The defending Super Bowl champion New York Giants were on a roll headed into Week 9 with four straight wins and a tight grip on first place in the NFC East division.
Unfortunately for New York, the win streak came to an end for the Giants on Sunday with a loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers with arguably the worst performance of the season from Eli Manning.
The two-time Super Bowl MVP completed 10-of-24 passes for 125 yards and one interception finishing the game with an ugly passer rater of 41.1. Manning admitted he had a poor performance led to the loss against via Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPNNewYork.com:
“Obviously, I didn’t play well last night,” Manning said Monday. “And there is no hiding it. I didn’t play my best football. I got to play better. I think that is all I am worried about.”
Manning was noticeably struggling against the best pass defense in the league that only gives up 174 passing yards per game and received little help from the ground game with running backs Ahmad Bradshaw and Andre Brown finishing with a total of 68 rushing yards and one touchdown.
Although New York hanging tough for the majority of the contest, the Steelers were able to capitalize in the fourth quarter with 51-yard touchdown pass from Roethlisberger to wide receiver Mike Wallace and a one-yard touchdown run by Isaac Redman with about four minutes remaining in the game.
The win was a step in the right direction for Ben Roethlisberger and company as they will head into their bye week before taking on the arch division rival Baltimore Ravens in Week 11. The first of two divisional matchups with the Ravens will be crucial with both teams neck-and-neck in the AFC North division once again.