Eli undone by playoff pressure

first_imgThroughout the game, Burress and Shockey bared their frustration, Shockey by stomping on the field after running free down the middle of the defense to no avail and Burress by whipping a hat to the ground near the Giants bench. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Though Eli’s poor performance didn’t happen on a Super Bowl doorstep, his first playoff experience didn’t look much different from Peyton’s run-ins with the New England Patriots. And like his brother the past 12 months, Eli will spend a year knowing he played his worst game when it mattered most. “You prepare and hope that you go out there in a playoff game, in a big game and a big situation, and play well and put your team in a situation to win,” Eli Manning said. “I didn’t do that today. … I made too many mistakes for us to win.” EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – If Eli Manning never understood his brother’s playoff angst before Sunday, he had quite the initiation. He learned how confounding good, experienced, well-coached defenses can be in the playoffs. He knows how hot the lights feel when asked to describe his part in a lopsided season-ending loss. center_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECoach Doc Rivers a “fan” from way back of Jazz’s Jordan ClarksonManning – who completed 10 of 18 for 113 yards with three interceptions and a lost fumble in the Giants 23-0 loss to Carolina – looked jittery in the pocket and was forced into several bad decisions. The most costly of them came midway through the third quarter when, while backpedaling under pressure, he threw a pass across his body to Amani Toomer. It was intercepted by Panthers cornerback Ken Lucas, whose return set up a 12-yard touchdown run by Steve Smith that made the score 17-0. “That was just a bad decision to throw it,” Manning said. “I couldn’t see the whole field well enough to see what was over there.” On his second interception, Manning said he never saw safety Marlon McCree, who juggled and then corralled a pass thrown over Jeremy Shockey’s outstretched right hand. McCree later intercepted another pass intended for Plaxico Burress. Manning’s troubles coincided with a season-worst 41 yards rushing and an overwhelming disadvantage in time of possession, which favored Carolina, 42:45 to 17:15. “That is what we wanted them to do,” Lucas said. “We wanted to put pressure on Eli and make him make some throws.” last_img read more