Aug 112023
New York Giants (August 11, 2023)

New York Giants – © USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants fell to the the Detroit Lions 21-16 at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan in the first preseason game for both teams. Both teams sat the bulk of their starters.

The starting offense for the Giants was:

  • QB Tyrod Taylor
  • RB Matt Breida
  • WR Isaiah Hodgins
  • WR Cole Beasley
  • WR Jalin Hyatt
  • TE Daniel Bellinger
  • LT Matt Peart
  • LG Joshua Ezeudu
  • OC John Michael Schmitz Jr.
  • RG Ben Bredeson
  • RT Korey Cunningham

The starting defense for the Giants was:

  • DL Jordon Riley
  • DL Brandin Bryant
  • OLB Tomon Fox
  • OLB Oshane Ximines
  • ILB Carter Coughlin
  • ILB Micah McFadden
  • CB Tre Hawkins
  • CB Deonte Banks
  • Slot CB Darnay Holmes
  • S Jason Pinnock
  • S Dane Belton

The Giants actually led the game 13-3 at halftime due two interceptions and a turnover on downs that gave the team outstanding field position. The second half got away from New York due to a 95-yard punt return and very poor play by their back-up offensive tackles, specifically Korey Cunningham and Wyatt Davis. Detroit did out-gain New York 327 to 216 in total yards, with most of the discrepancy coming in the passing game (230 to 135).

The Lions received the ball to start the game and immediately turned it over when outside linebacker Tomon Fox hit quarterback Nate Sudfeld, forcing a bad throw that was picked off by safety Jason Pinnock near midfield. Pinnock returned the interception 17 yards to the 32-yard line. The Giants could not pick up a first down and settled for a 48-yard field goal by place kicker Graham Gano.

New York’s defense got the ball back again on Detroit’s next possession. The Lions went for it on 4th-and-1 on their own 32-yard line, but Pinnock broke up the pass, causing a turnover on downs. Once again, the Giants’ offense stalled and Graham kicked a 42-yarder, making the score 6-0.

The Lions gained 63 yards on 14 plays on their third drive, setting up a 39-yard field goal to cut the score to 6-3. The Giants then drove 50 yards in 12 plays, but lost a yard on their own 4th-and-1 conversion attempt at the Detroit 18-yard line, turning the ball over on downs.

After both teams exchanged punts, safety Dane Belton intercepted a deep pass from Sudfield at the New York 44-yard line and returned the ball 42 yards to the Detroit 14-yard line. Then on the first play after the turnover, third-string quarterback Tommy DeVito connected on a perfect strike to tight end Tommy Sweeney for the touchdown.

The Lions had the ball one more time before halftime and gained 71 yards down to the New York 4-yard line. However, on 4th-and-4, cornerback Cor’Dale Flott broke up a pass to cause another turnover on downs.

At the break, the Giants led 13-3.

A group of mostly third-teamers could not move the ball for the Giants in the second half. Four straight possessions resulted in a total of two first downs and four punts. Worse, one of those punts resulted in a 95-yard punt return that cut the score to 13-11 after a successful 2-point conversion. Detroit took the lead late in the third quarter after a 14-play, 46-yard drive set up a 28-yard field goal.

The Giants regained the lead 16-14 with just over eight minutes to play after a 6-play, 39-yard drive. But the third- and fourth-teamers on defense could not hold, allowing an 11-play, 69-yard touchdown drive that gave the Lions a 21-16 advantage with just under two minutes to play. The game ended when on 4th-and-14, DeVito’s desperation deep pass was picked off at the Detroit 29-yard line.

DeVito finished the game 15-of-24 for 155 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He was also sacked five times.

Video highlights are available on YouTube.

WR Wan’Dale Robinson (ACL), DL D.J. Davidson (ACL), and CB Aaron Robinson (ACL) remain on the Active/Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) List.

RB Gary Brightwell (leg?), RT Evan Neal (concussion protocol), OT/OG Tyre Phillips (unknown), OT Devery Hamilton (ankle?), DL Rakeem Nunez-Roches (groin), and DL Ryder Anderson (triceps) did not play. Neither did OL Marcus McKethan (knee) and DL A’Shawn Robinson (knee), who were both activated off of the PUP on Monday.

WR Collin Johnson (knee) and CB Cor’Dale Flott (abdominal) left the game and did not return.

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

Unrestricted free agent inside linebacker Jaylon Smith has signed with the New Orleans Saints. The Giants made no effort to re-sign Smith. In 2022, for the second season in a row, the Giants added Jaylon Smith to the roster during the year. The Giants originally signed Smith to the Practice Squad and then 53-man roster in December 2021. He ended up playing in the last four games of the season with two starts, finishing with 18 tackles, one sack, and one pass defense. The new regime chose not to re-sign him during the offseason, but oddly did so in September. Smith soon entrenched himself as a starter, playing in 13 regular-season games with 11 starts. He finished the season with 87 tackles, three tackles for losses, one sack, two quarterback hits, and one fumble recovery. Smith was originally drafted in the 2nd round of the 2016 NFL Draft by the Dallas Cowboys.

Head Coach Brian Daboll will address the media by Zoom on Saturday.

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Eric Kennedy

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

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