Monday, November 16, 2009

Giants Figure Out A Way To Win: Do Nothing

Good morning, Fackers. Typically, the bye week during the NFL season is a welcome break for a team, but as much for the fans. A Sunday after the baseball season has concluded and without your NFL team in action seems kind of empty and aimless. However, that extra healing and preparation time is incredibly useful to the teams. And this week was particularly advantageous to the Giants, although they had absolutely nothing to do with it.

Big Blue had their best week since since blowing out the Raiders back on October 11th and they didn't even have to get off their couches. As heartbreaking and inopportune as their last minute loss of the Chargers was last week, it was nearly neutralized by the way the cards fell this weekend.

The Eagles made a trip out to San Diego but lost to the Chargers behind a resurgent LaDanian Tomlinson (96 yards, 2 TDs). The Cowboys visited Lambeau Field and were held scoreless by the Packers until there was less than one minute left in the 4th quarter. This left the 'Boys at (6-3) and the Eagles at (5-4) meaning the G-Men (5-4) are one game out of first place in the NFC and hold the edge in a tiebreaker against the Cowboys (although they don't against Philly).

The Giants' next two opponents, the Falcons and the Broncos, both lost as well. Atlanta outgained the Panthers on offense but two interceptions by Matt Ryan proved to be costly, as the 28-19 loss dropped them to (5-4) - tied with the Giants going into next week's match up. The Broncos suffered a 27-17 loss to the Redskins -their third straight. Kyle Orton was also hurt in the game and is unsure whether he'll be able to play next week. Like the Giants, the Broncos got off to a perfect start but have since hit the skids against some tougher competition and suddenly don't look so hot.

The Saints (9-0), Vikings (8-1) and Cardinals (6-3) all seem to be safe bets to win their respective divisions, but the scrum for the final three playoff spots just got a lot more interesting. The Giants, Eagles, Packers and Falcons are all sitting at (5-4) with the Cowboys just one game ahead. Chicago, Carolina and San Francisco are (4-5) but seem like longshots to end up in the postseason.

The Giants were significantly helped by the way things played out yesterday but have their work cut out for them in the near future. They play the Falcons next week at the Meadowlands and then have to travel to Denver to play on short rest on Thanksgiving. The following two weeks feature showdowns with Cowboys and Eagles.

The picture looks a whole lot rosier for the G-Men than it did after their loss to the Chargers, but that isn't saying all that much. They're squarely in the middle of the pack for the NFC Wild Card spots and will need to distinguish themselves over the next four weeks against stiff competition under difficult circumstances.

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