The former Super Bowl champion New York Giants are 0-4. Take a deep breath, and don’t panic. The Giants are not panicking. They believe in quarterback Eli Manning. They believe in Coach Tom Coughlin. The Giants believe they can win this week when they host the Philadelphia Eagles. They have come back from 0-3 before. They have overcome adversity in the past. However, the Devil’s Advocate must ask the question: Have the New York Giants been too good for too long?
The offensive line allowed seven sacks on Manning in one game. Seven sacks on one of the premier quarterbacks in the league. Over the course of four games, the Giants have scored a total of 61 points. They were shut out by the Caroline Panthers in Week 3. If there is a rock bottom, New York is getting very close to scraping it.
The Giants’ offensive line is riddled with injury. There are an astonishing number of key players that will not be hitting the field this week. Compared to the Eagles, the list is long and painful to behold. Even more agonizing is the fact that the Giants have not been 0-4 since 1987. Under Coughlin they became a team to be reckoned with, a force of nature on the field. Today, they are one of the four teams remaining in the league who have not won a game so far. This is not a place they are comfortable with. They are not playing for draft picks. The Giants are playing to win. They are not looking to be good. The Giants are accustomed to being great.
To that end, steps are being taken to shore up the defensive line. The Giants were in talks with the Carolina Panthers Thursday about trading a late-round draft pick next year for veteran linebacker Jon Beason. After passing his physical Friday, the deal has been made. Beason is scheduled to become a free agent in the upcoming offseason. Presumably the matter of where Beason will play next season can, and will be discussed then. For now, the Giants need assistance and they need it quickly.
Beason’s career has been disrupted by injury in recent years so it is difficult to get a clear picture of just what Giants’ decision makers think they can gain with him on the roster. He missed almost all of the 2011 season with a torn Achilles tendon. He only played four games last year before needing microfracture surgery on his right knee. Needless to say, his season was once again cut short. Beason was named the worst defensive player on the Panthers in the first two weeks of this season. This is quite a feat, as he played less than half the snaps and was benched in favor of former Giant Chase Blackburn.
Beason was not always a liability. In 2007, his rookie year, he led the Panthers with 140 tackles and was a runner up for Defensive Rookie of the Year. He has been selected to three Pro Bowls, a trend that was expected to continue until the Achilles injury in 2011. The last thing New York needs is another banged up player, but Beason believes he can contribute immediately. He stands ready to play if the Giants call upon him on Sunday.
The Giants are striving to get back to being where they were these last few years. They are currently ranked 22nd in total defense and 28th against the run. They are a good team, just how good and for how long remains to be seen. If by some cruel trick of the cosmos the Giants go 0-5 on Sunday, that may be the time to panic.
Written by: Brandi Tasby