Maybe this deserves the BREAKING NEWS tag, but it became more obvious tonight than it already was.
That Tom Coughlin guy? Pretty good at coaching football.
The Giants came in on a short-week, short-handed, and completely crashed the Panthers’ coming-out party with a 36-7 thrashing.
The Panthers were a team that was flying high, having just beaten the Saints and with Cam Newton making his prime time debut.
But Coughlin’s team beat the Panthers about the head and shoulders, with backups doing the bulk of the work. Running back Andre Brown had 20 carries for 113 yards and two touchdowns, and wide receiver Ramses Barden had nine catches for 138 yards, and was uncoverable early.
Those are things teams without leadership don’t do. Such teams latch onto excuses. The Giants keep rolling, as if those other guys never existed.
The only negative on the night for New York were a few more defensive players got hurt. Safety Antrel Rolle caught a camera on the sidelines with his knee late in the game, cornerback Corey Webster injured his right hand at some point, and Keith Rivers left with a hamstring.
The Panthers have significant problems on defense, beginning up front. They’ve got about two defensive linemen who would play regular snaps for a good defense (Charles Johnson and just-cut-by-Buffalo Dwan Edwards), and can’t get enough pass-rush to keep a quarterback the caliber of Eli Manning from scanning the field and finding third or fourth options at will.
But other problems were evident as well. Their special teams are a mess, and without Jonathan Stewart, their offense lacks ballast or balance.
As for Newton (three interceptions), he has all the potential in the world, but until he does the same thing more than one week in a row, all the questions anyone ever had about him are fair.