Cruz right on as the Giants, not Seattle, killed the Giants
JAIME C. HARRIS Special to the AmNews | 10/14/2011, 12:59 p.m.
Mistakes are part of football-both physical and mental errors. On Sunday, in a dispiriting 36-25 loss to the Seattle Seahawks at MetLife Stadium, the Giants committed an abundance of both.
As a consequence, they squandered a chance to elevate their standing in the NFC East to first place, with the 3-1 Washington Redskins idle, instead stumbling to 3-2.
Given the futility of their opponents leading up to Sunday's debacle-the Seahawks were 1-3-and the matchup advantages the Giants seemingly held over a team demonstrably less talented, the loss was inexcusable and crushing.
"The sloppiness of the game, the turnovers," said a stone-faced Tom Coughlin, the Giants' head coach, "this is as miserable a feeling as we've had around here in a long time."
Misery surfaced after the defense allowed the Seahawks' offense-practically anemic entering the game-to amass 424 total yards, including 145 on the ground, and score the go-ahead touchdown with two minutes and 37 seconds remaining in the game.
The score was 29-25, but the Giants were driving and only 10 yards away from retaking the lead. However, Eli Manning's pass to wide receiver Victor Cruz was intercepted by Seahawks cornerback Brandon Browner-Manning's third interception of the game and the Giants' fifth turnover overall-and was returned 96 yards for a touchdown.
"This game, a lot of it had to do with us killing ourselves," said Cruz, surrounded by reporters in front of his locker. The emerging playmaker had a career day with eight catches for 161 yards and a touchdown. All the same, his and Manning's miscue somewhat diminished his stellar individual statistics.
Reflecting on the dramatic turn of events to close out the defeat, Cruz lamented, "For [the game] to go backward that quickly is deflating."
The Giants will face the resolute Buffalo Bills at home this Sunday at 1 p.m. The shocking Bills are 4-1 and tied for first place in the AFC East with the New England Patriots.
Giants offensive tackle William Beatty acknowledged that the meeting with the Bills is a significant swing game for his team prior to their bye-week.
"Going into the bye, you want to go in there with a win," he said. "You want to go in there knowing you have an extra week to get players healthy. It's a big game for us."