Well, that sucked! An epic Sunday of football was ruined completely when the Giants dropped a 20-8 cockpunch to the hated Cowboys last night in Dallas. I shouldn't have to tell you that, but we have a regular reader who doesn't follow sports and I figured he should know what we're on about. But no more hints from here on in. You know who you are.
The Jets started the day off by being the Jets. Only problem is, the Bills decided to be the Bills, and they gifted the losers in puke-green a win they absolutely didn't deserve. The Jets are one pussy hair away from having a three-game losing streak, on their way to a Mets-like collapse, as I mentioned in my picks this week. But Buffalo deprived us of that. Fuckers. Watching the NYC media tear apart Manboobs and St. Favre would've been glorious.
But there's still time for the Jets to blow it all, so I'll root hard for that. I've been saying all along that they suck, and I wasn't swayed by the run they went on at midseason. They're inconsistent, horribly coached, and their schedule is a complete joke. Sure, they beat the Pats in New England, but only after blowing a huge lead. They should've lost that one, along with the opener in Miami, and of course yesterday. Only they didn't lose any of them and now they may win their division. Incredible. Welcome to being an NFL fan, where life just ain't fair sometimes.
They can tell you a little something about that in Baltimore today. Did the Ravens get jobbed? Probably. Personally, I think the ball crossed the plane of the goal line. But I'm not so sure Holmes' feet were down when it did. Either way, there wasn't indisputable evidence to overturn the call. So what do the refs do? They overturn the call and hand Pittsburgh the division title, a first round bye, and possibly home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Fucking amazing.
This season is now bookended by the Hochuli call and this call. Not good for the league. And I despise San Diego, but did anyone else notice that if it weren't for Hochuli, the Broncos and Chargers would both be 7-7 right now? I'm just saying.
After two thrilling, down-to-the-wire afternoon games, the Giants had to go fuck it up in primetime. It's not so much the loss as it is HOW they lost. Eight sacks is embarrassing. I don't care if McKenzie and Seubert were hurt. Diehl wasn't hurt, but he got abused on the very first play of the game and a whole bunch of times after that. Very disheartening.
Still, it was a game late into the second half, which is encouraging as a Giants fan considering how awful they played. What's weird is that the game stats aren't as lopsided as you'd think. The teams had the exact same number of first downs, and similar third down numbers. The Giants averaged 4.2 yards per rush, while the Cowboys averaged 4.8, and that was padded by Choice's long TD to ice the game. New York also had a slight lead in time of possession, and won the penalty battle by a big margin. (Dallas had 11 for 108 yards!)
So what happened? Bad coaching, for one thing. Kevin Gilbride abandoned the run way too soon. It seemed like Eli dropped back to pass the entire second half, even though the Giants obviously couldn't contain Dallas' pass rush. They should've run more, and when they passed they needed to throw more screens, quick hitches and slants. They did none of those things. Everything was a five-step drop trying to go down the field. In short, they got greedy.
The normally infallible Steve Spagnuolo also got greedy with the blitz. While I'll admit the pressure they put on Homo was fun to watch - and I really did think he was one more hit away from being knocked out of the game - they actually got burned on it in the end.
So that sets up a pretty crucial Week 16 contest between the Giants and Panthers. Personally, my panties aren't as bunched as I suspect Keith's are. Last week he emailed me privately to say if the Giants beat Dallas it meant they would win it all, but if they lost they won't make the Super Bowl. I love ya bro, but that's fucking absurd. THIS week is the game that really matters. Beating Dallas would've been the cherry on top, but it wasn't really necessary. The Giants want that No. 1 seed, or at least the No. 2 and a bye, and they can lock it up with a win at home.
More importantly, they just need to get back to playing good football. There is nothing in their track record to suggest they won't, or can't, do just that. Even after these two losses I still think they're the deepest, most balanced and best coached team in the league. That doesn't guarantee a Super Bowl repeat, but I'll still take my chances with these guys.
The best thing about Sunday night's game - the biggest game of the year in the NFC - is that Keith and I will be there in person, freezing our asses off to see it all happen. We rule.