I was perusing NFL.com Friday and I came across the sort of article that has historically made New York Giants fans cringe.
Written by Thomas George, the piece as filled with praise for the Giants offense.
When we are talking an NFL offense that features balance, that is deep across the lineup, that forces defenses to cover all areas of the field, that compiles big plays and also sustains long drives, this Giants model and mold is distinguishing itself.
It has not lost a fumble. For two straight games it has not allowed a sack. It leads the NFL in rushing offense (157.3 yards per game). It leads the league in runs of 10 or more yards (37). It ranks third in total offense (378.9 yards per game). It ranks sixth in scoring offense (27.3 points per game).
It features three running backs (brute Brandon Jacobs, versatile Derrick Ward and spunky Ahmad Bradshaw), each of whom give a defense something different to handle. It has four receivers (lanky Plaxico Burress, savvy Amani Toomer, crafty Steve Smith and tireless-worker Domenik Hixon), each of whom have double-digit numbers in catches and retain four of the top five slots in Giants receptions. Behind that wave is Sincorce Moss (a two-touchdown receiving game this season), rookie Mario Manningham and Super Bowl XLII hero David Tyree, who has been battling a hamstring injury.
Tight end Kevin Boss continues to mature, quarterback Eli Manning is steady to spectacular, and the offensive line is a cohesive, often-times dominating unit.
Add it up, and that is not your basic NFL offense.
That is an enviable offensive cache. It is an offense with a concrete identity.
There is even praise -- justifiable praise in my mind -- for the sometimes criticized offensive coordinator, Kevin Gilbride.
The Giants have a balanced offensive system and an intelligent approach. They feature a hybrid mixture of running the ball and mixing short and deep passes off those runs. Their drop-back passing game is more than adequately sophisticated.
Kevin Gilbride, their offensive coordinator, has early coaching roots in the run-and-shoot, four- and five-receiver-set, whip-it-around offense. It is part of his nature to open any offense up and win with the passing game first. Gilbride has effectively acquiesced to the Giants style, the Giants system, the Giants players.
His career signature achievement is matching wits with Bill Belichick in Super Bowl XLII and winning. With the Giants 6-1 now, Gilbride's teaching and play-calling are important Giants staples and strengths.
"This is a very proud and spirited group that believes strongly in being physical," Gilbride said. "The ability level of them able to do that has influenced us. It's something now we set out to do. We try to be a balanced-driven football team that is difficult for people to handle. Do that whether you run it or throw it. We try to keep the numbers as even as we can and balance that against the flow of the game. But when we have to throw it, we can, whether it is a two-minute scenario or playing from behind. We can be a risk-taking offense with the ability and confidence to do that."
As Giants fans, we longed for respect we didn't think we were getting even after our team won the Super Bowl.
As articles like this one indicate, we have it in droves now. Maybe even more than we want.