The Nw York Giants' goal for the 2013 NFL season is to become the first team to play in -- and win -- the Super Bowl in its home stadium. The Giants first have to reach the playoffs, which they failed to do a season ago. Yahoo! Sports Shutdown Corner believes the Giants have what it takes to do that.
From 'Shutdown Corner,' here are the best- and worst-case scenarios for the Giants in 2013:
This team’s best-case scenario for the 2013 season: This team is still very talented. The Giants may have won just three times in the final half of the season, but they were all blowouts, and the Packers game in particular showed that at their best, the Giants can compete with anyone. It shouldn't surprise anyone if the Giants win the NFC East and make another playoff run.
And here’s the nightmare scenario: It was troubling to see the offense struggle during some games last year, including four games with 16 or fewer points during the second-half swoon. A shutout against Atlanta, which wasn't known for its defense, was startling. If the offense can't find consistency – which probably means the line slips a bit, Wilson and Brown make mistakes in the running game and Nicks doesn't stay healthy – then the NFC East is tough enough to once again push the Giants out of the playoffs.
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Ralph Vacchiano of the Daily News has a terrific take on defensive end Justin Tuck as he tries to revive his career after two poor seasons. Here is part of it:
Tuck, now at the old NFL age of 30, has said all the right things since last season ended about his renewed focus and commitment, his determination to prove he’s a better player, his dissatisfaction with his play in recent years. But as the Giants like to say, talk is cheap. The real game for him begins on Friday when Giants training camp opens.
Without a revived Tuck there would be a personal cost as well, since he’s entering the final season of the five-year, $30 million contract extension he signed in 2008. It was once unthinkable that the Giants would let Tuck, one of their most popular stars, inch so close to unrestricted free agency. Now, based on his recent play, it’s hard to see them offering any kind of long-term deal.
So in other words, there’s not much riding on Tuck’s shoulders this summer: only the Giants’ defense, possibly their season and maybe his NFL career.
Jason Pierre-Paul is ranked No. 13 on Mel Kiper's list of the top 25 NFL players under 25 years of age. ...
Sports Illustrated ranked the 12 best backup quarterbacks in the league. Sorry, Giants' fans, David Carr did not make the list. ...
The Baltimore Ravens "still have some interest" in bringing back All-Pro fullback Vonta Leach, who they cut in a salary cap move during the off-season. ...
Former Giants defensive tackle Rocky Bernard, still unsigned as training camps begin, visited with the Detroit Lions on Wednesday. ...
Veteran defensive end John Abraham, sometimes mentioned as a potential fit for the Giants, visited the Arizona Cardinals on Wednesday.