- I had never been on the sidelines of a professional football game prior to this year, but by this point — the seventeenth game this season, including preseason contests — the pregame routine is becoming familiar to me, mainly because it is really, really routine. As in, the same exact thing every week, in the same sequence. Variations from the routine are rare, and they are generally minor. This squares with one of the oft-repeated things I’ve heard about professional football players: they’re creatures of habit, on gameday as much as any other.
Today’s gameday routine was completely thrown off by the Sean Taylor ceremony (more on that later) — the players were introduced as a group, at which point they stood at midfield with the Taylor family, for example. The Giants were leading 7-0 before the crowd seemed to have focused in on what was going on, before I got my head in the game, and — I suspect that the players had a similar experience.
- I almost hope so, in fact, because it would be nice to blame this slow start on something other than the Giants simply being that good. I had thought that if the Redskins could slow down the Giants run game, their defensive backs had a chance to have a big day against Eli Manning. The run has been stopped, but Manning has thrown for 130 yards in the first quarter alone. The Giants are just having that kind of day, when a snap for an extra point can be mishandled and the kick goes through anyhow.
- Wow. This is a fascinating new annoyance: there are some people sitting in front of the press box who seem to possibly be in violation of the NFL fan code of conduct, and who are demonstrating that by pounding on the press box window and shouting things at the folks in the front row. This makes the irritating guy with the whistle from previous weeks seem positively pleasant.
- As the quarter comes to an end, the few-extra-minutes-to-get-their-head-in-the-game theory is looking good. The defense held the Giants to a crucial field goal, and the offense is finally moving the ball. If that theory isn’t correct, though, this has the potential to be a looooong day.
Posted on November 30, 2008 by Matt Terl