City Paper is not for tourists
Yesterday I posted a thoughtful piece on the season-opening tilt between the Washington Redskins and the New York Giants. Commenters loved it, and so I thought I’d dip back into the well with a bit more analysis on a key aspect of the game.
And that’s the Giants linebacking corps, if you can call it that.
Anchoring the unit, if you can call it that, is Antonio Pierce, a free agent pickup from the Redskins in 2005. Letting Pierce go to a division rival was one of the Skins great clandestine personnel moves. Though the undrafted backer put in some solid work earlier in his career, including a possibly game-saving tackle against the Green Bay Packers NFC Championship game following the 2007 season, his work of late has been wanting.
This is a guy who needs a gut check, quite literally. He carries an innertube around his mid-section that I’d just guess weighs in at around 15 lbs. It didn’t help too much when he got burned repeatedly by Brian Westbrook in the team’s pivotal games against the Philadelphia Eagles.
Now he’s got a foot injury, too, which can’t possibly help his time in the 40.
Next up is Danny Clark, the team’s strongside LB. Now in his second year with the Giants, he has played for the Jaguars, Raiders, Saints, and Texans. So he knows the country quite well.
And finally, the weakside LB. This could be any number of no-names, including Gerris Wilkinson, Bryan Kehl, or perhaps even Chase Blackburn. And funny thing here—-though these fellows have vied for a starting spot in the game against the Skins, hey, none of them will likely be starting come Week 2. At that point, free-agent ack Michael Boley will be in there, back from his one-game suspension. Boley comes via the Falcons, where he didn’t even start last year!
Clearly this is not your father’s New York Giants linebackers.
The point here: If the Skins can somehow handle the two or three bona fide professionals on the G-men’s front line, they should be able to steamroll this D.
It’s hard to figure how the New York Giants