NY Sports Day
Joe McDonald

McDonald: Not So Fast, One Win Doesn’t Change The Big Picture For Eli Manning and the Giants

David Pokress/NYSD

This win doesn’t change a thing.

Just because Eli Manning turned back the clock to 2010, doesn’t mean the Giants are out of the woods after winning 27-23 in San Francisco.

Oh, sure it feels good and a win is a win, but remember the Giants beat another 2-7 team to improve their record to 2-7.

So yeah, you had a happy team and coach after last night’s game and for a night things looked up.

“It means a lot, and that’s kind of what I told the guys this week,” Manning said. “I said, ‘We’ve worked too hard not to be rewarded with wins.’ We’ve kind of stayed true to the course, though, and each week prepare hard, practiced well, play hard in games, and we just weren’t able to get some of the outcomes or make some of the plays we needed to win. And today we were able to do that. We scored some touchdowns early instead of settling for field goals, a couple on third-and-long, which is tough. So, that was great. That was big and kept the game close.

“Defense did a good job getting us some turnovers and then did a great job making them settle for a field goal at the end, giving us enough time. A touchdown wins a football game, and we were able to come back and make the plays that we needed to win.”

Sure, it feels good and you need to smile for Eli, but all this game does is give Manning another week to see if there is something there or if a game against the 49ers is just that – a one-off in a miserable season.

Sam Francisco didn’t have any type of pass rush and allowed Manning to stay in the pocket. That allowed the 37 year-old to have good reads and not rush passes. He’s not going to enjoy the same soft defense next week with Tampa Bay coming into town and old friend Jason Pierre-Paul with something to prove.

No, last night was the warmup, while next week would be a better test, even though Tampa is 3-6 and losers of three straight after a good start.

If Eli wins there, then he gets another start, but all of this is putting off the inevitable. Research and odds tell you the Giants are going to have a long second half and Odell Beckham’s prediction of running the table is just a pipe dream.

So, Shurmur must stay the course here and make time for rookie Kyle Lauletta. Over the next seven games, he needs to get some significant playing time, even if that means Manning needs to not start a game or two or take a seat in the second half of a couple of matches.

In a perfect world, it probably would have been better if the Giants lost this game and Lauletta would get the start against the Bucs, because it would have been a decent situation for him to learn. It’s not a team that would be real tough, but not a pushover either.

Yet, you have to believe Manning will still get the start, especially after Shurmur gave him the win or else mantra.

There’s still a lot of football left in the season, so feel good for one day and don’t let this win go to your head.


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