As life in the NFL goes, most of the time a four-game losing streak will just about end any season. Sunday at the Meadowlands, the New York Giants were handed their fourth straight loss, and with it their 2006 season which at one point had such great promise appears now to be in dire straits. The Giants, a team whose bark is bigger than their bite, talked a good game all week against the Cowboys, a team they trailed in the NFC East by one game. Sunday they played a solid game against Dallas, but in the end came up short, losing on a late field goal 23-20.
Dallas, since making the change to Tony Romo as the starter six weeks ago, has been a team that looks like it can make a deep January run. They have reeled off five of six, and if it were not for a wild last second loss to the Redskins, they would be 9-3. The offense has been in stride with Romo from day one, scoring at least 19 points in each game, and scoring 27 or better in three of the five wins. Bill Parcells saved the season for Dallas with his decision, and Sunday it paid off again against a hostile crowd and desperate team at the Meadowlands.
Sitting pretty at 8-4, Dallas has the Saints, Falcons, Eagles and Lions to wrap up the season as they push to get a week off and a divisional round home playoff game. They overcame a big test on the road on Sunday, and with it may have very well knocked their biggest rival out of the playoffs. The Giants, a team with big talkers, were mostly silent on Sunday following the loss. The biggest statement made in the game for the Giants was the dissaray that was shown when wide out Plaxico Burress called a late, valuable time out when he saw head coach Tom Coughlin running down the sideline. Coughlin was not calling a time out, instead was trying to just get his teams attention. Another example of things gone wrong for Big Blue.
Also take in to effect that Coughlin settled for field goals instead of trying to hammer the ball more and get touchdowns, and you have the makings of a town that is ready to see Coughlin go, and ready to stop hearing mouths in the locker room and seeing some results on the field. Don’t forget about four personal fouls for a team that’s head coach preaches discipline as a key to winning in the league. Instead, it has become an afterthought in a season that has slipped away for the now 6-6 Giants.
As columnist Steve Serby wrote in Monday’s edition of the New York Post – “The Giants have cheated their fans, and most of all, have cheated themselves.” As they head down the final four weeks of the season, all they can hope for is to just get back on track in a hurry, as another failure will all but end their season.