It’s Time For the Giants to Play With That ‘Sense of Urgency’
John Fennelly , Executive Editor
When you are 22nd overall in total defense (25th vs the pass, 15th vs the run) and you have Aaron Rodgers, RGIII, Drew Brees and Matt Ryan on your schedule the next four games, you might say you’re up against it. You couldn’t pick a more difficult string of games if you tried, and as Bill Parcells once said – if you can’t up for this, then you don’t belong in this business.
The Giants are facing a daunting scenario over the next month here and, yes, there is cause for concern. This is a team built around the pass rush and the vertical passing game. Right now, both are stuck in the mud.
Their secondary and linebackers become exposed when the pass rush fails to sack or hurry the passer. When there is no pressure, the back seven is hard-pressed to record a “pass defensed”. With the likes of Randall Cobb, Jimmy Graham and Roddy White headed their way, the situation will become even more difficult. Those three are basically having their way with secondaries this year.
The guess here is the defense tightens only a little bit, but the offense finally get its’ act together. With Hakeem Nicks healthy, the Giants can now get back to winging the ball around the yard. They will probably be playing from behind a lot (certainly against New Orleans, where the Giants have never been able to figure out Brees), so they will be forced to pass.
That means finally putting Eli Manning in a hurry-up style offense with 3-4 receiving options. For the 99,000th time, folks, this will put pressure on defenses. They also have to get the best players out on the field. If that means Andre Brown over Ahmad Bradshaw and Sean Locklear over David Diehl so be it. They have to begin to trust Rueben Randle, Travis Beckum and David Wilson. If they can’t, why are they here? Tired about hearing all these tales of potential. Let’s get some kinetic energy rolling here. Time to sink or swim.
On defense, the pass rush has to get going. If not, it will get ugly. Real ugly. The defense is designed to bend but not break. They have been bending and breaking. They don’t have the scheme or the talent to stop big-time passing games unless they chop them off at the head. If there ever was time for this pass rush to get hot, it’s now.
If they can go 3-3 in these next six games, they just might eek out this division. It would be most helpful if two of those wins came in their final two divisional games. For now, we’ll take it one game at a time. Bring on the Packers.