COMMENTARY | Eli Manning, a two-time Super Bowl MVP, leads the National Football League with 15 interceptions.
It's an uncomfortable, if not unbearable thought for fans of the New York Giants, who are used to seeing their football savior lead Big Blue to victory. Over the years, Manning has cemented a reputation as one of the most clutch quarterbacks in the league with 24 fourth-quarter comebacks.
But there have been no such game-winning drives this season, as the Giants have lost all six of their games, including a 27-21 decision to the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on Thursday, October 10. Manning threw an interception off the fingertips of tight end Brandon Myers on the team's final possession. It was his eighth interception in the fourth quarter this season.
Manning hasn't been able to save the Giants this season, not one time. Thus, New York is 0-6 for the first time since 1976, and for a team and fan base used to winning, it's all been tough to watch.
"It's frustrating not winning," Manning told Giants.com. "And it's frustrating because I don't feel like I'm doing my part to get this team some wins and some chances. Guys are doing their parts, and I need to start doing mine."
That's typical Manning, taking responsibility and not throwing his teammates or coaches under the bus, even if they deserve to be tossed. Truthfully, his teammates are not doing much to help him. Tipped passes and dropped balls have contributed to the team's offensive struggles, and poor route running by his wide receivers has made Manning look bad on several occasions. Six of his picks have been thrown in the direction of the undisciplined Rueben Randle. Moreover, New York's offensive line, which allowed a league-low 20 sacks in 2012, has failed to keep Manning safe and upright.
Yet, none of these excuses ease the pain.
There was a time when Giants fans didn't believe in Manning. That was before he won a pair of Super Bowls and won over most of his critics (read my Five Reasons Why We Love Eli Manning). We learned to trust Manning unconditionally. That's why watching him fail is so painful and difficult to comprehend.
Adam Martini is a freelance sports writer with more than 15 years of experience covering amateur and professional sports for several print and online media outlets. He tracked the New York Giants for Yahoo Contributor Network during the team's Super Bowl run in 2011-12. Adam can be found on Twitter @Pegcitysports.
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