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Back To The Drawing Board

The Giants call their three-headed rushing attack "Earth, Wind and Fire."

After Sunday night's victory over the Eagles, linebacker Chris Gocong may have a new moniker for them.

New York racked up 219 yards on the ground, including Brandon Jacobs' 126 yards and two touchdowns. Derrick Ward added 53 yards on 17 carries and Ahmad Bradshaw notched 38 yards on five carries to help New York grind out a 36-31 win at Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday night.

"They have a fast guy, a big and fast guy and a bigger and fast guy," Gocong said. "They have a good running game."

That's understating the obvious.

"They did some things that put us in bad situations as far as the edge was concerned," linebacker Omar Gaither said. "They were able to rack up too many yards. I look at that and that's terrible. But at the end of the day, we still had a chance to win the ballgame and we weren't able to pull it out."

It's true. Despite everything that happened, the Eagles did have a chance to win the game in the latter stages of the fourth quarter. But once again, the Eagles couldn't convert in a short-yardage situation and it cost them another game.

Now the Eagles are 5-4, including 0-3 in the NFC East.

"That's tough," Gaither said. "We definitely were in a hole, now we're in the hole even further. We just have to get ready for next week."

The Eagles came into the contest figuring if they could find a way to slow down New York's potent rushing attack, they would force Giants quarterback Eli Manning to throw and they could unleash their blitz.

That scenario never seemed to materialize.

"Really, our whole defense is based on stopping the run," Gocong said. "Then we get into the blitzing and packages, stuff like that. But when you don't do that, it makes for a long game. We were on the field the whole time. We have to get back to basics, we have to get past blocks (and) we have to make tackles."

The bottom line was the Giants didn't let the Eagles do what they do best.

"That's everything," Gaither said. "If you can't stop the ball on first down, you can't get them in a third-and-long situation and bring the pressure. Third down looks great, but first down is where you win a lot of ballgames."

Gaither also said that when a team has success running the ball, they generally have a distinct advantage in time of possession. Well, the Giants certainly had success running the ball, as evidenced by their near 20-minute advantage in that category.

"Yeah, but that's not an excuse," Gaither said. "We have to get off the field. We're out there because obviously we're not getting off the field. They had the ball entirely too long because they were able to run the ball. Anytime you give up too many yards, the other team is going to have time of possession."

Now it's back to the drawing board for the Eagles defense. For some, the close losses invoke memories from last season.

"Regardless of what happened last year, we have to find a way to pull these out in the end," Gaither said. "Do whatever it takes. We just keep coming up short and we just have to find a way to pull it out."

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