I wanted to start this week's News and Notes off with a note of my own: the fact that Peyton Manning and Eli Manning are currently ranked first and second in the league in passer rating. Both players are turning in MVP caliber campaigns for undefeated teams. Without doing any research, I feel pretty comfortable saying that this is the best simultaneous performance by a pair of brothers in NFL history, and quite possibly in the history of professional sports.*(a little more on this after the jump)
Eli is easily having the best season of his career, and if anyone doubts that he's one of the top QB's in the league, they're just not paying attention. Eli's got a 10 to 2 TD/INT ratio, which is better than everyone but Kyle Orton and Aaron Rodgers, who each only have 1 pick but also only 7 and 6 TDs respectively. He's just behind Peyton in yards per attempt, bolstered by his league leading 21 completions over 20 yards, not to mention his 5 completions of 40+ yards (tied with Peyton and two others for second in the league). I've heard the argument that Eli's just a "bus driver" for a team with a great defense and run game, but watching the games and looking at the stats both tell a different argument. I'm as big a Phil Simms fan as any blonde haired kid could have ever been, but I feel pretty confident that we're currently watching the greatest QB in Giants history coming into his prime. Enjoy it.
Injuries Not Slowing Down the Giants
Len Pasquerelli of ESPN.com has a nice piece about the level at which the Giants have been playing recently. He believes the Giants are one of the top contenders for Super Bowl XLIV and credits the stability at the top of the organization as one of the key pieces:
In a league where the overall quality is diluted by franchises such as Oakland, and where the fates of some clubs rely on the performance of their most conspicuous players, stability and steadfastness are critical attributes. The Giants have plenty of both. It doesn't hurt that the Mara family name has been on the letterhead since the franchise's inception, or that Coughlin is one of only eight NFL head coaches who had five full seasons or more of continued employment with the same franchise entering this season. The stability of the franchise has engendered an even-keeled culture that doesn't require a roster full of big names to succeed.
I've harped on this before, but living in DC and coming off a week where the Giants played the Raiders, I've seen first hand what a bad ownership situation can do to a team. The Mara's and Tisches are amongst the best in the business, and the fact that you so rarely see their names in the news is proof of that.
David Carr Making the Most of his Opportunities
Joe Laponte of the New York Times catches up with David Carr after his solid performance against the Raiders. I know there were some doubts about Carr during the preseason, but I like what he brings to the table with his ability to make some things happen with his feet as well as his arm. If, God forbid, Eli should be unable to go for a game or two, I have confidence that Carr can keep the Giants competitive.
* I did a very cursory search of famous athlete brothers, and I found 3 cases of brothers finishing in the top 10 of MVP voting in the same year, all in MLB: Felipe and Matty Alou in 1966 (5th and 9th, respectively); the Dean brothers in 1934 (Dizzy won, Paul finished 9th); and the Waner brothers in 1927 (Paul won, Lloyd finished 6th). Dom DiMagio finished in 9th in 1946, which amazingly was the only season Joe DiMaggio missed the top 10 from 1936-1948 (minus the war years). If I missed anyone, let me know in the comments.