More observations

1) Papa and Banks reviewed the Dallas win with a 23 minute recap. Good stuff.

2) Vaccaro has a nice piece on how Manningham got to the place he is currently in. He mentions the Wonderlicht score; concerns about MM’s ability to learn the offense were there. What Vaccaro did not mention was how Manningham got hurt in training camp in 2008. That is a big setback for ANY rookie. They need to get up that learning curve. But for Manningham, it was a death spiral. He spent the rest of the year trying to play catchup, never learning the offense.

It wasn’t until the offseason that he had the opportunity to make progress- he needed TIME. Our first BIG clue was given by Gilbride, which was passed along on June 19th at Ultimatenyg. We saw in preseason how he was being coached on the field by Manning in where he needed to put his body. But just as importantly, we saw in preseason that beautiful separation he seemingly gets on EVERY play. Manningham’s ascendency to the X receiver will not be without some ‘growing pains.’ But the way this NY Giants blogger sees it- THE MORE HE PLAYS THE BETTER HE GETS. By the end of the season he will be much improved. And wait until he has another camp- I’ll go on record and say that as long as Mario Manningham is not injured, he will be a tremendous WR in 2010.

3) “THINK“- As Manningham plays more, he will be thinking less.. that is when it will get scary, because he just went for 150 yards and was actually thinking out there. Thinking takes time. Not sure who said it (Simms?), but the paraphrased quote is that in the NFL, you want (defensive) players to think because that slows them down before they can actually make the play. For offensive players like MM, you need their moves to be automatic. This game is not yet automatic for Mario Manningham. When his game becomes automatic, lights out, he’ll get even more open than now because he’ll be making the right reads.

4) What is good for Manningham should be good for Corey Webster (and the other CBs) too. Practice makes perfect.

5) It is nice to see Vacchiano talk so candidly about some items. Vacchiano is an example of a beat reporter who has a lot of things to say but holds back because he needs to appear unbiased and get his access. This was caught late yesterday and belatedly linked it to the Tuesday remarks on Phillips, which were similar in vain.

6) I concede. How many of you out there in football land saw the Dolphins vs the Colts on Monday night? I saw the end of the game, and my estimation of Tony Sparano just went down a peg, maybe two pegs. Here is the setup:

MIA has the ball and is driving, 3rd and 6 from the IND 30 (4:33 to go), score tied. What do you do?

To say the Dolphins ran was not correct. It was more like a dive to CONCEDE the end of the possession so that they could get a few yards extra to make the FG more manageable. WRONG WRONG WRONG. As soon as they did that, I was going nuts. If the Giants did this, you can bet your sweet buns that Nature and I would have been throwing a hissy. It is tantamount to Fassel kicking the FG on 3rd down. But there were 4:33 to go, an eternity for Peyton Manning. And what about that Herm (un)Edwards line- YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME. How about trying to actually get the FIRST DOWN???! What a radical concept. How about still trying to score SEVEN on that drive. Pathetic. They kick the FG, which incidentally would have easily been good from another 5-10 yards, having hit the back net. Peyton dissects the Dolphins (and Gibril Wilson, who got roasted multiple times) and scores 7 in a heartbeat, so amazingly the Dolphins actually have time to put a drive together, but clock management was abysmal and the Dolphins lost. The replays of the game all focused on the clock management, but the Dolphins sin was on the previous possesion when they conceded.

22 Responses to “More observations”

  1. Mitch Says:

    WFAN just reported that Justin Tuck has a partially torn labrum.

    No details….

  2. Pastime Princess Says:

    I have one fear about Mario. If Hixon is healthy, he will start. I have not faith in TC or Killdrive to keep the best guy on the field.

    This does not sound good. He is the best player on the team.

  3. Pastime Princess Says:

    Peter King Agrees with You

  4. Mitch Says:


    I agree with you about Killdrive. I've said before that Hixon should be the return man. He will be more valuable there, and then with 4 wide he can line up.

    I'm hoping Tuck won't miss too much time. It is not necessarily a surgical procedure. I don't know if this is something he can play with or if he will risk further damage. I remember when LT was fitted with a shoulder harness and played that amazing game against the Saints.

  5. Pastime Princess Says:

    Agree 100% about Hixon and returns.

    Got this from the Daily News

    Defensive end Justin Tuck could miss this week's game in Tampa Bay with a partially torn labrum in his left shoulder, according to someone familiar with his situation. Even if he skips the game against the Buccaneers, Tuck is not expected to be out much longer than that.

    Tuck got hurt on Sunday night when he was illegally tripped by Cowboys LT Flozell Adams. The Giants have not revealed details of the injury. However, the source said the damage to his shoulder is not considered serious. The recovery time is expected to be about two weeks.

    Tuck might be able to play through the injury while he recovers, although it's not clear whether he'll even try since it's possible that it could get worse.

    The injury is also apparently an old injury – or at least a recurrence of one Tuck suffered in college. He missed two weeks of spring practice at Notre Dame in 2003 with an injury to the same shoulder. He reinjured it later that year during his junior season, according to reports.

    It's worth noting that Tuck didn't miss a game during that season, and had a school-record 13-1/2 sacks, including a 3-1/2-sack performance in the second-to-last game of the season at Stanford. So he's got a history of playing through injuries such as this one.

  6. Andy F. Says:

    pastime- thanks for that link to King. My apologies to King, you'll have to take it on my word that I did not see his words until Pastime gave the heads up. I am linking to the article now. Thanks for being my eyes and ears, guys, on this and things like Tuck, cannot do it all, not on what they pay me!

  7. Oxbay Says:

    I love Justin Tuck. Here's my problem with how the team uses him. It looks to me he has put on weight ever since the Super Bowl when he was used an extraordinary amount of time at the tackle position. He put the weight on because of the many times he's being asked to rush from an interior position. I think this extra weight has diminished hes effectiveness. He's so good he still makes many plays and effects the outcome of the game. I think he would be better if he lost the weight and relied on speed agility and quickness.

  8. Raymond Sultan Says:

    Andy and everyone else, do you guys read Gregg Easterbrook's Tuesday Morning Quarterback column on I ask because of your comment on Sparano's concession of the Monday night game via the meek dive-and-FG sequence. Easterbrook is a VERY sharp observer and analyst of football, one whose sensibilities in regards to strategy and to the deployment of resources are very much in line with those of this community, and every week he points to "fraidy-cat" punts and FG attempts as the moments when still-ambiguous outcomes of games swing decisively against the coach who's decided not to play for the win.
    Re: Tuck, this is very, very bad news. The Bucs are bad, but you know what? They can run the ball–Derrick Ward!–and given time, Byron Leftwich is an above-average NFL quarterback. Without Tuck, this weekend's game goes from a gimme to a trap.

  9. Pastime Princess Says:

    I used to read him all the time but have not in recent years. I have completely forgotten about him till you just mentioned him. I used to read him all the time because he was LOL funny and I mean I really did LOL.
    I remember he used to refer to the NY Times as the paper "All the news that might be true" in reference to that reported that got caught making up stories.

  10. Raymond Sultan Says:

    You really should go back to reading him. He's one of the very few people writing for the big sites right now who does more than just crank out dull, repetitive, uninformative puff pieces. (The other person who comes to mind as this kind of writer is Paul Zimmerman, Sports Illustrated's Dr. Z, who is recovering from a pair of strokes and is still unable to resume working.) I learn a lot every week by reading TMQ.

  11. Pastime Princess Says:

    I like Zimm also but I disagree with him most of the time. He is also before my time so lots of his references are lost on me.

  12. Raymond Sultan Says:

    Yeah, I mean, I'm 27, so I anything before Tecmo Super Bowl doesn't resonate that strongly with me. But there's something about his technical approach to the game–his emphasis on the intricacies of line play, rather than the mainstream adoration of the quote-unquote skill positions–that I've always found very satisfying to read. It's more his approach than his specific opinions that I think makes him a valuable writer.

  13. Pastime Princess Says:

    Just read this.

    A poll was taken before the draft and 26 of the 28 general managers in the NFL announced that they would draft LT if they had the first overall pick. However, the New Orleans Saints, who had the first pick, were one of the two teams not interested in Taylor.

  14. Raymond Sultan Says:

    Is that old-school Dr. Z? Did he agree with the decision not to draft LT: is that why you posted that quote?

  15. Pastime Princess Says:

    Had nothing to do with Dr. Z. I did not know just how lucky we where to have gotten LT that year. Maybe Andy can correct my math but we had a 1 in 14 shot of getting LT.

    Dr. Z. was famous for some sort of quote when LT was drafted. I believe he either didn't like LT to go that high or thought the Saints did a good job of selecting Rogers ahead of him. If someone remembers what he said and even better can find the video of it please post it. I tried to find it but couldn’t.

  16. Pastime Princess Says:

    Interesting Stat

    Stats of the Week No. 10: On Monday night Miami rushed for 239 yards, had a 3-1 time of possession advantage, committed only one turnover, and lost.

  17. Mitch Says:


    Here is an excerpt from an article in SI August of 1981

    It is Bum Phillips explaining why he chose Rogers instead of LT.

    To be sure, asking a running back to turn around a team that was so bad its fans took to wearing paper bags over their heads to keep from being recognized may be akin to using a chain link fence to keep out the ocean. Especially when the team gave up 30 points per game—"29th out of the 28 teams, I think," says one Saint official. For that reason, many fans as well as several of the Saints' coaches and scouts wanted the team to draft North Carolina Linebacker Lawrence Taylor. Not Phillips. He knew what Campbell had done for the Oilers. The year before he was drafted they had finished 8-6 and out of the playoffs. In Campbell's rookie season they were 10-6, then 11-5 two years in a row. They made it to the playoffs all three years and to the AFC title game twice, losing both times to the eventual Super Bowl champion, Pittsburgh. Bum had a hunch that with Rogers, history might repeat itself.

    "I just thought that George Rogers would do more for our football team than, say, one guy on defense like Lawrence Taylor," says Phillips. "He's a great linebacker, but if you put him on one side, they'd just run the other way the whole game. I couldn't get him in a position 30 times a game to make the big play. I can get a good running back in position 30 times to make the big play. The best defense is holding on to the football."

    Below is the link to the whole article

    and Pastime…

    Stats of the Week No. 10: On Monday night Miami rushed for 239 yards, had a 3-1 time of possession advantage, committed only one turnover, and lost.

    That would have been a win for Miami….except

    1. Peyton Manning had too much time left when he got the ball back


    2. Scott Norwood would have been the kicker for Indy…lol

  18. Pastime Princess Says:

    In hindsight we can see how wrong Phillips was but from his point of view at the time what he says makes sense.

  19. Pastime Princess Says:

    I guess that stat teaches us one thing. If you leave to much time on the clock for a Manning, your dead.

  20. Andrew Says:

    Justin Tuck's injury could be worse for our season his year than Osi's was for last year. In terms of the regular season, I think we can make the playoffs and win our division without him (Especially considering the injuries to the Cowboys and Eagles). HOWEVER, in the playoffs, Tuck's absence would be felt tenfold. We need this guy. He and Osi are a thousand times better together than they are apart.
    In response to everyone saying that Hixon starts if he is healthy. That is true, he definitely would but… firstly he is a better blocker than Manningham, and he can make plays. Secondly, even before Hixon went out of the game on sunday, we saw a lot of three WR sets with Hixon, Smith and Manningham. I believe on the first drive we saw the first three or four plays like that. Hixon desperately wants to play because he knows that if Manningham is put in that starting role, it might be impossible to take it back from him. That being said, I doubt Hixon will be that healthy this week. This injury is actually good for our team. After he gets healthy, Hixon can go back to being the number 3 receiver and returning kicks (what he does best). Also, where is Ramses Barden on those failed red zone drives. If we're failing so hard in there anyway, might as well take a chance on a 6'6" guy. Right?

  21. Andrew Says:

    In the second half of the season, I predict, as I predicted in the preseason, that we will have one of the best receiving corps in the game. Once Manningham has that starting role, Nicks is healthy and seen more of the field, and Barden has entered the picture… this team will have almost too many playmakers. Plus in the running game, when Ware is back, it'll make those short yardage plays a lot easier. Eli made a couple of bad misses the other day, but they were overshadowed by a ton of beauties. If our O-line stays healthy, this O has no ceiling!

  22. Pastime Princess Says:

    The only ceiling this offense has is how low Killdrive keeps it. If he has just 1/4 of a brain it will be killer. If he had a fully functional football brain it could be one of the tops in NFL history.

    This is why Bill Belichick is my favorite coach. After the Jets beat him Sunday he said, "We were outcoached."

    I also think he is the greatest coach of all time.

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