The New York Giants are far from a perfect team, but they are 2-0 and the positive feelings that have surrounded the team since the start of the offseason program remain. Though the Giants’ roster is young and inexperienced at many positions, they have several key leaders in every position group.
That leadership by talented players like Eli Manning, the starting defensive line (Jason Pierre-Paul, Olivier Vernon, Damon Harrison, and Johnathan Hankins), Jonathan Casillas, Justin Pugh and Weston Richburg, is a big part in the Giants’ ability to grind out close wins in the closing seconds of games. And of the potential cracks that could be forming in the Giants’ roster, well, winning cures a lot of ills. It gives them room to grow and solidify their shortcomings.
There are rumblings, however, that things aren’t so copacetic for the reigning NFC East champs.
A report by Pro Football Talk after the Washington Redskins lost to the Dallas Cowboys Sunday afternoon states that some of Washington’s offensive players are turning on quarterback Kirk Cousins. The reports, citing players who have chosen to remain anonymous, are saying that players are upset with Cousins’ "lack of decisiveness, erratic play, and confusion." It goes on to say that they would prefer that back-up QB Colt McCoy replace Cousins as starter because “at least he’d play with poise.”
Cousins was already in the news in 2016 when Washington decided to sign him the franchise tag ($19.95 million) after a great 2015 campaign. So far Cousins is rewarding their caution and failing to live up the the mantle of “Franchise Player.” While his 693 yards of passing is third in the league, his 78.5 passer rating is 27th in the league. With a 1-3 touchdown to interception ratio so far, there seems to be some merit to the anonymous complaints.
The Giants were essentially eliminated from playoff contention when they came out flat from their bye week and lost to the Redskins. If these reported cracks really exist, could the Giants turn the tables and hand Washington a morale — and potentially team fracturing — loss?