New York Giants News and Notes: Trying to Hang On Edition

Good morning fellow Giants fans. As we do every Wednesday, it's time to look back on last weekend's game--in this case a stunning come-from-behind win in Dallas, and look ahead to this Sunday's game--another must-win contest against Washington. But this week has a different feel. The desperation is not palpable. The Giants still control their own fate, but as opposed to last week at this time, they now have the division lead and will try to hang on to it for three weeks. And let's not forget, even though it feels like a lifetime ago, the Giants lost to the Redskins 28-14 on opening day, and Rex Grossman is still capable of picking apart a highly vulnerable secondary. Let's see what else is floating around on the Big Blue web:

First of all, congratulations to Jason Pierre-Paul, who was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week on Tuesday for his dominant performance on Sunday against the Cowboys. JPP, we salute you and are thankful that you wear a blue uniform.

Credit H.S. coach for unleashing Giants' Pierre-Paul - NYPOST.com
If you cannot block Jason Pierre-Paul, cannot keep him from laying out your quarterback, blame Manny Martin. If you cannot believe what you are seeing with Jason Pierre-Paul, cannot comprehend how this driven athletic marvel has soared for the Giants like some wide-winged bird of prey, thank Manny Martin. There was a time when Pierre-Paul was a teenage basketball player infatuated with dunking and highly skeptical of those guys outside on the field wearing helmets and shoulder pads. Someone had to convince this son of Haitian parents that if he switched sports he could one day line his pockets with riches beyond his imagination.

We thank you, Mister Martin.

NY Giants have lived dangerously all season, and it may come back to haunt them - NY Daily News
Now, with the Giants’ entire season on the line in the final three weeks, Big Blue has to be careful not to get worn down by all the stress. How could it not be taking a toll? In 10 of the Giants’ 13 games, the outcome was undecided with two minutes remaining. In seven of those games, the losing team was within a touchdown and had the ball in its hands with a legitimate shot to score. Eight times this season the Giants trailed in the fourth quarter, and five times, thanks to their Comeback Quarterback, Eli Manning, they’ve rallied to win . And he nearly pulled off fourth-quarter miracles against the Seahawks, 49ers and Packers, too.

You know, I don't agree with this. We all would love a blowout win at some point, but winning tight games is not only thrilling, it also in theory should prepare you mentally for playoff football.

Giants' Victor Cruz becomes household name as he nears single-season receiving record | NJ.com
The idea of anyone stealing any of Cruz’s moves just a few months ago was ludicrous. As he put it Tuesday, he was "basically a nobody" before catching two touchdowns in the Week 3 victory over the Eagles. Now, he sees it as the highest of compliments when Bryant imitates him and the Cowboys stack two defenders on him at the line to limit his lateral movement on releases. Cruz has earned such attention. He’s now only 194 yards away from becoming the Giants’ new single-season receiving leader (overtaking Amani Toomer at 1,343) and has joined Hakeem Nicks (1,023 yards) as the only duo in the 87-season history of the Giants to each record 1,000 yards or more in the same season.

Both the NY Giants and NY Jets say destiny is calling their number - NY Daily News
The Jets and Giants have played only one game against each other when it was crucial to both teams. It was the summer of 1969, a few months after the Jets had shocked the Colts in Super Bowl III. Even though the Giants were in the midst of an 18-season stretch of not making the playoffs, the Jets were not considered champions of New York until they beat the Giants, 37-14, in the Yale Bowl in the first-ever meeting for bragging rights. There may never be a Subway Super Bowl, so the Giants-Jets game on Dec. 24 may be the closest it ever comes to happening. It could be the most important Giants-Jets game since 1969.

This will surely make for some interesting holiday gatherings in the greater New York area.

Dallas Cowboys', New York Giants' inconsistency showing in division race - Don Banks - SI.com
The trickier part is that Philadelphia would still need further help, with the Cowboys losing at least one more game (either this week at Tampa Bay or at the Giants in Week 17) and the Giants dropping two of their last three games to create an entirely fitting three-way tie at 8-8. The one caveat is this: If both the Cowboys and Giants win this week and get to 8-6 (and New York is home against 4-9 Washington), the Eagles are eliminated because with Dallas and New York meeting in Week 17, one of those teams is then guaranteed of finishing at least 9-7 and beating out Philadelphia.

I posted this Don Banks article for one reason--to show that, remarkably, the Eagles are still alive. And I want to see them out of it almost as much as I want to see the Giants in it.

Jerry Jones backs his head coach Jason Garrett - NFL - Yahoo! Sports
Jerry Jones has no plans to axe Jason Garrett at the end of the season. The Dallas Cowboys owner, speaking on his weekly radio show today on KRLD-FM, said it’s not even an issue for the Cowboys. Garrett was named the interim head coach last season after Wade Phillips was ousted and Dallas is 7-6 and tied with the New York Giants atop the NFC East record-wise after losing to them Sunday night. Five the Cowboys’ six losses have come after they led in the fourth quarter.

Hey Jerry, would you be willing to take a polygraph test?

Happy hump day everyone!

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