Coming into Week 15 on Sunday, the New York Giants had nothing to play for but pride. However, in the team's 23-0 loss to the Seattle Seahawks, we didn't see much of that. New York's offense could manage only 181 total yards against the tough Seattle defense, and quarterback Eli Manning didn't help matters by throwing a career-high five interceptions. Even though the defense did a good job of holding the Seahawks to just 3.9 yards per carry on the ground while sacking quarterback Russell Wilson four times, the effort wasn't enough to make up for an abysmal output on the other side of the ball.
"I think the defense came out and played extremely hard," said safety and team co-captain Antrel Rolle. "I think the defense came out there and played extremely hard today. I think we made some great plays out there today, I think we challenged each and every one of their plays."
Rolle spoke up after the game and said that while the Giants were well prepared for Seattle by head coach Tom Coughlin and his staff, there was something missing from their execution.
"Coach Coughlin, he's a coach, but he can't coach heart," said Rolle. "He can't make a play or have heart, he can't make a player have passion about this game, and that's what we were lacking out there today."
2013 has been a frustrating season for the Giants, but one thing they haven't done is make excuses or blame the coaching staff for the team's poor play. Even during a 0-6 start, the players were accountable for their performance.
"Coach Coughlin can't take any of this blame," said Rolle. "Like I said, personally, I won't allow that. He can't take any of this blame. Coaches coach and they did a phenomenal job getting us prepared for this. We had a great week of practice."
No matter how polite the Giants players are after the game, though, it won't help the team improve on the field. That's something that is necessary if Coughlin and his staff are going to stick around much longer. A coach whose players don't play with heart is a coach who isn't tolerated for long in the NFL.
"Obviously sometimes out there today, we looked like we didn't have a pulse," said Rolle. "And you can never do that playing a game of this magnitude, playing a game that's this physical and playing an opponent like the Seattle Seahawks that live and die by pride, swagger, confidence. We knew that coming into the game today. They imposed their will on us today."