Excerpt: "As the Baltimore Ravens begin in their year-long reign as the newly crowned Super Bowl Champions, the New York Giants, who, after failing to build on a 6-2 start to their 2012 season only to find themselves without a chance to defend their world title won one year ago today, are still left wondering what could have been.
With the entire team still searching for answers on why, in the second half of what ended up a 9-7 season that saw uninspired losses to the Falcons and those same world champion Ravens, punter Steve Weatherford thinks there just weren’t enough plays made when the opportunities were there.
“I thought, for the most part, the energy at our practices and in our games was good,” Weatherford said by phone as he was en route to a recent speaking engagement. “But I felt like the thing that was missing most from the special season that we had in 2011 that we didn’t always have in 2012 was the execution.”
He noted that the personnel that the Giants fielded in 2011 down the stretch when they rolled all the way through to the Super Bowl XLVI championship was, for the most part, the same as what they had in 2012. And he opined that the coaching and game plans were just as solid in terms of putting guys into the best position to win games.So why was it that the game day execution was, at times, absent?
“That’s the million-dollar question,” Weatherford said. “Again, we kept pretty much the same team, so when times got tough last year and we needed a comeback, (quarterback) Eli Manning was always there, and he always delivered.”And there lies part of the problem. According to Weatherford, Manning was still very much the same clutch player, who often times put the offense in a position to succeed. But because of Manning’s past fourth-quarter heroics, Weatherford believes that maybe some of his teammates took it for granted that the quarterback had an endless amount of miracles that would bail them out of trouble." Read more...