“Giants Need to Get Back To Tradition”
By Michael Stewart
Since the 1950’s, the New York Giants traditionally have been known for a tenacious defensive front 7 and a solid running game; which rewarded them with 8 NFL titles (4 pre-Super Bowl ear/4 post Super Bowl era). However; since their last Super Bowl victory, the Giants defense and running game have both been declining and rank near the bottom of the league.
The last Giants RB to rush for over 1000 yards was Ahmad Bradshaw in 2012 with 1015 yard on 221 carries (4.6 yards). It’s safe to say that Tiki Barbers all-time yardage of 10,449 is safe at this point. As for the defensive side of the ball, the Giants traditionally had a LBer represented the team in the Pro Bowl nearly year after year.
Players like Sam Huff, Lawrence Taylor, Carl Banks, Harry Carson, Brad Van Pelt, Peeper Johnson, Jesse Armstead and Antonio Pierce. Let’s not forget the defensive linemen such as: Michael Strahan, Osi Umenyiora, Rosey Grier, Arnie Weinmeister, Justin Tuck, Andy Robustell, Leonard Marshall and Jason Pierre-Paul.
Why haven’t the Giants front office continue with this formula that has worked for decades. Well, one reason is the lack of the front office replacing the old with the new. GM Jerry Reese has had only 1 OL representing the Giants in the Pro Bowl since 2012, and that was Chris Snee who was drafted by Ernie Accorsi.
In fact, the same can be said for Line Backer’s and Running Backs not being a Pro Bowl selection since 2007. The History of Jerry Reese’s drafting LBer’s , OL , DL and Running Backs during his tenure are well documented.
* 2007-Ahmad Bradshaw (RB-rd 7) Adam Koets (OL-rd 6)/Jay Alford (DT-rd 3)
* 2008-Bryan Kehi (LB)/Jonathan Goff (LB)/Robert Henderson (DE-rd 6)
* 2009-Clint Sintim (LB-rd-2)/Andre Brown (RB-rd 4) Will Beatty (OL-rd 2)
* 2010-Phillip Dillard (LB- rd-4)/Mitch Petrius (OL-rd 5)/Jason Pierre Paul (DE-rd 1)/Linval Joseph (DT-rd 2)/Adran Tracy (DE-rd 6)
* 2011-James Brewer (OL-rd 4)/Greg Jones (LB-rd 6)/Jacquain Williams (LB-rd 7) Da’Rel Scott (RB-rd 7)/Marvin Austin (DT-rd 2)
* 2012-David Wilson (RB-rd 1)/Matt McCants (OL-rd 6)/Brandon Mosley (OL-rd 4)/Markus Kuhn (DT-rd 7)
* 2013-Justin Pugh (OL-rd 1)/Eric Herman (OL)-rd 7) Michael Cox (RB-rd 7)/Jonathan Hanks (DT-rd2)/Demonte Moore (DE-rd 3)
* 2014-Weston Richburg (OL-rd 2)/Andre Williams (RB-rd 4)/Jay Bromley (DT-rd 3)
* 2015-Ereck Flowers (OL-rd 1) Bobby Hart (OL-rd 7)/ Owamaqbe Odiqhizuwa (DE-rd 3)
Looking at the list above, some have panned out, while many have not; while the verdict is still out on some. Bottom line is that the Giants must go back to what made them a contender and that is to focus on the NY Giants Defensive front 7 and the Offensive Line.
If you control the line of scrimmage; you will most likely control time of possession; which in turn will probably turn into wins. GM Reese or whoever the Giants GM will be next year (fingers crossed) , need to shift gears and get some play making LBer’s/DE early in the draft and not later as in years past.
Focus on OL who excel in running blocking and not so much passing protection; as OC Ben McAdoo’s offensive system, the majority of drop backs are 3 steps and not 7 steps. In every Giants championship team, one common factor was evident and that was the presence of a play making LBer and/or DE.