Since most media sites release their NFL Power Rankings every Tuesday, I'll be leading off my Wednesday "Land of the Giants" posts with a sampling of how the Giants are being perceived by the MSM for the rest of the season. ESPN, Fox Sports, and CBS Sports all have the Giants ranked third in the NFL behind the Steelers and the Patriots. I liked John Clayton's quote on the ESPN Power Ranking:
"The Giants might not have a No. 1 receiver, but they seem like a No. 1 team."
- Justin Tuck was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week. Matt Mosley hit it right on the head:
"Osi Umenyiora had the flashier play with the sack and 37-yard fumble return for a touchdown, but Tuck had the better overall game."
- Ralph Vacchiano gives praise to new defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan. I thought Sheridan did a pretty good job overall, but I don't think we should get too ahead of ourselves anointing him the next in the long line of great Giants D-coordinators. Remember, Spags was awful his first two games before turning things around, and Eric Mangini was called "Mangenious" after his first season. I'd like to see more than just one good defensive performance against a below-average offense before I will be really comfortable with Sheridan.
- On a side tangent - does anyone else think the NY media is going a little overboard with the Rex Ryan/Mark Sanchez love? I actually like the Jets and root for them when they're not playing the Giants, but wasn't this the exact same stuff that was being said about Bill Parcells and Eric Mangini and Chad Pennington once upon a time? Why not wait until they play the Patriots before declaring Rex the second coming of Weeb Ewbanks and Sanchez the next Joe Namath?
Antonio Pierce tells Steve Serby why the Giants defensive line is so good. Of Osi, Tuck, and Kiwanuka he said:
"You see the arrogance from Osi, thinking that he's the best defensive end in the National Football League. You see the savvyness and the business decisions in the way Tuck handles himself to the media, just like Strahan did. And every day I'm pretty sure they get a phone call from 92, too, so that is a help."
On Mathias Kiwanuka: "He's a guy who I just can't wait for him to have just a totally breakout game. If there's anybody on our defensive line or on our team, period, that's worked harder this off-season and this spring and this training camp, it's been him. By far. Don't get no recognition because of the people he's behind -- two Pro Bowlers. But give him a chance and let him go in there and just do his thing all the time. He's a Pro Bowl player. He's an elite player. I bet any team in this league would beg to have him. Beg to have him. But I don't want to let him go."
- Finally, the NJ Star-Ledger starts looking ahead to the Giants week 2 opponent, the Cowboys (and if you haven't had this one circled on your calendars since the schedules were released a few months ago, revoke your Giants fan license and go buy yourself a shiny green Mark Sanchez jersey).