If today was the day that the New York Giants were supposed to get off the mat and begin their drive towards the playoffs, they didn’t get the memo. For the second straight week, the Giants were dominated in all phases of the game as they were defeated by the Ravens in Baltimore, 33-14.
The Giants came into this week fully aware of their flickering chances at making the playoffs after being shut out 34-0 in Atlanta a week ago. Throughout this must-win game they looked as if they were well into planning their offseason vacation.
The good news for the Giants is that the Dallas Cowboys lost earlier at home to New Orleans and that kept the Giants playoff hopes alive. The flipside to that coin is that now they will not only need to beat the Eagles next week in the season finale, they will also need an abundance of help in various scenarios involving Dallas, Washington, , Chicago, and Minnesota. The pending outcome of tonight’s game in Seattle between the 49ers and Seahawks also will impact the potential playoff scenarios for the Giants. It seems like yesterday that this team controlled their own destiny in terms of winning the NFC east division. It’s now becoming a growing reality that the Giants may not even make the postseason. These are the same defending champion New York Giants.
Inconsistency plagued the Giants again this week as they failed to generate anything positive on offense. Quarterback Eli Manning was victimized by a horrible performance by the offensive line. Manning was unable to get anything going through the air as wide receivers Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz were shut down by the Ravens defense.
Meanwhile on defense, cornerback Corey Webster was picked on constantly by Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco. Webster gave up the first touchdown of the game to Torrey Smith. He was then torched by Smith later on a 43-yard pass play that helped set up another Ravens touchdown on a quarterback sneak by Flacco. At one point it almost seemed as if Flacco was only throwing in Webster’s direction because he already knew it was going to be a completed pass for big yards.
Webster and the Giants secondary was lit up by Flacco and the Ravens today and running back Ray Rice ran through and around the Giants defensive line. One of the keys going into this game for the Giants was that they needed to take Rice out of the mix for Baltimore and they failed badly. The Ravens did a great job of hammering the Giants early with a heavy dose of Rice before picking on Webster’s side of the field with the passing attack.
As if the Giants don’t have enough problems with their defense, Justin Tuck (shoulder) and Kenny Phillips (knee) did not play. Both defensive tackles Chris Canty and Marvin Austin suffered knee injuries during the game.
Give credit to the Ravens for taking care of their business this week. They clinched the AFC north division and put the breaks on a 3-game losing streak as well.
This is a Giants team in all kinds of trouble and disarray. I don’t see how anyone can feel confident about this team in the playoffs … if they even make it. Ever since beating up on New Orleans two weeks ago, the Giants have been outscored 67-14.
The Giants head home to face the Eagles in the season finale. They will need to win and then count on all kinds of help around the league in order to make the playoffs. However, it all starts with winning the game and right now no one should feel positive about their chances right now.