Before the Giants head across the pond for this week's "International Game," it is important to note that the Giants have now officially been 5-2 for a third consecutive year.
So what? Everyone points to their past. My wife mentions it, the papers print it and the commentators report it. "Eventually they will fold."
This year feels different. There is a certain balance to this club on offense and defense. The Special Teams units are abysmal, but everybody can't be the Patriots.
Here's why it's different: For once, the Giants are beating the teams they should beat. In years past, they always played down or up, depending on their opponents level of competition. My friends who are Cowboy fans say, "Look at the record of the teams they Giants have beat combined. They've played stiffs."
Has Dallas played Washington yet? Philly? Green Bay? If the Giants defense had played even decent against Dallas, the Giants would have won. Dallas has beaten Miami, Chicago, Minnesota, and St. Louis. Combine those records. Are the Cowboys playing stiffs?
Any given team can win on any given Sunday and the Giants have stayed motivated and stuck to their gameplan.
Even better, the Giants have yet to play their BEST game. They have yet to put together two solid halves on both sides of the ball.
Let me be bold and say that no one, NO ONE, in the NFL currently possesses more POTENTIAL (key word) than the Giants. If the Packers had a running game to go with Favre, their D and youth, I would put them ahead, but they don't. Washington is close...however, those injuries on the OL have taken their toll. Cooley is also highly underrated and for the most part, their D is solid. They seem to lack a pass rush and big time receiver. Moss is a great possession guy, but you need height to be a number one (Steve Smith is one of the few exceptions).
The hardest aspect of the NFL is facing your division foes the second time around. Currently, the NFC is the best division in football in terms of parity and talent...statistics show this.
Notes: Wonderful to see Brian Westbrook er I mean Philly fall to Chicago with 9 seconds left at home...wonderful. Now there's two teams with no offense and no hope. 93 yards on Philly's once vaunted defense? How come I never hear Takeo Spikes mentioned? He (with the bigger name) has 37 tackles to Antonio Pierce's 52. Pierce is highly underrated. How the heck did Philly score 56 on the Lions? Oh, I forgot the Lions were away from the Dome.
I thought for a moment that Tony Romo had suffered an injury yesterday. I wish him no ill will. He's a great QB and throws a great ball on the run. Cowboy fans have waited long and hard for even a decent OB to show up in Dallas and he exceeds the bill.
Speaking of great Dallas QB's, I miss hearing Troy Aikman and Joe Buck call the Giant games. I know that's crazy, but after the old team of Madden and Summerall, they are my favorite. Speaking of Pat, it was nice to see him in Jerry Jone's box.
I thought it was against the code to have old players announce for their former teams. However, Aikman did sound fairly neutral. I know this is a common practice in baseball and other sports, but I'm not sure if Phil Simms has ever commentated during a G-MEN game.
Maybe the Cowboys will look past the Eagles and slip up. Very doubtful, but hopeful. Worst case scenario, the Cowboys win and officailly end the Eagles season. As I previosuly stated, I know alot of Cowboy fans (that run in the 90's sure produced alot of transplants) and they are more concerned about the Giants, than we are about them...after all we're home with 2 weeks to plan. Let's hope we cover Whitten this time. The Cowboys did not face this type of Giants D in Dallas back in September.
Boy, Adrian Peterson is the real deal. I bet him not being able to be a Cowboy (I've been to a Red River Shootout or two in my day) would feel like you or I not being able to be on our favorite team.
This just in: Renaldo Hill and Ronnie Brown are done for the year. 6-2 looks even brighter.