Tom Coughlin’s Memoir of the New York Giants 2006 Super Bowl Season

Tom Coughlin’s memoir of the New York Giants 2006 season and win over the undefeated New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII could have been a lot more than it is.  Like the public persona of the coach, it lacks a bit of personality and inside information that football fans are looking for.  I did find it worthwhile reading, anyway.

This book functions as a mini autobiography of Coughlin’s coaching career and the high pressure and long hours it requires to be a successful coach in the National Football League.  One of the better features of the book is learning about his coaching pedigree and his discussion of how he had to loosen up a little bit with the New York Giants, who as most recall, were seemingly in near mutiny of Coughlin’s old school rules and discipline.

And while Coughlin does a good job with the above, his recounting of the season and the Giants team is often devoid of personality and inside information about how the team overcame some of the squabbling and questions about leadership to go on their improbable run to a Super Bowl victory.  He certainly plays lip service to the quiet leadership skills of the oft criticized Eli Manning and his rocky but repaired relationship with older players like Michael Strahan, but it more reportorial than emotional engaging.

There also is little about football strategy and X’s and O’s in this book, which is fine as I didn’t expect much.  But for an avid football fan like myself that always adds a great deal to a book about football.

Despite these drawbacks, I am sure New York Giants fans will enjoy this look back at the season from Coughlin’s perspective.  I would not, however, recommend this to the casual football fan.

A Team to Believe In: Our Journey to the Super Bowl Championship

1942 Chicago Bears and 2007 New England Patriots

This won’t make Patriots fans feel any better but consider this.

The 1942 Chicago Bears lost the NFL Championship to the Washington Redskins 14-6.

The Chicago Bears of that year had the best offense AND defense in the NFL.  They set the then NFL scoring record with 376 points and held opponents to the fewest points of any other team in the NFL at 84.

They went 11-0 during the regular season, and get this, were on an 18 game winning streak dating back to the previous season.  And they were said to have not just beaten opponents that year but generally decimated them. Some odds makers had the Redskins as 22 point underdogs.

In the game, the Bears offense did not score a point. Their only score came on a fumble returned for a TD (kick failed).  And the Redskins defensive line evidently played a phenomenal game and had a goal line stand during the game.

One of the Redskins touchdowns came on a pass reception by Redskin back Wilbur Moore (thrown by Sammy Baugh) that was described as a “breathtaking, over-the-helmet catch in stride while tumbling into the end zone,” while a defender was draped across his back.

Sound familiar?

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