Eli proved that he was chip off the old block in the Panthers 23-0 destruction of the Giants on Sunday afternoon. Eli tossed three interceptions and fumbled on another drive as the Giants looked more like the 1970s Saints instead of a team that won the NFC East.
"I didn't play well, and I made too many mistakes for us to win today," said Messiah, who finished 10-for-18 for 113 yards. "It was not the way I wanted to come out and play. I look forward to coming back and getting better."
Maybe Eli should take his daddy's lead and just boycott the playoffs altogether. Eli, will of course, get a free pass for this performance. His name carries a lot of weight, but the truth is Eli did not improve this season. His numbers were mediocre even with an MVP-like performance from running back Tiki Barber. Eli showed what the Giants offense would look like when Barber is shutdown (he had 41 rushing yards) and the offense rested on his shoulders. That should give Giants fans something to look forward to in the future. Your running back isn't getting any younger. Plaxico Burress disappears like a Manning in the playoffs. And most GMs wouldn't take Eli straight-up for Shawne Merriman right now. Good luck.
Even Chad Pennington wouldn’t want to be Eli right now.
- The Giants became the first home team to be shut out in the playoffs since the Tampa Bay Buccaneers lost to the Los Angeles Rams in the 1979 NFC Championship Game. Sadly, it would be the only time the Rams appeared in a Super Bowl.
- The Bengals should feel fortunate that Carson Palmer was injured early in their first-round home loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Now the Bengals and its fans have a built in excuse. Yeah sure, the Bengals would have killed the Steelers with Palmer in there. Cincinnati had no answer for Pittsburgh as the Steelers started to roll offensively. The Bengals folded down the stretch and this loss was inevitable.
- It was nice to see all of the frauds in the AFC exposed this weekend. The Bengals and Jacksonville Jaguars both benefited from easy schedules to advance to the playoffs, and it is no suprise that they were knocked out of the playoffs. Look for at least one team, likely the Jaguars, to regress like the Chargers did this season. Ditto for the Giants on the NFC side. But look for the Buccaneers to get better as Cadillac Williams improves.
- Sean Taylor should blame the spitting incident on Roger McDowell, the secret spitter. If you noticed, his head went back, and to the left. Back and to the left. Taylor once again proved that defensive players are some of the dumbest players in the NFL. Lawrence Taylor on the Giants sideline cemented that thought.
- The Patriots looked very good on Saturday. But mentioning them this low in the story will feed Tom Brady's notion that his team is disrespected.