NFL Week 1: Giants vs. Redskins, Game Notes

September 11, 2011

NEW YORK – The 2011 NFL season has officially started Giants fans. I’m sure that most of you watched the Giants play the Redskins in DC today. Some football fans scrambled this morning to make sure their fantasy football teams had the proper lineups set and that there were no last minute injury updates. Some football fans broke out their lucky jerseys or made their favorite food before the games. All football fans honored the fallen of 9/11 in some way today, even if it were a small prayer or by attending a ceremony. America remembered the military and the fallen today. Never forget!

The Giants lost 28-14 to the Redskins in a game that was hard to watch at times. There were so many sloppy plays, after a very promising start, that I do not know where to begin. The best thing for Giants fans to do is just put this game behind us and look forward to next week when they play the Rams. Yes, it was that bad against a Redskins team that 99% of the experts said would lose today. The Giants start the season 0-1 and they have not even started the hard part of their schedule yet. After wins by the Eagles and Redskins, the G-men are officially in last place until we see what happens with the Cowboys game. The first half of the game saw a lot of back and forth action and it seemed pretty competitive, albeit sloppy. Big Blue went into the locker room at halftime tied up 14-14 and seemed to be building momentum.

Then the second half started and it all went down hill from there. One thing after another went wrong. The Giants were completely shut out in the second half and seemed to be playing tired football. I saw a lot of guys who appeared to be playing in slow motion. The Giants special teams are absolutely atrocious and need serious changes immediately. I have said that they might be the worst special teams in the entire NFL and I stand by that comment until they play better. The biggest surprise of the day was Redskins QB Rex Grossman balling on Big Blue for 305 yards and 2 TD’s. Nobody could have seen that coming. Giants QB Eli Manning had a rough day and was sacked 4 times with 1 INT. Manning has not seemed himself at all this year in the preseason or the regular season game tonight. I’m not sure what is bothering him but I hope he can focus on football and get back to the QB we all know he can be. The Giants also had way too many penalties in this game, finishing with 8 total.

Let’s take a look at some of my notes from the game.

QB Eli Manning – Eli did not have a very good game and finished 18/32 with 268 yards 0 TD’s and 1 INT. However, he did score on a 2 yard rushing TD.

RB Ahmad Bradshaw – Bradshaw had a decent game and ran hard as usual. He finished with 44 yards and 1 TD.

WR Hakeem Nicks – Nicks had a great game and he gets my offensive game ball. He finished with 122 yards 0 TD’s.

DE Justin Tuck – Tuck was on the sidelines and missed the game while he is recovering from an injury. Get well soon Justin!

CB Aaron Ross – Ross had a pretty good game but doesn’t look 100% comfortable back there yet.

S Kenny Phillips – KP had a really nice game and was all over the field. He is going to have a solid year.

RB Brandon Jacobs – Jacobs ran hard but finished with only 29 yards. I expect a big year from the Bull this year.

LB Mathias Kiwanuka – Kiwi had a good game and finished 5th on the defense in tackles.

S Antrel Rolle – Rolle led the defense in tackles and had some very hard hits in the game.

DE Jason Pierre-Paul – JPP gets my defensive game ball for his outstanding game. He finished with 2 sacks and 1 forced fumble.

LB Michael Boley – Boley had a good game and finished with a fumble recovery.

WR Mario Manningham – Super Mario had some big catches and finished the game with 49 yards 0 TD’s.

TE Jake Ballard – Ballard had a nice game despite getting banged up before halftime. He finished with 59 yards.

CB Corey Webster – Webster had a relatively quiet night but did his job.

LB Greg Jones – Jones had a pretty good night for a rookie being thrown into the fire. I like this kid.

WR Domenik Hixon – Hixon was a busy man tonight returning punts and seeing some time at WR.

K Lawrence Tynes – Tynes was 0-1 on FG’s due to a blocked FG attempt and made both of his two extra point attempts.

P Steve Weatherford – The “Weatherman” had a nice game I thought and fans must feel better with a veteran back there.

Giants Defense – The Giants D gave up 28 points to an inferior Redskins team but still finished with 4 sacks, 0 INT’s and 1 forced fumble.

Giants Offense – The Giants offense has some work to do and it starts with the play calling.

Giants Special Teams – Simply the worst special teams I can ever remember for the New York Giants.

Coach Coughlin – Coach Coughlin and his staff are making do with a depleted team and a young roster. There will be growing pains for certain.

What do you think about the Giants performance against the Redskins?

RD – nygreporter.com

Never Forget 9/11

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NFL Season Kicks Off Tonight, Giants Still Plugging Holes

September 8, 2011

NEW YORK – The 2011 NFL season has finally arrived after one of the worst off seasons I can ever remember. The two big downers were the lockout, which lasted about five months and more recently the injuries that have plagued the Giants before the season even started. The lockout was a drain on everyone associated with the NFL, including the fans who had to endure the constant threat of this season being cancelled. A lot of people were hurt financially, while the big boys argued over billions of dollars. Thankfully, with no time left to spare, both sides came to an agreement and here we are now, just hours away from the 2011 kickoff (Packers vs. Saints at 8:30 PM EST). The rest of the league will have their games played this Sunday.

The Giants mass injury epidemic is the other significant event that has occurred over the past month or so. With the recent news about the G-men losing LB Jonathan Goff for the year, it really starts to hit home when you realize that a good chunk of our defense are 2nd string players and rookies. I have a lot of faith in our players and they know they need to step up but the time for talk is over and they must perform on the field. The Giants brought in a bunch of players for workouts over the past 48 hours to try and plug some holes, including familiar faces with LB Chase Blackburn and LB Kawika Mitchell. Rookie LB Greg Jones will be practicing with the first team and will most likely get the chance to start against the Redskins this weekend. The Giants have lost 8 players (about 15% of the team) due to season ending injuries, two of them got cut and six landed on the IR list, they also have two players currently on the PUP list.

What does all of this mean? It means that fans should just sit back and watch the game on Sunday. I’m completely drained from all of the theories and analysis. When it gets this close to the first game, I tend to relax more because there is really nothing more you can do but play the game. There will be plenty of time to breakdown the Giants performance and speculate on the rest of their 2011 opponents but for now, enjoy the game. We know the situation the team faces with a lack of personnel and we will see how they adapt to that. It will be impossible to separate the significance of the date this Sunday (9/11/11) on the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks and the start of the NFL season for most teams. There will be tributes everywhere you look, as there should be and I’m sure that George Martin will be out there walking for the 9/11 first responders. There will be a lot of emotion this weekend and a ton to digest. Never Forget! The Giants vs. Redskins game kicks off at 4:15 PM EST on Sunday.

Do you think the Giants are prepared to compete for a playoff spot in 2011?

RD – nygreporter.com

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