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Are New York Giants Fans Tapping Out Already?

October 6th, 2012 at 10:30 AM
By Jen Polashock

'Crazy Fan' photo (c) 2012, Scott Rubin - license: There is absolutely no doubt that upon entering the 2012 NFL Season, New York Giants fans had set a high bar: Repeat. There is nothing wrong with that as Head Coach Tom Coughlin wanted to build on the strengths of how 2011 closed and the word continuity has been uttered more than fail has.

The concern at hand when setting sights so high is frustration can arrive faster than a waiver claim for a fantasy sleeper on a Sunday evening. Oh, that and some fans tend to seriously lose any ability to approach a situation with rational thought. Humor isn’t even close to being used and absurd and unfounded comments come through lips that usually part to scream pro-team clichés. Week 4’s painful loss to another division rival (the Philadelphia Eagles) created some ugly ogres – either that or Mr. Hyde came out early from many.

Dejection after a team defeat is expected when such piety and optimism is placed into a single game – especially against an opponent that elicits so much disdain and depraved recollections. Most die-hards understand that the emotional state that can be drawn out goes further that wanting to kick the family pooch. However, attacking fellow fans (to the points of threatening demise and detriment) and wishing ill towards the team that just hours prior had such professed, undying love? Little more than unreal, it’s disturbing behavior for Big Blue fans.

What provokes this hostility within and why so early on, make proclamations (in Week 4) that: “one more loss, then…”, “This team is done and so am I!” and “_____ sucks; here we go again…”? Why take it to the extremes?

One theory is the years following factor. A large portion of the fan base for the New York Football Giants have been there for their years of pre-glory and multiple Lombardi trophies. They remember the miserable years of having hope and having it crushed repeatedly (see: annually) while being stuck in a bit of a coaching rut. The Bill Parcells era ushered in a new gaggle of followers, but they also bought into the no-nonsense ways that the Tuna adhered to (and while continuing to be a cautiously optimistic mob. 1986 finally paid off for the true Big Blue Faithful that remained by their franchise’s side. Ensuing years were much of the same until 1990 when odds were beat to win another World Championship, but the years after that second Lombardi were all over the place. Recollections include: Parcells’ infamous “retirement,” Ray Handley/Dan Reeves, Dave Brown/Danny Kanell, Simms/Taylor retirements, a 2000 Super Bowl appearance that culminated in an infuriating loss and playoff appearances that seemed to always fall short.

Enter the “new” fans that cannot appreciate the misery that old school fans have stomached for decades. Their “time” came swiftly compared to their predecessors’. They are of a cloth that wants, umm, demands instant gratification and will accept nothing less than what, in their mind, is perfect. If it’s not, they threaten to walk away, which is typical behavior instead of “hanging tough” and following through with the team (definition of fan – look it up; we need different vernacular for these types). What many of the old-school-ers see is spoiled ignorance – ignorance that doesn’t know much of what transpired prior to their entry into blue fandom. Sure, names like Lawrence Taylor and Phil Simms roll off the tongue with ease, but anything more – like actual New York Giants history – is lacking horribly, along with how to act as a Giants fan.

Week 5 will soon be in the record books, but the outcome is still to be played out – on the field at MetLife Stadium at 1:00, EST. Win or lose, could the Big Blue brotherhood hold it down enough to not act like a Philadelphia Eagles fan?


Tags: Bill Parcells, Dan Reeves, Football, Lawrence Taylor, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Phil Simms, Philadelphia, Philadelphia Eagles, Tom Coughlin

28 Responses to “Are New York Giants Fans Tapping Out Already?”

  1.  TuckThis says:

    Wow Jen! You sound like you’re speaking to all those 20 something Yankee fans who came of age ( or fandom) in the mid 1990s and now think they’re entitled to win every year. As a Giants fan of a certain age who has been through good and bad, I don’t feel that way. Everyone would like the label dynasty applied to their team, but times have changed, sports have changed and parity rears its head much more often.
    I can deal with losses, injuries and even a down year, but I can’t stand the whining…especially by the players. I expect the Giants…win or lose…to be a class organization. I had hoped their fans would be as well.

    •  GOAT56 says:

      Being a Giant fan since 85′, I’m not the 20 somethings. The point Jen makes which I didn’t fully realize until recent years is how bad much of the 60s and 70s was for the Giants. While we had a few bad years over the past 27 years it was nothing consistently like what older fans had to deal with and it changes your perspective of the team. In my time while we haven’t always been great we have never been an embarrassment.

      It’s just like my era of Yankee baseball growing up 10 minutes from the stadium was no championships. I left the Bronx in fall of 96′ so I never saw them win while I was around. It seems crazy but the entitlement that all these Yankee fans of many generations grow up with I never felt. So when you become a fan really does affect your perspective.

  2.  GOAT56 says:

    Excellent piece. Though I wouldn’t accuse anyone here of tapping out. I say panic or close to panic is what too many Giant fans seem to be expressing right now. We have many injuries and that’s definitely cause for concern. However, we have stated “in Reese we trust” and said how deep this team was in most areas. Most of the injuries that will cause players to miss the Browns game are in areas of depth for us. OL is one place we don’t have depth. While the OL has some bruises it appears we will still have our unit we have started the last 2 weeks which is our best 5. That unit just has to play and can’t afford any further injuries.

    The other area hit that we don’t have good depth right now is DT. Funny enough even missing players like Nick and KP the biggest injury might be Benard. Austin and Kuhn haven’t looked ready to even share a 3rd DT role and now they will likely have to handle 60 or so snaps between them. There should be concern but the situation isn’t dire because unlike a cc brown type player these guys have talent. They might not have done anything thus far but that doesn’t mean one of both of these players can’t step up to the challenge.

    Losing KP isn’t good but it’s not nearly as bad as it would have seemed a few months ago. Brown has really stepped up and played much better than anyone could have expected. That fact that no one here has mentioned Deon Grant shows just how well he’s played. Also we can see the very legit upside of Will Hill and him being able to help now as well. Then we return another solid backup in Sash. So while not having an excellent player like KP hurts, it’s far from the 2009 situation. We still have Rolle who is still likely to play and 3 other solid/good players.

    With Eli, our OL intact and our defense with enough parts we are still in a good place health wise to win this game. Many of the players we won’t have this week could be back by next week because most of these injuries are minor.

    •  Jen Polashock says:

      Most of my writes don’t come from the fans here, but last week had some MAJOR meltdowns on Facebook, Twitter and even in person. Fans here are more than knowledgeable and don’t speak out of ignorance (Death threats…REALLY?). I think much of the “fans” I’m penning about are KIDS that don’t know the game. Maddening nonetheless… I wrote angry this week. LOL.

  3.  Dirt says:

    I’m not worried about this team at all, not when #10, #80, #88, #90 are not on IR, not when they’ve lost 2 divisional games by one (1) score each, both featuring more self inflicted errors than their opponents committed.

    They’ve dominated two inferior opponents, save for a self inflicted 21 point hole against Tampa.

    The Cleveland Browns are another inferior opponent. Another ingerior opponent that will be dealt with in kind.

    Just like 4 of the next 5 after that.

    •  GOAT56 says:

      I agree with you. But I do have to conceed the only “inferior” opponets left maybe Washington and New Orleans which is only 3 games. And a division game is always different. The Bengals are good and getting better.

      We will have to beat many good teams to be where we want to be. But I believe we can and will.

      We win this game and on Monday 101 will be fired up to face SF. Everyone will pick SF and perfectly set up for one of our classic stand games like Philly game 1 or NE game 1 last year.

      •  Dirt says:

        Of course it’s subject to interpretation but I feel the Giants are definitely better than Was, Dal and Cin, and probably better than Pit. And maybe overall equal to SF.

        Now, will they win them all? Who knows. Road trips, injuries, bad bounces from the oblate spheroid, zebras, etc. But this is a Super Bowl champion returning most of the core. Those guys are for the most part also rans.

        Also, to the point of my post below, Eli loves playing in Dallas which by league rules mandates perfect conditions.

  4.  Dirt says:

    I wonder how many rings Eli would have accumulated be end of his career had the Met been opened in 2010 with a roof.

    On one hand, he’d have some of the advantages that guys like Brees and Peyton had in building their resumes. He may have thrown for 6,000 last year. (At the very least, we wouldn’t have to worry about Nicks foolishly being sent on North facing routes down the Giants sideline facing West in home Fall sunny afternoon games anymore.)

    But on the other hand, it may have made him less equipped to travel outside in the playoffs, which has also plagued the careers of those gentlemen.

    •  GOAT56 says:

      Great point. In order to match up with Philly and take advantage of Eli’s talents we really have a team that is better designed to play in a dome than bad late season weather. I think this is another factor while we have struggled at home iin the 2nd half the past several years.

  5.  GIANTT says:

    I look on the first few games as a “shakedown cruise” Its main raison d’etre for me is to find out if my preseason enthusiasm and exuberance admittedly tempered by previous seasons experiences will come to fruition . Mostly will the veterans start showing signs of age and will the rtookies perform up to expectations . I see this team as one that has a decent upside especially if injured players start to show up to play .
    I think you are bring a little harsh with “tapping out” even for those newbie fans who expect playoffs and Super Bowls every year . I think it is more of levelling of thos expectations and the realization that other teams have also done things to change their team in the offseason .
    Im not worried yet , as I said once before the Cowboys were playing in their Super Bowl in the first game . That may well be the high point of their season .
    Last weeks game ? Im disappointed by the loss but it could have gone either way and the Iggles didnt show a game that exactly overwhelmed the Giants either .

  6.  Krow says:

    People say all sorts of things when they’re emotional. Especially when they’ve had a few drinks too. It’s hard for me to watch the Giants without being cranked up. I’m sure my TV thinks I’m insane and possessed by a terrible anger problem.

    That’s point #1 … context is important.

    Point #2 is that while we always moan about fans being too negative … we never say anything about the opposite. It’s almost impossible to voice any sort of disappointment or disapproval without someone pretending you’re giving up … and then b’tching at you.

    We’ve lost two very winable games to Division foes. We have an injury list as long as my arm. The toughest schedule in the NFL. Any objective analysis has to think we’re in trouble. But damn … say that here and you’ll get a chorus of people whining at you … calling you names … and demanding you cheer louder.

    To me that’s as big an issue as the folks saying we’re looking at a 2-14 season.

    •  kujo says:


      Though I will say, and I believe you’ll agree, there does seem to be more ferocity and passion when it comes to making negative comments and analyses following a defeat as opposed to positive ones after a victory.

      •  GOAT56 says:

        That’s just the way our society works in general. I learned for myself as an O, I can’t come in here right after a bad loss. I have to at least give a day for people to calm down. And reading a gameday thread after a bad loss really serves little purpose.

        •  kujo says:

          Demo and I were talking about it the other day, as a matter of fact, and it’s ironic–I’ve got history as a P, but I, too, have had to absent myself after these losses because it was just too much.

  7.  kujo says:

    I missed last week’s installment of where the scouts were, but for those interested New York Giants scouts were, according to Chris Steuber, at the Indiana at Northwestern game, the Clemson at Boston College game, and the South Carolina at Kentucky game.This might be entirely insignificant, but last week was the third time of the year the Giants went to a South Carolina game.

    This week, according to Steuber, Giants’ scouts are attending four games: UConn at Rutgers, Illinois at Wisconsin, Florida State at North Carolina State, and Nebraska at Ohio State.

    Let’s take a look at this week’s games. I’m a big proponent of the Giants going heavy on defense in the upcoming draft and if they are looking defense early in the draft Florida State at North Carolina State offers a lot of potential picks.

  8.  fanfor55years says:

    Well, I suspect I have been a crazed Giants fan longer than many on this site have been alive. By now I should have changed my moniker to fanfor60years, but I like the alliteration of what I’ve got. In any case, there were great times early when my family had no money but it didn’t take much to go to the games, sit in the upper deck, and watch teams that were always competitive and won a few championships. All around me were steelworkers, bus drivers, firemen, contractors and such who spent a good part of the game drinking and howling at Jim Lee Howell because of his “stupid” coaching decisions. Soon enough came the Dark Ages of the 70′s and 80′s, when you had to have a lot of resilience to get yourself to look forward to each season despite knowing the chances of competing for a championship (and sometimes competing at all) were slim. I used to see Well Mara in the city having a great time at some of his favorite watering holes and would occasionally approach him and lob in a plea for better football, but I had better luck trailing around JG Mellon’s after Tucker Fredrickson and latching on to some of the beauties he chose not to “select” that night. The players were still approachable, many lived in the city, and since they stunk they were not the celebrities they are today.

    And then, miraculously, enter Pete Rozelle to crack Wellington and Tim’s head together, inform them that they were hurting the league by fielding a horrid franchise in New York and that they were going to hire George Young to fix it. And just like that, spring came, as Giants’ fans started to hope again that they might someday see good football. Frankly, back in those days in the 70′s, until his knees gave out and he was traded, Joe Willie and the Jets owned the town. That 1969 championship, and Namath’s magnetism and style (remember, these were also the days of Clyde roaming the city, the city that, really, the Knicks owned more than any football team ever did), went a long way for Sonny Werblin and his team.

    And then came Parcells, and Simms, and Carson, and LT. And you all know the rest.

    And through it all, I, and many others, have been passionate supporters of the Giants and learned a little football along the way. Even if we sometimes bitterly critique them it is out of deep love. It’s like when I get furious at my wife. The fury is intensified by my deep love for her. If I didn’t love her so deeply I’d probably get less mad about being disappointed or treated badly. Same with this team. So, while I agree that many younger fans haven’t had their hearts broken enough by this team to have truly “earned” their right to express such bitter criticism, I would defend the right of EVERY Giants fan to get disgusted, to get crazily negative, to think the sky is falling, etc. It is all out of deep passion for the team. Better that than not caring.

    As for where they are now, my view is that after winning two rings in five years we all have to count ourselves awfully lucky to have experienced it. And they get something of a free ride for a few years now. BUT, that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be expected to play (and coach) up to their capabilities. I have hammered away for years at the fact that you don’t know what a team really is until November, and nothing happening now is going to change that. I’ve also said that I expect us to be in pretty decent shape after Sunday. I expect us to be tied with the Eagles on top of the NFC East (and, at worst, one game behind after only five games, giving us plenty of time to pass them). We will start to get back injured players. Soon we will get Chris Canty back. The youngsters will all have gained a lot more playing time early than is normal, which helps give us GOOD depth. Flaherty will have had more time to mold the O-line as he wishes (I said months ago that Beatty’s return would be the make-or-break issue because once he did the flexibility and depth available would dramatically increase). Fewell will, hopefully, be quicker to make adjustments to the defense than he did last season.

    Anyway, as of today the Giants aren’t in bad shape. BUT, they DO need to win tomorrow. A third loss, including two home losses and two division losses in the first five games gives them a much tougher hurdle to jump. Far from an impossible one, but higher. Beating the Browns is a big deal. I think they will, and I think they know how big a game it is. I suspect that by late Sunday we will have witnessed at least a few of the young Giants make their marks and show they can be real assets down the road.

  9.  GIANTT says:

    I think GOAT put his finger on it when he said that he doesnt come on here after a loss . I take several days to come back after sanity and reason come back to me . Many others post in this heightened testosterone fueled irritability rather than wait unitl they cool down . Thus there seems to be one sided commentary from frustrated venters and it takes a day or two for sanity to return
    Replying to Kujos comments as well , I know I savor a victory and have learned that comments fueled by frustration and irritatiion generally come back to bite so I take the proverbial deep breath and read the OTHER posters diatribes then try and limit my comments to reasoned arguments .I leave the stupids to others

  10.  GIANTT says:

    I predict that the Giants final record will be somewhere between 2-14 and 14-2 .
    Repeat as Super Bowl champs ? probably not – I just hope they are good enough this year to get to the playoffs which would mean they would probably have beaten the Eagles and Dallas later on this year (especially since Im hoping to make the Eagles game my one foray to see the Giants play this year ) . Recent years results have made me raise my expectations just a tad but I have learned that even losing to the Ravens in the Super Bowl is NOT , I repeat NOT a life changing experience for us fans .
    I keep thinking of the T shrts that the Pats had printed up when the were looking to go undefeated . After the Giants beat them The t shirts got donated to a charity and were sent to South America . I believe an intrepid reporter followed the trail and found them adorning the locals who probably had no idea the source of their good fortune
    THOSE recipients of the Pats largesse had greater life changes than the Pats did by losing the Super Bowl

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