By: Marco Imperati
After a 6 game winning streak, the Giants flaws came full circle. They lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers 24-14 in a game that was really never close. Offensively, the Giants are falling apart. So many questions surround this team’s offense, that was the strength the last two years. In 2016, not only is it near the last in the league in statistical categories, it may end up being the unit that holds this team back from a playoff run and maybe even making the playoffs. Eli Manning finished with a stat line of 24 for 39, 195 yards, 2 touchdowns, 2 interceptions. The decisions just weren’t there for Eli and this offense. None bigger than the first interception. This team has become so predictable on offense. When Larry Donnell checked into the game as the Giants made it into the red zone, everyone in Heinz Field knew where the ball was going next. Eli, not getting the lift on the ball that was needed, could not throw the ball out of the stretched arms of Linebacker Lawrence Timmons. That killed a drive, potential points, and the spirit of the Giants offense in this game. This game aside, Eli has not looked crisp. OBJ is the best player on this team but Eli Manning is the most important. If he’s not playing his best, that may work vs the Browns or the Bears but will not work vs the Steelers, Cowboys or Lions.
Keep an eye on: Ben McAdoo and his playcalling duties. As I mentioned above, the team has gotten very predictable. One must wonder if McAdoo has too much on his plate as the head coach. They have stayed in the same personnel virtually all season. There is hope that Justin Pugh and even Shane Vereen may return for this game. That would be a huge lift to this offense.
Up Next: Although still a monster game, this game has lost a little bit of its luster with the Giants not winning in Pittsburgh. Anything can happen down the stretch, but the Giants must zone in and beat the visiting Cowboys this Sunday night. We’ve seen momentum before with this Giants team, and that can switch in a millisecond. A win shows the world that this team can go toe to toe with the best team in football. A loss could send this team in a downward spin and give life to NFC teams like the Packers, Buccaneers and Redskins. December football. Put up or shut up. .