Of course the Giants are tanking (and of course John Mara can’t say so)

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Giants co-owner John Mara opted for a naughty word when faced with the perception that his team’s decision to supplant Eli Manning with Geno Smith comes from a desire to lose as many games as possible, in the hopes of winning the best possible draft position. But the only true “bullish-t” in this dynamic came from the man who opted to use that term, and for good reason.

Mara knows that a team that tanks can’t talk about tanking. If it does, Ted Wells would instantly set up an encampment on the outer fringes of said team’s anal cleft.

Integrity of the game. Integrity of the game. Any effort not to win each an every game is an affront to the integrity of the game, so any team that would ever admit to not trying to win each and every game would find itself in the jaws of a trying investigation.

It’s an easy mess to avoid, because the league doesn’t want to investigate a team for tanking. Instead, the league wants to continue to pretend that it doesn’t happen, even if it does. So the path to avoid scrutiny is to never admit to tanking, and to always deny it whenever the subject comes up.

That’s why there’s no draft lottery. Think of the interest that yet another offseason tentpole could drive premised on determining the draft order would generate. But having a lottery would mean acknowledging the benefit that flows from losing. Which would encourage more tanking. Which would never be tolerated by the league office.

So, yes, the Giants are tanking. And, yes, Mara’s profane response is aimed at ensuring that no one ever realizes that they’re tanking.

That’s not criticism. They should be tanking. Who cares about the difference between 2-14 and 5-11? If the lesser record means securing a better chance to get the next quarterback who will be unceremoniously kicked to the curb in November 2031, so be it.

Indeed, if the Giants end up having dibs over the Jets and the Giants get a franchise quarterback and the Jets don’t, it will have all been worth it, millions of times over.

17 responses to “Of course the Giants are tanking (and of course John Mara can’t say so)

  1. The league doesn’t seem to have a problem with teams …..
    …from New York (New Jersey) doing whatever they like, whenever they like, however they like with no repercussions.

  2. Eli was a bad QB who had the blessing of playing with Hall of Famers on that Defensive line. He was never that good for all this out cry and got so many passes because of his last name. I’m THRILLED the Redskins sent him to the Junkyard for the Giants to finally admit he’s awful!

  3. I’m sorry but I don’t think it’s that cut and dried as playing to win or tanking. They’re not going to the playoffs – that’s a fact. They have a QB in Eli Manning that is close to the end of his career and there is nothing to be gained or frankly lost other than his health by continuing to take snaps behind that line. They have a QB they invested a relatively high draft pick in and they should get him some game experience to see what he’s got and how he develops from that in game experience. Honestly they should be doing that all over the roster – and as teams tend to rotate players at practically every position EXCEPT QB – and they probably have. The only evidence I see of “tanking” is going to Geno Smith instead of the rookie (as there’s plenty of film on Geno.)

    I think the Giants could have handled this situation better and that Eli based on his history and commitment to the franchise deserved better treatment. At this point in the season though it would be negligent of the Giants not to look at the young guys on the roster to see what they have. The fact that it’s the one position on the field that never substitutes or rotates players (except for injury) and the fact that Eli’s been the face of the franchise for so long is what makes the move so glaring.

  4. I don’t see it as tanking. I’ve watched Eli Manning play this year, and he’s not getting the job done at an NFL level. I understand he’s not the only player on the Giants, but he’s missing wide open guys. He’s throwing the ball to their shoes, not their hands. He starts falling down as soon as the pressure gets near because he doesn’t want to get hit. He has absolutely zero mobility. Zero ability to extend the play. I understand when teams play aging stars like Cal Ripkin and Dan Marino, so I’m not arguing that the Giants would be wrong to play Eli, but that’s not what we’re talking about. We’re talking about the Giants are tanking because they’re benching the player that’s killing them, and I just don’t see that as tanking. Plus, we all know that the best QB’s don’t necessarily get drafted first. Someone like Josh Allen from Wyoming, or Mason Rudolph from Oklahoma State might end up being next year’s Carson Wentz, and they could still be available even if the Giants win all the rest of their games. The Giants are guilty of making mistakes, but I don’t think it’s deliberate. I think you’re giving them too much credit. It’s a fun argument though.

  5. The Giants would be tanking by keeping Eli Manning as the starter. They are 2-9 with Manning. No reason to believe they would improve over the last five games. The Giants are looking like a 3-13 team with Eli. Why not give the more talented backup Geno Smith a chance to right the ship?

  6. How is the memorabilia scam investigation coming? Will it be simuilar to Peyton Manning’s PED “investigation” and just a cover up for the other Manning per Archie’s orders?


    I am fairly certain if Brady admitted PEDs were sent to Giselle or he was rumored to be involved with a NFL merchandising scam, Article 46 would be referenced and suspensions with stolen draft picks would commence.

  7. If the Giants str8 up cut him today he would pass through waivers and get claimed by the Bronco’s. All the other teams low on the WW have their QB’s locked up. He would not get picked up by the Browns because he would not play for the Browns and they know this.

    Giants should cut him today.

  8. McAdupe destroyed the Giants. Why on earth would Mara fire Eli instead of firing the cause of the problem, McAdupe? Shame on Mara and his terrible decision here. Eli is NOT a bad QB, he has terrible players around him and a doofus for a coach, on another team he would be doing fine, it’s as simple as that. Fire the terrible GM and the coach before you fire your Super Bowl QB and face of the franchise. Shameful. Good luck with Geno, idiots.

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