After Sunday's dismal loss to the Washington Redskins, the Giants under head coach Tom Coughlin look headed for yet another second half collapse. Although the Giants at a mediocre 7-7 still control their own destiny with two games remaining, Giants co-owner John Mara cannot be happy with the lackluster play of his team. With the Dallas Cowboys winning on Saturday night against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, without question, the Giants knew they had to win in order to keep pace with Dallas. And unfortunately, to the dismay of Giants' fans, the New York Football Giants did not show energy and fight. Once the Redskins took control of this game, the Giants performance was so atrocious that fans left early for the exits. This scene of fans exiting early should be of concern for John Mara. This could very well be foreshadowing for Giants management.
There was a time in which Giants fans became livid with Wellington Mara and the inept play of the Giants. As a result of years of lousy football, they hung him in effigy. Seeing this act of extreme frustration, it had a profound affect on John Mara. At that time, it spooked him from the spotlight and driven him to build a champion. In fact John Mara does possess a Lombardi trophy under his watch. However, since winning Super Bowl XLII, things have gone south. The following year, the Giants were the best team in the league. After 12 games, they compiled an eleven and one record. Next came the unfortunate Plax shooting incident. Even though the Giants were Plaxless, they managed to claim the number one seed. But they suffered a bitter loss to the arch rival Eagles in the NFC Divisional playoff. In that season, the Giants had a golden opportunity to repeat as champions. And they could not seize the moment. 2009 and 2010 were wasted seasons in which the Giants did not qualify for the playoffs. Both of those seasons ended with second half collapses. Like the last two seasons, 2011 is teetering. The Giants still have control of their own destiny. But if the Giants lose to the Jets and the Cowboys win over the Eagles, another season will end with disappointment. If this scenario plays out, John Mara has to be looking at the facts. Here are some facts for Mr. Mara to consider:
1. Tom Coughlin's poor record in second halves of seasons. Here is a breakdown of Coughlin's body of work from game 9 to the final game of a season.
2004: 1-7 record home 1-3 and 0-4 road
2005: 5-3 record home 3-1 and 2-2 road
2006: 2-6 record home 0-4 and 2-2 road
2007: 4-4 record home 0-4 and 4-0 road
2008: 5-3 record home 2-1 and 3-2 road
2009: 3-5 record home 2-3 and 1-2 road
2010: 4-4 record home 2-2 and 2-2 road
2011: 1-5 record home 0-3 and 1-2 road
Thus far, Coughlin has a 25-37 second half record. He has a woeful 10-21 record at HOME. And he is 15-16 on the road. Generally speaking, a team with talent like the Giants should be surging in the second half of a season. In addition, under Coughlin, the Giants have not won their home games late in a season. This disturbing trend has become a vicious cycle. Coughlin's teams get out of the gate swiftly then run out of gas to close a season. Upon his arrival as head coach until now, there have been changes. Assistant coaches have been dispatched and new players have been brought in. Even with these changes, the Giants continue to underachieve with talent. The only constant has been Coughlin.
2. Besides Coughlin's pathetic second halves of seasons, Mr. Mara has to be irate at the current Giants" defense. As of today, the Giants have the FOURTH worst defense in the NFL.
Since 2006, the Giants have invested a lot on the defensive side of the ball. They have used many high draft picks on defenders:
Kiwi1, Ross1, Phillips1, Sintim2, Pierre-Paul1, Joseph2, Amukamara1, Austin2. That is five #1 draft picks in the last six years.
Despite pouring money, draft picks, and changing defensive coordinators, the Giants STINK on defense. Pete Furman, an expert here at UltimateNYG, points out that the Giants, having the 4TH worst defense in the N.F.L, speaks to the failure of Reese to draft well, to the horror of the signings for Bernard, Boley and Canty and the Tampa Two employed by Fewell.
Furthermore, The Giants have allowed an opponent to convert at least 50 percent on third down in five consecutive games. That’s the first time that’s happened in the NFL since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Whether or not the Giants make the playoffs, John Mara has to make some decisions about the direction of his team. He gave Coughlin a 1 year extension, which is 'code' for: get results now. The excuses made over the last few years such as defensive line wearing down, injuries, and not making snap decisions on coaches is wearing thin with Giants fans. If Mr. Mara sticks with the status quo yet again, there is going to be an upheaval with the fans. And for Mara, do not be surprised if he gets the ire from fans. Like Wellington, Giants fans may decide to hang him in effigy.
even if you throw out 2004 with eli as a rookie, the second-half record of couglin is poor, but his first-half is fabulous, so overall he is easily above .500. i wistfully commented previously that wouldnt it be nice if we could take coughlins first-half and fassel's second-half, we would be elite, but we cant. basically, i feel that the gmen need to hear another voice, especially on defense. sometimes just a change is needed.
btw, reese has never picked a HC, so i believe he should get his chance here. the draft is a bit of crap shoot. one must look at the overall hits and misses. just remember coaching the draft picks up is key. on defense, we only had spags for 2 yrs, so the other 6, we havent had a really good dc. this makes a huge difference in getting the most out of the talent. part of that is reeses fault for allowing the hires, but much of that is on coughlin. i bet fox or spags would get much, much more out of this defense. just saying....
Hallelujah! You mention Reese's failures in the draft. This is the primary issue. I do not believe the Giants really have the talent and depth to compete with the better teams. Coughlin and staff failed miserably against the Skins and Fewell is inflexible with his zone but Coughlin and Gilbride should not be the ones vilified this season. Reese is the culprit.
@dolphinsgate this is nonsense dolphinsgate. the skins trotted out gaffney and moss with rex grossman pitching. their best receiver didnt even play (fred davis). the schemes were awful. there is lack of lb talent for sure but no ability to maximum the assets the D does have. they have enough talent to win. they have no heart, fire or game planning.
@mighty dumpmaster @dolphinsgate
Well put dump master. Our coordinators are horrible at leveraging their strengths. Reese I'm not a big fan of. But for me its mostly his free agent signings or non signings along with some undrafted rookies like blount that pissed me off. His drafting certainly isn't the greatest but that's also because he doesn't draft guys we need.
Wellington Mara, John Mara, doesn't matter. I just want someone on D to play with the ferocity of Rooney Mara, the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
Glenn - thanks for bringing up the 3rd down non-efficiency of the Giants defense. I was wondering when that would come up and if there was even a stat for defenses. Watching the Redskins game, it seemed that the only time that they failed to make it on 3rd down was when Grossman threw a horrible pass with little or not pressure or coverage.
Agree with plektor, the record in big games – not just losses but collapses – is an equal indication of their problems, as much as their playing down to lesser opponents which others have highlighted. The defense’s failure to compete in big games has destroyed the team’s ability compete for the playoffs.
The Jints have given up an average of 31 points in their 7 losses so far in 2011. As bad as this is, it was actually worse in the past two years, which averaged 35 points in their 6 lossses in 2010 and 36 points in their 8 losses in 2009. By and large these are not “trap” games or games against weaker opponents. They are divisional matchups, showdowns against top teams, or late season games to qualify for the playoffs, which they did not do as a result of the losses. These include 49 - 24 wipeout to New Orleans this year; a 38 - 14 loss to the Colts early in 2010; back to back losses to the Eagles by 38 - 31 (4th quarter collapse) and 45 - 17 to the Pack to destroy their playoff hopes last year; and in 2009 surrendering more than 40 points in losses to the Saints, Eagles twice, Carolina and Minnesota. 3 of these 2009 losses occurred in the last four weeks, averaging 43 points against, to seal the Giants playoff fate.
This is not winning football, or anything close, and is disheartening for fans who for decades have come to expect and identify with a competent if not dominating defense. The third down statistic highlighted by Glenn is telling, although not surprising for anyone who watches the games each week. All too often the defense is simply not competitive.
In light of their commitment to stock the defense (except LB), the results are obviously debilitating for any chance of success, especially given the fairly good offense, which has become notably efficient in the last two minutes if the game is close. Seems to me that there is nothing worse than your team not showing up for the marquee matchups that keep fans invested in their team.
Another record that shows how mediocre we've been lately is our record against teams that are above .500.
2004 : 1-5
2005 : 4-5
2006 : 2-6
2007 : 1-5
2008 : 6-3
2009 : 3-6
2010 : 1-4
2011 : 2-3
@Arthuro Can anyone argue that the only thing the Giants have won since "the miracle" is a really bad draft position each year. Take note that the teams who build winners are adapt at trading,moving up and down but mostly,a team that gets top 5 picks for 4-5 years by being amongst the worst 4-5.
At least they get or have the opportunity to get superior talent vs teams that are cyrrently winning and more so vs the teams who play mediocre football which lands them at 25-30.
That has been the Giants position every year. They don't win,they don't make the playoffs and are left with a poor option at the end of the draft.
When Ress made the now infamous trades for Boley,Canty and Bernard it was to have a superior defense. Noyt onlu was this a legendary flop but the Giants lost big cap which is still haunting them.
The worst part is that failing via trade ans/or draft a ream does horrible damage. The outcome is wasting another draft when other positions are in,or about to be in decline. Screw up again and a franchise has wasted another draft which will require redundancy year after year.
The process can be short(Green Bay,New England,New Orleans and Pittsburgh,Baltimore or it can be long,very long.
@peter S. Furman @Arthuro Pete my feelings exactlt but reese has done decent with the positions at which he drafted in. Except his inefficiencies in free agency and pussiness to bit trade picks or go after a guy they need is his biggest flaw. Biggest blunder was the waste of beatty sintim picks in a strong draft class!! Clay mathews anyone???!! Mauluga?? The list goes on hell even Mike Wallace instead of bardens bust a$$!!