists of things that are unacceptable in the sport of football include grabbing people’s facemask, holding, running in the wrong direction oh yeah and hurling your helmet into the stands because you got pulled from the game. Guess which one of these helped me decide that Jacobs can’t be depended on? The Giants’ need at running back is far from dire, Bradshaw can be a home run hitter when he wants, but the Giants may need to start looking for somebody more long term.

3.     The Boy Who Would Be King Prince
One pebble can cause 1000 waves. Similarly on shutdown cornerback can cause 3-4 wins. That’s the potential impact of Former Husker, now Giant Prince Amukamara. Amukamara is blazing fast, with great coverage skills that served him well in a great Nebraska defense under Coach Bo Pelini. With a 4.43 40 time Amukamara has the speed and the height (6’) to cover Jackson or Austin. With Prince presumptively taking over the 1 spot at CB half of the field may now be unavailable to a bevy of very good NFC East offenses. With a very strong defensive line and a good pool of safeties lead by Kenny Phillips Amukamara may be the missing piece to put this already pretty dominant unit over the top.

4.     Revenge is a Dish Best Served Sometime This Season
As you might have noticed last season, the Giants got owned by the Eagles. True, the slot blitzes in the second game kept Vick and his hapless offensive line guessing but there was still the fact that the Giants lost and DeSean Jackson shall never be forgotten for the miraculous play that he made that day. With the Eagles sitting pretty at the top of the division the Giants need to hit them where it hurts, right in the win/loss column. The Giants get their first shot at the Eagles in week 3. It should be a hard hitting game as the Giants try and reap their vengeance for the utter humiliation the Giants suffered when this happened…

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