Since their bye week in early November, the Giants are 4-2. Sunday’s 19-0 loss to the Tennessee Titans is certainly frustrating, but the Giants are clearly pointing up in recent weeks.
Despite being knocked out of playoff contention, the organization has taken steps forward in the past few weeks.
With another win from their remaining two games of this season, the Giants would double their win total from the year before. The Giants were supposed to be a playoff team last season and finished with the most losses in franchise history. This year, after an offseason of moves and trading away two players at midseason, the Giants have grown over the course of the year.
There’s a sense of direction and purpose that wasn’t here this time a year ago. The Giants are building something under Shurmur, and the early growing pains of this year are now benefitting the team.
“We didn’t do enough to compete to win the Super Bowl so we didn’t reach our goal,” Shurmur said. “Does that mean we’re failures? No. What it means is we’ve got a lot of work to do. That’s what it means, and I want to finish this year in a way that shows that we’ve grown so that we’re at a different spot than we were a year ago to make some more of that growth that we all know needs to happen.”
In what was a rebuilding year, the Giants improved in many different areas, something that last year’s supposed playoff contender couldn’t say about 2017. Give Shurmur this offseason and another draft and this team could take another step forward.
Yes, this team will finish with a losing record for the fifth time in six years. There are holes on the roster and they might lose safety Landon Collins this offseason.
But the Giants, sitting on just a single win after the bye week, proved that they believed in Shurmur. When the rest of the NFL assumed they would tank for a better pick in the NFL Draft, the Giants came together.
They’ve bought into Shurmur’s philosophy when it would have been easy to lay down and give up on the season. That didn’t happen, proving that they believe in him as a coach and as a man.
He has proven over these past few weeks that he is absolutely the right person for this daunting job.
“Along the way, I will say this – playing and coaching football is what we do, and there’ll be some point in the winter where we’re not doing it and we’re all going to miss it,” Shurmur said. “I know from my standpoint and I know our players in the locker room, we’re going to try to get the most out of these next two weeks and try to win two football games because that joy that you feel from winning, even though we’re not going to be able to go on this year, that’s something that we want to feel.”
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