Big Blue Freefall: Giant Mistakes Lead to 29-10 Loss to Titans

EAST RUTHERFORD NJ - SEPTEMBER 26: Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants throws an interception in the endzone while being sacked by Cortland Finnegan #31 of the Tennessee Titans in the first quarter at New Meadowlands Stadium on September 26 2010 in East Rutherford New Jersey. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

In losing to the Titans 29-10 today at Giants Stadium, the Giants played like a team trying to get discharged from the military. There can be no other excuse for a team repeatedly shooting itself in the foot, and right now there seems to be no way to stop the bleeding.

On the Giants very first possession, the offense continued to have problems catching passes. Hakeem Nicks let a ball go right through his hands, and was picked off by Sen'Derrick Marks. The pick led to a 48 yard field goal from Rod Bironas.

After the field goal, the Giants drove the length of the field, but once again turned the ball over when Eli Manning made an ill-conceived left handed throw into the end zone that was tipped and intercepted by Jason McCourty.

Chris Johnson, who the Giants defense did a pretty good job of containing most of the game, scored on a one yard run to put the Titans up 10-0 in the second, capping off a ten play drive that saw more poor tackling from a defense that has not tackled well in what seems to be a very long time.

The Giants got on the board on the next drive, with Lawrence Tynes connecting from 50 yards. Tynes had missed earlier from 53.

After forcing the Titans to punt on the next series, Eli Manning drove the Giants 63 yards to tie the game at the half, with Ahmad Bradshaw tying the game with a ten yard run.

Things unraveled quickly for the Giants in the third quarter. After a Titans punt pinned the Giants at the one, Ahmad Bradshaw committed a questionable chop-block penalty that led to a Titans safety. After the free kick, Tennessee drove down the field for a touchdown, with Bayonne native and Rutgers alum Kenny Britt making a leaping catch for a touchdown giving the Titans a 19-10 lead.

Manning quickly drove the Giants right back downfield, only to be undone again by Bradshaw, who fumbled the ball away at the Titans five yard line.

More of the same on the ensuing drive from the Giants offense, beautifully driving downfield, and coming apart at the seams when they got close to the end zone. After the drive stalled, the Giants had an inexcusable delay of game penalty on the first field goal attempt, quite possibly the first I've ever seen. The penalty served to ice their own kicker, as Tynes missed his second FG of the game, this one from 43 yards. To make matters worse, Kareem McKenzie took a stupid personal foul penalty on the play, which helped the Titans drive for another field goal giving them a twelve point lead.

McKenzie's day was hardly done, as he short-circuited the Giants next drive by taking yet another personal foul penalty that left the Giants with a 3rd and 25 they couldn't recover from. The second penalty led to McKenzie being yanked off the field by coach Tom Coughlin.

The Titans would add a late touchdown to the misery, as the Giants defense could only contain Johnson for so long, and he was able to break a couple of runs to put the final nail in Big Blue's coffin.

After a feel good start in the inaugural regular season game at the New Giants Stadium, two weeks later the Giants are a team at an obvious crossroads, and if Coughlin can’t get them straightened out and fast, he will undoubtedly pay the price. As the late Wellington Mara used to say, “empty seats speak volumes”, and at the conclusion of today’s game, the abundance of gray seats had plenty to say.

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