Well... That was agonizing.
Some of you may remember (well, probably not) that after week 1 I decided to make one of these after each game. Well, I was forced to miss week 2, and there wasn't any reason for angst after week 3, so here we are. This will basically be my version of Ed's "Kudos & Wet Willies". So, if you'll kindly follow me across the jump, we'll get to it.
- Kenny Philips: That one hurt. I've maintained for a while that KP is quietly one of the top all around safeties in the league. He's solid against the pass, solid in the run game, he lays the wood if you try to go across the middle, and he rarely lets the play get behind him. Watching him go down hurt. Bad. If he has to miss time, we don't have anyone who can really fill his shoes.
- Perry Fewell and the soft coverage: Okay, I realize that they don't want to get beat deep. and that if you play press-man across the board against Vick, that leaves about 30 yards of open field if he keeps the ball. BUT: When you have big, aggressive, physical press man corners like Corey Webster and Prince Amukamara why Why WHY are you playing them so far off the receivers they aren't even in the picture!? Especially against a WR like jackson, who WILL burn you if you give him a free release or space. Come on, press and jam on the outside to give the line that extra second! (you can still leave the safeties, nickle back, and linebackers in (tighter) zones)
- DL Stamina: This is a real problem. It was getting pretty obvious that the DT's were getting gassed. I know Fewell doesn't like to rotate his DL players much, but they need to do something. I saw Anvil and Bernard out there almost every play, and while Anvil is a monster, and Bernard is good as well, Anvil needs a break now and again, and Bernard is just old. I saw Kuhn out there twice, and I don't recall seeing Austin once. They NEED to get these guys some more reps.
- Offensive Play Calling: For the most part, I can't complain too much about the play calling but I do have a couple. 1) The constant attempts at deep strikes to Hixon. Can you get in a rhythm first? Please? 2) Whenever Wilson is in the game. Okay, I get it, you want to trust the kid, but don't yet. Why the hell are you then setting him up to fail? Seriously, why are you giving a guy who is obviously being spoon-fed the offense dumbass trick plays like that weird wishbone shovel pass to the space where Wilson USED to be? He's obviously deadly with the ball in his hands (more on that later), so just put a hat on a hat and let the kid play.
- Hakeem's Health: Why can't this guy stay healthy!? He probably could rival Larry Fitzgerald for #2 (some days 1) in the league if he wasn't hurt ALL the time. Even constantly dinged he's top-5.
- Commentating: I almost went to bed at the half just out of disgust at having to listen to Micheals and Collinsworth. If there's realignment in the future, I actually wish the Giants would wind up in the AFC so we don't have to listen to blowhards like them or Buck/Acheman anymore. And that pains me to say.
- David Wilson: When was the last time the Giants had a Kick Off returner like Wilson? Was it Meggett? He is electric! It really bugs the hell out of me that A) They won't just let him play B) The offense couldn't capitalize on some awesome field position.
- Tuck Is Alive! 91 showed up last night, in the running game (until the rest of the D started getting gassed) and he laid some hits on Vick ('bout broke him in half on one... I was a bit surprised that he got up)
- JPP Is Still A Monster: Seriously, it wasn't even fair at times. Controlling a blocker and grabbing McCoy with 1 hand like a child... Just WOW.
- Special Teams: For the most part ST's were great. Almost blocked 3 punts, great returns, and good coverage. The only bad parts were Weatherford's shank, and that one block in the back that brought back another 40-50yrd return by Wilson.
- Bennett: Big guy might be the best blocker, of any position, in the league, and he is FAST too.
- Wide Receivers: They missed Nicks last night, that much is obvious, but I like the mismatches they can exploit... If Nicks can ever get something like healthy, they'll be the best in the league.
- Ramses Barden: This is both how he was used (or not), and the last series. The dude makes plays. He's so good at using his frame to box out defenders that he catches pretty much anything near him, and when he doesn't he's got a great chance of drawing the flag. For the most part he got off the line well against DRC and Nnamdi, and getting open, but it took them most of a half to get him on the field. And then when they finally did, Eli/Killdrive were too intent on the deep shots to Hixon to even look at him. ...And then there was the last pass of the game. First, that pass never should have been thrown. They should have either gone for another run or run a high percentage play-action pass. Eli or Killdrive got greedy and it cost them the game... But Barden shouldn't have been that aggressive either. I'm not going to kill him for it (even though it probably means that he won't see the field again this year), because it was blatant by both sides. If it had been an eagles receiver vs a Giants DB, Collinsworth would have said it should have been a no-call.
- Osi: I know your game is aggressive pass-rushing... But what happened to the awesome discipline you showed against the Panther!? You KNOW Vick wants you to break contain, so why do it? But, really, a job well done in the running game.
- Officiating: For the most part, they were okay. A little hold-happy to start the game, but whatever (though it bugged the hell out of me when Harriman had two hands hooked inside the collar of Tucks jersey AND shell, and it went uncalled, just like the blatant facemask against Randle)... But that jackson drop shouldn't have been overturned. What ever happened to indisputable evidence? I would have been okay with them leaving it a catch if that was what the ruling on the field was... But that picture was too grainy and completely lacked the ability to perceive depth. I could argue that the tip of the ball bounced off the ground and saw it kick up dirt... And there's no way anybody could conclusively and indisputably say I was wrong, based on that film.