X’s & O’s: Giants Defense (or lack thereof)

Sorry, more football nonsense today. The thing is, when a defense as astonishingly bad as the 2009 New York Giants comes along, it deserves a second look.

I was listening to today’s Giants/Vikings game on the way back from Connecticut, and it was so bad that I couldn’t even turn it off. It was amazing–I hadn’t seen a group of 11 guys this bad at their collective job in quite some time.

Afterwards, I had to see it for myself. I took a look at the highlights on nfl.com, in hopes of finding a few players whose lack of talent really stood out from the rest. I certainly wasn’t disappointed, here is what I found (I couldn’t embed the video here, so click on the link to open in a separate tab):

0:10 — Danny Clark #55 falls down after a terrible block by the Vikings guy. I took a screenshot which highlights Clark’s humorous attempt at playing defense.

0:25 — Aaron Rouse #26 runs halfway across the field before he realizes it’s a run fake. Michael Boley #52 attempts to cover Rouse’s guy but is too far away at that point.

0:45 — Clark and Jonathan Goff #54 can be seen discussing last week’s episode of Bones when they realize that a member of the Minnesota Vikings is running by them with the football.

1:04 — DJ Johnson #29 (whom i’ve never heard of until today) either thinks he is 12 feet tall or has very poor depth perception, based on his attempt to defend this Brett Farve throw.

1:30 — Kevin Dockery #35 attempts to cover ex-Giant Visanthe Shiancoe, but is clearly too stoned to do so.

1:50 — Goff and Clark decide to double-cover Vikings TE Jeff Dugan (Shiancoe’s backup who has 5 receptions this year) leaving Shiancoe wide open down the field.

Note that the Giants’ brand of double-coverage involves two guys jogging behind the receiver, so I guess it was better that they just left Shiancoe open.

2:10 — The defensive game plan of shutting down Jeff Dugan really worked to perfection here. Aaron Rouse takes away the Dugan deep threat by cleverly backpedaling towards the corner of the endzone, as Farve is forced to settle for a wide open Sidney Rice.

2:34 — I’ve tried to avoid calling out defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan, mainly because he is such an easy target. But the play calling here is just bizarre. The defensive scheme on this play calls for six guys blitzing, and for some reason this guy is one of them (didn’t catch his number, probably Rouse or a member of the Johnson trio):

I like how the offense is inside the 15 in a clear passing formation, and he blitzes a guy who’s 15 yards away from the quarterback, thereby giving the defender a 0% chance to succeed on the play. Step into my office, Bill Sheridan–because you’re fucking fired.

2:51 — Danny Clark doesn’t know who to cover here and gets beat. Probably poor coaching, but also he sucks.

3:31 — Once again, notice the swarming coverage Jeff Dugan receives on this 4th-down play. You know what they say, when you play the Minnesota Vikings, you can’t let Dugan beat you.

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