If you're new to New York City, you may be operating under the illusion that the Jets have historically held the city's football fans under their sway. Unless you were talking about the legal machinations of Plaxico Burress, the only gridiron news of note came from Gang Green. Whether it was Rex Ryan talking tough, Mark Sanchez pouting like a model or people complaining about the way they were selling PSLs for the new stadium, the Jets have been dominating the headlines this year.
Anyone who has been in New York for a while will tell you that that's a very unusual state of affairs, however. The Giants are the established stars of the area, and they're used to being in the headlines while the Jets are normally reserved for the funny pages. But the Giants can't even get that kind of treatment. Recent coverage of their dealings have been hard to find anywhere on the radar screen.
That's curious for any NFL team, but for the premiere team in the biggest market in the country it is downright bizarre. It's easy to come up with reasons why the Giants aren't featured more prominently. They are short on engaging personalities, they didn't do anything particularly interesting this offseason and they don't seek out publicity in the same way their co-tenants in the Meadowlands.
More than anything else, though, it's the nature of news cycles that has kept the Giants offstage. Like it or not, the negative take always sells better than the positive, which has made it hard for people to talk about Big Blue. Their recent success was met with so much praise from the media that they can't suddenly tack the other direction without losing all of their credibility.
It's impossible to preemptively criticize their choice to sign defensive players when their offense needed firepower because you've spent the last few years talking about how the Giants defense won championships. You can't criticize the lack of characters on the team, because you've complimented the Giants' decisions to get rid of characters over and over again.
If they don't win big this season, though, you can be sure that a lack of coverage won't be a problem. G.M. Jerry Reese will start hearing that he can't win if he doesn't have players inherited from Ernie Accorsi. Tom Coughlin will hear that his toned-down style has robbed the team of their urgency and Eli Manning will hear that his massive contract extension was a massive mistake. That's the next stage of the news cycle, and it's one the Giants have to hope they never see.