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New York Giants Notes: Telling It Like It Is Edition

Greetings fellow Giants fans, and welcome to the Friday before your weekend with three weeks to go before the start of the regular season. Man, it feels good to write that. Anyway, I'm here to share with you a few articles I came across this morning that I found particularly interesting. The first is from Athlon sports, and it's painfully accurate when describing the Coughlin-era Giants.....

New York Giants 2011 NFL Team Preview |
The Giants are essentially what they’ve been for most of the Coughlin era — a flawed team that can be dangerous if it gets hot at the right time. They have big problems on special teams, some questions in the middle of their defense and lots of potential injury issues on offense. But when the Giants have a full roster and they’re clicking, they’re as explosive as any team in the NFL.

That's just it. I don't know about you guys, but the last couple of seasons I've been on pins and needles watching this team play, waiting for them to implode but knowing they can just as easily explode for a lot of points. The bottom line is they are always competitive under TC with a chance to win, and I'll still take that every year.

Giants' defense must back it up - NFL Nation Blog - ESPN
"We know our offense is kind of struggling right now with some of the departures," cornerback Terrell Thomas said last week. "But we're already saying, if we've got to be the Ravens of '01 when they won the Super Bowl and just have to shut teams out, that's what we're going to do." That's pretty big talk from a defense as inconsistent as the Giants' D has been lately. As good as it looked at times last year, sacking Jay Cutler nine times in the first half in a home game against the Bears, for example, it could also play badly enough to give up 28 points in the fourth quarter to Michael Vick, DeSean Jackson and the Eagles. The Giants' problem on defense the past couple of years has been an inability to consistently be as good as they keep telling us they are.

This pretty much says the same thing the Athlon Sports preview does.

New York Giants training camp: Team needs more from TE Travis Beckum - NFL - Sporting News
The Giants are asking third-year TE Travis Beckum to take a quantum leap forward this season with the free agency loss of Kevin Boss to the Raiders. Beckum was drafted because of his pass-catching ability and was supposed to develop into an H-back able to get downfield and work out of the slot as a dangerous receiver. He has been slow to come around, hampered by nagging injuries and an inability to pick up the complexities of the offense, but he does have physical tools.

I know many of you BBVers feel this way, too. So do many folks around here in Madison, especially when you see a framed photo of Beckum in Badgers' gear at Trader Joe's--I kid you not.

While the Yankees remain a huge New York story, it's the NFL that is really making this city buzz
Football feels bigger around here than baseball, and not just because Rex Ryan is so big these days, in all ways, even making a big throw of his headset because of too many men on the field in the first preseason game.

Another interesting piece that brings up an compelling argument, one that might be better left for a separate post--are the Giants bigger than the Yankees in the tri-state area?

New York Giants: Greg Jones catches Tom Coughlin's eye - NFL - Sporting News
Competition for final roster spots at linebacker will be hot and heavy, with several youngsters in the mix. One rookie helping himself is Greg Jones, a sixth-round draft pick from Michigan State. Jones (6-foot, 242) was a playmaker at MLB for the Spartans but was deemed a bit too small to be much of an impact player in the NFL. So far, the Giants like the way Jones pursues and flows to the ball. He drew favorable reviews from Tom Coughlin after his preseason debut and has also been active on special teams, which will ultimately be his ticket to a spot on the roster.

Yeah, um. Yeah.

Chicago Bears' Jay Cutler hopes to avoid another New York Giants' beatdown - ESPN Chicago
Sacked on nearly 50 percent of his dropbacks in last year's game, Cutler didn't appear to be overly concerned Tuesday about facing a Giants defense that churned out a grand total of 10 sacks in that Oct. 3 outing, which ranks as the most in one game by a Bears opponent since the statistic became official 29 years ago.

Looking back on this game feels good--it was one of the positive turning points of the 2010 season; when the Giants nearly forced a fourth-string emergency quarterback into action.

Have a great weekend, everyone. I'm already thinking about the barbecued ribs I'm going to make for my Grub for Guys column, and my mouth is watering. It must be football season.