New York Giants coach Pat Shumur’s vanilla play-calling against the Arizona Cardinals came under fire after the team lost a close one at home Sunday.
The Giants were down 24-21 late in the fourth quarter when Shurmur drew up a draw play on 3rd-and-18 to Saquon Barkley. The play yielded little results giving the Giants a 4th-and-long for Jones to make and to keep the drive alive as the clock was winding down.
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New York failed to convert the play, giving the Cardinals a chance to put the nail in the coffin at the Giants’ 30-yard line. Arizona would only manage a field goal, but it was clear that New York’s overall momentum was thrown for a loss.
Jones got the ball back at his own 12-yard line after rookie wide receiver Darius Slayton took the ball out of the end zone nearing the two-minute warning.
As the Giants fell to 2-5 on the season, fans on social media eviscerated Shurmur.
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Shurmur defended the play-calling on the team’s second-to-last possession, saying “It was going to play out the way I thought. … Stop them, make them kick a field goal at the very least, then we go down and score a TD. Plus, I wanted to get a chance to make it on 4th-and-15.”
Even Barkley agreed with the call, according to the New York Post.
“I think it’s a great call,” he said. “If they drop back, I think you got one of your best playmakers on the field with the ball in his hands.”
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Shurmur has a chance to get into some rarified air if the Giants fall to the Detroit Lions next week. According to Big Blue United, a loss for Shurmur would move him into eighth place for worst coaching record in NFL history. He is currently in 10th place with a .303 winning percentage.