Oct 022022
Gary Brightwell, New York Giants (October 2, 2022)

Gary Brightwell – © USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants gutted out a tough 20-12 win over the Chicago Bears on Sunday at MetLife Stadium, but the team lost a plethora of key players to injury. Quarterback Daniel Jones (ankle), quarterback Tyrod Taylor (concussion), wide receiver Kenny Golladay (knee), offensive tackle Evan Neal (neck), offensive guard Mark Glowinski (ankle), defensive lineman Henry Mondeaux (ankle), outside linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux (back), outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari (calf), cornerback Aaron Robinson (knee), and safety Julian Love (concussion) all left the game due to injuries.

The Giants are now 3-1 on the season.

The overall team statistics were relatively equal. The Giants out-gained the Bears in first downs (21 to 16), total offensive plays (61 to 60), total net yards (333 to 304), and time of possession (31:17 to 28:43). However, the Giants held a big advantage in rushing yards (262 to 149) while the Bears doubled the Giants in net yards passing (155 to 71). The Giants won the turnover battle 3 to 2.

The Giants received the football to start the game, but quickly went three-and-out and punted. Chicago’s first possession resulted in a 10-play, 65-yard drive that stalled inside the red zone. The Bears settled for a 29-yard field goal and a 3-0 early lead. New York responded quickly. A mixture quarterback Daniel Jones’ passes and running back Saquon Barkley carries moved the ball to the Chicago 21-yard line in five plays. Then on a designed run, Jones scrambled 21 yards for a touchdown. The Giants were now up 7-3.

On Chicago’s ensuing drive, their second of the contest, quarterback Justin Fields connected on a 56-yard pass on the first play of the possession. However, for the second time, the Bears were forced to settle for a short field goal inside the red zone. The 22-yard kick cut the score to 7-6 near the end of the first quarter.

The Giants gained a couple of first downs on their third possession, but were forced to punt. The Bears once again moved the ball on their third possession, driving 53 yards. But on the 10th play, at the New York 27-yard line, Fields was sacked by outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari. The ball came loose and outside linebacker Kavyon Thibodeaux recovered at the 25-yard line. The Giants kept up the momentum as the offense then drove 75 yards in seven plays. Barkley broke off a 29-yard run to start the drive. Jones connected on passes of 18 and 15 yards, the latter coming on a highlight-reel run after the catch by Barkley on 3rd-and-9. Jones finished the possession off with his second touchdown run of the game, this one from nine yards out. Giants 14 – Bears 6.

The Giants’ defense finally forced a three-and-out on the Bears’ fourth possession. However, wide receiver Richie James fumbled the punt away, with the Bears recovering at the New York 35-yard line. The Bears gained one first down, reaching the 23-yard line, but settled for yet another field goal. Giants 14 – Bears 9. Neither team scored on their final possessions of the half.

Chicago received the ball to start the 3rd quarter and immediately proceeded to cut into the Giants’ lead once again. The Bears gained 58 yards in nine plays, but for the third time in the game, settled for a red zone field goal. Giants 14 – Bears 12. That would be the last points Chicago scored on the day.

After both teams exchanged punts, the Giants moved the ball 60 yards in five plays to set up a successful 44-yard field goal by place kicker Graham Gano. The big play play on this drive was a 40-yard pass interference penalty against wide receiver Darius Slayton. Giants 17 – Bears 12 near the end of the 3rd quarter.

Chicago went three-and-out. Tyrod Taylor, who was now in the game for the injured Daniel Jones at quarterback, gave the ball right back as his deep pass intended for Slayton was intercepted at the Chicago 7-yard line. Nevertheless, the New York defense held again, forcing another three-and-out. The Giants’ offense then put together their final scoring drive of the game, a 13-play, 54-yard effort that took 6:34 off of the clock and resulted in a 43-yard field goal by Gano. Giants 20 – Bears 12.

With 5:31 left in the game, the Bears picked up a first down, but were stuffed on 3rd-and-2 at their own 45-yard line. The Bears’ head coach decided to punt with 3:15 left, the kick being downed at the New York 3-yard line. The Giants could only gain four yards and punted with 2:13 left. However, it was Chicago’s turn to fumble the punt away, the muffed kick being recovered by running back Gary Brightwell at the Chicago 37-yard line.

Barkley picked up 13 yards on the first play of the ensuing possession. However, the Giants failed to put the game away as Gano missed the 37-yard field goal with 17 seconds left. The Giants had to sweat out a series of desperate laterals on the final play of the game before safety Dane Belton recovered a fumble at the Chicago 28-yard line.

Jones finished the game 8-of-13 for 71 yards. He also rushed the ball six times for 68 yards and two touchdowns. The leading receiver was tight end Daniel Bellinger who caught three passes for 23 yards. Barkley carried the ball 31 times for 146 yards.

Defensively, the Giants were credited with six sacks, including two by defensive lineman Dexter Lawrence and one each by linebackers Tae Crowder, Jihad Ward, Azeez Ojulari. There was also a team sack. Crowder led the defense with 11 tackles.

GAME VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS are available on YouTube.

On Saturday, the Giants signed ILB Jaylon Smith from the Practice Squad to the 53-man roster. The team had a vacant roster spot and did not have to make a corresponding roster move.

The Giants activated (standard elevation) WR Marcus Johnson and DL Henry Mondeaux from the Practice Squad to the 53-man roster on the same day.

Inactive for the game were WR Kadarius Toney (hamstring), WR Wan’Dale Robinson (knee), DL Leonard Williams (knee), CB Cor’Dale Flott (calf), CB Nick McCloud (hamstring), OT Tyre Phillips, and ILB Austin Calitro.

QB Daniel Jones (ankle), QB Tyrod Taylor (concussion), WR Kenny Golladay (knee), OT Evan Neal (neck), OG Mark Glowinski (ankle), DL Henry Mondeaux (ankle), OLB Kayvon Thibodeaux (back), OLB Azeez Ojulari (calf), CB Aaron Robinson (knee), and S Julian Love (concussion) all left the game due to injuries.

Transcripts and video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Brian Daboll and the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

Head Coach Brian Daboll and select players will address the media by conference call on Monday.

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Eric Kennedy

Eric Kennedy is Editor-in-Chief of BigBlueInteractive.com, a publication of Big Blue Interactive, LLC. Follow @BigBlueInteract on Twitter.

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