Archive for the ‘David Diehl’ Category

Giant Illini

July 11, 2009

NY Giants Left Tackle David Diehl bleeds blue, AND ORANGE. He is a proud graduate of the University of Illinois, so proud in fact that he is giving back. It is not every day that you hear about a guy who gets a free ride to college and then decides to ‘pay it back.’ It is a nice gesture. After a week of adultery, murder and battery, football is allowed to have stories about players making good things happen.

Who said this about Nicks?

June 15, 2009

From Friday June 12: “I like the way his attitude is. I like everything about what he’s trying to do here. He’s planning on staying here all summer so he can throw and catch with Eli [Manning]. He’s spending extra time in his playbook. He’s watching film. He’s doing things that veterans do. It’s awesome to see. That’s how you succeed and that’s how you make a splash in the NFL.”

These are the things you like to see. To have your #1 embrace the work ethic and NOT rest on his laurels of being selected #29, it is a VERY good sign. People turn their television on for week 1 and see a rookie make some good plays and they think it is his ability. But we here on this blog watch the Giants 24/7/365 and know enough about football to be aware of the fact that it takes a tremendous amount of dedication and effort to succeed. This rookie can push Moss to get more time in the slot. Is it crazy to think he can take the X and be next to Smith? If he works hard enough it will only be a matter of time. At the very least, it is simply an encouraging sign to see a rookie with special gifts who is willing to work. It shows a great deal of self-respect, respect for his teammates and coaches.

David Diehl at the Comix Comedy Club TONIGHT

May 20, 2009

David Diehl will be at the Comix Comedy Club TONIGHT in Manhattan. A portion of the proceeds will go to Project Sunshine, a charity which helps children who have cancer and other illnesses. Come out and support Dave and this charity.

New York Giants 34 Carolina Panthers 28

December 22, 2008
Ward and Boss, the TWO keys to the Ultimatenygame
This was as gutty a performance as I have seen from this team since the Redskins W3 2007. The similarities were many- 2 consecutive losses, lots of doubters, a double digit deficit. When the Giants defense was getting manhandled early, giving up 3 TDs on the first 3 drives, down 21-10, there was no realistic way we were going to win this game. That this team came back from that proved so many things to us. But most importantly, the victory proved so much to themselves. It reminded them of what they have done this year in winning 11 games prior. It reminded them of what they have done last year, when they could come from behind and win despite so much adversity.

Victory tonight was icing on the cake. That the Giants somehow managed to tie the game was a mini-miracle. There were so many positives that were going to come from this game, and the recap was going to take that angle, the Patriots Week 17 Angle, where that loss was a BIG POSITIVE. If Kasay hits the FG, there is still a lot to be positive about. That the kick misses and the Giants go on to win in OT may very well be the luck needed to make this team go all the way. Wins like this galvanize a team. The Giants may have to play this team again, but they will not be afraid. They took this team’s best punch, got knocked down, got back up and were the last team standing. The Giants got the confidence back that they lost when Burress was removed from the roster, and they are learning to how to win with who is left. Barber, Strahan, Umenyiora, Shockey, Burress? How many daggers do you put in this team? It keeps coming. The Giants have faced NINE consecutive teams with winning records, a combined 82-51-2. Every team took their best shot. The Giants are 12-3, they have the all-important bye to heal up, they have homefield through the playoffs. And they have the resolve and the resiliency of a team that is capable of anything they believe in.

THE POSITIVES WERE MANY:
1) The offense is back. Wonder talked about the Giants offense getting into a new rhythm now that Burress is no longer there. They did exactly that. They stayed with the run. But they were able to do so because, unlike in Dallas, down and distance was manageable enough. Manning held the ball less, threw into shorter routes, and this way there were not the countless debilitating sacks that caused horrendous 2nd and 3rd downs.

2) Eli Manning found his wind legs. He managed the wind, threw shorter passes, stepped into the passes, and threw the ball a little lower on shorter routes to keep the ball from sailing. This was important, dare we say vital, for Manning’s confidence. And once again he led his team down the field to score near the end of Q4, got the 2 pt conversion pass to Hixon (what a play fake, we were sold on the ball being handed off to Jacobs along with all of the Panthers!) to tie the game, and then led them again in OT. Everyone knows that Manning is capable of anything at the end of a game. His confidence after the game was obvious: “You never know what the weather is going to be like here. We’re used to playing in those cold and windy games and I would like to think we would have the advantage in some of those. I think it will be fun playing the games at home.”

3) Derrick Ward, Brandon Jacobs and the offensive line were excellent in the running game. Gilbride gets credit for not giving up on the run. How do we begin to discuss the superlatives of Derrick Ward, who gashed this team time and time again, amassing 215 yards from scrimmage as the backup?!!

4) Gilbride found his Tight End! Kevin Boss lives. In my humble opinion, this was the real key to the game. In order for Ward to run his highlight film in Q4 and OT, there HAS TO BE BOSS first, moving the chains. It is the middle of Q3, 21-13 Panthers. The Giants have the ball at their own 16 yard line. When the Giants get into a 3rd and 10 after a 5 yard penalty, and Madden is sentencing the Giants offense to death (now that Burress is gone), we are yelling for Bossssss! And to Boss it went! And on the exact type of play that Witten and Garrett killed us on last week that we needed so desperately! One game late, but good enough to save us! Boss makes his chip block, then after the delay on the right side of the line, runs out across the middle to the left, catches a 5 yarder and runs for daylight, 11 yards, and the first down. Small ball, but an important first down. You need those types of plays to keep the rhythm, because how else can you keep going to the run? The Giants controled the ball for 8:36. 5 first downs. Ward with a big 22 yarder. And when it was 3rd and Goal from the 3, who was there to clean up and convert? Kevin Boss in the end zone. So many key plays.

Boss must become the 1986 Mark Bavaro of this offense. In 1986, the Giants WRs were nothing spectacular. Indeed, guys like Lionel Manuel, Bobby Johnson and Stacy Robinson couldn’t shine shoes for most teams. How on earth did the ’86 team keep the pressure off the loaded box? How did they move the chains? The answer was Bavaro, who LED THE SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS IN RECEIVING YARDS THAT SEASON. That is your blueprint for success, that is the rhythm they found. Everytime the Giants were in a big spot, Boss was the answer. Your TE can get you big plays all over the field, but especially in the red zone, and especially on third down. Let’s remember, who was the player that awoke the Giants offense at the beginning of Q4 vs the Patriots in the Super Bowl? Kevin Boss for 45 yards. USE THAT TIGHT END to get you a fresh set of downs so that you can have that patience in the running game.

5) I admit to being wrong about Jacobs. The Giants need the moose more than I thought. He has that attitude necessary to impose your will on an opposing team. While I still want #44 to get lots of touches, 3rd down and red zone, it is apparent more than ever how the battering of Jacobs sets up Ward on the change of speed.

6) Gilbride made the adjustments. Even when the Giants tried a RB flare which did not work, it was fine, it was stretching the LBers. The gmen used the quick slants, the draws out of the shotgun, the TE delayed pass, mixing it up enough to allow the running game to keep going, pounding away at them.

7) Webster was once again excellent. He covered Smith most of the game, but Smith only had 3 catches for 47 yards, and on 35 of them it was a zone coverage (and more accurately, a failed blitz pass rush) that got beat, not Webster.

The Negatives:
1) Still no pass rush. We’ll be generous and put some of that on Tuck’s leg, vomit and the flu. Without Tuck (who was valiant in effort) making an impact, you have to figure the DL becomes very average very quickly. Tuck and Robbins need two weeks off now to rest for Jan 10-11. Kiwi needs to watch tape of how Strahan does not try to overpower linemen on run defense, he sheds them.

2) To say our linebackers are mediocre is a compliment. Without Tuck and the DL at full strength, these sack of potatoes were victimized constantly. Spags gave them more help in the second half and it stemmed some of the bleeding. My kingdom for a LBer #1 in the draft. And #2 also.

3) Diehl has regressed. Is he playing hurt, or tired? If it is either, get him some rest, because he is not playing the edge nearly as well as he was playing earlier in the season.

4) Pierce is ineffective in coverage beyond a few yards past the line of scrimmage. He simply lacks the speed. On one key 3rd down conversion, a Panther player comes into the middle of the field PRECISELY where Pierce’s zone of coverage is, and he still does not make the play. Unacceptable.

Misc:
1) I thought when the Giants won the toss in OT, I would have taken the wind. Manning’s reaction to the decision to take the ball almost looked like he agreed. But the team did not blink, and ran it down their throats.

2) To be filed under the category of why you do not bet: Let’s say you took Carolina, taking +3 points. There is almost no chance in hell of you losing your bet at any point until the very end of OT. You’re up 21-10, still up 21-20, then 28-20 in Q4. The only way you will lose is if by some miracle the Giants get a TD, get the 2 pt conversion, and then somehow win with a 6 pt TD in OT.

Webster’s Dictionary

December 16, 2008

1) Negligent– failing to exercise the care that a reasonably prudent person would exercise in like circumstances
Incompetent– lacking qualities for effective action
Of the two, negligence is far more serious. It implies known neglect. Yesterday’s post dealt with Gilbrown’s incompetence. But the more I thought about it, Gilbrown allowing his QB to get sacked 8 times in one game is NEGLIGENT. How dare he not protect his QB if his OL cannot?! He put the entire franchise at risk, given that Eli Manning is the franchise.

2) Speaking of Webster, I have zero problem with allocating a lot of resources towards a good CB. Once again, Webster was very good Sunday. He was part of the answer, not a question.

3) Speaking of protecing Manning, where was the ref with the nonsense browning flag when Brady James body slammed Manning to the turf?? And they give Tuck a flag for something half as bad in the first Dallas game? Ridiculous.

4) Everyone who doesn’t trust David Carr in there, just let Manning get sacked 8x per game and Eli will morph into David Carr. I saw Eli Carr out there Sunday night, come to think of it.

5) Perhaps I was not completely clear in my rant yesterday about Gilbrown. He is not the ENTIRE reason why the Giants dropped from 29 points to 3 points per game. This may be semantics, but to quantify in broad strokes, lack of Burress chops down some points, poor OL play chops down some points, not having that bully Jacobs chops down a couple of points. Gilbride cost the team double digit points. If they were able to have an identity, a game plan, an ability to adapt, the team could still manage to score 17, 20 points per game. The way the Giants defense was playing, that would have been enough to win.

6) Dallas was playing hurt too, so we did not exactly lose to a great team last night. Dallas is improved, but they are not great.

7) Mr. Platitude (Eli Manning) spelled it out after the game, wondering aloud : “Just because you miss one or two guys, we’ve got playmakers, we just didn’t get it done.” This is Mr. Manning being polite and saying that 11 men here still have plenty of talent to score more than 3 points per game.

8) Did everyone on the OL have the flu? David Diehl looked like he was sleepwalking on a couple of those sacks.

9) This team is banged up. It needs that bye in the worst way. Maybe this is part of the reason why the OL is not playing as well.. showing some wear.

10) I do not really subscribe to the theory that the Giants ‘miss’ Jacobs as much as others. As long as #44 is playing hurt, I admit Jacobs will be good to have back this weekend. Ward is not a big dropoff. The only point here to concede is that Ward is not the emotional leader that Jacobs is. If Bradshaw was 100% and being used properly by Gilbrown, no one would be missing Jacobs at all. In fact, Bradshaw would have delivered another Buffalo W16-type performance, in my incredibly biased opinion.

11) Reese did the right thing in not re-signing Jacobs. Yes, if he wants his services again he will have to pay more, but the only thing we learned from this year about him is that it is more true than ever that a 6’4″ RB will get injured during the year.

12) To my long-suffering Chiefs fans out there… There are a few of you who visit Ultimatenyg New York Giants Blog. For these Chiefs folks, it is 40 years since Len Dawson. Alas, there is HOPE! Peterson was fired! (Anyone who would PAY to have Herm back must need a lobotomy.)

Sacks allowed

November 27, 2008

One of the reasons why the Giants offensive line is being lauded is obviously because the Giants are the #1 rushing team in the NFL. But the second reason is that Manning is getting protected week in, week out. In 2007 the Giants offensive line allowed 29 sacks in 16 games. This year, after 11 games, they have allowed 13 sacks, which is on pace for 19 sacks for the season. This is such an impressive stat. (Separately, if you want perspective on what they put David Carr through in his rookie season, click on his name. Talk about damaging a guy’s career.)

Some of it is being a veteran QB. We noted on Sunday evening’s recap how well Manning was stepping into the pocket, buying an extra precious second or two to find his receiver downfield. Veteran QBs like Marino, Elway, Brady and Peyton Manning have always been artful at sensing the rush and getting rid of the ball. There is NO DOUBT that Eli has gotten better this season at sensing the pass rush. So to ignore this and give all the credit to the OL is an error. But nonetheless, the OL is certainly getting the job done. When you consider that David Diehl had 13.5 sacks allowed by himself in 16 games last year, he has obviously made tremendous improvement. He deserves to be singled out, especially after this blog’s criticism of him last year. The Giants scheme to give Diehl help (especially against the faster edge rushers), but clearly he is getting it done.

Another perspective on the performance of the OL is penalties. Anecdotally (in the absence of granular OL statistics) the amount of holding penalties we have seen from the offensive line has been pretty low too. Certainly the number of Petitbrown false starts is way down last year and this year.

Summary: the OL is doing it in the run game (#1), sacks allowed (#6), penalties. The only thing we could do better is see them in more of the time at the end WINNING the game for the team. When the play calling (ie 4:02 left in Q4 of AZ game) is varied, they can do that ably.

ps please email or comment if you are able to supply us with a site that has individual (not team) penalty statistics and/or individual sacks allowed statistics.

NYGiants 37 Arizona 29

November 24, 2008


1) VERY NICE ROAD WARRIOR WIN.

2) We said it all week, the Giants OFFENSE needed to step up and score 40 points to win this game… they did and the team won.

3) Eli Manning was outstanding. Akin to the Bengals game, the AZ defense gave the Giants a lot of 8 man fronts. The Giants were not going to run for 200 yards today, so Manning and the passing game had to answer. He answered emphatically. End of midseason malaise. The stats will not do Manning justice. He managed every single phase of the offense beautifully. He was 26/33, but of 7 incompletions at least 3 or 4 were dropped by his receivers. One of the things that is always there in Eli’s game is his control over everything. He knows exactly what he wants. Granted he had problems with crowd noise early, but he managed that too. And then there is the way he steps into the pocket when the pass rush is coming. It buys him that extra split second and that means the difference between winning and losing in the NFL.

4) The officiating was horrendous. This is such an old story in the NFL this season. The point here is this is why the Giants need to strive to eliminate ALL mistakes… because these refs are so terrible that you do not want to let their arbitrary decisions cost you the game. So the Giants won despite more than a few bad calls. Good for the Giants.

5) Manning took a beating on a handful of plays. There were a few times where he got driven into the ground WORSE than the horrendous call when Tuck was flagged for a personal foul (against Dallas 3 weeks ago). The hypocrisy is incredible.

6) The Giants run defense was never challenged.

7) Carney is gin on the short FGs, but his lack of leg is hurting the Giants’ kickoff coverage.

8) Before anyone gets too excited about this Giants win, please remember that the Giants got TWO turnovers from Kurt Warner (resulting in +10 points for the gmen) PLUS one failed onside kick attempt (+3 points) PLUS two fantastic Hixon kickoff returns of 68 and 83 yards (+10 points). So those little nuggets added up to 23 points of the Giants 37 total scored. Yes, they all count, but the message is that down the road the offense is going to need to keep scoring on offense because opponents like the Cardinals (and other teams with good QBs) will score. CONTINUE TO USE THAT OFFENSE TO WIN GAMES.

9) Lots of players need to be singled out in the game. Of course Hixon pulled another performance like that against Seattle. Give him the minutes (on the offense AND on kickoffs) and he is an impact player, period. Phillips looked very good out there today. His speed in the secondary allows him to cover a lot of ground, and you see that when he closes in on plays, either stopping a TD (Fitzgerald, Q1) or containing plays and eliminating yards after catch. (Daryl Johnston did a good job of pointing out how the Giants defense did a great job of containing YAC.) And then there are the players you simply do not hear from, like Corey Webster. The silence is deafening. He is anchoring the entire secondary right now because he is quietly shutting it down. Against the best. Of course there is Pierce, who as traffic cop, according to Goose, was calling Arizona’s run and pass plays before the snap, as well as (according to Johnston) calling for Thomas to move over to a certain position before the snap, which led to his INT.

10) Gilbride. He still is predictable in the second down and 10 yards or less after a first down pass play… you know a run is coming. But that said, he called a very good game because (a) he went away from the run when the Cardinals were loading up at the line and (b) he did NOT go into the prevent offense with 4:02 left. Excellent. He and Coughlin respected Arizona’s offense enough to know that they had to demand enough of their offense to WIN the game instead of asking the defense not to lose it. And win it they did, by driving 30 yards to the AZ 16 yard line for the FG.

11) It is almost not worth noting, but I will post the obvious. Everyone in tomorrow’s media will be glowing about how the Giants won without Jacobs and Burress. For many on this blog, we know that the success of the Giants and the offense in particular this season has not been about those two players. So when one or both were a threat not to be in the game today, there was EXACTLY ZERO alarm this week from this corner because the Giants are so browning loaded at RB and WR that this team was not going to miss ANYTHING. I for one was actually salivating at the thought of guys like Hixon and Bradshaw getting more minutes. These guys are not only ready for primetime, they ARE primetime. So let the media fawn over the Giants winning on the road w/o the “name” stars of Jacobs and Burress… the real name stars who are indispensable are Diehl, Seubert, O’Hara, Snee, McKenzie and Manning. When the Giants win without those 6 guys, we can gush.

It’s all about the line of scrimmage

October 30, 2008
McKenzie, Snee, O’Hara, Seubert, and Diehl (out of picture) break from the huddle.


3 Running backs who could start for many teams
4 Wide Receivers who could start for many teams
1 QB who is poised, confident, calm, making less mistakes, making more great throws
1 solid Fullback
1 Tight End with great hands who can even move a little in traffic

AND FIVE OFFENSIVE LINEMEN WHO PLAY AS WELL TOGETHER AS WE HAVE SEEN SINCE PRE-FREE AGENCY.

The stats are gaudy. The Giants are third in the league in (lowest) sacks allowed, slightly less than one per game. The #1 Rushing Offense in the NFL. The #3 Overall Offense in YPG. #2 in Time of Possession.

(Oh by the way, the team is 27th in the league in red zone efficiency. I’ll let you connect that dot.)

Back to the offensive line, these guys have ALL been with one another for four consecutive seasons 2005-2008. Diehl 2003. Seubert (essentially back from injury in) 2005. O’Hara 2004. Snee 2004. McKenzie 2005. To say these guys have their communication down is an understatement. To watch them vs the Steeler blitz was impressive. Air tight. This is what I miss from pre-free agency, an offensive line that works as a unit. Continuity. Consistency. High level of play.

The Giants organization understands this, although I certainly had plenty of doubts about Accorsi when Fassel was around. They relied way too much on McNally to put together patchwork and ignored the OL for cap reasons. I contended that McNally’s presence was a crutch for the organization, because the allocation of resources their dwindled with every successive miracle McNally performed. McNally was practically Dr. Frankenstein, manufacturing linemen in his basement. (Seubert was one those who still remains).

You have to give Accorsi/Reese/Coughlin the credit for their work over the past four years in trying to keep these guys together. THE BOTTOM LINE IS THE FIVE MEN AS A UNIT ARE GREATER THAN THE SUM OF THEIR PARTS. And they would be the first ones to tell you that. Simms this past Sunday singled them out as the reason why the Giants would win the game. Indeed, they were the difference.

Lack of depth at Tackle is the only blemish on this story. As long as Diehl and McKenzie are healthy the Giants OL should be fine, because we saw that Ruegamer can come in and plug the inside.

Let’s remember, the offensive line was the single most consistent unit last year also. And the OL is playing better than last year, if that is at all possible.

This weekend we get to see Diehl vs Ware. As long as the OL stays healthy the Giants are one of a handful of teams that can vie for the title.

New York Giants make final roster cuts for 2008 season

August 30, 2008

The NY Giants made their final roster cuts, and there were a few items of note but nothing enormously surprising.

Brandon London is probably the biggest casualty, but my guess is that he is picked up by another team off waivers in very short order.

Getting John Carney off the geriatric ward for FG kicking duties is just part of the way the wacky world of FB works. I think I dislike FG kickers almost as much as head coaches.

The Giants for now kept FIVE RBs, choosing to stay with Droughns AND Ware. (Hedgecock does not count, he is a FB.)

Good for David Carr for surviving and making the most of his new opportunity. Between Woodson gtg cut and Wright going on IR, he is prominently there as the backup.

I do not think Guy Whimper will be challenging the slow feet of David Diehl anytime soon.. he was cut.

The only addition by subtraction..

August 17, 2008

done in the past year was cutting Luke Petitgout. Not that Ultimatenyg had it figured out or anything. The reason for mentioning Petitgout is that he was cut today by TB.

At the time of Reese’s decision last winter we were as perplexed by the move as the media. It was Reese’s first big move as GM. Petitgout’s replacement, David Diehl, gave us addition by subtraction:

The not so good…
1) The OL lost depth by losing interior help when Diehl moved to Tackle.
2) Diehl had the second most sacks allowed in the NFL.

BUT the very good…
3) Diehl was healthy for all 20 games, missing only 1 series vs TB for dehydration (constantly razzed by linemates for his un-ironman imperfection!)
4) Diehl was adequate enough in pass protection and did a good job on runblocking
5) GONE WERE THE PETITGOUT FALSE STARTS AND TREMENDOUS PENALTIES
6) No more Petitgout back spasms throwing the OLine into damage control

That he has been cut by Gruden tells us plenty. Hmm, let’s see, Reese’s Giants won a Super Bowl and the Bucs released him a year later after only 4 starts and yet another injury in 2008. I guess we need not guess. Reese knew exactly what he was doing when getting rid of Petitgout- he got rid of a player with inconsistent health and “cancer” penalties. With Phillips looking good in camp, all he needs is another rookie or two to ‘stick’ and he will be bulletproof for a while. I think I like calling him Kevlar- any shots fired at him either miss or they just bounce off. He had a violent Shockey in his office and quietly moved on. There is no doubt who is running the show in Giantland.