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Five questions with the Giants



This week I exchanged questions with Ed over at Big Blue View to catch up on all things Giants ahead of this weekend's Sunday Night Football matchup

Do you find the fact that it's week 10 and the Eagles and Giants are about to play for the first time as odd as I do?

Yes, it is very odd. It will, however, make for some fun the second half of the season. Giants still have two games with Philly and games at Dallas and Washington, so it won't be easy.
I was surprised to find that the Eagles are actually favored in this game by 3 points. Despite the fact that the game is in Philadelphia, it's interesting to see any 7-1 team underdogs in a game. Do you think they should be underdogs, or is this a slight against the Giants?
This is not really a huge surprise to me. If you figure the home team always gets three points, it's basically a pick 'em game, and I would say that's about right. I know the Eagles are good, and I know it's always incredibly difficult for the Giants in Philly. I don't see it as a slight, I see it as recognition that the Eagles are a very good team.
Plaxico Burress has been the big national story related to the Giants this year. He seems to be acting somewhat childish and has been a pain, but has he been a distraction? It certainly doesn't seem that way. He hasn't been bad this year, but he has been subpar by his standards. What do you chalk that up to?
Ah, the Plax question. Let me just say Burress is an idiot, but he is a very important idiot to the Giants hopes of winning another Super Bowl. Yes, he's been a distraction but for the most part the Giants have simply put it aside and focused on winning. Of course, it helps that the Giants have about a half-dozen wide receivers who could start on many teams. Plax caught 15 balls in his first two games, but only 16 since. He's faced a lot of double coverage, but I think there are a couple of other factors. I think his head hasn't been screwed on right, and I also think the Giants are simply starting to look to guys like Steve Smith, Amani Toomer, Kevin Boss and others more often. No more Plax as  first option on most of the pass plays.
You're reigning superbowl champs. You're 7-1. You've got a 2 game lead in the division. Most bookies have you as the odds on favorite to win it all. What does success or failure look like for the Giants from here on out? Do you need to get back to the big game for this season to be a "success?"

There are Giants fans who will say nothing short of another Super Bowl title would be a success for this team. That's the George Steinbrenner 'A season is not a success without a World Series title' attitude, and even though I'm a Yankee fan i think that's crap. Interestingly, when the season started I thought getting back to the playoffs would be a success, since that would be four straight years. The bar has been raised, though. Failure would be going 4-4 or 3-5 in the second half and getting bounced in the first round of the playoffs. Success? An NFC East championship and probably at least reaching the NFC Championship Game. The playoffs are so unpredictable, though, that I hate to say 'we have to get to this game' to be successful.

Fact is, I think the Giants are already successful no matter what happens from here on out. They have a Super Bowl title in their pocket. They have a quarterback who can lead them for the next 8-10 years. They have a great coach. They have a great GM. They have an abundance of young, talented players at almost every position. They are set up to be a force to be reckoned with around the league for the next several seasons. No matter how this season ends, that isn't going to change.
The last time the Eagles beat the Giants was in the 2006 playoffs. The last time a McNabb led Eagles team has beaten the Giants was 2004! Part of that has been due to the fact that missed several of those matchups, but when he has played the Giants they've done a nice job against him. What do you attribute that to and what will be the plan to stop McNabb this Sunday night?

I don't know what I attribute it to. McNabb is a wonderful quarterback. As the Giants plan is every week, it will be all about the pass rush. You know what defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo will dial up -- pressure, pressure and more pressure. Can the Giants get to McNabb? Can they hit him, make him hurry, make some poor decisions? Personally, though, I'm more worried about Brian Westbrook. He's the guy that always kills the Giants. Besides, I don't care what the numbers say I am not convinced at this point that the Giants have a great run defense. We'll see.

Thanks again to Ed at Big Blue View and keep an eye out over there for my responses to his 5 questions.

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