Not only did Chip Kelly’s firing send shockwaves throughout the league, it seems to have put the Giants on notice. New York, last week, confirmed their third straight losing season and fourth consecutive one without postseason play thus putting Tom Coughlin firmly on the hot seat. Many of his players have come out in recent days to affirm their support for the embattled coach although Coughlin himself has said his only focus is on Sunday’s matchup with the Kelly-less Eagles.
Offensive Lineman Justin Pugh toed the party line as he spoke to the media on Wednesday and reiterated the importance of ending the season on a high.
“It builds off that going into the offseason, you know, it’s how we end the season looking out at that last game. You want to go out on a good note, you don’t want to have a bad taste in your mouth going into the offseason, it’s a long time before you strap back up and get to play again so definitely, finishing up the season with a win is our primary goal.”
Drafted in 2013, Pugh has yet to play in the playoffs and was clearly down about it as he felt this was the year. Out of Big Blue’s nine losses this year, 7 have been by a margin of 6 points or less and given the state of the NFC East, each game mattered.
“Three years in a row I haven’t gone to the playoffs, that’s no fun so that’s something that you got to keep working on, get better at, you know this year I really felt like we had the opportunity and we were in position to make a run and things fell apart for us so we got to learn from it and it’s the closest I’ve been so I know I’ve just got to build off finishing games and that’s been the biggest thing going into this offseason.”
Before the season began, John Mara had promised Giants Nation major changes if the team was not playing in January; that scenario has become a reality and adjustments are likely due. Fans and analysts are still debating whether this season’s failures are still all Coughlin’s fault as his proponents suggest he did the best he could with an injury-decimated roster. Others want the front office held accountable, saying the team’s late draft picks have not really delivered. In whatever plotline, the Giants have a game to play on Sunday and can figure out the franchise’s future course after that.