So, let's get right to it. How are you feeling now about the New York Giants chance of making the NFL playoffs? If I had to guess, I'd say not too good.
I have been asking that question every week lately. When I asked last week 72% of you who voted thought they would.
As of today, following Sunday night's disappointing loss to Philadelphia, Cool Standings gives the Giants just a 25.7 percent chance at making the post-season for a fifth straight season.
I am venturing a guess that this week's poll comes in somewhere in between those two numbers.
As of last night, more than 80 percent of you who had voted in the 'should Bill Sheridan be fired immediately?" poll said 'yes." Well, by now we all know that head coach Tom Coughlin disagrees.
Coughlin said he was "disappointed with the results," but had not given any thought to removing Sheridan.
Instead, as has been Coughlin's MO throughout his Giants' tenure, he put the onus on the players.
"I thought we had a winning performance on offense but not a winning performance on defense and not a winning performance on special teams," Coughlin said. "Our pressure wasn’t very good yesterday – whether we were four, five or six-man rushes, really – there was really no way to say that the pressure had any degree of success no matter how many you brought yesterday."
Coughlin was also peppered with questions about the long touchdown pass to DeSean Jackson. He was asked specifically if Michael Johnson was out of position on the play. He made no effort to cover for Johnson, who was supposed to be in two-deep coverage with Aaron Ross but was nowhere to be found.
"Why in the world we are stuck on this backup tight end coming out at us instead of the knowledge of where this guy is. He is the one guy that can hurt you wherever he is on the field. That’s a good question," Coughlin said. "He was so concerned with the receiver releasing in front of him, the tight end in front of him, that he really didn’t have an awareness."
For now, I am with Coughlin on this one. Players have to understand their responsibilities, and carry them out. They have to understand which players can hurt them, and react accordingly.
That said, if the season ended today there is no doubt in my mind Sheridan would have to be looking for a new job. He has three weeks to change that. Off what I have seen for 13 weeks, I don't have much confidence he can.
Eli Manning knows the Giants are chasing Dallas (8-5) for the final playoff spot. He also knows they can't worry about the Cowboys.
"All we can do is worry about ourselves though. You can’t get into, you know, we need some help, but we’ve got to handle our business. We’ve got to win all three games. That is what our focus is, our focus is this week, right now, on Washington. We’ve got a big game. They are playing well. We’ve got to go into their place and find a way to get a win."
Kareem McKenzie, who has a sprained medial collateral, is likely out for at least two weeks.
(E-mail Ed at email@example.com)