The Giants sealed the game on the first drive of the second half. They drove 76 yards and scored on a handoff to Bobby Gaiters, who fumbled into the end zone, recovered it, fumbled it again, and then recovered it for good. Linebacker Tom Scott closed out New Yorks scoring with a 65-yard interception return, and the Eagles got two garbage-time touchdowns to make the score more respectable.
The two teams were tied for the Eastern Conference lead and would still be tied four weeks later when they met in Philadelphia. The Giants prevailed 28-24 in that one, too, to win the conference title.
With Y. A. Tittle at the controls of his innovative offense, Allie Sherman was named Coach of the Year in 1961 and 1962.
The Brooklyn-born Allie Sherman was riding high at this early point in his career. He was succeeding dramatically in his dream job and was being lionized in the press and by the fans for his innovative passing game and exciting offensive approach. He successfully dealt with a potentially nasty quarterback controversy between holdover Charley Conerly and newly acquired veteran Y. A. Title, and he had revitalized a Giants team that was picked to finish in the middle of the pack in 1961.
Allie got his start as an undersized, lefthanded backup quarterback for Greasy Neale’s Eagles in the 1940s. Neale thought highly of Sherman, though, and frequently insisted he was the smartest man in football.” Neale recommended Sherman to his friend Steve Owen when Steve was installing the T-formation in 1949, and Sherman coached the Giants’ backs for five years under Owen.
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When Jim Lee Howell replaced Owen in 1954, Sherman took a head-coaching job in Canada while Vince Lombardi was hired as New York’s offensive coach. Sherman returned to the Giants as a scout and replaced Lombardi as offensive coach when Vince left for Green Bay in 1959. Two years later, Howell stepped down and the Giants tried to get Lombardi out of his Packers contract, just two years into his tenure there. Commissioner Pete Rozelle vetoed that possibility, however, and Sherman was hired, once more the second choice behind Lombardi.
Sherman’s team won the Eastern Conference his first three years and he was named Coach of the Year in 1961 and 1962, although his Giants lost to Lombardi’s Packers in both title games. Afraid that his aging team was on the verge of collapse, Sherman began trading away some veterans, while others retired. The problem was that he did not get much value back in his trades and did not have comparable talent on hand to replace the veteran stars.