Excerpt: "It didn’t take long for the panic to begin swirling. The truth is, it never does. One loss by the Giants last Sunday set off alarm bells inside and outside of their practice facility.
It didn’t even matter that the loss followed four wins in a row.“It doesn’t matter if you won 3 0 in a row,” defensive end Justin Tuck said last week. “You lose a game, there’s going to be that (awful) feeling about losing that game.”
And as quarterback Eli Manning added, “The only way to get that bad taste out of your mouth is to go out there and play better.”
That’s exactly what the suddenly desperate-looking Giants (6-3) hope to do against the Bengals (3-5) at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati on Sunday afternoon.
The defending Super Bowl champions may still be sitting pretty after losing a non-conference game to the Pittsburgh Steelers last week. And they may still have a commanding 2½-game lead in the NFC East after all four division teams lost last weekend.
But all the Giants could think about this week was what Tom Coughlin admitted was a “soft” performance by his defense, and an offensive slump that even offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride admitted was “jarring.” A team that looked like it was gaining momentum one week earlier is suddenly perceived to be slumping." Read more...