I’ve never seen such a hotly debated position on a team as the Giants linebackers. Anthony C., though, sums up the reality of the situation perfectly.
Andy W. writes…
Not sure why everyone thinks the Giants second half performance is a mystery. It is very simple. The NFL back loads the Giants schedule in case they want to flex them (and their TV market) into prime time. Since this can only be done in the second half of the season, they have tougher games and thus a poorer record than the first half.
Andy, that’s no excuse. I’m sure there are other teams that have difficult second half schedules and who fare well. What you’re suggesting, or so it would appear, is the Giants can handle pressure or stand toe to toe with the “better” teams and I would think tht opinion, if it indeed reflects yur thinking, wouldn’t be met well by the team.
Again, I’d have to go back and do a detailed analysis – and I don’t’ have the time to do that with camp on the horizon – but I’m willing to bet that injuries played a big role in the second half swoon.
I’ll point to 2011 as the Giants caught fire at the very end of the year right through the playoffs when they started getting starters back healthy.
Anthony C. writes…
I have written on several occasions, and this obsession over the LB’s is getting old. In the current defensive schemes, the traditional LB unit of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s no longer exist. The size of many safeties and the LB’s make them interchangeable. Like you, I am more concerned with the DL outperforming the OL’s they are facing and the DB’s creating turnovers on the back end. It is more about depth and interchangeable parts.
Banks, Carson and LT were great and we will never see the likes of them again in a Giants uniform. Most teams have one solid LB, and the other parts of that unit tend to be fluid, depending upon whether they play a 3-4 or 4-3 scheme.
Frankly, if the defense can keep teams under 20 ppg, whoever plays LB is irrelevant.
Spot on Anthony. Couldn’t have said it better myself.