This might be a good time to resurrect that refrain. The Giants today returned to work looking forward to a final six-game stretch that got much more difficult while they rested on their bye.
While they spent a weekend without a game to play, the 6-4 Giants saw their lead in the NFC East cut to a single game when Dallas rallied from a 13-0 deficit to defeat Cleveland in overtime. The Cowboys improved to 5-5 and could move within a half-game of the Giants when they host Washington on Thursday.
The Giants return to action Sunday night at home against the Green Bay Packers, who yesterday won their fifth consecutive game, 24-20, in Detroit. Indeed, each of the Giants’ next five opponents celebrated victories on Sunday – Green Bay, Washington, New Orleans, Atlanta and Baltimore. Those teams are a combined 33-17 (.660). The Giants will end their season at home against Philadelphia, which is currently 3-7 but has defeated the Giants in eight of their last nine meetings.
“It’s about how you finish,” wide receiver
No team has a more difficult final six weeks than the Giants, who look forward to meeting that challenge head on.
“That’s what it’s all about,” coach Tom Coughlin said today. “You’ve got it to this point. It’s certainly in our hands, in our own control. We have a one-game lead in the division. We play some very good football teams down the stretch here, but that’s what it is. It’s a stretch. We’re excited about that part of it. We look forward to it; one game at a time.”
“Everyone knows about this vaunted six-game schedule,” defensive end
The good news for the Giants is that owning a lead puts them in control of their own destiny.
“That’s the way we like it,” Nicks said. “We don’t want to have to depend on anybody for anything, so we’ve just got to go out there and take it one week at a time and prepare well and play well.”
Like millions of Giants fans, Coughlin spent most of Sunday in front of a television.
“Watched a lot of football yesterday, as you all did, I’m sure,” Coughlin told reporters after leading the Giants through practice at the Timex Performance Center. “Got excited, got upset, got excited, got all the emotions in play, but we’re excited to be back on the field and seeing all of our guys again. Hopefully they’re well rested and ready to go.”
The Giants will try to break a two-game losing streak when they face the Packers. In their final two games before the bye, they lost at home to Pittsburgh (24-20) and dropped a 31-13 decision to the Bengals in Cincinnati. Before that game, the Giants had a 2.5-game lead in the NFC East. A Cowboys win and a Giants loss would leave them tied with five games remaining. The teams split their season series.
“It’s crazy how quickly things are flying by and how things can change quickly,” guard
They’ll have to battle on Sunday. Not only are the Packers red-hot, they’ll be looking to gain some revenge against a Giants team that eliminated them from the playoffs when Green Bay was the top seed in the conference last season.
Of course, the Giants are accustomed to these late-season challenges. And they’re about to face six more in the coming weeks.
“Six games left, it’s a six-game season,” wide receiver
“You just focus on the next game,” quarterback
They will need that and more against some of the NFL’s best teams.
“He’s trying to get back to it,” Coughlin said. “It’s probably good for him to be out there. We’ll see what he’s like tomorrow and Wednesday; see how much both Jacquian (Williams, who also has an injured knee) and Kenny can do.”
Phillips thought he was going to play earlier this month, but seems more confident of lining up on Sunday.
“I felt good about Pittsburgh,” Phillips said, “but I feel better about this week.”
*The New York Giants and New York Cares will host their fifteenth annual Coat Drive this Sunday. Giants Fans are encouraged to donate their gently worn coats by bringing them to either of the Fed Ex trucks parked in front of the MetLife and Verizon Gates prior to the game, or to New York Cares volunteers who will be at every entrance gate. New York Cares is a non-profit organization that helps warm thousands of men, women and children by providing winter coats to homeless shelters, community organizations, centers for battered women, and agencies serving senior citizens across the metropolitan area. Donations are more appreciated than ever before.