Good morning, New York Giants fans! We begin the day after the Giants fell to 3-4 with a second straight loss to an NFC East team by noting that a number of other media analysts agree with my position that what the Giants proved over the past two weeks is that they just aren't good enough.
Let's look at some of those opinions as we talk our look around the Inter-Google.
We begin with Steve Serby of the New York Post:
A real team, a true contender, refuses to let the Cowboys bully them from pillar to post and leaves Eli Manning a helpless spectator on the sidelines. A real team, a true contender, shows up fighting mad with the chance to atone for the sins of the previous week and change the narrative of its season. A real team, a true contender, punches back after it gets punched in the mouth.
They might as well kiss the division goodbye now. It will belong either to the 6-1 Cowboys or 5-1 Eagles.
The 3-4 Giants, if they somehow survive their next three games against Andrew Luck, the Seahawks and their 12th Man and the 49ers, can try to scramble for a wild-card berth, and good luck with that.
But they head into the bye looking nothing like a playoff team.
To those of us who stand on the outside and evaluate these teams against one another, it's clear that these Giants are not that good. They're not a terrible team, as they were this time last year, but they're not a contender either. They are a rebuilding team and clearly have been since they changed up the offense and blew out the free-agent budget in the offseason, signing more free agents than any other team.
And while the remainder of this year is likely to feature periods of encouraging progress, right now the Giants just don't have enough good players to hang with the top teams in the league.
NOTE: Yours truly is also one who stands on the outside and evaluates and as I indicated Sunday night the Giants simply don't have the players to compete with the big boys.
What we learned: First of all, the Giants aren’t nearly as bad as they looked in their 27-0 blowout loss to Philadelphia. That said, they still have obvious problems in some key areas – like the offensive line that had a series of ill-timed penalties and was pretty terrible in run blocking all game long. And their defense is now dangerously thin. They’re only getting about half a game out of CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (hip/ankle/back) and now they’ve lost DT Cullen Jenkins (thigh) and LB Jon Beason (toe). Maybe they’ll all be back at full strength after the bye, but without them – Beason and Jenkins were hurt early – the Giants’ defense was lucky not to give up a lot more points, because they barely provided much resistance at all – especially in the second half. The best way to sum it up, really, is this: The Giants are a mediocre team and now they’re starting to get dangerously thin.
Instead of sending a message to the Eagles and Cowboys that they plan to stick around in the division race, a wakeup call was sent to them: They are just not good enough.
That's the undeniable conclusion after Eagles 27, Giants 0 last week in Philly was followed by Cowboys 31, Giants 21, on Sunday at AT&T Stadium.
For the second straight week, the Giants found out the troubling reality about an NFC East that is quickly slipping out of their reach before the first half of the season is over.
The competition is better.
It was hard to reach any other conclusion last week, when the Eagles shut them out in Philadelphia, and if that wasn't proof enough, this 31-21 loss to the Cowboys could serve as confirmation. The Giants didn't play all that bad here, other that a pair of devastating fourth-quarter fumbles that left tight end Larry Donnell crying on the bench.
Still: The Cowboys just had another gear.
Tight end Larry Donnell fumbled twice Sunday. He knows the first one pretty much sealed the Giants' fate, as 'Raptor' indicated Sunday night:
"I was trying to just get a couple more yards and he made a good play, put his hat on me, I was just trying to fight for extra yards and didn’t cover the ball like I need to,’’ Donnell said. "It’s terrible. Especially when we have a chance to go down the field and tie the game up. Get some momentum and that happens. I got to do better on my part.’’
Cornerback Prince Amukamara fought valiantly, if unsuccessfully, against Dez Bryant (9 catches, 151 yards) on Sunday night. He found it hard to believe Dallas quarterback Tony Romo did not have an incomplete pass in the second half, going 9-for-9.
"No [bleeping] way. I didn't know that," cornerback Prince Amukamara said. "Heck, yeah [it's frustrating]. It's definitely taking a shot at our DBs as a whole. Definitely take it personally. You can't let a quarterback do that."
Cowboys tight end coach Mike Pope was singled out before a herd of media infiltrated the home locker room at AT&T Stadium.
A long-time Giants assistant who was not retained after the 2013 season, Pope was given a game ball after beating his old team.