Are New York Giants Super Bowl Contenders in 2017?
It seems like it was not too long ago that the New York Giants won their last super bowl. After successfully handing Tom Brady and company a second super bowl loss, things have not gone so well for our heroes from New York.
Inconsistency and sub-par performances from high profile signings have contributed to the Giants having little to no success since that great moment in 2012 when they lifted the Lombardi trophy for the franchise’s 4th title in the super bowl era. Through the highs and lows the team has always relied on Eli Manning. A quiet but true leader who uses his poise to come up with clutch plays year after year. This year has been no different. The Giants have a very young core of extremely talented and explosive wide receivers. Leading the way is the controversial yet insanely gifted Odell Beckham Jr. A player who with a blink of an eye is running by the league’s top defenders after a catch and scoring spectacular touchdowns time after time. Better known for his brilliant one handed catches and sometimes distracting on or off the field behavior, he has a knack for coming up big when the game is on the line.
DEFENSE WINS CHAMPIONSHIPS
To win the super bowl you need to have a tough and energetic defensive unit. The Giants have made it very tough on opposing quarterbacks to get going. The Giants spent close to $200 million during the past offseason to get back on track after being very bad to put it nicely. Usually overspending does not translate into success but the Giants have made it work this year. Mainstays like Jason Pierre-Paul, Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie and an emerging star in Landon Collins have made it easier for the rest of the defensive unit to remain poised and confident that they can shut down opponents with regularity.
SIGNS OF BEING A CONTENDER
The Giants come off a very important win over their longtime nemesis Dallas Cowboys. The Giants defense played their hearts out the entire game. This led to a huge 4th quarter which saw them take the lead late in the game on a pass from Eli Manning to Odell Beckam Jr. If they go into the playoffs as a wild-card team they would go in knowing that they have beaten Dallas twice this year (no one else has beaten them) if they were to see them again in the playoffs. Being a wild-card team is by no means an indicator of how well a team does come playoff time and even more so the Giants whose last two Super Bowl wins were as a wild card team. Eli Manning knows how to win in any environment and has proven to be cool under pressure and there is no one in the game I would rather have at the QB position during crunch time come playoff time.
ROAD TO THE SUPER BOWL
No team in the NFL is perfect come playoff time and the Giants do have their shortcomings. Most notable is that despite having top tier offensive players they have struggled mightily at times to get going during games. They have virtually no running game which can hurt the team if all they do is rely on the passing game. You can’t struggle with your identity as a team and expect to win in January and February. But what is one of the characteristics of a champion? It’s being able to overcome your struggles and weaknesses. The Giants have the personnel and talent to do a lot of damage come playoff time. They’ve been in this position before. They are almost never considered favorites by football experts but in sports that usually doesn’t matter. The Giants are looking to surprise a lot of people and they have the talent and desire to do it. We’ve seen it before from this team and I expect to see them in Houston for Super Bowl LI.