New York Giants head coach Ben McAdoo knows that his winless Giants aren’t being given much love by the forecasters in their predictions for this weekend’s games.
And the hate doesn’t bother him one bit.
“We’ve got a great opportunity,” he said Friday of the team’s upcoming game against the 3-1 Denver Broncos which will be played Sunday night. “There’s nobody giving us a chance in hell to go win this ballgame. People don’t think we can score a point without 13 (Odell Beckham). They think our defense has lost its stinger. Special teams isn’t important to the whole locker room.”
Those reasons alone might be enough to justify the strong wave of doubt people have about the Giants and their ability to get their first win this week, but McAdoo seemed to caution people not to write the team off just yet.
“We’re going to find out what we’re made out of on a big stage, and I think we have a good football team,” he said. “You go back and you look at the first two games of last season–we found a way to win a game versus a quarterback who never played, against a team that was battling here at home. Then we lost three in a row, we were 2-3.”
The problem is that last year, the Giants defense was playing at a championship level and the injury situation wasn’t anywhere close to being as bad as it currently stands today, with receivers Odell Beckham Jr., Dwayne Harris and Brandon Marshall on injured reserve, and defensive ends Olivier Vernon and Romeo Okwara, receiver Sterling Shepard, linebacker Jonathan Casillas, running back Paul Perkins and center Weston Richburg, all declared out for this weekend’s game.
The injuries, the drop off in the defense and in special teams, and the continued struggles of the offense have prevented the Giants from playing “complementary football,” which has led to the five losses and the growing doubt that sunny skies remain in the distance for this year’s Giants team.
Still, McAdoo seems to think a win isn’t that far off.
“This year, last three ball games we lost either in the last seconds of the ballgame, or the last series of the ballgame. And we had opportunities to win those games,” he said. “We haven’t found a way to win. We need to do that, that’s my job. We had a great practice on Wednesday and Thursday. It was a spirited practice yesterday with pads on. So, I’m excited to go see how we play.”
McAdoo was asked what gave him reason to believe the offense could score without Beckham, placed on injured reserve his week after breaking his ankle in last weekend’s game.
“Practice. Watching the way we practice and watching the way we execute in practice. Seeing the run game going. We ran the ball better last week. We had over 102 yards after contact running the football. We’re doing some positive things in the games, we just have to play a complete game and play consistent football.”
Again, the problem is that for the last four weeks, McAdoo has spoken highly of how the team has practiced only to have nothing to show for it on Sunday. So why should people think this week is going to be any different?
“I still feel we have a good football team,” McAdoo said. “I believe in the guys in the locker room.”