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View Poll Results: Is Eli to blame for 2012 failure?

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  • Yes, more than most of the team

    4 23.53%
  • Yes, but no more than some others

    9 52.94%
  • Not really

    1 5.88%
  • No

    3 17.65%
Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
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    Is Eli to Blame?

    Blame Eli, above all, for 2012 failure

    Giants had enough talent to reach the playoffs, but Manning fumbled it all away
    Updated: December 31, 2012, 2:41 PM ET
    By Ian O'Connor | ESPNNewYork.com




    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- In his heart of hearts, Eli Manning knows this was a winning season in record only. He knows he had a chance to do something no New York Giants quarterback had ever done, a squandered chance that might haunt him for the balance of his career and beyond.

    Out of the playoffs and out of luck, stripped of his shot at being the first Giant to lead his team to back-to-back championships, Manning knows why his 9-7 feels more like 7-9. He's playing against NFL history now, trying to join the ultra-exclusive club of Joe Montana, Terry Bradshaw, Troy Aikman, and Tom Brady as the only men to win at least three Super Bowl rings.

    And if he never gets there, if he ends up stuck on two forever, 2012 will be one that keeps him awake at night. No, the career-high five touchdown passes he just threw in a 42-7 rout of the Philadelphia Eagles won't comfort him in the dead of night.


    Jim O'Connor/US PResswire
    After winning it all last season, Eli Manning couldn't lead the Giants back into the playoffs.
    "It hurts," Manning said.

    As it should.

    "There's no enjoyment," he said, "in not going to the playoffs. ... Each year you want to make the playoffs to give yourself the opportunity to win a championship. 9-7 last year was good enough. It wasn't good enough this year, and we knew it wasn't going to be."

    The Giants had no good excuse to miss the postseason tournament, an unforgiving truth they will take to their graves. They had the requisite leadership and talent at the positions of head coach, quarterback, and pass-rusher, and though they suffered their share of injuries, so did everyone else and then some.

    Hakeem Nicks wasn't Hakeem Nicks, but the Giants still had enough playmakers to win the NFC East, or to at least secure a wild card. That's the shame of this playoff-free season, Manning's third in four years. It didn't have to go down like this. The Giants should've never ended up hoping and praying for the 4-11 Lions to beat the Bears, a desperate bailout plan if there ever was one.

    The Motor City was the place where this New York season officially went to die, no matter how much Eli and friends tried to wish away the inevitable. The Giants did a ton of scoreboard watching Sunday, and when Detroit cut Chicago's lead to 20-17 in the third quarter, and cut it again to 26-24 in the fourth, the MetLife crowd let go of its most hopeful roars of the day.

    The Giants were just trying to make it alive until the later games, but counting on the Lions was counting on a lost cause. Manning and teammates didn't get the word until they were in their locker room, word, Eli said, "that it wasn't going to work out the way we wanted to."


    Of course, the season was thrown away in Atlanta and Baltimore, where the Giants were beaten by a combined score of 67-14 and where two ring-free upstarts, Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco, badly outplayed the two-time Super Bowl MVP. Manning didn't even throw for 165 yards in either blowout, punctuating a late-season fade -- interrupted by the big games against Green Bay and New Orleans -- that mocked the early-season campaign for Eli as league MVP.

    Nobody's saying it was all Manning's fault. The offensive line buckled more than it had in the past. The stars on the defensive front, Justin Tuck and Osi Umenyiora and Jason Pierre-Paul, were a shell of what they were across last year's charmed championship run, and when the Giants don't get to the other guy's quarterback, they don't win.

    But Tuck, Umenyiora and JPP aren't face-of-the-franchise players, and they aren't working under $100 million contracts, either. (Just ask Osi.) Manning rightfully got most of the credit when the Giants won their two titles, so he deserves most of the blame for fumbling away a division his team should've locked away a month ago.

    It's something for the quarterback to think about when he blows out the candles Thursday on the occasion of his 32nd birthday.

    "Each year," Manning said, "especially as I get older and guys, teammates, get older in their careers, you don't know how many opportunities you're going to have to be on a team that has the talent to possibly win a championship, the talent to make the playoffs and give yourself a chance to make it a special season.

    "I feel like we have that talent here on this team. Obviously there's not a whole lot of changeover from last year. We had the ability to make the playoffs, and we're disappointed that we didn't play up to our ability each week."

    The last time the Giants failed to repeat as champs, they had a fairly unique reason. Plaxico Burress accidentally shot himself in the leg in a Manhattan nightclub over the extended Thanksgiving weekend, and Tom Coughlin would eventually admit to ESPNNewYork.com that his team couldn't overcome "losing a player of that magnitude."


    With no such drama or trauma this time around, the Giants were left with no acceptable answers for what happened in Atlanta and Baltimore, and for failing to match the 2008 team's trip to the postseason. Sunday, when he was done handing Andy Reid and (most likely) Michael Vick their final defeats as Eagles, Coughlin said he planned to ask his players, "What in the world was the last two weeks all about?"

    He probably wasn't going to be satisfied with the responses. "I usually figure it out myself," the coach said, "but this one's a little tougher."

    Actually, this tale of two 9-7s -- good enough for a championship one year, bad enough for a flameout the next -- isn't as difficult to figure out as Coughlin might suspect. Manning elevated the 2011 team when he absolutely needed to, and he failed to do the same for the 2012 team.

    "I don't think it's a lack of hunger or focus," the franchise quarterback said of the losses to the Falcons and Ravens. "We just got outperformed."

    Eli got outperformed above all others. He's still very much an elite quarterback, still a future Hall of Famer, still the kind of long-baller you want at the plate in the bottom of the ninth.

    But the Giants had enough talent to reach the playoffs, and Manning didn't maximize that talent. In the end his 9-7 season was, in fact, a losing season, a wasted opportunity to enhance his legacy in the race against his own biological clock.
    http://espn.go.com/new-york/nfl/stor...s-failure-2012

  2. #2
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    Eli certainly didn't well play this season, BUT when he really started to struggle is when O Line went to ****.. Eli NEEDS protection plain and simple..

    Is Eli is to blame? Yes but no more then others..

    Nicks being as injured as he was all season certainly didn't help.. Gotta keep that in mind..
    Last edited by NY007; 01-01-2013 at 07:50 PM.

  3. #3
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    I agree 100% with NY007

    So much is mentioned about this being a complicated offense with so much to do with protection schemes and timing, well how can you have the right timing when your QB is running for his life? Also, part of the blame would go to the coaches for not simplifying the offense when things started to fail.

  4. #4
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    I'd say no more than others, but some of his INTs to start off games were awful. He made more boneheaded plays this year than last which caused the D to be on the field longer than they should have been. So I say he's the biggest to blame.


    Quote Originally Posted by Gibby23 View Post
    The only way I will be proven wrong is if the giants win in SF and that isn't going to happen. You can keep saying they beat the Packers on the road and all that, but they are not playing the Packers this Sunday. The Niners will win by 10 plus points..... Numbers don't lie only you and some giants fan do to make yourself feel better about the loss your team has coming up.
    gooood caaaall

  5. #5
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    I think its easy to blame him but its a number of things. This team needs a huge revamp and I think we come back stronger next year.

  6. #6
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    He did some pretty dumb things out there but at the same time injuries..... injuries RB n WR spots were not there for Eli as he is used to. I'm sure his trust was shaken a bit

  7. #7
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    Eli played terrible I thought he was taking that step, but he clearly regressed. His passes had no zip on them either he needs this extra rest. We are a big play team and Nicks being hurt didn't help either plus Cruz playing scared because he doesn't have a contract didnt help either. The defense looks like it needs to be revamped completely

  8. #8
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    When will ppl get Eli need a RUNNING GAME. Running game opens up the passing game plain and simple




    Quote Originally Posted by PraiseJesus View Post
    My PREDICITON OF LEBRON GOING TO THE KNICKS WAS SPOT ON!!!!

    JUST AS ALL MINE ARE.

    I'M NEVER WRONG



    FREE MY SOURCE PraiseJesus

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giants #1 Fan View Post
    When will ppl get Eli need a RUNNING GAME. Running game opens up the passing game plain and simple
    Sure it helps but it really comes down to blocking and the offensive line.. Eli has to have time.. Eli played his best season last year with out a running game but the pass protection was ok..

  10. #10
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    I wouldn't be surprised if Eli was injured this year. His passes look off. He never complains or shows it and is a gladiator. We all need to relax with the whole "blame Eli for the season" talk.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by GMenFanSince90 View Post
    I wouldn't be surprised if Eli was injured this year. His passes look off. He never complains or shows it and is a gladiator. We all need to relax with the whole "blame Eli for the season" talk.
    Well he's always been playing with plantar fasciitis. So there's that...

  12. #12
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    Eli made some poor decisions no doubt about that but it was a totally team collapse.

    So not really.

    NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 18-1 Signature of a Champion!
    ELI MANNING.... 2X SB MVP....2X SB CHAMPION!

  13. #13
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    It happens, cant win every year, we will be back!!!!
    FAV FIGHTERS- HW-Struve-JDS-D.Cormier LHW-Gustafsson -Ovince St. Preux Machida MW-Kenndey-D.Miller-Chris WeidmanWW-Condit-Rory MacDonald-Kampmann-Douglas Lima-Marquardt LW-Penn-Edgar-Jim Miller-Joe Lauzon-FW-Jung Patricio Freire BW-Torres-Dantas- Faber-Fly-Benavidez

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