By Steve Farace
At 7-7 they were buried.
They had lost 2 games to the Redskins and one to the Seahawks. Tom Coughlin was on the verge of being fired (for the 25th time since being with the team) and the fans were beginning to turn on them.
The previous paragraph is one that is used to describe the new Super Bowl Champions.
The Giants have been down this path many times. They start strong and then hit this midseason lull and then attempt that end of the season rebound. It happened in 2007 and nearly happened last year if not for an ill advised punt to one unmentioned speedster of the Philadelphia Eagles.
You can never count this team out. Please do not attempt to do so. You will come out a loser as was the case with many NFL “insiders”.
The one difference between this year and Super Bowl 42 is that this year the better team won. The Giants had the edge on defense and because of that edge (and because Gronk was not at 100%) they also had the edge on offense. That is now 3 games in a row that Eli has gotten the best of Tom.
There is no doubt in my mind that Eli Manning is a top 5 quarterback and at this very moment he is #4. Yes I would take Brady, Rodgers and Brees over him and I might even take Peyton over him if he was 100% healthy.
The Giants defense has always been their best asset and if it is off at all (2010 season) then the Giants will not make it very far. This year it was the defense and the running game that struggled through that 7-7 stretch. At that point it was all Eli carrying this team. Once that game started against the Jets, the running game and the defense kicked it up several notches and never looked back.
The moral of the story is that you should never count this team out. They have one of the best closing quarterbacks in the history of the NFL (5 fourth comebacks in the playoffs alone). They have a team that can seemingly turn it on at any moment. They turned it on for the Jets, Cowboys, Falcons, Packers, 49ers and Patriots.
Left for dead at 7-7. Six games later they are the Champs.