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Tom Coughlin can't understand why his team fell so flat against the Eagles at the Meadowlands on Sunday night.
"As I just said to each one of the players, first start off with yourself and look at yourself in the mirror. Ask yourself. Because my question for them was, ‘Why?’ What does it take to understand what the Eagles were going to be like coming here? You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know that the team is 3-6 with their backs to the wall, they are going to play their butts off."
A fair question, but what is it going to take for Coughlin to understand that he coaches a team filled with players who can't really be bothered with giving maximum effort every minute of every week? How many losses like this is it going to take before Coughlin tries an approach that doesn't leave his face redder than a baboon's rear end?
Coughlin complained after the game that the team lacked fight, which was definitely true, and his players deserved each and every one of the barbs thrown in their direction. But that doesn't come close to covering the list of people who need to do some soul-searching in the wake of the 17-10 loss to Philadelphia.
After all, would there have been anything different about the game if Eli Manning didn't fumble the game away on Jason Babin's hit? Let's say the Giants score a touchdown there and win the game on a field goal in overtime, what would Coughlin have said then?
We already know because we've seen it over and over again this year. He praises the team for their unyielding effort and their remarkable resiliency instead of pointing out that a team with designs on doing big things probably shouldn't be struggling so mightily to beat the Cardinals, Bills and Dolphins.
Last week's loss to the Niners was very revealing because Coughlin's response was simply that he sat there and figured the Giants would come back and win because they had done it so many times before. Why wasn't the focus on the fact that the Giants failed to play with any urgency until their backs were against the wall or that the team consistently starts games like they are surprised to learn there's another team on the field?
Coughlin's comments will play well because they seem like a reasonable response, but the only way the coach of the 2011 Giants can honestly be surprised by what we saw on Sunday night is if he wasn't paying attention to anything that's gone on this season.
The only difference is the result and that should never have been given such primacy in Coughlin's view of the season in the first place.
Asking the players on the team to look in the mirror is fine, but Coughlin and the rest of the coaching staff should do the same thing because they share a great deal of the blame for Sunday night's mess.
When a team makes the same mistakes over and over again -- despite Coughlin's attempt to seem dumbfounded, there was nothing new on Sunday night -- the man at top has to share in some of the blame instead of simply pointing the finger at everybody else.