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New York Giants News & Notes: Playoff odds, offense

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  • As bleak as things might look, the Giants still have a pretty good chance of making the playoffs this year, according to NFL-forecast.com. They have a 48.7% chance of finishing 2nd in the East, which would all but guarantee them a spot in the playoffs. Nothing's a gimme in the NFL, but the Giants schedule the next three weeks is a lot easier than the Cowboys. It should also be noted that as bad as the Giants have looked for most of the past 8 weeks, they haven't lost to a team with a record worse than 8-5 all season. The 2009 Giants aren't a great team, but they've taken care of business against the teams they are supposed to take care of business against. Hopefully that won't let up against the Redskins and the Panthers.
  • Apparently Eli Manning still sees Super Bowl potential in this team. The Giants haven't done much of anything since shellacking the Raiders to suggest that there's a Super Bowl run in them, but then neither had the Cardinals last year, the Giants two years ago, or the Steelers back in 2006. The NFL is a funny league, and a truly dominant regular season team hasn't won the Super Bowl since the 2004 Patriots won their second in a row. I'm not ready to write this team off until the nail is officially in the coffin.
  • There's been a lot of talk about how bad the defense has been, but the Giants offense has actually been very good lately. Take away the Denver game and they're averaging just about 28 points a game. Even with the Broncos game they're on pace for their third highest scoring season ever. Whoever you choose to blame for this mess, don't put it on Eli Manning - at the end of this season he will have led 3 of the 4 highest scoring offenses in franchise history. With the talented group of young receivers he has around him, this offense should be very good for a long time. Now it's up to Jerry Reese to sort out the defense.
  • Steve Serby takes the Giants defense to task for the "brainlock" they exhibited on the near interception/fumble that was blown dead. I argued after the game that it was a tough play for Boley to make (a near shoe-string INT on a ball that was knocked out of McNabb's hands), and I stand by that. You can't get on a guy too much for not making what would have been a fantastic play. That said, I agree with Serby that there's no excuse for nobody on the Giants defense (or the Eagles offense, for that matter) to not at least try to jump on the ball.
  • The NY Times Fifth Down blog remembers happier days, as it continues its countdown of the top 10 Giants moments at Giants Stadium with Jim Burt's crushing blow on Joe Montana and the Giants blowout victory over the 49ers in the 1986 playoffs.
  • Finally, this isn't Giants related but it is about our upcoming opponent and is hilarious, so I felt I had to share. Apparently Antwaan Randle El hasn't been doing a very good job returning punts, so some Redskins legends have been calling him out, including Joe Theismann with one of the best jabs I've heard in a long time: "He averages 3.9 yards a punt return. I will say this in all humility: I could do that. OK? As a matter of fact, I have done it. And I've done it better. I catch the football." Remember, this is a 60-year-old former quarterback who hasn't played football since LT snapped his knee in half 25 years ago. Gotta love the Redskins.