Monday, October 24, 2011

Bye week assessment and musings

It's hard to judge where the Giants are after these first 6 games. There were two awful losses against the Redskins and Seahawks and some very unimpressive wins against the Rams and Cardinals, especially in consideration of these opponent's performance in their other games, where we see the Cardinals and Rams struggling on offense against other teams. The victory against the Eagles could also be considered somewhat tainted, as they have a 2-4 record. Really the only good win against a good team was week 6 against the Bills, but that is not much to rely on to predict a good season. The loss against the Seahawks was really awful - they scored 36 points (7 on defense) and accumulated 420+ yards on offense - way better than their numbers in every other game this year. So who are the Giants? The team that had great 4th quarter wins against the Eagles and Bills? Or the team that looked awful against one of the worst teams in football?

Amukamara coming back to practice is a big plus - the Giants need to play a blend of zone and man coverages and can not do it unless they have the personnel to do so. Amukamara's presence allows the Giants to slide Rolle back to his natural S position and give less playing time to Grant and Tryon. Looks like the Giants are as healthy as they have been in a while, with Tuck, Snee, Hynoski and Jacobs all returning to practice.

Ballard has been a real find, catching the ball well. If Ballard, Hynoski and Pascoe pick up their blocking, Giants could have a very balanced offense the rest of the year.

Phillip Rivers is considered an elite QB by the NFL experts, but I would take Eli every time. He looked really lame in the second half against the Jets this week. He probably has better career numbers than Eli, but: (1) he has had betyter weapons than Eli over the years, (2) the weather in San Diego doesn't compare to the winds that Eli has to put up with in the Meadowlands every winter and (3) the NFC East is always tough while Rivers can pad his stats against the awful AFC West.

My hope for the second half of the season is that LB Herzlich and RB Da'rel Scott get some playing time and make a contribution. Jacquian Williams has gotten much more playing time than anyone anticpated. THis is partly because he has played fairly well and partly because he has good speed and teams have been playing a lot of 3 WR formations against the Giants defense. Herzlich has been active every game but has not seen the field in the base defense, playing only on ST.

Revis is the best CB I have ever seen and probably the best defensive player in the league. Giants wanted to draft him, but the Jets traded up to get him. Giants ended up with Aaron Ross, who is playing better this year than he has in a few years.

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