I'll be the first to admit that after watching the Colts absolutely maul this Giants team, I was jumping off the cliff. My exact thoughts were: getting ready for the draft....coaching change...watching the Jets paint themselves as the new annointed of New York (ugh).
I mean, think back. We got thrashed. A rookie WR scored against our secondary, Peyton carved up our defense, Freeney and Mathis set up camp in the backfield as our tackles could not even get in the way, Bradshaw was trying to create his own running lanes unsuccessfully; all against a rush defense that allowed the Houston Texans, of all teams, over 200 yards on the ground (of course, we now know that Arian Foster is one of the best RBs this year and is currently leading the league in rush yards). That being said, though; plain and simple, it was ugly.
But I am thinking now that the Giants learned from that beat down. They've shown us time and time again their resiliency; I'm sure they reviewed tapes of that game. Osi Umenyiora looked good before but it seems like he may have seen what Freeney and Mathis did to our guys and is now back to that Pro Bowl form. Now, I don't know if it was the coaches who took it apart, or the players, who realized that the beat down they received was the same type of play THEY were capable of inflicting on opponents. Who knows? All I know is that right now, this Giants team is a very different team from who they were two games in. It's cool to see all this happen. They're different. It feels like 2008. And that's a refreshing feeling.
Tuck did say a bit ago that he was starting to see similarities between this defense and the one that held the league's most prolific scoring offense ever to a mere 14 points in the Superbowl in 2008.
I wasn't sure how to take that.
The reason being is that Tuck said some things about hunger last year that just weren't a part of the overall Giants defense's vocabulary. He spoke it and it didn't show on game day. Perhaps now we're seeing the defense being what it should've been all along.
I did think coming in to this year that Perry Fewell was more qualified, prepared, and a better fit than
Bill Sheridan whatshisname was from last year. Then again, so is our family's Brobee jack-o-lantern sitting lit outside right now. We're seeing the opportunistic defense come through from his Buffalo days but this defense is a whole lot better than the product Buffalo put on the field. The best Buffalo's defense ranked last year was 15th. They thrived on turnovers. We're considered #2 in the league right now based on yards. With those stats in perspective, I can't put my finger solely on the coordinator.
I think we can safely assume that any one of our defensive linemen, no matter where they are in the rotation, inside or outside, would be starters on any other NFL team. That would put some of the credit on Jerry Reese, as well. The guys are talented so, of course, you gotta put some of the credit on the players. Overall, it's exciting to think what could become of this year, provided our guys stay healthy.
My point is this: just as the Giants found motivation in playing hard and barely losing in New York on Week 17 in 2008 to an undefeated Patriots team, they also seem to have found that same motivation in an embarrassing loss in Indianapolis on Week 2 in 2010 to a not-so-undefeated Colts team.
If that's what it takes, then, so be it.