The New York Giants put up a season that has not been one that fans will want to remember, especially the seven-game losing streak. The Giants entered the season with so much promise. There was a breath of fresh air as Kevin Gilbride was no longer the offensive coordinator; he was replaced by Ben McAdoo. The Giants promised to be a new look team but instead fell into a familiar losing season.
We will start with the good that happened this season, as it is more fun to write about and I hope more fun to read about. The Giants offense found it’s proverbial stride late into the season. The offensive line seemed to find whatever the unit’s magic fix was. Eli Manning found his new favorite target in Odell Beckham who has become a sensation in his rookie season.
Dec 28, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) before a game against the Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
The defense improved dramatically in the Giants late season winning streak. In one stretch the GMEN had 22 sacks in 3 games. Overall, the defensive performance was dreadful (we’ll get to that) but it improved so very much late in the season.
Much of the Giants struggles were due to injuries. Notable season sidelining injuries include Jon Beason, Victor Cruz and Geoff Schwartz. The Giants lost the captain of the defense, their salsa dancing receiver and their most talented offensive lineman.
That may not be the only reason for the losses but it certainly is a formula for disaster. The Giants lost a lot of dependable and high producing players. Teams understand that this can happen but how do you prepare for it? There really is no way to prepare for major injuries unless you have the quality of depth to make up for it.
The Giants went on an unforgivable seven-game losing streak in which they displayed truly horrifyingly pathetic play. They lost a game to the Jacksonville Jaguars in which they had a 21 point lead the week after blowing a 10 point lead against the division champs, the Dallas Cowboys. The Giants blew every opportunity in front of them this year. They lost some close games because they could not get out of their own way. These games could have been the difference between another losing season and sneaking into the postseason.
The Giants offensive line was putrid though it did have the built in excuse of being reshuffled. The offensive line found its way but the Giants had games where they could not produce on offense at all because of penetration into the backfield. The inability to get it together until it was too late was the ugliest part of this season all around.
The defense was just as frustrating. The pass rush came alive late in the season but it was mostly mediocre. Linebackers were the worst part of the defense. The defense gave up big runs because linebackers could not get off blocks, they got caught in the trash (mostly because they took bad angles of pursuit). The secondary was atrocious at times this season, to the point of embarrassment.
The most unacceptable part of this season however is that we have been here before. 0-6 last year was a brutal start and a good second half of the season did not make it okay. The Giants wasted a lot of talent. Don’t get me wrong, this team has major problems but it under achieved to a level only the Matrix sequels could rival. It was seriously that bad as everything will be remembered as an exciting premise wasted by horrible performances.