This Giants loss was seen from a mile away. A few miles, actually, because we have been expecting it for some time now.
The Seahawks are a legitimate playoff contender. They took away Saquon Barkley. They neutralized Daniel Jones’ legs. And then they challenged the quarterback to beat them through the air with a banged-up offensive line and an underwhelming receiving corps. The result? A 27-13 loss to snap a four-game win streak and pull back the curtain on how the Giants will be attacked the rest of the way with a slew of good teams remaining.
As a result, here come the calls for general manager Joe Schoen to buy a wide receiver in the 30-something hours before Tuesday afternoon’s NFL trade deadline. But you know what? That is the last thing Schoen should do.
The Giants did not look like a team that is a player away Sunday. They looked many players away. Which is what we all expected two months ago before coach Brian Daboll went for two in Nashville and this magic carpet ride began. The 6-2 start has turned the rebuilding expectations on their head. But it has not changed the fundamentals of the situation.
The Giants can never say this publicly. But their focus should be on accumulating draft assets and working toward salary cap health. Not diverting from the plan to overextend for someone like Jerry Jeudy in the hope he might give you a better chance to win a wild card spot. Daboll and Schoen’s team has overachieved enough to take selling off the board. If the Giants were 4-4 or 5-3 today, they would be wise to consider moving Barkley (and others). But at 6-2, that is not viable. So they should do the next-best thing and stand pat.
And to be clear: Daboll and Schoen are not quitting on this season if they pass on making additions. The Giants have back-to-back home games with the Texans and Lions after their bye week. Even with their offensive limitations, they should be 8-2 with seven games to go. Everything we have seen from Daboll indicates he is capable of putting together two winning game plans down the stretch, especially with the Colts and Commanders (twice) on the docket.
That should be good enough to get the Giants in the tournament. And if 10-7 is not? Oh well. They never anticipated contending anyway. And they can take solace in the fact they did not risk negatively impacting their future to strain for it. Especially since there are still no guarantees with that approach.
James Kratch can be reached at [email protected]