It is now five in a row for the New York Giants, a 22-16 home win over the Chicago Bears now firmly putting Big Blue in the mix for the playoffs with a 7-3 record. But it is the way the Giants are winning games that is impressive.
All five of the Giants wins in this streak are by a touchdown or less, five results by the relatively narrow margin of a combined 23 points.
On Monday night, the Giants pulled out a tight one, holding on for a one-point win at home over the Cincinnati Bengals. Now on Sunday, they overcame a 16-9 halftime deficit to roll off an impressive second half en route to the top seed in the NFC’s Wild Card standings.
“It’s been tough. I think that’s been the biggest thing. These games last year, we were losing,” wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. said. “We’re coming out, finding ways to get the win and that’s it.”
It is a stark contrast to last year’s Giants team that folded like a cheap suit come crunch time. Last season’s team was 6-10, with a staggering eight losses by seven or fewer points. It seems that the Giants of this season are more resilient and certainly more clutch.
“It’s usually the way it turns out in this league. It would be nice to get some games with some larger margins, but that doesn’t seem to be the case,” head coach Ben McAdoo said. “We’ll play tight games, that doesn’t bother us.”
And with two teams ahead on the schedule in the next two weeks in the Cleveland Browns and the Pittsburgh Steelers who came into this week with losing records, there is a chance for the Giants to roll off another couple wins before a Week 14 home game against the division-leading Dallas Cowboys.
The Giants still have divisional games on the road at the Philadelphia Eagles and the Washington Redskins left on their schedule but already that December meeting with the Cowboys is all the buzz.
After a win at the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, the Cowboys are now 9-1. They haven’t lost since Week 1, which was to the now streaking Giants.
“7-3, we’ll take it. The NFC East is tough. Obviously we know we’re behind Dallas still and Washington and Philly are playing good football and have a lot of wins. We can’t get comfortable. We’ve got to keep getting better so there’s still lots of room for improvement,” quarterback Eli Manning said. “We’ve got to score more points offensively but no turnovers today, so that’s a positive. It wasn’t the most ideal conditions to have a big day offensively, but we ran the ball over 100 yards, threw the ball efficiently enough, and had a nice game plan. Guys played smart and played good football.”