When the New York Giants finished with a 7-9 record to end the 2013 season, many wondered if their long run of success, which included two Super Bowl championships, had finally come to an end. But after a massive offseason spending spree, the implementation of an entirely new offensive system and the return of head coach Tom Coughlin, it would appear as if the Giants have gone "all in" for one more shot at the Lombardi Trophy.
However, the question now becomes: can the team find continuity quickly enough to compete with their many new players, new coaches and a brand new offense?
"I don't think [their championship window is closed]," Merriman said on NFL AM. "They did two things this offseason. For one, they addressed the wide receiver position, giving Victor Cruz some help so he won't be double-teamed. Two, they beefed up on the offensive line, which is not only going to help the passing game and Eli Manning, but [also] their running game — which they've been known to run the ball.
"They went out and made adjustments. So, especially in that division, they'll always have a chance to bounce back and play well. … They addressed the right positions on that team in order to move forward, progress and get back to where they need to go."
When looking back at what plagued the Giants in 2013, Merriman is spot on. Some of the team's biggest problems stemmed from inconsistency at both wide receiver and offensive line, which led to a struggling running game and, of course, a league-leading number of turnovers. But if the Giants can shore up the offensive line and find some consistency at wide receiver outside of Victor Cruz, it will be one gigantic step forward.
Still, many other pieces will have to fall into place in order for the Giants to make another run at the Super Bowl, including the return of their once daunted pass rush, as well as some impact play from the linebacker position.
Luckily for Big Blue, they've made a lot of progress in those areas on paper, and should they put it all together on the field, it would be easy to see that the championship window has not closed just yet.
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