It’s important to understand the history of events when it comes to judging things.
This is especially true with people.
Some people are loyal. Some are stubborn. Some are reliable. Some are flakes.
We come up with these terms to characterize people based on what they’ve proved to us in the past.
For as long as Eli Manning has quarterbacked the New York Giants, they’ve been an inconsistent, unreliable football team.
You’ll see Manning make some of the greatest plays the game has ever seen, in the biggest spots.
(Mario Manningham, David Tyree)
But you’ll also watch games where he has trouble completing a forward pass, making throws with his eyes closed or with his left hand.
He is who he is at this point, and it needs to be expected, to expect the unexpected.
Does that make sense? I hope so.
Right now, the Giants are sitting at 5-8, still mathematically alive in the Wildcard race.
And while, sure, it’s a neat idea to believe that miracles can happen and a team once 1-7 could storm back to make the playoffs, my question for you is this:
Is this “anything can happen” mentality the thought-process of a franchise that demands excellence?
The Giants are on the verge of missing the playoffs for the sixth time in seven seasons, and based on a nice run here at the end of the season, people are once again falling for the bait.
The Giants are just like your flaky friend who has apologized for the 7th time about ditching you on plans, trying once again to sway you into believing their story.
At some point, you just have to stop believing them and move on.
The Giants have now won four of their five games, all against backup quarterbacks (Nick Mullens, Ryan Fitzpatrick/Jameis Winston, Chase Daniel, and Mark Sanchez/Josh Johnson).
And as a result of their (poor) competition, the Giants offense has been putting up high point totals, scoring 27, 38, 30, and 40 in their four second-half wins.
“Oh, but the Giants offense doesn’t play against backup quarterbacks, they play against the opposing defense. So, it’s not fair to judge them based on the play of the opposing quarterback,” says the average fan.
The Giants defense has intercepted 11 (!) passes in their four wins against these backup quarterbacks, two of those passes returned for touchdowns.
Thus, allowing the Giants offense more opportunities, better opportunities to score points.
In their first eight games of the season, the Giants intercepted just four passes.
Why such a small number? Because they played better quarterback competition.
The likes of Drew Brees, Cam Newton, Matt Ryan, DeShaun Watson, and Carson Wentz.
In return, they understood how important it was to score points and score points fast.
Which usually equates to throwing the football more than it does running the football.
If you’ve noticed, Saquon Barkley’s workload has increased during their recent stretch of wins.
Why is that?
Because when you play inferior quarterbacks who you aren’t afraid of, you can stick with the run game longer than you would against a good opposing quarterback who can score points.
Not once did Barkley carry the football 20 times during the first half of the season.
He’s now done it three times in five games, and if Sunday’s game against the Redskins wasn’t a blowout, it probably would have been four times in five games that he took at least 20 carries.
All I’m saying, as I’ve said before, is don’t get fooled by the Giants recent success and the fact that they are relatively alive in the playoff hunt.
They still need a new quarterback next season.
It’s as simple as that.