The New York Giants were concerned that Chase Blackburn's in-depth knowledge of their system would cause problems for them in week three against the Carolina Panthers, and swore they would make the necessary adjustments. They didn't. And because they failed to act, they took a 38-0 beating right on the chin and fell to 0-3 on the season.
“I had an idea of what they run and what they like to do in situations,” Blackburn told the Charlotte Observer. “We had a great game plan going in. I’ve been sharing all the information all week. Guys, all of us, linebackers were out there knowing what to do; (defensive backs) knew what kind of routes they were going to get off the route combinations."
Blackburn, who had taken a grand total of zero defensive snaps in the Panthers' first two games, played a pivotal role in Sunday's contest. Not only did he see time on the field, but led the charge emotionally for his team as they also faced, but ultimately avoided, an 0-3 hole.
“It makes for a big difference when you can play the game at that speed. We were able to play fast because we were aware of what they were going to do," he added.
Panthers head coach Ron Rivera was not shy about crediting Blackburn, either. He openly admitted that Blackburn's knowledge of the Giants' system helped them on both defense and special teams.
“This was one of those things when you have a guy who knows the other team and you sit there and you listen to him when he is watching tape, before the play even happens, he calls the play out,” Rivera said. “You go, ‘He has a grasp of it.’ We saw it in practice. He was focused, he was excited and he brought a lot of energy.”
Luckily for the Giants, the Kansas City Chiefs employ none of their former players. However, on the downside of things, they do employ head coach Andy Reid, who knows Big Blue about as well as anyone.
Photo credit: Mike Gannon
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