As unfathomable as it sounds, the Giants' epic collapse in Sunday's 38-31 loss to the Eagles did not eliminate them from the playoff picture. In fact, it didn't even knock them out of the division race, though it is unlikely they'll win it.
To do that, they'll have to beat Green Bay and Washington, and Philadelphia would have to lose to Minnesota and Dallas. That's a longshot. But a mere playoff spot is not out of the realm of possibility. In fact, the Giants could lock up the sixth seed with a win over Green Bay this week.
Eli Manning, in a rare address to his teammates, told them as much Monday morning. He implored them to put arguably the worst Giants collapse in franchise history behind them and think about winning in Green Bay.
"We play a big game in Green Bay, and we just have to take care of our business," Manning told the media. "We're the ones who decide whether we make the playoffs and what happens. It's only us. We don't need help from anybody else."
Manning said he felt compelled to get up and speak, an uncharacteristic act for a characteristically quiet quarterback.
"I just wanted to remind everyone of our situation, keep your head up and that we're in a good position, a good spot," Manning said. "We're in charge of our own destiny. We're going to write the ending to this story, no one else."
The 9-5 Giants currently have a one-game lead over the 8-6 Packers, so a win clinches the spot. The only other team with a shot is Tampa Bay, but the Giants have clinched tiebreakers over the 8-6 Bucs.
Even a loss in Green Bay won't eliminate them from the playoff hunt. But it would make beating Washington in the regular season finale imperative. And a loss in sunny Wisconsin is a definite possibility, considering the strong showing the Aaron Rodgers-less Packers had Sunday night against the Patriots.
So the Giants had best wipe their collapse from their minds and bodies quickly, or they'll put themselves in a real corner come Jan. 2.