Super Bowl champ Giants eliminated from playoffs

Sun Dec 30, 2012 6:57pm EST
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By Larry Fine

(Reuters) - The reigning Super Bowl champion New York Giants lost any chance of a repeat performance when they were eliminated from playoff consideration despite closing the season with a 42-7 win over the visiting Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.

The Giants (9-7) missed out on the postseason when the Chicago Bears (10-6) defeated the Detroit Lions (4-12) 26-24. New York had needed a win and three different teams to lose on Sunday in order to grab a wildcard berth .

New York, which squandered a 6-2 start to the regular season, had the inside track to a playoff berth before absorbing one-sided losses to playoff-bound Atlanta and Baltimore by a combined 67-14 in the previous two weeks.

Responding to coach Tom Coughlin's call to show their pride in the finale, quarterback Eli Manning threw four touchdown passes in the first half as the New Yorkers stormed to a 35-7 lead by intermission.

"I'm very proud of our team about the way we played today," Coughlin said, though there was no sugar-coating the bottom line.

"It goes without saying, the first thing is you don't ever rely on anyone else in this business. You have to take care of your own business," said the coach.

"We had it in our grasp. We knew exactly what we had to do but we weren't able to get that done. I'm sure that will be first and foremost on our minds throughout the off-season."

The lopsided loss may have signaled the end of a long run for Philadelphia Eagles (4-12) head coach Andy Reid, who was challenged by the team owner to post a winning mark this season. Reid has been at the helm of the Eagles for 14 seasons.   Continued...

New York Giants David Wilson (R) is tackled by Philadelphia Eagles Nnamdi Asomugha (L) and Jamar Chaney (C) in the third quarter of their NFL football game in East Rutherford, New Jersey, December 30, 2012. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine