Nov 072021
 
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Xavier McKinney, New York Giants (November 7, 2021)

Xavier McKinney – © USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK GIANTS 23 – LAS VEGAS RAIDERS 16…
The New York Giants’ defense led team to a 23-16 upset win over the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday afternoon in East Rutherford, New Jersey. With the victory, the Giants improved their overall record to 3-6.

Statistically, the Raiders held big advantages in first downs (24-16), total net yards (403 to 245), and net yards passing (286 to 96). But the Giants out-rushed the Raiders (149 to 117) and won the all-important turnover battle (3 to 1). The Raiders were also a dreadful 1-of-6 in red zone efficiency.

The Giants’ lone offensive touchdown of the game came on their first possession as New York drove 75 yards in seven plays to take a quick 7-0 lead. Running back Devontae Booker broke off a 16-yard run on 3rd-and-1, and two plays later, quarterback Daniel Jones threw a perfect deep sideline pass to tight end Evan Engram for a 30-yard touchdown.

The lead did not last long as the Raider too scored their only offensive touchdown of the day on their first possession. Las Vegas drove 73 yards in 10 plays, culminating with a 2-yard touchdown pass by quarterback Derek Carr. The game was tied at 7-7.

After both teams exchanged punts on their respective second drives, the Raiders immediately got the ball back when Jones was strip sacked. Las Vegas recovered at the New York 30-yard line. The Raiders reached the 6-yard line but could get no further and settled for a 25-yard field goal to give themselves a 10-7 advantage.

Both team exchanged punts again. The Giants’ offense finally put together another scoring possession by moving the ball 43 yards in nine plays to set up a 35-yard field goal by Graham Gano to tie the game at 10-10. Unfortunately for New York, the defense yet again this year allowed the opposition to score points on their final drive before halftime. With 3:17 left on the clock, the Raiders drove 56 yards in 10 plays and kicked a 32-yard field goal with less than 10 seconds before the break.

At the half, the Raiders led 13-10.

Momentum began to switch in New York’s favor right from the start of the 3rd quarter. On 3rd-and-7 from their own 35-yard line, Carr threw a pass towards the left sideline that was picked off by safety Xavier McKinney, who returned it for a 41-yard touchdown. The Giants were quickly back up 17-13.

The Raiders scored their final points of the game on their ensuing possession, a marathon, 15-play, 85-yard, 8-minute drive that was halted at the New York 7-yard line. Las Vegas picked up five first downs on this possession, including a 4th-and-1 conversion. Place kicker Daniel Carlson kicked his second 25-yard field goal of the game (and third overall) to cut the score to 17-16.

The Giants responded with a 13-play, 62-yard possession. While it only resulted in a 32-yard field goal by Gano, the drive did take take over six minutes off of the clock and put New York back up by four points, 20-16, early in the 4th quarter.

The Raiders were able to once again drive the field on the ensuing possession, their third of the second half. Las Vegas picked up four first downs and drove 70 yards in eight plays to reach the New York 7-yard line. Carlson was sent in to kick his third 25-yard field goal of the game, but this one he missed wide left. With 9:28 left to play, New York still held a 4-point advantage.

The Giants were able to pick up two first downs before being forced to punt, pinning the Raiders at their own 12-yard line. Three plays later, McKinney picked off his second pass from Carr, this one a toe-tapping, sideline interception at midfield with 5:12 left. Fullback Eli Penny, subbing for the injured Devontae Booker who left the game with a hip injury, picked up 25 yards on three straight carries. The Giants could not pick up their third first down on this possession and settled for a 38-yard field goal to give them a full-touchdown advantage at 23-16.

The final possession of the Raiders began at their own 25-yard line with 3:21 left to play. New York’s bend-but-don’t-break defense made things interesting, allowing Las Vegas to to pick up 52 yards and four first downs, reaching the Giants 13-yard with 44 seconds left in the contest. But on 2nd-and-10, linebacker Quincy Roche beat the left tackle and sacked Carr, causing a fumble that defensive lineman Leonard Williams recovered at the 23-yard line. Jones knelt on the ball one play to bleed the clock and end the game.

Jones was under heavy pass pressure when he dropped back and finished the game 15-of-20 for 110 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions. Only three of his completions went to a wide receiver. He was officially hit six times, sacked twice, and fumbled once. Jones also carried the ball four times for 17 yards. No pass target had more than four catches or 38 yards. Booker carried the ball 21 times for 99 yards before leaving the game with a hip injury. Penny carried the ball five times for 35 yards.

Aside from generating three turnovers and holding the Raiders to 1-of-6 in red zone efficiency, the defense also held Las Vegas to 4-of-12 (33.3 percent) on 3rd down. Carr was only sacked once, but the hit by Roche caused the game-winning turnover.

Video highlights are available at Giants.com.

ROSTER MOVES, PRACTICE SQUAD ACTIVATIONS, INACTIVES, AND INJURY REPORT…
On Saturday, the Giants activated LB Elerson Smith to the 53-man roster from Injured Reserve.

The Giants also elevated WR Pharoh Cooper and LB Trent Harris to the 53-man roster from the Practice Squad.

Inactive for the game were RB Saquon Barkley (ankle), WR Sterling Shepard (quad), LB Lorenzo Carter (ankle),S Nate Ebner (ankle), and LB Oshane Ximines.

TE Kaden Smith (evaluated for concussion) and RB Devontae Booker (hip) both left the game with injuries. Booker was asked about his hip after the game and he responded, “It’s great. Went back, got x-rayed on it and everything was good.”

POST-GAME REACTION…
Transcripts and video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Joe Judge and the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

POST-GAME NOTES…
The Giants did not allow a second-half touchdown for the third consecutive game.

The Giants have one of the NFL’s best records in a game prior to a regular-season bye: 22-11 (.667).

The Raiders became the seventh opponent to score against the Giants in the final 1:33 of the first half and sixth in the final 36 seconds.

QB Daniel Jones tied his career-high by completing 75% percent of his passes. Jones completed all nine of his passes in the first half, the first Giants quarterback to do so since Phil Simms in 1993.

The Giants and Indianapolis Colts are the only teams with a takeaway in every game this season.

PK Graham Gano has made 19-of-21 attempts this season.

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
Head Coach Joe Judge and select players will address the media by conference call on Monday.

Sep 012021
 
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Quincy Roche, Pittsburgh Steelers (August 21, 2021)

Quincy Roche – © USA TODAY Sports

GIANTS CLAIM THREE PLAYERS OFF OF WAIVERS, CUT THREE…
The New York Giants have claimed the following players off of waivers:

  • WR Collin Johnson (from Jacksonville Jaguars)
  • LB Justin Hilliard (from San Francisco 49ers)
  • LB Quincy Roche (from Pittsburgh Steelers)

The 23-year old, 6’6”, 222-pound Johnson was originally drafted in the 5th-round of the 2020 NFL Draft by the Jaguars. As a rookie, he played in 14 NFL games with no starts, catching 18 passes for 272 yards and two touchdowns.

The 24-year old, 6’1”, 231-pound Hilliard was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the 49ers after the 2021 NFL Draft.

The 23-year old, 6’3”, 245-pound Roche was originally drafted in the 6th round of the 2021 NFL Draft by the Steelers.

To make room for these three players, the Giants cut wide receivers C.J. Board (contract terminated) and Dante Pettis (waived) as well as linebacker Trent Harris (waived). Board was re-signed a few hours later when the Giants placed two players on Injured Reserve.

GIANTS PLACE ELERSON SMITH AND JOHN ROSS ON INJURED RESERVE…
The New York Giants have placed linebacker Elerson Smith and wide receiver John Ross on short-term Injured Reserve. Both are eligible to return to the 53-man roster after the first three games of the 2021 regular season.

With these roster vacancies, the Giants re-signed wide receiver C.J. Board, who was cut hours earlier in the day, and long snapper Casey Kreiter, who was cut yesterday.

GIANTS SIGN 14 PLAYERS TO THE PRACTICE SQUAD…
The New York Giants have signed the following players to the team’s 16-man Practice Squad:

  • RB Sandro Platzgummer
  • WR David Sills
  • WR Damion Willis
  • WR Matt Cole
  • TE Nakia Griffin-Stewart
  • TE Jake Hausmann
  • OC Brett Heggie
  • OG Kenny Wiggins
  • OG Jake Burton
  • OT Jackson Barton
  • DL David Moa
  • DL Willie Henry
  • LB Niko Lalos
  • S Jordyn Peters

All 14 players were with the team during training camp.

Platzgummer will spend a second season on the Practice Squad as part of the NFL’s International Player Pathway Program. Platzgummer does not count against the 16.

Three spots remain open on the Practice Squad.

MICHAEL STRAHAN TO HAVE HIS JERSEY NUMBER RETIRED ON NOVEMBER 28…
The New York Giants will retire former defensive end Michael Strahan’s #92 jersey during the November 28 game at MetLife Stadium against the Philadelphia Eagles. Strahan played for the Giants from 1993 to 2007. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2014.

Currently, 12 Giants have their jersey numbers retired by the Giants. Former quarterback Eli Manning will also have his jersey number (#10) retired during the September 26 game against the Atlanta Falcons at MetLife Stadium.

HEAD COACH JOE JUDGE…
The transcript of Joe Judge’s press conference on Wednesday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

THE PLAYERS SPEAK…
Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
The Giants practice again on Wednesday afternoon (12:30-2:30 PM). The team’s coordinators and assistant coaches will also address the media, as well as select players.