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View Full Version : News, notes, rumors, and gossip: Monday, December 17, 2012 The Morning After



RoanokeFan
12-16-2012, 12:51 PM
EXCERPTS FROM EXTERNAL NEWS ARTICLES REGARDING THE NEW YORK FOOTBALL GIANTS ARE POSTED UNDER THEIR SOURCES. MISCELLANEOUS SPORTS ARTICLES ARE POSTED UNDER THE "MISCELLANEOUS" SECTION AT THE END OF THE THREAD. LINKS FOR ALL LISTED SOURCES ARE INCLUDED TO ALLOW MEMBERS TO INDEPENDENTLY BROWSE AT THEIR LEISURE.


NEWARK STAR LEDGER

Eli Manning Again Threw An Early Interception - Only This Time, Giants Couldn't Recover

http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2012/12/eli_manning_again_threw_an_ear.html

Excerpt: "Eli Manning wanted consistency from his offense, and today at the Georgia Dome, he got it.

For the second straight week, he threw a brutal interception in the first quarter — this time, on the very first play.

It didn’t get much better, and unlike a week ago against the Saints, the Giants did not recover. Manning had started 134 regular-season games as a quarterback without the Giants getting shut out.

Well, there’s a first for everything.

“You want to go out there and play well, knowing how important that game was,” Manning said after this 34-0 loss to the Falcons. “You want to have your best performance and score points and when you don’t do that, when you know you had chances and you didn’t capitalize and they made plays, it’s tough.”

Tough is an understatement. Manning completed just 13 of 25 passes for 161 yards with two interceptions.

That added up to a passer rating of 38.9, his lowest of the season.

The performance seemed more troubling because the Giants thought they had broken out of a midseason slump.

Manning had four touchdown passes in a 52-27 victory against the Saints last week, but it was clear from the start that it would be a struggle against a stout Atlanta defense." Read more...


Giants' Defense helpless To Prevent Runaway

http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2012/12/giants_defense_helpless_to_pre.html

Excerpt: "The same Giants defense that last week left New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees dazed and confused didn’t bother showing up in a 34-0 loss to the Falcons at the Georgia Dome today. The Giants barely laid a hand on Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan and wound up producing their worst effort at a most inopportune time.

“I feel like that girl in the ‘Wizard of Oz,’ ” said defensive end Justin Tuck. “I wish I had some red shoes and could wish myself to the next game. Next Sunday can’t get here fast enough.”

But the Giants have a whole week to consider what happened in this lopsided loss. The Falcons established their running game early, enabling Ryan to shake off a three-game malaise and help the club score more points than it has since the season opener in Kansas City. It matched the most points allowed by the Giants this season.

Atlanta ran the ball a season-high 38 times for 129 yards, 52 of them from the much-maligned Michael Turner. The running threat allowed Ryan more freedom to throw the ball. He wound up completing 23 of 28 passes for 270 yards, breaking his own single-season yardage record (4,202 yards), and three touchdowns. He was sacked only once, that by defensive tackle Chris Canty for an insignificant five-yard loss.

“The running game was crucial for us,” Ryan said. “Getting that going early and making their defensive line have to defend both, having to rush the passer and defend the run and the draw, was crucial. It meant their defensive line had to defend the run. We did a good job mixing it up and making it difficult for their defensive line to get in the rhythm of the game.”

The Falcons showed their intention to establish the run on their first possession. After taking over at the Giants' 16 following an Eli Manning interception, the Falcons gave it to Turner on four consecutive plays and he scored from the 1. That set the tone for the rest of the game." Read more...

Giants Stopped Short On Three Fourth Down Plays

http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2012/12/giants_stopped_short_on_three.html

Excerpt: "One of the most frustrating aspects for the Giants in today’s loss to the Falcons: being stopped on three fourth-and-shorts, thus coming away without points in Falcons territory.

Two happened on back-to-back drives in the second quarter, and the third happened in the third quarter. Each time, the Giants were in position to put points on the board and chip away at Atlanta’s growing lead, but they instead walked away with nothing in the 34-0 loss.

“Absolutely gigantic,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said.

Smith would know. Back when the teams met in the wild-card playoff round last January, it was Smith’s team that was stopped twice on fourth-and-short quarterback sneaks in Giants territory. The Falcons offense scored no points in the 24-2 loss, their team only registering on the scoreboard with a safety.

Giants coach Tom Coughlin said the decision to go for it each time was “all my call.” He wanted to spark his team, but the outcome, instead, was “very, very disappointing.”

The Giants gave the ball to rookie David Wilson on their first fourth-and-1, an inside zone run on which Wilson said the Falcons were more physical.

“It closed up,” he said. “When you look back, you wish you could have done this or done that, but, you know, it was just closed up.” Read more...

Giants Dismantled In 34 - 0 Loss To Falcons, Fall Out Of First Place

http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2012/12/giants_dismantled_in_34-0_loss.html

Excerpt: "Those other Giants showed up today.

You know, the Hyde to their Jekyll. The team that, a week after a definitive win against the Saints, ends up on the other end of a blowout. The team that likes to make things as difficult as possible in the hunt for the playoffs.

The Giants’ 34-0 loss to the Falcons boils down to this: Their playoffs destiny may no longer be in their own hands, if the Redskins or Cowboys pull off wins today. And it happened in embarrassing fashion, with the Giants being shut out for the first time since a 2005 playoff loss to the Panthers.

It was the first regular-season shutout the Giants have suffered since a 24-0 loss to the Eagles on Dec. 1, 1996.

Oddly enough, this was the third straight season when a Week 15 loss clouded the Giants’ playoffs picture: It came to the Eagles in 2010, when the Giants missed the postseason, and to the Redskins last year, when the Giants rallied to a Super Bowl XLVI title. While the now 8-6 Giants continued their maddening inconsistency, the Falcons delivered a signature win that proved they and their 12-2 record are for real." Read more...

You Grade 'Em: Giants vs. Falcons

http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2012/12/you_grade_em_giants_vs_falcons_1.html

Excerpt: "Giants fans, here's your chance to grade Big Blue in their game against the Atlanta Falcons

Assign your grades in the polls below, and then drop down and leave a comment explaining your thinking." VOTE

SITE LINK (http://www.nj.com/giants/)


NY DAILY NEWS

Myers: Tragedy Puts Game Into Perspective

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/myers-horror-newtown-put-giants-game-perspective-article-1.1221778


Excerpt: "Chris Snee walked out of the Giants locker room and was greeted by his sons Dylan, a third-grader, and Cooper, who goes to kindergarten, and the excitement of the boys wearing Snee’s No. 76 blue jersey no doubt eased the pain for their dad of a bad loss and a barking hip.

The boys were sitting against a wall and waiting patiently with their mom, Kate, the daughter of Tom Coughlin, for Chris to come out. The hugs and kisses have been even more special the last few days after the unimaginable horror of the massacre of 20 first-graders and six adults in Newtown, Conn., at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

“I think we all needed some good squeezes on Friday,” Kate Snee said.

PHOTOS: GIANTS LOSE TO FALCONS 27-0 (http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/big-blue-big-embarrassment-atlanta-gallery-1.1221624)


The Giants locker room was somber, as you would expect after a 34-0 embarrassment to the Falcons, the second-worst loss in Coughlin’s nine seasons with the Giants and the worst shutout loss ever for a defending Super Bowl champion.

The Giants lost control of the NFC East, but if they win their last two games — next week at Baltimore and then at home against the Eagles — they will get a wild-card spot. And they can still win the division.

Coughlin and his players did not use what happened Friday in Newtown as an excuse, but they were playing with heavy and broken hearts following a tragedy about an hour from where they live.

Coughlin held a moment of silence in their team meeting Saturday night. Victor Cruz spoke to the family of Jack Pinto, a 6-year-old killed in the massacre, when told the little boy idolized him. He was moved almost beyond words when he talked about being told by the family on Saturday that they may bury Jack in his Cruz jersey." Read more...
Eli Manning Picked And Rolled In Atlanta

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/awful-eli-picked-rolled-atl-article-1.1221779

Excerpt: "Last year, Eli Manning could do no wrong. This year, far too often, it has gone all wrong.

His latest act included two more interceptions and a handful more errant passes, and when it was all over, Manning had spearheaded a punchless Giants offense in a disappointing, embarrassing 34-0 loss to the Falcons at the Georgia Dome.

And he could offer little explanation.

“We didn’t come out today and play our best,” Manning said in a colossal understatement. “Atlanta did a good job, but any time you turn the ball over three times, it’s a tough situation. We didn’t take advantage of the opportunities that we were in.”

It was a dramatic turnaround for Manning. Over the last three weeks, he had finally busted out of a midseason slump, ending all the “tired arm” chatter by throwing eight touchdown passes, including four in a rout of the Saints, and seemingly proving once again to be a truly elite quarterback.

On Sunday, he was erratic, not elite. His very first pass, a short throw to the right on second-and-7 from the Giants 16, landed in the arms of Falcons corner Asante Samuel and set up Atlanta’s first touchdown.

Manning was picked again in the second quarter. On second-and-11 from his own 19, Manning thought he could hit Nicks on a slant. But safety Thomas DeCoud stepped in front, and Manning’s throw left Nicks playing defensive back. “I tried to get it knocked down,” said Nicks, “but he (DeCoud) made a good play.”

It was Manning’s 15th interception of the season. He’s struggled with interceptions throughout his career, but last season, he offset those picks with big plays.

But the big plays have been absent in a passing game plagued by miscommunication. Manning had a rare chance in the first quarter, when Nicks finally broke free downfield on first-and-10 from the Giants 20. But the bomb was just a hair too deep for the banged-up Nicks, who flailed after it but couldn’t make the catch.

“It seemed like it was close,” Manning said, “but obviously a little bit overthrown.”

The poor performance left the Giants no margin for error, with two games left." Read more...

Giants' Insider: Rookies Wilson And Hosley Schooled

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/giant-insider-rookies-david-wilson-jayron-hosley-schooled-article-1.1221805

Excerpt: "hey shared a hotel room on Saturday night, burying their noses in their playbooks in anticipation of their first NFL starts.

And then, on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, David Wilson and Jayron Hosley reminded everyone how much experience they have under their belts. Wilson, starting at tailback in place of injured Ahmad Bradshaw, failed to convert a critical fourth down, and managed just 55 rushing yards.

Hosley, subbing for corner Prince Amukamara (hamstring), struggled even more, injuring his ankle on one big play and surrendering a 40-yard touchdown to WR Julio Jones early in the third quarter.

“I did some good things,” Hosley said. “There was some things I could have did better.”

Wilson called his own performance “poor.” A week ago he was dynamic, scoring three TDs against the Saints, but questions remain about his ability to gain tough yards. He didn’t answer those well.

With 6:08 to play in the first half and the Giants facing fourth-and-1 from the Falcon 32, Wilson was stuffed by Sean Weatherspoon for no gain. His playing time gradually dwindled from there.

“We didn’t do much on offense,” Wilson said. “We gotta get plays going and get drives going.”

The Falcons planned to target the rookie Hosley, Atlanta wideout Roddy White said, and they did so with 3:50 left in the first quarter. Hosley was drawn into what he thought was a screen play and rushed toward the line. Instead, WR Harry Douglas dashed past him, catching an easy 37-yard pass that set up Tony Gonzalez’s 12-yard TD three plays later.

Hosley injured his ankle on the play but tried to battle through it. He couldn’t keep up with Jones in the third quarter, when the Falcons’ speedster dashed straight by him to catch a 40-yard touchdown.

“He got behind me,” Hosley said. “I could have prevented that by keeping my outside leverage. He just made a good play.” Read more...

Cruz Feels Special Bond With Newtown Family

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/cruz-feels-special-bond-newtown-victim-article-1.1221800

Excerpt: "Every time Victor Cruz went back to the Giants bench and sat down, his eyes immediately fell to his feet and his hands. It’s hard to imagine anyone in the Georgia Dome — not his teammates, his coaches, the fans or the Falcons — were feeling as much emotional weight as Cruz was feeling at those moments.

“Jack Pinto, My Hero” was written on one of his cleats and “R.I.P Jack Pinto” on the other. On the back of his gloves, Cruz wrote “Jack Pinto This one is 4 U.!” Cruz was paying tribute to 6-year-old Jack Pinto, one of the 20 children killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., on Friday. The wide receiver spoke to the family on Saturday night and discovered that Pinto was such a Cruz fan the family is considering burying the child in a Cruz jersey.

“There are no words that can describe the type of feeling you get when a kid idolizes you so much that they want to, unfortunately, put him in a casket with your jersey on,” Cruz said. “I can’t even explain it.”

The acknowledgement felt strange. The tribute felt good. And then the outcome felt bad. Cruz experienced one of the worst days of his pro career, catching three passes for 15 yards and the Giants lost 34-0 their first regular-season shutout loss since 1996.

“I’m pretty down to say the least,” Cruz said after the game. “It’s a game that we needed and it’s a game that we wanted to play well in. Unfortunately we didn’t do that at all. To compound that with the tribute that I paid to Jack today, it’s unfortunate. I’m sad about it. As an athlete, we have to go through it and get over it, and as a person I have to keep plugging and understand that I did something good for a good family.” Read more...

Third Place Giants Still Control Own Destiny

http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/giants/2012/12/third-place-giants-still-control-their-destiny

Excerpt: "The defending Super Bowl champions are now in third place in the NFC East.

But they still control their playoff destiny.That's the bizarre reality the Giants are left with after their humiliating, 34-0 loss in Atlanta on Sunday (http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/giants-show-signs-life-falcons-article-1.1221562). The Giants (8-6) are technically in a first-place tie with the Washington Redskins (8-6) and Dallas Cowboys (8-6), but they slip to third based on the tie-breaker, which since they split the season series against both those teams, is record in the division.

Right now the Redskins are 3-1 in the NFC East. The Cowboys are 3-2. The Giants are 2-3.However, despite all that, the Giants are in pretty good playoff position, thanks to their 7-4 record in NFC games. That gives them a tie-breaker advantage over the Vikings and the Bears, two 8-6 teams in the fight for the second and final wild-card spot. It also helps that the Cowboys and Redskins play each other in Week 17, meaning both of them can't get to 10 wins." Read more...

Giants No Match For Falcons In Blowout

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants/giants-show-signs-life-falcons-article-1.1221562


Excerpt: "The Giants have surrendered their crown as the best team in the conference. Soon they may be surrendering their NFC East crown, too.

The defending Super Bowl champions pushed themselves to the brink of disaster with a total no-show on Sunday in a 34-0 loss to the Atlanta Falcons. They had no answers on defense for the Falcons’ big-play offense and Eli Manning short-circuited the Giants with two early interceptions.
The Giants’ anemic offense -- which was shut out for the first time since a 23-0 wild-card playoff loss to Carolina on Jan. 8, 2006 -- was also stopped short on three fourth-down tries inside Atlanta territory – a complete reversal of what happened in the playoffs in January, when the Giants stopped the Falcons twice on fourth down and went on to dominate, 24-2.

That seems like so long ago, though. Those Giants were rolling then. These Giants (8-6) are sputtering, having lost four of their last six games. And as a result they left themselves to sweat out the scoreboard, knowing that if the Washington Redskins (7-6) won in Cleveland or the Dallas Cowboys (7-6) beat the Pittsburgh Steelers they’d slip into second place in the division." Read more...


SITE LINK (http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/football/giants)

THE NEW YORK POST

Last Chance For Jints To Show A Will To Win

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/giants/something_prove_DOd8h7f9lC2RKZm2CZacFP

Excerpt: "ou wouldn’t trade in one moment of the improbable, damn near impossible ways the Giants won those two Super Bowls the past five years. Neither would they. Part of the wonder attached to those two runs will always be the degree of difficulty attached to both of them.

Five road wins, two of them in January in Lambeau Field. Two wins over the favored Patriots, one when they were sitting on history’s doorstep with an 18-0 record. To say nothing of the twin abysses facing both of those teams: 0-2 (and down two TDs at the half in Week 3) in 2007; 7-7 after 14 games last year.

“Triumphs of the spirit,” was the phrase coach Tom Coughlin summoned in the minutes after last year’s mission was complete.

Yes. All of that was wonderful. All of that was unforgettable. But there is a flip side to that, and we’re starting to see it. The Giants would likely be reluctant to admit as much privately, let alone publicly, but the way they’ve played across these 14 games in 2012, the message is unmistakable:

When the lights are on, we will be, too. Trust us. Which is a hell of a way to let a season get away from you.

“We know we can overcome losses,” Eli Manning said yesterday, in the aftermath of a 34-0 crunching at the hands of the Falcons that just might be the most humiliating loss of the Manning-Coughlin Era. “We know how to bounce back.”

It is a skill that has rewarded them handsomely twice in the past five years. But it’s a tough way to live in the NFL." Read more...

Eli, Defense Stink It Up As Big Blue Lose Control Of NFC East

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/giants/eli_defense_stink_it_up_as_XSA5ONoys4FieRooFGvMwI

Excerpt: "The bridge has been torn down, forcing the Giants to create their own identity, no longer tethered to the Super Bowl glory of a year ago. There is no way to say anything that happened last season has anything to do with this season, not after the Giants went down to Georgia and were bedeviled by the Falcons in a historically bad loss yesterday.

Seven days after a joyride 52-27 pounding of the Saints, the Giants believed they were a team on the rise but indeed found out the folly of that thought. They did nothing on either side of the ball and were thoroughly and completely humbled and embarrassed by the Falcons 34-0 inside the Georgia Dome in a statement game for both teams.

The Falcons(12-2) showed they are for real. The Giants (8-6), leaving themselves with no playoff-entry margin for error, showed they are capable of anything, anywhere, good, bad or indifferent, which is no way for a true contender to operate.

“I’m tired of that ‘We’ve been here before.’ Forget all that,’’ Jason Pierre-Paul said. “I’m tired of hearing it. There’s no ‘We’ve been here before.’ ’’

He’s right. These Giants — now the third-place Giants — have not been here before, not after absorbing the worst shutout loss by a defending Super Bowl champion in NFL history. It was the first time under Tom Coughlin the Giants have been shut out in the regular season — the only other shutout was a playoff loss to the Panthers in 2005.

“I don’t want to say I’m shocked by it, but where was it?’’ Coughlin said, wondering where the heck his team’s consistency went." Read more...

Manning & Co. Simply Offensive In Ugly Loss To Falcons

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/giants/manning_co_simply_offensive_in_ugly_PIToGyTmEY1M0J Sb33HSQJ

Excerpt: "Twice yesterday the Giants had a fourth-and-1 and failed. Once yesterday they had a fourth-and-2.

And three times they failed to convert for a first down and keep the drive going.

“If you’re fourth-and-short, you should be able to get it,” guard Chris Snee said. “That’s always our mentality.”

That was also part of the Giants’ offensive failure yesterday, as they were shut out in a regular season game for the first time since Dec. 1, 1996 — a span of 256 games. The performance yesterday was putrid — Eli Manning threw two interceptions, running back Kregg Lumpkin lost a fumble and the Giants had the ball for a total of 21 minutes. This came one week after putting up 52 points against the Saints — 45 of them on offense.

“We couldn’t get anything going,” Victor Cruz said.

Actually, the Giants did. They just couldn’t finish a drive. On their second drive of the day, they moved from their own 20-yard line to the Atlanta 12 in nine plays. But then Lawrence Tynes missed a 30-yard field goal.

Then in the second quarter, the Giants moved from their 20 to the Atlanta 32, facing a fourth-and-1. Down 17-0, coach Tom Coughlin elected to go for it instead of trying a 49-yard field goal, but David Wilson was stopped for no gain.

On their next drive, the Giants moved from their 10 to the Atlanta 11, facing a fourth-and-1. This time, Manning threw incomplete to Cruz.

“I felt like, if we would have completed one of those fourth downs early on, we would have gotten the momentum a little bit and would have gotten some things going,” Cruz said. “But we weren’t able to do that.” Read more...

Wilson and Hosley No Factors

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/giants/wilson_hosley_no_factors_x1jbpxt5OnUaVXKiv6cRNO

Excerpt: "As roommates, David Wilson and Jayron Hosley spent Saturday night hunkered down in their hotel room awaiting yesterday’s game against the Falcons.
“He was doing his studying, I was doing my studying, both rookies with a lot of pressure on our shoulders, a lot of guys depending on us,’’ Hosley said.It didn’t turn out so great for either Giants rookie in the 34-0 loss to the Falcons. Wilson didn’t have much room to maneuver on kickoff returns and, in his first NFL start at running back, gained 55 yards on 12 rushing attempts.Hosley, starting in place of injured Prince Amukamara, had to come off the field briefly with a sprained ankle and when he returned was burned by Julio Jones on a 40-yard touchdown pass from Matt Ryan in the third quarter." Read more...

Abysmal Giants Embarrassed By Falcons, Shut Out For The First Time Since 1996

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/giants/abysmal_giants_shut_out_for_first_2UezhSmsWt0anPF7 ZLQKAO

Excerpt: "Matt Ryan threw three touchdowns passes and the Atlanta Falcons handed the New York Giants their first regular-season shutout since 1996, blowing out the defending Super Bowl champions 34-0 on Sunday.

Julio Jones caught a couple of scoring throws from Ryan, who broke his own franchise records for completions and passing yards in a season. He finished 23 of 28 for 270 yards.

The Falcons (12-2), who have already clinched the NFC South, moved a step closer to locking up home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs. One more win would lock it up.

Eli Manning threw two interceptions for New York (8-6), which came into the game with a one-game lead over Washington and Dallas in the NFC East. The Giants also went 0-for-3 on fourth down." Read more...

SITE LINK (http://www.nypost.com/sports/giants)

THE BERGEN RECORD

Giants' Notes: Loss Too Ugly For Tuck To Take

http://www.northjersey.com/sports/183740761_Giants_notes__Loss_too_ugly_for_Tuck_to_ take_ugly_to_take.html

Excerpt: "Justin Tuck badly wanted to go home and he can’t wait to get back on the field in Baltimore when the Giants play the Ravens next Sunday to erase the stinging loss they absorbed inside the Georgia Dome.In fact, Tuck told reporters after the game he would channel Dorothy from "Wizard of Oz" if he could."I wish I had some red shoes and I can wish myself right t

To next Sunday," Tuck said. "Because it can’t get here quick enough."

Giants honor victims


The Giants affixed a decal with the initials of Sandy Hook Elementary School — "SHES" — on their helmets to honor the victims of the tragedy in Newtown, Conn."Being close to home, the players were greatly upset about it," Giants coach Tom Coughlin said. "Many of the players have young children, so they can empathize with the parents who had young children killed. There was no one that escaped the effect of it, but that’s not an excuse for why we played the way we played today."

Snee smarting

RG Chris Snee came out of the game after injuring his hip in the second quarter. He was replaced by Jim Cordle."I’m sore and in some pain," said Snee, who returned in the third quarter before leaving for good when the score got out of hand. "I’ll find out more [today], but it would take a lot for me not to play. I tried to give it a go in the third. Coach thought it best if I came out at that point." Read more...

SITE LINK (http://www.northjersey.com/sports/pro_sports/football/)

NEW YORK TIMES

Falcons Rout Ensures Giants' Path To Playoffs Will Be Bumpy

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/17/sports/football/falcons-rout-giants-ensuring-a-bumpy-playoff-path.html?ref=football&_r=0


Excerpt: "All week, the Giants players said this year could be different. They had lived through the stress that came with spending the final month of last season with their tiptoes on the precipice and, after walloping the New Orleans Saints a week ago, it seemed reasonable to think that this time they really might make the finish a little less dramatic. Maybe, just maybe, they said, they could make it easier on their fans, their coaches and most importantly themselves.


Instead, it was only the Atlanta Falcons who showed Sunday that they are worthy of a new perspective. Often seen as pretenders among the N.F.L.’s elite because of poor postseason performances, the Falcons routed the Giants, 34-0, further establishing their dominance in the N.F.C. and dooming the Giants to the same old story of a white-knuckle endgame.

The Giants no longer hold a home playoff game in their hands. For at the same time as the Giants were getting shut out in the regular season for the first time since 1996, the Washington Redskins — without the wunderkind quarterback Robert Griffin III — beat the Cleveland Browns to move past the Giants and into first place in the N.F.C. East." Read more...


SITE LINK (http://www.nytimes.com/pages/sports/football/index.html)

WALL STREET JOURNAL


SITE LINK (http://online.wsj.com/public/page/news-sports-nfl.html)

GIANTS.COM

Giants Shut Out By Falcons; Turnovers Key

http://www.giants.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Giants-shutout-by-Falcons-Turnovers-Key/c01056d4-608c-4985-a7d0-a4217b7c04d4

The Giants might need help to get into the playoffs following Sunday's loss

Faced with a virtual must-win situation Sunday, the Giants suffered one of their worst and ugliest losses in memory.

Coming up short in all phases of the game, the Giants were dominated in a 27-0 loss to the Atlanta Falcons in the Georgia Dome. With two games remaining – at Baltimore and home against Philadelphia – the Giants might need help to get into the playoffs.

The Giants fell to 8-6 and depending on the outcomes of the games involving Washington and Dallas, they will still be in first place or will drop to second place in the NFC East. If they are tied for first or in second, they no longer control their division title destiny.

The Falcons improved to an NFC-best 12-2.

Atlanta scored on Matt Ryan touchdown passes of 12 yards to Tony Gonzalez and 40 yards to Julio Jones, Michael Turner’s one-yard touchdown run and Matt Bryant field goals of 38 and 19 yards.

Lawrence Tynes missed a field goal attempt and the Giants came up short on fourth-down conversion attempts three times.

The Falcons increased their lead to 24-0 on the first series of the second half when Ryan and Jones hooked up for a long touchdown pass. On first down, Jones lined up on the left side, ran past rookie cornerback Jayron Hosley and caught Ryan’s perfectly-thrown ball in the end zone.

The score capped an eight-play, 80-yard drive that included Turner’s 14-yard run and a 10-yard pass to Jones just prior to the touchdown.

On their next possession, the Giants drove to the Atlanta 25-yard line where, for the third time, they tried to convert a fourth-down opportunity. And for the fourth time they failed. Eli Manning ’s pass to Lregg Lumpkin was knocked down at the line by defensive lineman Jonathan Babineaux.

The Falcons then drove 73 yards to set up Bryant’s 19-yard field goal, which increased Atlanta’s lead to 27-0 with 10 seconds remaining in the third quarter.

The Giants trailed, 17-0, at the end of a first half in which Manning threw two interceptions, Tynes missed a 30-yard field goal and they twice came up short on fourth-down conversion attempts.

The 17-point halftime deficit was the Giants’ largest since they trailed at New Orleans, 21-3, on Nov. 28, 2011.

It was their first scoreless half since Nov. 6, 2011 at New England (where a 0-0 tie became a 24-20 Giants victory) and the first time they were shutout in the first half and trailed since Sept. 19, 2010 at Indianapolis, where they were down 24-0 and lost, 38-14.

Atlanta scored only three points in the second quarter, but it was still a bad 15 minutes for the Giants.

On the Giants’ second offense play of the quarter, Manning’s pass was intercepted – just as his second pass in the first quarter was. Safety Thomas DeCoud picked off the throw intended for Hakeem Nicks and returned it five yards to the Giants’ 27. But the Falcons lost a yard on Harry Douglas’ third-down end-around and Bryant came on to kick a 38-yard field goal.

On the Giants’ ensuing possession, recently-signed Kregg Lumpkin’s 40 rushing yards helped move the Giants move to the Falcons’ 32-yard line. But on fourth down, David WIlson ran off left tackle and was stopped for no gain.

The Giants forced an Atlanta punt and again put together an impressive series, starting at their own 10-yard line and traveling to the Falcons’ 11 – where they faced another fourth-and-one. Tom Coughlin eschewed a field goal attempt that could have given the Giants their first points and instead kept his offense on the field. But Manning’s pass for Victor Cruz fell incomplete.

The Giants trailed, 14-0, at the end of a first quarter that was as one-sided as the score indicated.

On the second play of the game, Manning’s pass for Nicks was intercepted by Asante Samuel, who returned the ball six yards to the Giants’ 16-yard line. It was the first time Manning’s first pass in a game was picked off since Nov. 1, 2009 at Philadelphia, where the perpetrator was Samuel.

Turner covered the 16 yards by himself, on runs of three, eight, four and one yard, the last off right guard for the touchdown and a 7-0 Atlanta lead just 2:28 into the game.

The Giants responded with a nice drive, moving from their own 20 to the Falcons’ 12-yard line. But Manning’s third-down pass fell incomplete and Lawrence Tynes was wide left on a 30-yard field goal, his shortest missed attempt in more than three years.

Atlanta took advantage of the miscue by driving 80 yards in 10 plays, including Ryan’s 12-yard touchdown pass to Gonzalez, who made a terrific leaping catch in the end zone with Will Hill directly in front of him. The big play on the series was a 37-yard pass to a wide open Harry Douglas up the left sideline. That gave Atlanta a first down at the Giants’ 11-yard line. Gonzalez scored to plays later.

D Struggles To Get Offense Back On Field

http://www.giants.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/D-struggles-to-get-offense-back-on-field/2d21842a-9f4c-47ae-b8b6-8d5cc360cc7b

The Giants' defense allowed a lopsided time-of-possession advantage for the Falcons

"Before they could break a sweat, the Giants had already turned the ball over once and allowed a touchdown to start the game against Atlanta. But, Lawrence Tynes the NFL’s leading scorer, was going to begin to right the ship on the ensuing possession with a makeable field goal, capping a 10-play, 68-yard drive.

However, Tynes’ 30-yard attempt went off course – wide left – and Atlanta drove for a touchdown and a 14-0 lead in the first quarter.

If there was a team to do it, the resilient Giants have proven they could climb out of such a hole. But it wouldn’t be the case in Atlanta. Not this week.

“I mean, we’ve come out of worse than 14-nothing,” said linebacker Chase Blackburn, who finished with seven tackles (one for a loss) and broke up a pass. “But at the same point, you don’t want to start that way. It’s a big strike to the team when things start happening that way, things start to snowball. But we’ve got to find a way. We’ve got a lot of character, a lot of leaders, a lot of veteran players on this team, and we’ve got to find a way to dig out and finish the game and play right the rest of the way.”

With two games remaining in the season, the Giants will have a lot to look over this week, especially how they allowed the Falcons to convert 9 of 13 third downs and control the ball for more than 38 minutes.

“Definitely not the game we were looking to come out here and put on display today,” Blackburn said. “They had three turnovers, we didn’t have any -- defensively, we didn’t create any. On third downs, we just couldn’t get off the field.”

Turnovers Mount For Giants In Atlanta

http://www.giants.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Turnovers-mount-for-Giants-in-Atlanta/28771afe-9084-477a-9c3f-1ae90f698d43

The Giants committed three turnovers in Sunday's loss, including one on the first drive of the game

"Turnovers and time of possession are important stats in any game. On the road, they often become that much more pressing factors in the outcome of a game.

The Giants, who were 3-0 all-time in the Georgia Dome entering Sunday, knew this. But knowing and doing are two different things.

On his first pass of the game – and second offensive play overall – Eli Manning threw an interception to cornerback Asante Samuel, which led to Atlanta’s first touchdown in a 34-0 rout of the Giants. A quarter later, Manning was picked off again by safety Thomas DeCoud, resulting in a Falcons field goal.

Fittingly, the Giants’ final offensive play was a lost fumble by running back Kregg Lumpkin.

“That’s football, and we didn’t come out today and play our best,” Manning said. “And you’ve got to give credit to Atlanta. They did a great job, but any time you turn the ball over three times and have three turnovers on downs, you’re putting yourself in a tough situation and we just didn’t take advantage of the opportunities that we were in.”

Additionally, the Giants, who entered Week 15 first in the NFC with a plus-16 turnover differential, were unable to generate any takeaways on defense. The Falcons were plus-6 heading into Sunday’s contest against the team that knocked them out of the playoffs last season.

And in that Wild Card game back in January, the Giants stopped Atlanta on three critical fourth-down conversion attempts. The Falcons returned the favor Sunday as New York was unsuccessful on three of their own attempts, turning the ball over on downs. Meanwhile, the Falcons converted 9 of 13 third downs and controlled the clock by more than 17 minutes (38:57 to 21:03)."

GIANTS 101

Atlanta Falcons Embarrass New York Giants 34 - 0; Giants Lose Control Of NFC East

http://www.giants101.com/2012/12/17/atlanta-falcons-embarrass-new-york-giants-34-0-big-blue-loses-control-of-nfc-east/

Excerpt: "Prior to kickoff on Sunday afternoon, Atlanta (http://www.giants101.com/tag/atlanta/) Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan said the team was "salty" over last year's 24-2 divisional playoff beatdown. He said their plan was to come out fast and not let off the gas … and that's exactly what they did as they humiliated the New York (http://www.giants101.com/tag/new-york/) Giants 34-0. And, to be quite honest, the game wasn't nearly as close as the score indicates.

Not only did the Giants lose the game, they also lost control of the NFC East (http://www.giants101.com/tag/nfc-east/)as both the Dallas Cowboys and the RGIII-less Washington Redskins won.With two games remaining, the Giants remain in control of their own playoff destiny, albeit t not the destiny they wanted. If they win out, they will earn a wildcard spot, but they'd need help to regain control of the NFC East (http://www.giants101.com/tag/nfc-east/).
“We should be better than them, both sides of the ball, flat out,”Osi Umenyiora (http://www.giants101.com/tag/osi-umenyiora/) said. “But we didn’t look that way today.”


The Giants have been Jekyll and Hyde all season. One moment they look like the best team in the NFL (http://www.giants101.com/tag/nfl/), and then they look like the worst. Rarely has there been any in between. But just how bad was it on Sunday? It was the worst loss in NFL (http://www.giants101.com/tag/nfl/) history by any defending Super Bowl champion." Read more...


SITE LINK (http://www.giants101.com/)

BIG BLUE VIEW

Falcons 34, Giants 0: Offensive Struggles Cost Giants

http://www.bigblueview.com/2012/12/16/3773202/falcons-34-giants-0-offensive-struggles-cost-the-giants

Excerpt: "The New York Giants (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/teams/new-york-giants) (8-6) are in must-win mode for the rest of the season, but they got shut out instead by the Atlanta Falcons (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/teams/atlanta-falcons) (12-2), losing in the Georgia Dome 34-0. It's the first time the Giants have been shut out in the regular season since 1996 (24-0 to the Philadelphia Eagles (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/teams/philadelphia-eagles)) in a game which looked the complete opposite of that NFC Wildcard game in January.

Matt Ryan was stellar, going 23-for-38 with 270 yards and three touchdowns. wide receiver Julio Jones (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/131119/julio-jones) also had six receptions for 74 yards and two touchdowns on the day. The defense struggled in the beginning and started to pick up their game a bit, but still failed to put real pressure on Ryan.

On the first attempted pass of the game, Eli Manning (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/2235/eli-manning) throws a pick to his old nemesis Asante Samuel (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/1698/asante-samuel) on a pass intended for Hakeem Nicks (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/71294/hakeem-nicks). The Falcons respond with Michael Turner (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/3034/michael-turner) rushing the ball into the endzone for a touchdown.

On their second drive the offensive line looked good with their blocking and giving Manning time to make plays, but the last two plays of the drive Manning had to rush passes and was hit on both. Lawrence Tynes (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/2407/lawrence-tynes) comes in for the 38-yard kick, but missed, and the score remains 7-0 Atlanta at that point.

The Falcons gained a lot of yardage on a pass to Douglas, burning Jayron Hosley (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/154922/jayron-hosley). Though Will Hill made good coverage, Ryan finds Tony Gonzalez in the endzone for a touchdown to make the score 14-0.

Manning gets sacked on the next drive and the Giants are forced to punt.Chase Blackburn (http://www.sbnation.com/nfl/players/2207/chase-blackburn) nearly picks off Ryan while making great coverage on Tony Gonzalez, which forces the Falcons to punt. Manning however throws his second interception of the game on a pass intended for Nicks. Thomas DeCoud made great coverage on Nicks and makes the pick." Read more...


SITE LINK (http://www.bigblueview.com/section/news)

SPORTING NEWS


SITE LINK (http://aol.sportingnews.com/)

GMENHQ

SITE LINK (http://gmenhq.com/)

YARDBARKER


SITE LINK (http://www.yardbarker.com/nfl/teams/new_york_giants/56)

INSIDE FOOTBALL

Giants Lay A Goose Egg In Uninspired, Sloppy 34 - 0 Loss To Falcons

http://insidefootball.com/blog/archives/5681

Excerpt: "The Atlanta Falcons needed a win to clinch home field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs, and would have loved nothing more than to get it against the very same team that knocked them out of last year’s playoff tournament with a 24-2 win.

The Giants, meanwhile, needed to keep winning to stay in control of their destiny what with Washington and Dallas breathing down their neck for the division title.

In the end, the Giants zoned out as quarterback Eli Manning put his team in a hole with two interceptions that led to 10 Falcons points while the giants defense couldn’t’ get out of its own way en route to a 34-0 embarrassing loss to the AFC South champions.

The Falcons jumped out to a 14-0 lead after just 14 minutes of play as Manning was picked off on his very first pass from scrimmage by defensive back Asante Samuel, who returned it to the Giants 16. It was the third time in his career that Manning’s very first pass of the game was picked off, and the second time by Samuel, who last did it as a member of the Eagles.

From there, it was all downhill for the Giants, who were unable to get any consistency on offense, their lone legitimate scoring drive resulting in an inexplicable botched 30-yard field goal attempt by kicker Lawrence Tynes, who seems to have drastically cooled off in that department after starting out perfect earlier in the year.

The Falcons, who by this time were already up 7-0, converted Tynes’ missed field goal into a 12-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Matt Ryan to by tight end Tony Gonzalez to make it 14-0." Read more...


SITE LINK (http://www.insidefootball.com/)

THE RED ZONE.



SITE LINK (http://www.theredzone.org/)

GIANTSFOOTBALLBLOG


SITE LINK (http://www.giantsfootballblog.com/)


NFL.COM


SITE LINK (http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkgiants/profile?team=NYG)

SI.COM


SITE LINK (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/nfl/teams/new-york-giants/?eref=sinav)

ESPN.COM

Victor Cruz, Giants Play With Heavy Hearts

http://espn.go.com/new-york/nfl/story/_/id/8753444/victor-cruz-new-york-giants-play-heavy-hearts-atlanta-falcons

Excerpt: "said he was saddened by the whole Georgia Dome experience, disappointed that he was held to three catches and 15 yards on a day he wanted to go deep like never before. Cruz was playing for a much larger cause than first place in the NFC East on Sunday, and the box score said he had come up painfully small.

The box score was a liar. Up in Newtown, Conn., inside the home of the late, great Jack Pinto, the devastated family of the 6-year-old fan who moved Cruz to tears, moved him to turn his uniform into a shrine, understood why the receiver was a big winner in a 34-0 defeat.

A woman who answered a call to Pinto's home and who identified herself as Jack's grandmother said the boy's parents needed more time and space before talking to a reporter about Friday morning at Sandy Hook Elementary School. But before she excused herself, the boy's grandmother did want to say one thing about the Giant who had spoken with Dean and Tricia Pinto and who had written tributes to their murdered son on his cleats and gloves.

"What he did was a wonderful, wonderful, incredible thing," Jack's grandmother said, "and we're so blessed that the entire world feels the same way."

So it really didn't matter that Cruz lost a football game to the Atlanta Falcons (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/atl/atlanta-falcons), or that the Giants found themselves shut out in a regular-season game for the first time since 1996.

America is a broken place right now, broken over Sandy Hook, and the country needs simple acts of kindness a lot more than it needs the weekly holiday that is an NFL Sunday.

All the Giants did their part, carrying the elementary school's initials on their helmets and on Tom Coughlin's cap, and observing a moment of silence in their Saturday team meeting and on the field before Sunday's kickoff. But Cruz became the face of his wounded team, the Giants' unofficial ambassador to Newtown.

He was Jack Pinto's favorite, and the child's parents told Cruz that Jack would be buried in the jersey he wore while watching the Giants on TV. No. 80 in your program, No. 1 in a lost boy's heart.

"I told them I was honored," Cruz said. "I couldn't even express to them how great that made me feel, and how big of an honor that is. … No words describe the type of feeling you get when a kid idolizes you so much that they want to, you know, unfortunately, like put him in the casket with your jersey on." Read more...



##


Giants Shocked, Yet "Confidence Is Not Shaken"

http://espn.go.com/new-york/nfl/story/_/id/8753373/new-york-giants-say-confidence-not-shaken-atlanta-blowout

Excerpt: "After the worst shellacking a defending Super Bowl champion has ever taken,Justin Tuck (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/8488/justin-tuck) sat at his locker stall, staring at his folded hands, trying to figure out what had just happened.

"What is the girl in 'The Wizard of Oz'?" Tuck asked. "Dorothy? I wish I had some red shoes and I can wish myself right to next Sunday. because it can't get here quick enough."

The New York Giants (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/nyg/new-york-giants) aren't in the Canyon of Heroes anymore. In fact, they probably wished they were in Kansas -- or anywhere but Atlanta's Georgia Dome on Sunday.

The Atlanta Falcons (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/atl/atlanta-falcons), a team that barely scored two points against them in last season's wild-card game, punched the Giants in the mouth harder than Juan Manuel Marquez did to poor Manny Pacquiao.The only good thing the Giants can take from this 34-0 debacle is that unlike what Marquez did to Pac-Man, the Falcons didn't knock the Giants' playoff hopes out cold.The Giants (8-6) fell flat on their face and lost sole possession of the NFC East lead. But they still are playoff bound if they win their final two games, at Baltimore and against Philadelphia at home.While the Giants opened the door and invited theWashington Redskins (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/wsh/washington-redskins) and Dallas Cowboys (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/dal/dallas-cowboys) to claim the division, Tom Coughlin's team controls its own destiny, in terms of the wild card, due to its conference record.It will be no easy task, winning in Baltimore and beating Philadelphia in what could be Andy Reid's final game. But the Giants have been down this road before.Last year, after losing a listless 23-10 game to the Redskins in Week 15, the Giants went into "All in" mode and beat the Jets and Cowboys to win the NFC East and make the playoffs.So even though Tuck didn't hesitate for a second in saying this was the worst he's seen the Giants in a regular-season game, the team's defensive captain has seen how his team can bounce off the mat and get back up."We have had crappy games like this and came right back out and played like Super Bowl champions," Tuck said. "No, my confidence is not shaken." Read more...

Matt Ryan Throws 3 TDs As Falcons Hand Giants First Shut Out Since 1996

http://sports.espn.go.com/new-york/nfl/recap?gameId=321216001

Excerpt: "The Atlanta Falcons (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/atl/atlanta-falcons) sent a message to all the skeptics with a resounding victory over the defending Super Bowl champions.Matt Ryan (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/11237/matt-ryan) threw three touchdowns passes and the Falcons defense handed New York its first regular-season shutout since 1996, stifling the Giants 34-0 on Sunday.Julio Jones (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/13982/julio-jones) caught a couple of scoring throws from Ryan, who broke his own franchise records for completions and passing yards in a season.

Matty Ice finished 23 of 28 for 270 yards.The Falcons (12-2), who have already clinched the NFC South, moved a step closer to locking up home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs. One more win would ensure that any postseason contests before the Super Bowl are held at the Georgia Dome

.Eli Manning (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/5526/eli-manning) threw two interceptions for New York (8-6), which dropped into a first-place tie with Washington in the NFC South. Dallas has a chance to make it a three-way tie later in the day, hosting Pittsburgh.

The Giants also went 0-for-3 on fourth down and missed a short field goal.Despite their lofty record, Atlanta has received plenty of criticism for winning ugly against inferior opponents. A 30-20 loss to last-place Carolina the previous week only seemed to reinforce the notion that the Falcons are headed for another short stay in the playoffs. They have yet to win a postseason game since Ryan took over as the quarterback in 2008, going 0-3.But one thing the Falcons never seem to do anymore is lose two straight games. They extended the NFL's longest active streak since consecutive defeats to 49 games, going back to the 2009 season.

For the Giants, it was a miserable performance when they desperately needed a win, at a time of year when they normally play some of their best football.Manning threw his first pick on the second play of scrimmage, setting up a quick Atlanta touchdown. Coach Tom Coughlin made a curious call late in the first half, passing up another short field goal attempt when his team was almost 2 yards shy of the marker.

Asante Samuel (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/4578/asante-samuel) batted down a short pass intended for Victor Cruz (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/13553/victor-cruz), sending Atlanta to the locker room with a commanding 17-0 lead and all the momentum.But even if the Giants had taken the field goal, it's probably wouldn't have made much difference.

The tone in this one was set right away.When Manning attempted to hit Hakeem Nicks (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/12586/hakeem-nicks) on a short pass to the right, Samuel stepped in to make the interception and return it to the Giants 16. From there, Michael Turner (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/5679/michael-turner) ran it four straight times, the last of those a 1-yard plunge that gave Atlanta a 7-0 lead less than 3 minutes into the game." Read more...

Rapid Reaction: Falcons 34, Giants 0

http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/giants/post/_/id/20745/rapid-reaction-falcons-34-giants

Excerpt: "The NFC wild-card playoff rematch between the Giants and Falcons was a complete mismatch as Atlanta destroyed the defending champs 34-0 (http://espn.go.com/new-york/nfl/recap?gameId=321216001).

What it means: The Giants continued their maddeningly inconsistent ways by following up their big win over the Saints with an embarrassing loss at Atlanta.

The defense had no answers for the Falcons' offense, got little pressure on Matt Ryan (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/11237/matt-ryan) and couldn't cover Julio Jones (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/13982/julio-jones). Eli Manning (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/5526/eli-manning) threw two picks in the first half, David Wilson (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/14887/david-wilson) couldn't get going and the Giants were stopped cold on fourth-and-short three times.

The NFC East is now officially up for grabs.

Ugly start: Manning threw two interceptions in the first half, one on the second offensive play of the game when Asante Samuel (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/4578/asante-samuel) picked him off at the Giants' 22 and returned it 6 yards to set up a Michael Turner (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/5679/michael-turner) touchdown run.

On the Giants' next drive, Lawrence Tynes (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/3413/lawrence-tynes) missed a 30-yarder and the Falcons made them pay again. Ryan hit Tony Gonzalez (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/1231/tony-gonzalez) on a touchdown pass to push the Falcons up 14-0.

In the second quarter, Tom Coughlin went for it on fourth-and-1 twice and was denied both times. At the Falcons' 32, Wilson ran to his left side only to be stuffed. Then with less than two minutes left, the Giants went for it again at the Falcons' 11, only to see Manning's pass to Victor Cruz (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/13553/victor-cruz) get broken up.

The Falcons were able to go into the half with a 17-0 lead.

The Hokie rookie:Jayron Hosley (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/14983/jayron-hosley) started at corner for the injured Prince Amukamara (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/13975/prince-amukamara) and had a tough day. He bit on a Ryan pump fake that led to a 37-yard pass to Harry Douglas (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/11318/harry-douglas). Hosley pulled up lame and injured his ankle on that play but returned.

He had a nice breakup on a deep pass to Roddy White (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/8442/roddy-white) but later gave up a 40-yard touchdown to Jones, who ran right by him to put the Falcons up 24-0 with 11:31 to go in the third quarter. " Read more...

Falcons Topple Giants - VIDEO

http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=8752524


Wilson's Struggles In First Start

http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/giants/post/_/id/20755/wilson-struggles-in-first-start

Excerpt: "There was a notable difference between how David Wilson (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/14887/david-wilson)'s first start began for him and how it went for his team in Sunday's 34-0 loss to the Falcons (http://espn.go.com/new-york/nfl/recap?gameId=321216001).

The rookie running back from Virginia Tech opened strong in replacing the injured Ahmad Bradshaw (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/10693/ahmad-bradshaw). He had 47 yards on six carries in the first quarter, but he finished the same way the Giants played overall.

Wilson's final six carries were good for just 8 yards, although he said he didn't notice the Falcons making any changes on defense.

"I didn't really notice a difference; we've just got to bring it, be more physical," he said. "They played harder than us today."

Wilson finished with 55 yards on 12 carries.

After New York forced a punt early in the second period, they started a drive at their own 20-yard-line while trailing 14-0.

Falcons defensive end John Abraham (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/2144/john-abraham)dropped Wilson for a 1-yard loss on first down, and Eli Manning (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/5526/eli-manning) threw his second interception on the next play.

Kregg Lumpkin (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/11766/kregg-lumpkin) replaced Wilson on the Giants' next possession, and had some success with three carries for 39 yards as Big Blue moved to the Atlanta 33.

That was about it for the Giants' running attack for the rest of the game. At that point Wilson and Lumpkin had combined to rush 10 times for 85 yards.

From then on, they rushed 11 times for 12 yards. Lumpkin's final six carries went for 3 total yards.

That downward slide began on second-and-2 from the 33, where Lumpkin was stopped for no gain behind right tackle. Then, he gained just a yard behind right guard.

Wilson re-entered as Giants coach Tom Coughlin opted to go for it on fourth-and-1 from the 32.

Wilson went left, the Falcons stretched it out, and linebacker Sean Weatherspoon (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/13243/sean-weatherspoon) led the way as Atlanta dropped the play for no gain. " Read more...

Cruz Plans Trip To Visit Family In Newtown

http://espn.go.com/blog/new-york/giants/post/_/id/20795/cruz-plans-trip-to-visit-newtown-family

Excerpt: "New York Giants (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/nyg/new-york-giants) star Victor Cruz (http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/_/id/13553/victor-cruz) plans to visit the family of one of the children killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School, to present the cleats and gloves the wide receiver wore in Sunday's game with the Atlanta Falcons (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/atl/atlanta-falcons).

Cruz used the equipment to pay tribute to Jack Pinto, 6. Cruz was the favorite player of the young Giants fan, who was among those murdered by a gunman Friday in Newtown, Conn.

After an emotional phone conversation with Pinto's parents and 11-year-old brother Saturday night, Cruz wrote "R.I.P. Jack Pinto" on one of his game-day shoes and Jack's name and the words "My Hero" on the other. He also wrote "This one is 4 u!" on one of his gloves.

"I definitely plan on giving my cleats and gloves to the family. (I'm) going to try to head down there sometime this week," Cruz said after the Giants' 34-0 defeat. "Just spend some time with them, talk to them a little bit, and get to know them a little bit. ... I wanted to go down there and pay my respects in person.”

Cruz said Dean and Tricia Pinto, Jack's parents, told him they planned on burying their son in Cruz's No. 80 jersey. "I told them I was honored," Cruz said. "I couldn't even express to them how great that made me feel, and how big of an honor that is." Read more...



SITE LINK (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/nyg/new-york-giants)

NBCSPORTS

Falcons Roll To Huge Win Over Giants

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2012/12/16/falcons-roll-to-huge-win-over-giants/related/

Excerpt: "The Falcons won’t shut up their many doubters until they win a game in the playoffs, but they likely got a few more people believing they could pull that off with their performance against the Giants on Sunday.

Atlanta intercepted Eli Manning (http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/1657/eli-manning)’s first pass, turned it into a Michael Turner (http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/2641/michael-turner) touchdown and never looked back in a 34-0 rout of the team that humiliated them in a 24-2 playoff loss last season. The Falcons held the Giants scoreless in the first half thanks to another pick by Manning, a missed field goal and two stops on attempted fourth down conversions, but the second half had very little to do with the Giants.

The Falcons scored on their first possession of the third quarter when Julio Jones (http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/6475/julio-jones)toasted Giants cornerback Jayron Hosley (http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/7439/jayron-hosley) for a 40-yard touchdown, stuffed the Giants on another fourth down and then pretty much went into cruise control as the Giants seemed to be content to take their beating while turning their attention to next week’s game with the Ravens. If either the Redskins or Cowboys win on Sunday, the Giants are out of first place and the tight Wild Card race in the NFC will make that trip to Baltimore a very necessary win for the defending champs." Read more...

SITE LINK (http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2012/07/19/jets-reportedly-plan-to-use-tim-tebow-as-red-zone-quarterback/related/)

CBSSPORTS

Falcons Destroy Champ Giants, Near Home-Field Clinch

http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/gametracker/recap/NFL_20121216_NYG@ATL/falcons-destroy-champ-giants-near-homefield-clinch

Excerpt: "The Atlanta Falcons (http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/teams/page/ATL/atlanta-falcons) wanted to make a statement.

Boy, did they deliver one Sunday to the defending Super Bowl champions.

Coming off an ugly loss and criticized for failing to impress even when they won, the Falcons turned in their most well-rounded performance of the season with the playoffs approaching. Matt Ryan (http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/players/playerpage/420095/matt-ryan) threw three touchdowns passes and the defense handed New York its first regular-season shutout since 1996, routing the Giants (http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/teams/page/NYG/new-york-giants) 34-0.

"We love the haters, man," said Falcons cornerback Asante Samuel (http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/players/playerpage/396071/asante-samuel), who had the first of two interceptions against Eli Manning (http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/players/playerpage/493004/eli-manning). "The haters keep us going. So keep your hate coming. We love it. It makes us play with a chip on our shoulder."

It sure showed.

Julio Jones (http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/players/playerpage/1623794/julio-jones) caught a couple of scoring throws from Ryan, who broke his own franchise records for completions and passing yards in a season. Matty Ice finished 23 of 28 for 270 yards.

"I felt like I was seeing the field well," Ryan said.

The Falcons (12-2), who have already clinched the NFC South, moved a step closer to home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs. One more win would ensure that any postseason contests before the Super Bowl are held at the Georgia Dome.

Manning had his lowest-rated game since 2007 for New York (8-6), which dropped into a first-place tie with Washington in the NFC South. Dallas had a chance to make it a three-way tie later in the day, hosting Pittsburgh." Read more...



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PROFOOTBALLWEEKLY

NFC East Spin Cycle: Three-Team Race In NFC East

http://www.profootballweekly.com/2012/12/17/nfc-east-spin-cycle-three-team-race-in-nfc-east

Excerpt: "What a race we have. The Cowboys and Redskins both won in Week 15, the Giants lost big on the road, and with two weeks to play we have three 8-6 teams atop the division. (Pity the poor Eagles, who likely watched the madness from home on Sunday after their blowout loss on Thursday.) The madness is just beginning.

GIANTS
What we learned: It’s Week 15 and we still have no real idea which Giants team will come to play each week. As a result, the division lead is gone. The Giants went from first place to third, by tiebreakers, after losing 34-0 at Atlanta and watching the Redskins and Cowboys win. Now we know why Tom Coughlin thought the Giants would need to win its final four games to keep the NFC East crown. But Sunday, the Giants had very little pass rush, couldn’t cover Julio Jones and were a combined 4-of-13 on third and fourth downs in an embarrassingly bad loss, even to a team as accomplished as the Falcons.

What’s in store next: The Giants will attempt to pick themselves up in a road game against the Ravens, who clinched a playoff spot in Week 15. They’ll still play hard because the AFC North remains up for grabs and plus, well, they are just not playing that well. It will be the second time this season that an NFL team (the Bengals are the other) has faced Peyton Manning and the Broncos and Eli Manning and the Giants in back-to-back games. The Giants followed up a loss to the Steelers with a loss to the Bengals on the road, so the Ravens cannot be taken lightly.

What the heck? Fifty-two points scored one week, zero the next. How exactly does that happen? Well, it actually happened on defense, believe it or not. The Falcons picked on rookie CB Jayron Hosley in his first start and put the Giants in a 17-0 hole less than 20 minutes into the game. That put the Giants in a pass-first mode and took David Wilson (eight first-half rushes for 46 yards) out of the mix after a promising start. He finished with only 12 carries and one catch. Manning was picked off twice — both times throwing to Hakeem Nicks — and new RB Kregg Lumpkin lost a fumble. Defensively, the Giants never could get that cauterizing turnover or tide-shifting play. So, you can’t blame the fact that the Giants were blanked solely on the offense. The defense didn’t help either." Read more...


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Falcons Make Statement By Shutting Out Giants

http://www.profootballweekly.com/2012/12/16/falcons-make-statement-by-shutting-out-giants

Excerpt: "The Atlanta Falcons wanted to make a statement.

Boy, did they deliver one Sunday to the defending Super Bowl champions.

Coming off an ugly loss and criticized for failing to impress even when they won, the Falcons turned in their most well-rounded performance of the season with the playoffs approaching. Matt Ryan threw three touchdowns passes and the defense handed New York its first regular-season shutout since 1996, routing the Giants 34-0.

``We love the haters, man,'' said Falcons cornerback Asante Samuel, who had the first of two interceptions against Eli Manning. ``The haters keep us going. So keep your hate coming. We love it. It makes us play with a chip on our shoulder.''

It sure showed.

Julio Jones caught a couple of scoring throws from Ryan, who broke his own franchise records for completions and passing yards in a season. Matty Ice finished 23 of 28 for 270 yards.

``I felt like I was seeing the field well,'' Ryan said.

The Falcons (12-2), who have already clinched the NFC South, moved a step closer to home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs. One more win would ensure that any postseason contests before the Super Bowl are held at the Georgia Dome.

Manning had his lowest-rated game since 2007 for New York (8-6), which dropped into a first-place tie with Washington in the NFC South. Dallas had a chance to make it a three-way tie later in the day, hosting Pittsburgh.

The Giants also went 0-for-3 on fourth down and missed a short field goal.

``Atlanta was very, very good. We were very, very bad,'' New York coach Tom Coughlin said. ``There's no excuse for what happened here.''

Despite their lofty record, Atlanta has received plenty of criticism for struggling to beat inferior opponents. A 30-20 loss to last-place Carolina the previous week only seemed to reinforce the notion that the Falcons are headed for another short stay in the playoffs. They have yet to win a postseason game since Ryan took over as the quarterback in 2008, going 0-3.

But one thing the Falcons never seem to do anymore is lose two straight games. They extended the NFL's longest active streak since consecutive defeats to 49 games, going back to the 2009 season.

``Our focus was heightened from other weeks,'' coach Mike Smith said. ``We've got a lot of great leaders and mentors in that locker room. They took the message from the meetings and took it out on the field.''

After thoroughly dominating the Giants, the Falcons have surely sent a resounding message to the rest of the league: beware of this team in the playoffs.

``Last week everybody was talking smack about us,'' defensive end John Abraham said. ``We just continue what we're doing.''

For the Giants, it was a miserable performance when they controlled their own destiny, at a time of year when they normally play some of their best football.

Manning threw his first pick on the second play of scrimmage, setting up a quick Atlanta touchdown. Coughlin made a curious call late in the first half, passing up another short field goal attempt when his team was almost 2 yards shy of the marker. Samuel batted down a short pass intended for Victor Cruz, sending Atlanta to the locker room with a commanding 17-0 lead and all the momentum.

``I was thinking we needed to engender a lift for our sideline,'' Coughlin said. ``That did not work out either.''

Nothing did." Read more...

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MISCELLANEOUS

Old Giant
12-17-2012, 07:54 AM
No need to read about it RF, it was there for all to see.
That was a "Yale Bowl" worthy performance-shameful.

Thanks and time to wait for redemption against Baltimore-I hope.

RoanokeFan
12-17-2012, 08:15 AM
No need to read about it RF, it was there for all to see.
That was a "Yale Bowl" worthy performance-shameful.

Thanks and time to wait for redemption against Baltimore-I hope.

We live to fight another day

GameTime
12-17-2012, 09:34 AM
Thanks Ro....

ashleymarie
12-17-2012, 10:44 AM
Thanks Ro

RoanokeFan
12-17-2012, 11:33 AM
Thanks Ro....

Tough game

RoanokeFan
12-17-2012, 11:33 AM
Thanks Ro

Wish it were better news

BigBlue1971
12-17-2012, 01:14 PM
thanks Roanoke!

rough day! at least it wasnt one of those "almost heart attack" losses!

BeatYale
12-17-2012, 05:29 PM
Thanks bro.

Mod_C
12-17-2012, 06:23 PM
thanks Roanoke! rough day! at least it wasnt one of those "almost heart attack" losses! Speak for yourself. :)

RoanokeFan
12-17-2012, 06:25 PM
Thanks bro. You're welcome

RoanokeFan
12-17-2012, 06:27 PM
thanks Roanoke! rough day! at least it wasnt one of those "almost heart attack" losses! Very tough

Broadway Blue
12-17-2012, 07:00 PM
Thanks RF!

RoanokeFan
12-17-2012, 07:27 PM
Thanks RF! You're welcome