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Giants Win, Still Not In

1Washington-Redskins-vs-New-York-Giants 

The Giants managed to defeat Washington yesterday, 17-14, but still did not make the playoffs because Green Bay beat Chicago.  The Packers owned a head-to-head victory over the Giants which should still be fresh in everyone’s minds since it happened just last week.  Even though New York’s playoff chances were officially squashed yesterday, they were truly gone last week after the loss in Green Bay.  One could even argue that the Giants were done after the horrific Eagles loss which sapped all of the fight out of the team.

In Washington they actually managed to win, but it felt like a decent team sneaking past a bad team rather than a good team forcing its way to a playoff shot.  The defense, led by Osi Umenyiora’s two strip sacks, held back Washington’s offense with four turnovers and the Giants offense was able to make just enough big plays to win, like a 92 yard pass from Eli to Manningham.  Sure it was a win, but it wasn’t the type of game to make anyone feel like the Giants were being robbed of a playoff berth.  They had that chance and blew it in the past five quarters.

There was one positive to come out of the game, as now head coach Tom Coughlin is probably keeping his job.  I’ve always thought Coughlin was a great coach and I’ve stuck by him through all of the seasons where he was on the hot seat, even before the Super Bowl run.  This year was different though; the team had collapsed before but nothing like what we saw in the five quarters before the Washington game.  There needs to be a scapegoat for that disaster and I thought it would be the head coach, but it’s difficult to fire a coach with a 10-6 record and Coughlin has earned at least one more season to right this ship. 

It remains to be seen where the Giants go from here.  The team has a lot of young talent on both sides of the ball and not many pressing needs.  The biggest need is strongside linebacker where veteran Keith Bulluck performed admirably, but he was just a veteran stopgap.  Either former second round pick Clint Sintim needs to step up and take the position or another high draft pick will probably be made to secure the position this year.  The NYG could also look at upgrading the middle linebacker spot where Jonathan Goff was solid but unspectacular in his first year as a starter.

Some media outlets are reporting that the Giants could be on the lookout for another cornerback this offseason.  While I don’t see them drafting one in the first few rounds considering Webster, Thomas, and Ross are all high picks, bringing in a mid-round guy to develop and possibly start rotating in by the end of the year could be very beneficial.  That’s really all they need on defense although knowing Jerry Reese he’s sure to add another developmental pass rusher like he does every year.

On offense the Giants need to get younger on the offensive line because some of the old stalwarts began to break down this year.  Even if they do decide that Will Beatty is the left tackle of the future, they still need to start developing a young guard and center prospects.

They don’t really have any other needs on offense; they could just use depth at most positions, although if Ahmad Bradshaw leaves in free agency running back will immediately become the biggest need on the team.

This team has plenty of upside and should have made a deep run this year.  They certainly had better make the playoffs in 2011 or the owners won’t be this understanding at this time next year.    

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I’ve always thought Coughlin was a great coach

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