The Giants gained 150 yards and allowed seven sacks of quarterback Eli Manning.
But the offense was far from the only problem, as a defense they were expecting to count on leaked for 38 points in an embarrassing loss to the Panthers.
“We still gave up 17 points in the first half and weren’t able to stop any of the bleeding in the second half,” defensive end Justin Tuck said, via Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News. “I’ve always been taught on defense it doesn’t really matter what the offense does. If you have yardage to stand by, you’ve got to stand. The years we had success as a team are the years when the offense is not playing their best, the defense picks them up and makes a play, gets the momentum swung.”
That swing never materialized Sunday, and the reaction of the Giants is one of disbelief, as if the kind of rally that saved them from an 0-2 start in 2007 was coming any moment.
“I thought we could at least be competitive,” defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins said. “This is rough, that we could play like that. You expect better.”
At this point, the thing that needs fixing as much as the Giants would be our expectations of them.