Giants Control Own Destiny, for Whatever That’s Worth

From Jimmy Kempski of Blogging the bEast:

• That was pretty much the absolute worst case scenario of a day for the Giants.  They got annihilated by the Falcons, while the Redskins, Cowboys, Seahawks, and Vikings all won.  If you go to the “playoff machine” on ESPN it will tell you that if the season ended today, the Giants would be out of the playoffs.  The Redskins would be the NFC East Champs, with the Seahawks and Vikings grabbing the final two wild card spots.  However, if the Giants win their final two games, neither of which are against the Vikings, they are guaranteed at least a wild card.  All 3 remaining relevant NFC East teams “control their own destiny.”

• I’m going to forever think of yesterday’s Giants’ game as the “Kregg Lumpkin game.”  And that’s not because Lumpkin lost the game for them or anything like that.  I think it’s because the ball kept coming his way in crucial situations.

  • 3rd and 2 at the Atlanta 33… Handoff to Kregg Lumpkin for 1.
  • 3rd and 1 from the Atlanta 11… Handoff to Kregg Lumpkin for nothing.
  • 4th and 2 from the Atlanta 25… Pass incomplete, intended for Kregg Lumpkin.

When you have arguably the best offense in the NFC, the defense knows that you’re likely to give the ball to one of your good players, not a guy that has been on the team for 3 weeks.  They’ll never expect “The Lumpkin.”  And therefore, you HAVE TO go to Kregg Lumpkin in crucial situations.  You just have to.  For the Giants not to convert any of those plays to Lumpkin, it had to have been, what? 1 in a million?  1 in a billion?  I certainly can’t blame the play calling there.

• Jason Pierre-Paul tried to tackle Michael Turner near the goal line yesterday, and just bounced right off of him. He missed a tackle on the following series.  It has not been a great follow-up year for a guy that I thought was the best defensive player in the division last season.  Forget comparisons to DeMarcus Ware this season.  JPP doesn’t even match up favorably, statistically anyway, to Brandon Graham.

• By my count, Asante Samuel has picked off the Manning brothers 8 times in his career.  He got Eli for the 5th time yesterday.

• On Asante’s INT, David Wilson got absolutely destroyed by a blitzing linebacker.  There was also another play where the Falcons were blitzing, and Eli wanted to get the ball out quickly.  Wilson didn’t adapt to the blitz and was far too late to get his head around to locate the incoming pass from Eli.  Those are the kinds of things that make Tom Coughlin not trust him.  I’ll have more on Wilson at some point this week.

• What happened to Lawrence Tynes?  He has become a reliable kicker and was even having a very good year, but he has missed FG attempts in each of the last three games.  Easy ones, too.  He missed a 43 yarder against the Skins a few weeks ago, a 36 yarder last week against the Saints, and then a 30 yard chip shot, in a dome, against the Falcons.

• More importantly, what has happened to Eli Manning?  I have no idea what he was looking at on the pick he threw to Thomas DeCoud.  It has not been a good follow up season to his Super Bowl run:

Eli QB rating

• Victor Cruz took a vicious shot from a Falcons safety on a deep ball over the middle, but before he did so, he alligator armed it.

• The Giants are maybe the NFL’s best example of a “Jekyll and Hyde” team.  How do you look as good as the Giants looked against the Packers, and then look this bad against the Falcons? I’ll never figure you out, Giants.

More on the Giants later in the week.  Be sure to follow Blogging the bEast on Twitter and like Blogging the bEast on Facebook.