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The shaming of a lost season

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Today, Eli Manning's 210 game streak of consecutive starts comes to an end, and he's not even injured.

No, as you're doubtlessly aware by now, Manning was benched by coach Ben McAdoo earlier this week in favor of Geno Smith, who was a colossal bust in 4 seasons with the Jets, and rookie Davis Webb, although Manning will be the backup for today's game at Oakland. Hours before game time, there are rumors that the Giants will cut ties with McAdoo after the game, and some are already squawking that McAdoo should've been bounced after even announcing his decision to demote Manning. General Manager Jerry Reese likely won't be too far behind, but the truth is, this really shouldn't have gotten to this point.

Going into the season, the Giants had one glaring issue to address, and that was a porous offensive line. They didn't, and Manning was getting sacked on a regular basis. It wasn't helping when the Giants lost receivers Odell Beckham, Jr. & Brandon Marshall to injuries, depleting their receiving corps.

In truth, the decline of the Giants began 2 seasons ago, in Tom Coughlin's final season as head coach. Never mind that the Giants went 11-5 last season under McAdoo, but ever since he was first hired as offensive coordinator, Manning was beginning to regress. Realistically, Manning demotion can best be chalked up to the law of diminishing returns, but it's not entirely his fault, not when you have that weak O-line. They caught Kansas City when the Chiefs were struggling, but in turn fell to San Francisco for the Niners' lone win. How do you figure any of that?

Conversely, Coughlin's back in Jacksonville, in the front office, and the Jags are no longer the doormats of the AFC South. In the course of three seasons, McAdoo's presence has chased away one of the most successful coaches in Giants history, stained the team's overall reputation, and shamed the face of their franchise. If the Giants were going to make their first mid-season coaching change in 41 years, it should've been done when they started at 0-5.

Would Ben McAdoo get another shot as a head coach? No. He got lucky last year, but this year his offensive deficiencies have been exposed for all to see again, and it's worse this time. Like, his next job should be in Canada, eh?
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