Shurmur not feeling the checkdowns. Looks like “Throw the ball” to me. pic.twitter.com/2Vpckys7zq
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) October 12, 2018
As the Giants‘ offense muddled through a first half in which Saquon Barkley accounted for 137 of its 167 yards of total offense against the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday night, head coach Pat Shurmur appeared visibly frustrated with the play of quarterback Eli Manning.
After Manning checked to Cody Latimer on a screen pass, with Barkley as a wide receiver isolated against Eagles cornerback Ronald Darby with no safety help over the top, Shurmur was caught by the FOX cameras appearing to scream, “Throw the ball!”
The Giants, who eventually lost 34-13 to drop to 1-5, had a first down and 19 on that series, and on three straight passing plays, Manning failed to throw the ball more than five yards past the line of scrimmage.
Veteran quarterbacks have traditionally had some of the highest completion percentages of their careers under Shurmur, but they’ve also been productive moving the ball.
Last season, Case Keenum posted career-highs in completion percentage (67.6) and yards per attempt (7.4). Keenum ranked 11th in the NFL in yards per attempt.
Likewise, in 2016, Sam Bradford posted the second-highest completion percentage in league history with 71.6 while averaging seven yards per attempt.
However, Manning entered Week 6 averaging 9.06 yards per attempt, but finished three games with under seven yards per attempt.
In a controversial interview with ESPN last week, wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. couldn’t even say whether he believed the Giants have a quarterback problem.
“Uhh, I don’t know,” Beckham said. “I feel like … he’s not going to get out of the pocket. We know Eli’s not going to run it. Can he still throw it? Yeah. It’s cool catching it shallow and trying to take it, but I want to go over the top of somebody.
“I want to be the best that I can. I don’t feel like I’m given the opportunity to be the very best that I can be. I feel like I could score every quarter, if given the opportunity. I know those numbers could be double, or triple that they are right now.”
Matt Lombardo may be reached at MLombardo@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @MattLombardoNFL