Palladino: Don’t Get Too Happy Giants Fans

‘From the Pressbox’
By Ernie Palladino
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Ernie Palladino is the author of “Lombardi and Landry.” He’ll be covering football throughout the season.

Not to sound like one of those nay-saying sourpusses, but the Giants shouldn’t get too happy about themselves after their 27-24 win over the Bills.

Oh, sure, they head into the bye week at 4-2. And being tied for the NFC East lead with Washington, whose bubble appears ready to burst into many pieces after the Skins’ 20-13, Rex Grossman-fueled loss to Philadelphia, is nice and all.

But the fact remains that the Giants simply can’t keep walking this tightrope and expect long-term success. Prosperity must be enjoyed and fostered, not thrown away.

And the Giants continue to toss it off as a disposable item.

Take it from the third quarter. The Giants go up 24-17 on Ahmad Bradshaw’s athletic dive into the end zone for his third touchdown. Corey Webster gets his first pick of the year on the Bills’ next possession, and the Giants are set up nicely to take a two-score lead.

So what happens? The drive stalls and the field goal unit doesn’t block Alex Carrington, and he blocks Lawrence Tynes’ 51-yard field goal attempt. And that leads to a 12-play, tying touchdown drive in the fourth quarter where the Bills see exactly two third-down situations and convert a fourth-and-1 on Ryan Fitzpatrick’s sneak.

And they might even have lost this one had it not been for Webster’s second interception at the Bills’ 4. Another couple of inches on the throw to Stevie Johnson and the receiver would have had a touchdown. Instead, the Giants started back, only to cause the crowd to gasp as Eli Manning went to the air on third-and-goal from the 5 and nearly got it picked off. Just what the Giants would have needed, another ending like the Seattle game with Leodis McKelvin running one back like Brandon Browner.

Instead, it all came out fine as Tynes hit a 23-yarder for the winning points.

For sure, there were plenty of good things that happened for this injury-battered squad. The running game produced 122 yards, 104 of which went to Bradshaw. And Bradshaw did produce the pivotal offensive play of that final drive, a 30-yard misdirection on which he stiff-armed the cornerback.

There were the interceptions, the drawing of two pass interference calls on Drayton Florence, a once-solid cornerback who has seen better days, and some good second-half run defense from a unit playing without Justin Tuck. And Manning didn’t throw an interception, a great comfort the week after a three-pick game.

So the Giants will have plenty to smile about as they idle their engines and await a post-bye matchup with weak Miami.

Still, despite winning, they continue to give off this disturbing 8-8 vibe. Teams just don’t survive by waiting until the fourth quarter to turn it up. The Seattle game proved that. And the Bills came within one great Corey Webster play of proving it again.

“I don’t think we put a complete game together yet,” Webster said. “We’ve been striving to finish and win the fourth-quarter battle. We did just that.”

But how long can they continue to beat the fourth-quarter odds?

The bet here is not long.

Best to use these next three days before their extended bye weekend to tighten up the defense, find some consistency on offense, and hope that key players like Justin Tuck, Brandon Jacobs, and Chris Snee get back.

If this team starts feeling too good about itself, it could be in for a big letdown.

How are you feeling Giants fans? Leave a comment below.

  • Jobe

    I agree with everything Palladino wrote. The Giants are giving up way too many big plays and if they don’t stop giving up 80 yard TDs they won’t win many games. However, the NYG have guys playing out of position on D and when Tuck and the Prince come back, they can return to their regular positions and the defense will vastly improve. I also think unlike the last 2 season, this year they will get better as a team as the season moves on and make the playoffs.

  • KPMc

    “And being tied for the NFC East lead with Washington, whose bubble appears ready to burst into many pieces after the Skins’ 20-13, Rex Grossman-fueled loss to Philadelphia, is nice and all”

    The Giants are 4-2, the Redskins are 3-2. Don’t know what school you went to or who taught you about sports but in my world that means the Giants are clearly AHEAD of the Redskins.

    NYG 4-2 .667
    WAS 3-2 .600
    DAL 2-3 .400
    PHI 2-4 .333

  • chris

    Dude its so evident your a hater. The giants are 4-2 without playing with all its starters all year. Why dont you write about that? They had been playing without 6 of their Starters dude get off their back and throw them some compliments for that.

  • kevin lanier

    Why is it that whenever anyone plays this if game it only goes one way. Let’s play it all the way. If Pascoe gets a good block earlier and Eli doesn’t have to rush his throw early in the game to Nicks it’s a touchdown. If Mario holds onto the ball on his td catch they’re up two scores, if JPP doesn’t encroach the Bills don’t get that last score. If Pascoe doesn’t hold on the first drive of the game they probably score on the first drive of the game. There are alot of ifs in every game. Bottom line is they beat a team that beat the Raiders, the Pats,and the Eagles so why shouldn’t this game be close based on the fact that this was a good team and they were decimated by injury also. Amazing how every flaw is maximized by the positives are minimized.

  • Billy Batts

    Enough about the schedule. Yes we have to play some good teams but so what? You can lose any given week to any team in the NFL. We’ll have a shot every Sunday and that’s all you can ask for. Win or lose I’ll be there. Bring it on.

  • Brendan

    Yesterday’s game was one of the first all around solid games the Giants played all season. We were without Tuck, and Chris Snee and still managed to rush for 122 and besides the one 80 yard outburst by Fred Jackson, keep him check. Eli will have his bad games, but at the end of the day, he’s still the best QB in the NFC east and proved it yesterday.
    And the whole thing about being a fourth quarter team, can’t the same thing be said about the Lions, who have trailed in every game this year at halftime? They are in a good spot in their division, and so are we.

  • Dan

    I agree with everyone else, stop being so negative, it may not have been pretty but a win is a win, and at the end of the day, thats all that matters. You have followed the Giants long enough to know that they don’t like to make it easy.

  • v a

    Really a win is a win period. With you’re logic Ernie we could also be talking about the Giants easily being 6-0, easily. It’s not how, it’s how many and that was a huge in for the New York Football Giants.

  • BleacherCreature26

    We just beat the same bills that took down the PATRIOTS!
    They picked TOM BRADY and took it back for a touchdown to seal the deal.
    The Bills are good, and we beat ’em!

    so how am i feeling as a Giants fan?

    PUMPED-UP! stop being such a worrying little cry baby, WE JUST WON! LETS GO GGGGGG-MENNNNNN TAKE IT HOME BIG BLUE!!!

    • Croccixio

      I agree – take a pill Ernie – just as they lost the week before, they were able to make the plays this week and get the win. They are a work in progress with all of the injuries but they beat a tough team and Ideally the Giants do everything right & go ahead by two TDs but given that they didn’t and STILL won – time to stop the worrying & enjoy an exciting victory
      As Coughlin said after last season’s 10 wins “10 wins they can KMA” – well 27-24 – all of the worry wards can KMA!’

      GO GIANTS!

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