It took until the final game of Week 15, but at least something went as expected in the NFC wild-card race. Two days after the Cowboys knocked the Saints from the ranks of the unbeaten in New Orleans and a day after the Packers lost to the Steelers on a last-second touchdown pass, the Giants embarrassed the Redskins on "Monday Night Football."
Aside from possibly making new Redskins president Bruce Allen reconsider his career choice, Monday's result kept the Giants one game behind the Cowboys and Packers in pursuit of the NFC's two wild-card bids. The NFC East title isn't done and dusted for the Eagles just yet, but among the three current wild-card contenders, which group of fans should feel best about the guy they have leading the way?
Look at how each quarterback has fared so far in December.
Eli Manning: 57-for-89 passing, 900 yards, 8 TD, 1 INT, 122.9 QB rating
Aaron Rodgers: 68-for-112 passing, 826 yards, 6 TD, 2 INT, 93.8 QB rating
Tony Romo: 82-for-119 passing, 953 yards, 6 TD, 0 INT, 109.7 QB rating
And then consider the changing fortunes of SportsNation's quarterback rankings.
Jason R. (Orlando)
So is the "Dallas can't win in December" thing dead forever thanks to beating the Saints?
Scouts Inc.'s Gary Horton
Yes, until this weekend. I don't buy the December fade thing. It just happened. This is a good football team. The problem I see is they don't put back to back games together. How many times this season have we loved them and then the next week they lay an egg? It may be different with their backs to the wall, but they are capable of winning their next two or losing them. Full transcript
Are the Giants' struggles on defense this year entirely a schematic (read: Bill Sheridan) problem? That's the conventional wisdom out there. But it seems to me they've also had personnel issues (for example, Kenny Phillips' injury) and Umenyiora not playing up to form among others.. what are your feelings on the matter?
Football Outsiders' Bill Barnwell
Where to begin? Scheme. Misuse of personnel. Attitude and respect issues across the board. Injuries to key players, and a lack of depth when those players went down, especially with Phillips (remember how well the rookies played in 07 during the Super Bowl run?) and the execrable C.C. Brown. The idea was to build up a ton of depth up front and make the pass rush unbeatable. Instead, the rushers have still been disappointing, Canty's been hurt, Rocky Bernard's been a total non-factor, and the secondary minus Ross and Phillips has been exposed. Full transcript