Somebody really needs to arrange a game between the Giants and the Titans, so they can have an inept-off. Tennessee thoroughly outplayed Baltimore in just about every way, but coughed the ball up twice on stupid plays (LenDale White carrying the ball like the proverbial loaf of bread, Todd Heap trying to hurdle a defender), keeping them from scoring. And the Giants played an excellent defensive game, but completely blew it on offense, with some of the stupidest play-calling in history.
Giants Stadium is famously a terrible place to play on a windy day, and yesterday was a bad day for wind. The Giants came into the game with the best ground game in the NFL, and what did they do? They called one pass play after another. Brandon Jacobs ran the ball effectively (19 times for 92 yards), but at crucial moments, they went to the pass, and it failed miserably. They never got the ball in the end zone, and ended up missing two long field goals because they didn’t gain any yards on one ineffective run and two incomplete passes. The second one was particularly bad– Carney had already missed from that range, so they had to know that they needed yards, but they abandoned the run, and settled for a long kick, which went wide.
If they’d gotten any points out of those drives, or better yet, touchdowns on any of the drives inside the Philadelphia 20, the game would’ve been completely different. As it was, they choked completely. Philadelphia wasn’t brilliant, but they were better than the Giants, and that was the game.
This sets up an NFC championship game between two quarterbacks who were supposed to be washed up (Kurt Warner was backing up Matt Leinart a year ago, and Donovan McNabb was benched at the half in one game this season), and an AFC championship between Pittsburgh and Baltimore that promises to be nearly unwatchable. Whee!
On the bright side, it will leave me plenty of time for grading papers next weekend.