Not much went well for the New York Giants in their home opener on Monday night against the Detroit Lions. As if taking the loss was not rough enough, Giants head coach Ben McAdoo shifted the blame to his two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback, Eli Manning.
Manning’s game was worth of some criticism, but for a second-year head coach to drive the bus over his starting quarterback like that after two games was quite a development from the Giants. But Manning has taken plenty of hits over his career, both on and off the field, so the comments from his head coach have not appeared to bother him, as the Giants look to rebound this weekend on the road against the Philadelphia Eagles. Manning has seen the ups and downs of a season before and is not getting himself involved in a war of words with McAdoo at this point in time.
“It’s part of being in the NFL,” Manning said, as noted by Tara Sullivan of The Record. “You can’t be sensitive and I think everyone’s gotten very sensitive — players and everybody. If someone says anything negative about you, or you did something wrong, then you’ve got a problem. Coach McAdoo and I have a great relationship. I think he understands that — I told him when he first got here. I enjoy being coached, if I screw something up, let me know. I want to be coached, so we talked about things and there’s some things I’ve got to do that I’ve got to do better at.”
Credit Manning for being upfront about his relationship with his head coach and being able to take the public criticism the way he has. But one has to wonder what’s going on behind closed doors and inside the mind of Manning. Even the most PR-savvy of players has to have a part of them that questions those who hurl the criticisms so publicly.
The Giants’ struggles on offense do not actually begin with the quarterback, but with those assigned the job to protect him. The Giants’ offensive line has been a mess in the first two games of the season, allowing Manning to be sacked eight times and having the running game have an NFL-worst 48.5 rushing yards per game. It doesn’t matter how much talent you have at the skill positions in football if you do not have a stable offensive line to provide any protection or time to develop a play. McAdoo knows his offensive line needs work but criticized Manning for not making better decisions to bail out his line. That’s not entirely fair for any quarterback when playing behind a line this horrid.
The offensive line is so bad, it has caused ESPN Radio host Don La Greca to blow a gasket.
— David Santana (@dsantana310) September 19, 2017
This week the Giants take on the Eagles on the road. The Eagles are fourth in the NFL with eight sacks recorded. And just as a reminder, the Eagles’ offensive line has not been great either, with a nearly equally weak running game and eight sacks allowed on Carson Wentz. This weekend’s NFC East battle could be messy.