2004 New York Giants season

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2004 New York Giants season
Head coach Tom Coughlin
Home field Giants Stadium
Record 6–10
Division place 2nd NFC East
Playoff finish did not qualify
Previous season Next season
< 2003 2005 >

The 2004 NFL season was the 80th season for the New York Giants. After starting the season 5–2, the Giants finished 6–10, 2nd in the NFC East.


Former Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Tom Coughlin was hired to replace Jim Fassel, who was fired following the conclusion of the 2003 season. Departures: Kerry Collins, Brian Mitchell, Kenny Holmes, Brandon Short, Cornelius Griffin, Keith Hamilton, Michael Barrow, Matt Bryant.

NFL draft[edit]

Main article: Manning-Rivers trade

Due to their poor record from the previous season, the Giants were guaranteed one of the first four picks in the draft. Since they finished with the same record as the San Diego Chargers, the Oakland Raiders, and the Arizona Cardinals, tiebreakers would determine who received which pick and the Giants were given the fourth pick. That year, Ole Miss quarterback and Heisman trophy finalist Eli Manning was slated to be the #1 pick. That pick was in the possession of the Chargers, whom Manning was refusing to play for. Although forecasts saw the Giants picking either Robert Gallery, an offensive lineman from Iowa who went to the Raiders with the second pick, or Ben Roethlisberger, a quarterback from Miami of Ohio who went later in the draft to the Pittsburgh Steelers, the team was looking to trade with the Chargers to acquire the pick. Instead, on draft day, a scenario was initiated where the Chargers drafted Manning, the Giants drafted North Carolina State's quarterback Philip Rivers, and the picks were swapped for each other.

The Giants also selected former Boston College offensive guard Chris Snee, Auburn linebacker Reggie Torbor, and strong safety Gibril Wilson.

Main article: 2004 NFL Draft
Round Selection Player Position College
1 4 Philip Rivers (traded to Chargers) Quarterback NC State
2 34 Chris Snee Offensive Guard Boston College
4 97 Reggie Torbor Defensive End Auburn
5 136 Gibril Wilson Safety Tennessee
6 168 Jamaar Taylor Wide receiver Texas A&M
7 203 Drew Strojny Offensive Tackle Duke
253 Isaac Hilton Defensive Lineman Hampton


Regular season[edit]

Although the Giants had traded for Eli Manning, the season began with veteran quarterback and former league MVP Kurt Warner as the starter. After a season-opening loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, Warner and the Giants enjoyed surprising success, starting a four-game winning streak that included road victories over the Dallas Cowboys and Green Bay Packers. Following a Halloween rout of the Minnesota Vikings, 34–14, the Giants were 5–2, trailing the then-undefeated Philadelphia Eagles by just two games.

The high-water mark of the Giants season came on November 7, when the Giants led the Chicago Bears 14–0 at the end of the first quarter. Over the rest of the game, though, the Giants turned the ball over five times, allowed the Bears to score 28 unanswered points (20 in the second quarter) and lost by a score of 28–21. After another loss, this time on the road against the Arizona Cardinals, Giants coach Tom Coughlin decided to replace Warner with Manning. The decision did not show immediate success, as the Giants turned the ball over ten times in the next four games, scoring a total of 37 points.

Close losses to the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cincinnati Bengals followed, dropping the Giants to 5–10. The season did end with a glimmer of hope, however, as the Giants rallied from a 16–7 fourth quarter deficit to end the season with a 28–24 victory over the arch-rival Dallas Cowboys. Manning threw two fourth-quarter touchdown passes, and Tiki Barber scored the game winner.


Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
1 September 12, 2004 at Philadelphia Eagles L 31–17
2 September 19, 2004 Washington Redskins W 20–14
3 September 26, 2004 Cleveland Browns W 27–10
4 October 3, 2004 at Green Bay Packers W 14–7
5 October 10, 2004 at Dallas Cowboys W 26–10
6 Bye
7 October 24, 2004 Detroit Lions L 28–13
8 October 31, 2004 at Minnesota Vikings W 34–13
9 November 7, 2004 Chicago Bears L 28–21
10 November 14, 2004 at Arizona Cardinals L 17–14
11 November 21, 2004 Atlanta Falcons L 14–10
12 November 28, 2004 Philadelphia Eagles L 27–6
13 December 5, 2004 at Washington Redskins L 31–7
14 December 12, 2004 at Baltimore Ravens L 37–14
15 December 18, 2004 Pittsburgh Steelers L 33–30
16 December 26, 2004 at Cincinnati Bengals L 23–22
17 January 2, 2005 Dallas Cowboys W 28–24


NFC East
(1) Philadelphia Eagles 13 3 0 .813 6–0 11–1 386 260 L2
New York Giants 6 10 0 .375 3–3 5–7 303 347 W1
Dallas Cowboys 6 10 0 .375 2–4 5–7 293 405 L1
Washington Redskins 6 10 0 .375 1–5 6–6 240 265 W1

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]