Giants clinch first playoff appearance since 2016 season

Brian Daboll and Saquon Barkley
Brian Daboll and Saquon Barkley / USA TODAY Sports/SNY Treated Image

For the first time since the 2016 season, the Giants are in the playoffs.

With their lopsided 38-10 win over the Indianapolis Colts, Big Blue has clinched a spot in the postseason.

This marks just the second time, since the 2011 Giants won the Super Bowl, that they have made the postseason. The other occurrence, in 2016, resulted in a one-and-done -- they fell to the Green Bay Packers, 38-13, in the Wild Card Round.

The way things are currently shaping out, the No. 6 seed Giants would likely head to northern California to take on the San Francisco 49ers in the Wild Card Round, but that is subject to change.

Making the playoffs this season is no small feat for the Giants, as a regime change at general manager (Joe Schoen) and head coach (Brian Daboll) quickly saw the organization rebound from a 4-13 campaign in 2021 to a playoff spot the following year.

"I’m just happy we won this game," Daboll said afterwards. "Am I excited? Certainly, I’m excited, but I think you’ve just got to stick with the process that got you here. Got to get ready to play another game, and you know, the playoffs are a different breed. They’re one-and-done, but we’ve still got one more game before we get to those."

He later added: "You work hard in this business to try to give yourself a chance to play extra innings or more games. So we’ve done that and put ourselves in a position to compete for more than just one other game."

Thanks to a resurgent Saquon Barkley, steady QB play from Daniel Jones, and solid play on the defensive side, the Giants began their season with an improbable 7-2 start, with notable wins over the Tennessee Titans, Packers (in London), and Baltimore Ravens.

After four straight weeks without a win (with a tie mixed in), the Giants came up with a much-needed 20-12 victory over the Washington Commanders under the lights in Week 15, which greatly improved their playoff outlook.

Though they failed to clinch against the Minnesota Vikings in Week 16, they still made it in a week later, and while Daboll is happy to be in the playoffs, he knows the job is not yet done.

"You work with these guys every day," he said. "... Some of them have had some challenging times here, so I’m extremely happy for the players first and foremost, but the staff, trainers, ownership, coaches.

"But our goal will never be just to make the playoffs. That will never be just our goal."