Dec 192021
 
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DALLAS COWBOYS 21 – NEW YORK GIANTS 6…
The Dallas Cowboys did not bring their “A” game and the contest was not as one-sided as expected by many, but the New York Giants were soundly defeated 21-6 on Sunday afternoon at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Giants fell to 4-10 on the season and have lost nine of their last 10 games against the Cowboys. The Giants have guaranteed themselves their fifth double-digit loss season in a row, and their seventh in eight years.

Adding injury to insult, the Giants also lost wide receiver Sterling Shepard at the end of the game with a torn Achilles’ tendon.

The overall team statistics were surprisingly close in a few areas. Dallas only held slight advantages in total offensive plays (70 to 61), total net yards (328 to 302), net yards rushing (125 to 124), and net yards passing (203 to 178). However, the Cowboys dominated the all-important turnover battle (4 to 1). The passing yards were also more than a bit misleading in that a net 79 of them came in garbage time with quarterback Jake Fromm playing.

In a nutshell, an undermanned New York defense kept the Giants in the game, but the team’s offense was simply dreadful.

The Giants had 10 total offensive possessions. They resulted in four turnovers, two turnovers on downs, two punts, and two field goals. Nine of Dallas’ 15 first-half points came off of New York turnovers, with the Cowboys beginning a touchdown “drive” at the Giants’ 13-yard line after an interception thrown by quarterback Mike Glennon. Running back Ezekiel Elliot scored from 13 yards out (the extra point failed). The Cowboys also began their last field goal drive of the first half after running back Saquon Barkley fumbled the ball away at the New York 46-yard line with 41 seconds left before halftime.

New York’s other two first half drives were an 11-play, 58-yard affair that ended with a 35-yard field goal by place kicker Graham Gano and a four-play drive that ended with a punt. Dallas’ first possession ended with a punt after gaining 45 yards on 10 plays. They also had two other long drives that ended with field goals, one gaining 58 yards on 10 plays and the other 68 yards on 16 plays.

Glennon finished the first half 6-of-9 for just 45 yards, with one pass being completed to a wide receiver, and an interception. At the break, the Cowboys led 15-3.

The Giants cut the score to 15-6 on their first possession of the second half by driving 51 yards in eight plays to set up a 42-yard field goal by Gano. Unfortunately, that would be New York’s last points of the day. Glennon’s next four possessions resulted in a turnover on downs (failed 4th-and-1 quarterback sneak that gave Dallas the ball at the New York 29-yard line), a punt, and two interceptions. The turnover on downs led to a Dallas touchdown five plays later, making the score 21-6 (extra point failed again) near the end of the 3rd quarter.

Neither team scored in the 4th quarter. This is when Glennon tossed interceptions #2 and #3 before being benched by Fromm with under four minutes to play. The Cowboys punted twice more and turned the ball over when linebacker Lorenzo Carter sacked quarterback Dak Prescott and forced a fumble that nose tackle Austin Johnson recovered. Carter finished the game with 4 tackles, 3 quarterback hits, 2 sacks, a forced fumble, and a pass defense.

Glennon finished the game an abysmal 13-of-24 for 99 yards, no touchdowns, and three interceptions. His quarterback rating was 24.8. Running back Devontae Booker carried the ball eight times for 74 yards. Barkley chipped in with 50 yards on 15 carries, but also fumbled the ball away.

Video lowlights are available at Giants.com.

ROSTER MOVES, PRACTICE SQUAD ACTIVATIONS, INACTIVES, AND INJURY REPORT…
On Saturday, the Giants activated S Xavier McKinney from the Reserve/COVID-19 List. They also re-signed CB Sam Beal to the Practice Squad. In addition, the team activated WR Alex Bachman, LB Jaylon Smith, and CB Jarren Williams from the Practice Squad as COVID-19 replacements.

Missing the game due to COVID-19 were WR Kadarius Toney, WR John Ross, LB Cam Brown, LB Oshane Ximines, CB Aaron Robinson, CB Adoree’ Jackson, and S J.R. Reed.

Inactive for the game were QB Daniel Jones (neck) and OG Ben Bredeson (ankle).

RB Gary Brightwell suffered a neck injury in the first half and did not return. WR Sterling Shepard left the game late with a torn Achilles’ tendon in his left leg. His season, and possibly his career with the Giants, may be over.

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:

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

Dec 172021
 
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THE STORYLINE:
As a franchise, the New York Football Giants have collectively buried their heads in the sand for almost a decade. While there have been many humiliating moments, games, and even seasons since 2011, the utter and complete incompetency seems to be coming to a head. Ownership, management, et al. seem to be living in denial. A reckoning is in store on Sunday.

Reap what you sow.

THE INJURY REPORT:
Except for Xavier McKinney, who is a “close contact” negative, it is not expected that any of the COVID players will play on Sunday.

  • QB Daniel Jones (neck – out)
  • RB Saquon Barkley (ankle)
  • WR Sterling Shepard (calf – questionable)
  • WR Kadarius Toney (COVID)
  • WR John Ross (COVID)
  • TE Kyle Rudolph (ankle)
  • LT Andrew Thomas (ankle)
  • OG Ben Bredeson (ankle – doubtful)
  • DE Leonard Williams (triceps – questionable)
  • NT Austin Johnson (foot – questionable)
  • NT Danny Shelton (calf)
  • LB Benardrick McKinney (illness)
  • LB Reggie Ragland (illness)
  • LB Elerson Smith (illness)
  • LB Cam Brown (COVID)
  • LB Oshane Ximines (COVID)
  • CB Aaron Robinson (COVID)
  • CB Adoree’ Jackson (COVID/quad)
  • CB Jarren Williams (illness)
  • S Xavier McKinney (COVID)
  • S J.R. Reed (COVID)
  • S Steven Parker (illness)
  • PK Graham Gano (illness)

THE FINAL WORD:
The beatdown is likely to be utterly embarrassing. The stadium is likely to be filled with mocking Cowboys fans. Jerry Jones will likely be laughing his ass off. And Dallas will likely win its 15th game against the Giants in the last 19 games between these two teams.

Pathetically, team surrogates will continue to address the public, blaming fans for not understanding what is going on behind the scenes and insisting that things are actually getting better.

But hey, ownership appreciates you. They are giving PSL/season-ticket holders a free medium soft drink if you attend the game. Drink up lads!

Dec 142021
 
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Eli Penny, New York Giants (December 12, 2021)

Eli Penny – © USA TODAY Sports

QUICK RECAP

The wheels are coming off the Giants 2021 season. The 4-8 squad traveled across the country to Los Angeles to take on the 7-5 Chargers. Daniel Jones remained on the sideline as he and the organization try to diagnose the the severity of his neck injury and timeline for possible return, while the 2020 NFL Rookie of the Year, record-setting Justin Herbert, marched onto the field making his 28th consecutive start.

NYG began with the ball, led by backup Mike Glennon for the second straight week. Sterling Shepard was back on the field, leaving only first round rookie Kadarius Toney as the only other skill position player left on the injured list other than Jones. This offense has scored the fewest touchdowns in the league (tied with HOU) and at least a part of that reason revolves around the injuries. The game started with 3 straight scoreless possessions between the 2 teams. LAC seemed to find their flow early on, however.

On their second drive, they never saw a 3rd down over the course of 9 plays, picking up chunk after chunk. They ran the ball down NYG’s throat and ended it with a 1-yard touchdown by Austin Ekeler. NYG’s response was important. Much thanks to a 60-yard gain on a 3rd-and-10 pass from Glennon to Kyle Rudolph, NYG tied the game up via a play-action pass to fullback Elijhaa Penny. The game entered the second quarter locked up at 7 a piece.

NYG’s defense, an improving unit over the past couple of months, couldn’t come up with a stop to reverse the momentum. Herbert hit rookie receiver Josh Palmer for a 12-yard touchdown at the end of a 9-play drive to re-lengthen to lead to 14-7. This is where the LAC dominance began. NYG followed with a 3-and-out, then LAC made it a 10-point game thanks to a 27-yard field goal. NYG proceeded to another two three-and-out drives, giving LAC the ball back with 40 seconds left in the first half. On a 3rd-and-11 with 25 seconds left, Herbert threw an absolute bomb as he was being hit by Lorenzo Carter that traveled 70 yards in the air and into the hands of Jalen Guyton for the 59-yard score. Just like that, in a matter of 12 minutes of game clock, LAC went to 24-7 after being tied up at 7.

To add insult to injury, LAC began the second half with the ball, adding 3 more points via a 28-yard field goal. Make it 20 unanswered points. Head Coach and special team guru Joe Judge went into his bag of tricks on the following drive. NYG was set to punt from their own 38 but to the surprise of everyone other than the Chargers, it was a fake. Riley Dixon attempted a pass that came nowhere close to his target, cornerback Keion Crossen. LAC took the field position and turned that into 3 points. 23 unanswered points.

This game seemed all but over, with the Chargers up 30-7 lead entering the 4th quarter, but they weren’t done. Herbert hit veteran Jared Cook for a 1-yard touchdown. 30 unanswered points. The rest of the 4th quarter saw the LAC backups get a few snaps and NYG score two garbage touchdowns against a prevent defense. Glennon hit Barkley for on a 18-yard score and the quarterback ran another one in after nearly tripping over his own feet. Glennon ended his 17/36 day with an interception before the white flag was raised.

NYG loses 37-21.

QUARTERBACK

Mike Glennon: 17/36 – 191 yards / 2 TD – 1 INT / 70.5 RAT

Glennon also scored on a 7-yard touchdown run in garbage time after the Chargers called the dogs off. Not that the numbers are overly impressive, don’t let any of them mislead you. Glennon was awful for most of the afternoon. He went 9/19 in the first half and missed multiple easy throws. He had targets open but missed them. He had targets open but did not see them. There isn’t a huge benefit to seeing Glennon out there if Daniel Jones remains out. If and when Jake Fromm learns enough of the offense, Glennon needs to go back to his 2nd-string role.

RUNNING BACK

Saquon Barkley: 16 att – 64 yards / 3 rec – 31 yards – 1 TD

For his 5th straight game, Barkley rushed for more yards than the previous. His 95 total yards were the second-highest of the season (win vs. NO being the highest). To be fair, as I have been very critical of him all season, he looked better in this game than what we have seen most of the year. A little less dancing, a little more lowering of the shoulder, and extra yards after contact. He was only on the field for 55% of the snaps too. I would love to see him play these last few games hard and fast. We need to know he can still do it.

WIDE RECEIVER

-Another poor day from this group when it came to involvement and production. Much of that is due to the poor play of Glennon, however. He was misfiring left and right, north and south. Golladay saw 8 targets and caught just 2 of them for 15 yards. John Ross and Pharaoh Cooper each caught 1 pass for a combined 13 yards.

-Sterling Shepard came back for the first time since November 1st. I wasn’t sure how much they would limit his snaps, but he actually on the field for 56 plays (81%). He saw just 4 targets, catching 2 of them for 27 yards.

-Darius Slayton was targeted 3 times and didn’t catch 1 of them. He added a drop to his total on the year. His 10.6% drop number is one of the worst in the league.

TIGHT END

-Kyle Rudolph came up with the biggest play of the day on a 60-yard catch-and-run (mostly run) when the game was still tight. He also graded out very well in the running game.

-Evan Engram had 1 catch for 8 yards and a drop. Glennon missed him multiple times. Unfortunate to not see Engram build off his solid performance a week ago. Chris Myarick also added a drop.

OFFENSIVE LINE

-Compared to what we’ve seen this season, the offensive line as a whole played a solid game. They got more vertical push in the running game than we have seen all year and the pass protection was above average across the board.

-Andrew Thomas allowed 1 pressure on a play where he lost his footing. Besides that, he was near flawless. He built on his very solid season. Nate Solder allowed 2 pressures and a sack while splitting snaps with Matt Peart. We all want to see more out of Peart, but one can easily make the case he is a lesser pass blocker than Solder. His footwork looks horrific, and it carries over to his hands and torso.

-Inside, center Billy Price and guard Will Hernandez finished with above average grades. The latter allowed 1 pressure but adjusted well on stunts and both were powerful in the running game. Matt Skura allowed a sack and a TFL – two negative plays that you can’t have but he was solid everywhere else. Ben Bredeson saw 10 snaps and didn’t have any standout plays in either direction.

DEFENSIVE LINE

-Leonard Williams injured his elbow early and at the time of this writing (Tuesday AM), my guess is he will be done for the year. This should open the door for rookies Elerson Smith and Raymond Johnson to see more snaps. Neither stood out in their limited action against LAC.

-Dexter Lawrence had one of his best days as a Giant. 7 tackles, 1 sack, and a career high 4 pressures. What I liked most here was the fact that he amped up the intensity after Williams went out. I would like to think that was him consciously making the effort to be the guy in there, the one to take over. Now, if only we could get him to play with that intensity weekly.

-Austin Johnson and Danny Shelton combined for 10 tackles but were obliterated in the running game. Shelton especially doesn’t have the juice to get off the blocks quick enough. He is such a heavy, slow mover.

LINEBACKERS

-Tae Crowder added 8 tackles to his team-lead in that department. He and Reggie Ragland were the guilty culprits when it came to LAC’s running game success. They couldn’t avoid blocks, they couldn’t get off them. Benardrick McKinney added 5 tackles and played a nasty, physical brand. He made his presence known a few times.

-Lorenzo Carter had an active game. He got the best of star rookie left tackle Rashawn Slater a few times, recording 4 tackles and 2 pressures. He was close on a sack as well. Azeez Ojulari added sack and now has a team-high 7.5.

-Elerson Smith and Quincy Roche were both quiet. NYG now has a rotation of 3 players on rookie deals to work with on the outside. I want to see more of Smith and Ojulari with Carter and Roche taking a back seat. We need to see the upside-guys get the action and let others fill in during breaks.

CORNERBACKS

-Aaron Robinson played all but 3 snaps. He led the team with 9 tackles and allowed a little too much separation on underneath / intermediate routes. That is where he needs to prove himself in this league. He won’t be a tall, long, speedy downfield cover guy. He isn’t going to beat a ton of guys up at the line. His physical movement skills are there, but the anticipation isn’t there yet.

-James Bradberry wasn’t targeted often. He had 1 tackle and 1 pass break up.

-Jarren Williams saw a third of the snaps and LAC went after him pretty hard. He allowed a touchdown and was flagged for a hold on special teams. He has the look of a typical young and inexperienced corner in that he can’t seem to use his athletic ability just yet. He is tripping over his own feet and isn’t seeing things yet. I like his talent, though. Just need to see him bounce back a bit.

SAFETY

-The one thing I like the most about this defense is the amount of versatility these safeties bring to the scheme overall. With the injuries and inexperience at corner, the likes of Logan Ryan and Julian Love with their respective history at cornerback can help a ton. With that said, these three got roasted by the LAC passing game that was missing their best receiver. McKinney was beat on the long touchdown, Ryan was flagged for an illegal hands to face, and Love was fooled on a touchdown along with missing 2 tackles.

SPECIAL TEAMS

-K Graham Gano: No FG attempts
-P Riley Dixon: 5 punts / 45.6 avg – 41.6 net

3 STUDS

-DT Dexter Lawrence, OT Andrew Thomas, RB Saquon Barkley

3 DUDS

-DT Danny Shelton, CB Jarren Williams, QB Mike Glennon

3 THOUGHTS ON LAC

(1) Within the scouting community, the Chargers front office, and in particular the college scouts, is highly respected around the league. These guys are thorough, they stick to their template for that year, and hit on a lot of picks. What I like the most about them is their ability to evolve their process year by year. Unlike many teams, they will change their approach when the market and team situation dictate as much. They’re going to be competitive for a very long time.

(2) What is it that this team is missing? Their offensive line has been very up and down. They had a stretch of 3 games where they rivaled the level of lowness we see from NYG. Their right tackle Storm Norton is one of the worst 5 starters in the NFL at that position and right guard Michael Schofield can’t handle power. They have gotten a bit better, but I think it will be their undoing in the postseason.

(3) The NFL has been taken over more than ever by more analytics-based minds both on coaching staffs and front offices. Time will tell if the approach is going to work (I think some teams way overvalue it). LAC uses a lot of it to make in-game decisions, notably on 4th downs and field goal situations. According to my count, it has hurt them more than helped. When factoring this in against teams that can really capitalize on mistakes, I think it will further hurt them if they make the playoffs.

3 CLOSING THOUGHTS

(1) If Daniel Jones is going to be out the rest of the season with the neck injury, these last few games got even more difficult to watch. He was the biggest gray area in my mind who needed more clarity. I want to see him play with a full slate of skill-position players behind a line that is fully healthy, or close-to it. No, I don’t have any hope in Fromm coming out of nowhere even though I would rather see him play than Glennon.

(2) Has Joe Judge proven he can’t get the most out of his team? It is at least a conversation worth having at the end of the year. The coach and QB especially are the ones who need to get the most out of others. Judge hasn’t taken a step forward as a head coach. I don’t get caught up in the post-game press conferences, those are what they are. I read and listen to a lot of them, and only about 7-8 coaches in the league are worth listening to in that situation. I am more concerned with the lack of identity this team has. The lack of self-scouting. The poor game management with timeouts and situational football.

(3) Barring a surprise, NYG will have 2 selections in the top 10. 3 in the top 40. 5 in the top 80. With the gray cloud over the quarterback situation and a strong offensive line/pass rusher group coming respectively, one can easily make the argument this is the biggest pre-draft process in decades for this franchise. Who will be in charge? That is THE question for me. NYG needs to go outside the box, they need to go unorthodox. Their inability and unwillingness to do so is a catalyst for why NYG is where they are right now.

Dec 122021
 
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LOS ANGELES CHARGERS 37 – NEW YORK GIANTS 21…
An incompetent, uncompetitive, poorly-coached, and talent-deficient New York Giants team was utterly humiliated 37-21 by a Los Angeles Chargers team that barely broke a sweat on Sunday afternoon. Two late touchdowns by the Giants made the final score misleading. Indeed, the game seemed more lopsided than when the Chargers went up 37-7 in the 4th quarter. The Giants are now 4-9 on the season with four games left to play. The Giants will have a losing season for the eighth time in the last nine years.

The contest was best epitomized by what transpired in the final two minutes of the first half. Already leading 17-7, the Chargers were forced to punt the ball from their own 8-yard line. The Giants got the ball back, 1st-and-10 on the Los Angeles 41-yard line with 1:40 left before halftime. Three straight pass attempts by starting quarterback Mike Glennon resulted in the Giants actually losing two yards. Riley Dixon’s punt only traveled 18 yards. The Chargers got the ball back on their own 25-yard line with 40 seconds on the clock. Four plays later, with 25 seconds left, quarterback Justin Herbert threw a 59-yard touchdown pass to give the Chargers a 24-7 advantage at the break.

Of note, the Giants have now been outscored 59-0 in the final two minutes of first halves this season.

Five of New York’s six first-half possessions resulted in two first downs and five punts. Four of those drives gained only 17 yards. The only first-half points came on the third possession, a 7-play, 75-yard drive that ended with a 3-yard touchdown pass from Glennon to fullback Eli Penny. This tied the game at 7-7. It was all downhill for New York after that.

The Chargers’ six first-half possessions resulted in three touchdowns, a field goal, and two punts.

With the game already out-of-hand, the second half was like watching a slow death. The Chargers scored on each of their first three drives, adding two field goals and another touchdown. Meanwhile, the Giants turned the football over on downs (an incomplete pass by Dixon on a fake punt) and fumbled (Glennon was sacked on 4th-and-9 near midfield, fumbling the ball away to Los Angeles). The outcome of all of this was the Chargers going up 37-7 with 9:28 left in the game.

The Giants made the score more respectable with two late touchdown drives. The first was a 10-play, 75-yard affair that ended with an 18-yard touchdown pass from Glennon to running back Saquon Barkley (the Giants failed on the 2-point conversion). After a Los Angeles punt, the Giants drove 63 yards in seven plays, with Glennon scrambling seven yards four a touchdown. A 2-point conversion run by Penny cut the score to 37-21.

New York actually successfully recovered an onside kick with 1:18 left to play. But four plays later, Glennon was picked off with 47 seconds left.

Glennon finished the game 17-of-36 for 191 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. He also fumbled the ball away. Running back Devontae Booker was the leading receiver with just four catches for 28 yards. Barkley carried the ball 16 times for 64 yards, and Booker gained 56 yards on eight carries.

The defense was abysmal, allowing 423 yards of offense and seven scoring drives (four touchdowns, three field goals). The Giants only broke up one pass. Herbert finished the game with a 133.1 quarterback rating. The Chargers also ran for 152 yards. New York did not force a turnover.

Video lowlights are available at Giants.com.

PRACTICE SQUAD ACTIVATIONS, INACTIVES, AND INJURY REPORT…
The Giants elevated CB Jarren Williams from the Practice Squad. In addition, WR/returner Pharoh Cooper was activated from the Practice Squad as a COVID-19 replacement for OG Wes Martin (Reserve/COVID-19 List).

Inactive for the game were QB Daniel Jones (neck), WR Kadarius Toney (oblique), CB Adoree’ Jackson (quad), WR Collin Johnson, and LB Oshane Ximines.

DE Leonard Williams injured elbow in the second quarter and did not return to the game.

POST-GAME REACTION…
Video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Joe Judge and the following players are available at Giants.com:

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

Dec 102021
 
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John Mara, New York Giants (July 29, 2021)

John Mara – © USA TODAY Sports

THE STORYLINE:
For fans of the New York Giants, we’ve officially entered that all-too-familiar part of the season where we are just waiting for it to end. And that’s with five games left! Unfortunately, this has become commonplace for the once-proud franchise. Fans eagerly wait six months for players to report to training camp and by mid-season, the team is out of contention.

I said to my wife yesterday, “I have no idea what to write in my game preview this week.” She responded, “Just say they suck.”

This season has been a disaster for the franchise, not just for what occurred this year, but moving forward. Let’s review:

Entering the season, most NYG fans felt good about the coaching staff with the exception of offensive coordinator Jason Garrett. Joe Judge obviously had or developed the same reservations about Garrett and fired him last month. However, a significant percentage of the fan base now doubts Judge and the rest of the coaching staff he has assembled. It has gotten so bad that I’ve actually seen posts from readers saying Ben McAdoo and/or Pat Shurmur were better. The person with the most to lose over the course of the last five games may be Joe Judge. It’s not inconceivable that his job may be on the line.

Since fans assumed the coaching staff was largely set, the #1 issue entering the 2021 season was Daniel Jones. After a promising rookie season and a disappointing sophomore season, 2021 was supposed to be the tiebreaker. Was Daniel Jones the future or not? The team loaded up on offensive weapons to help his cause. Many pundits claimed in the offseason that the Giants were “loaded” on the offensive side of the ball and Jones was out of excuses. Unfortunately for Jones, the team’s decision to largely stand pat on the offensive line was a disastrous mistake. Worse, all of the “weapons” have missed significant time and/or are extremely limited by injuries when they do play. While Jones has only thrown seven interceptions this year (3 in one game), he has only also inexcusably thrown 10 touchdowns. While Jones’ lost fumbles have dramatically decreased from 11 in 2019 to 6 in 2020 to 3 in 2021, his overall QB rating has plateaued at 84.8. Long story short, he has not gotten better. And while this was no sin for a 3rd-year quarterback in 1980, 1990, and 2000, it apparently is in 2021. Worse, Jones has suffered some mysterious structural neck injury that may prevent him from redeeming himself in the last few games. Jones was the #6 pick in the entire 2019 NFL Draft. Instead of being a difference-maker, he’s been a major disappointment.

Saquon Barkley was the #2 pick in the entire 2018 NFL Draft. He had one of the greatest rookie seasons in NFL history, accruing over 2,000 total yards despite a terrible supporting cast. It’s been all downhill ever since. Barkley has become an injury-prone back who, while still fast, appears to have lost his explosive lateral agility. Despite what he publicly says, his confidence has waned. Worse, he appears to fear contact, the death-knell for any football player, especially a running back. 2021 was supposed to be Barkley’s redemption tour. Instead, right now there are many fans who argue he isn’t even the best running back on the team. Taken together, the selections of Barkley and Jones, two top-6 picks in back-to-back drafts, looks like an unmitigated catastrophe.

A renewed Barkley was supposed to jump start the offense. But so were the additions of high-priced free agent Kenny Golladay and surprise 1st-round draft pick Kadarius Toney. It was hoped that injury-prone, perennial teases Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram would finally put together complete, consistent seasons. Darius Slayton was supposed to rebound from a sophomore slump. Kyle Rudolph was supposed to help in the red zone. None of these things happened. All of these guys have been in and out of the line-up with injuries. Golladay has 26 catches and, unbelievably, no touchdowns. Toney has barely made an impact, playing in less than half of all offensive snaps. He also has yet to reach the end zone. Shepard has missed half the season. Engram only has 35 catches for 334 yards; Slayton 21 catches for 280 yards. Rudolph only has 19 catches and one touchdown.

Entering 2021, reinforced by significant additions at linebacker and in the secondary, it was anticipated that the defense would pick up where it left off in 2020. That didn’t happen as the defense mightily struggled during a 1-5 start to the season. While the defense has significantly tightened up during the course of the last six games, directly responsible for an “improved” 3-3 record during this time frame, it has developed some serious physical and mental toughness issues. New York is 25th against the run, one of the main reasons why it is only 23rd overall (a drop from its 12th-place finish in 2020). But perhaps more troubling, Giants’ defenders and coaches are unable to stop opposing offenses in the last few minutes of the first half. In practically every single game this year, the Giants have surrendered a long touchdown drive right before halftime. If it wasn’t so sad, it would be comical. The team lacks both physical (run defense) and mental (belief in oneself) toughness. And it was the defense that was expected to carry the team this year while the offense came together.

Dave Gettleman’s legacy has been determined. He’s been a colossal failure as GM of the New York Football Giants. He spent a #2 overall pick on a 1-year wonder running back who is now afraid of getting hit. He spent a #6 overall pick on a “franchise” quarterback who isn’t. Perhaps almost as equally damning is that through four NFL draft classes and four NFL free agency periods, the offensive line that he vowed to fix is still a complete mess.

John Mara appears to be the new Dan Snyder of the division. Every decision he makes is wrong. He picks the wrong general managers and coaches. He spends hundreds of millions of dollars on players who aren’t very good. Offseason moves that look good on paper in March and April rapidly become a joke when the games count in September.

To sum up, nothing has gone right in 2021. Coaching, franchise quarterback, franchise running back, receiving targets, defense, management, and ownership all look like a mess. The optimists hoped and believed that the coaching staff was set, Daniel Jones would have a break out season, Saquon Barkley would regain his rookie form, Jones would have a plethora of dangerous weapons to throw to, the defense would be even better than it was in 2020, and that Dave Gettleman would ride off into retirement with the team clearly moving in the right direction. None of that happened. It appears the franchise is no further along than it was in 2014-2015 (12-20 under Tom Coughlin), 2016-2017 (14-18 under Ben McAdoo), 2018-2019 (9-23 under Pat Shurmur). The Giants are 10-18 under Joe Judge. They may not win another game this year. A decade of really, really bad football.

THE INJURY REPORT:

  • QB Daniel Jones (neck – out)
  • QB Mike Glennon (concussion – probable)
  • WR Kenny Golladay (rib – questionable)
  • WR Kadarius Toney (oblique – out)
  • RB Saquon Barkley (ankle – probable)
  • WR Sterling Shepard (quad – questionable)
  • NT Danny Shelton (calf- questionable)
  • CB Adoree’ Jackson (quad – out)

THE FINAL WORD:
The Giants are going to lose on Sunday. We all know it. Worse, the team knows it. The only question is will the Giants keep the final score respectable or not.

Dec 072021
 
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Billy Price, New York Giants (December 5, 2021)

Billy Price – © USA TODAY Sports

QUICK RECAP

Week 13 brought NYG down to Miami to face off against the Dolphins, a team that started off 1-7. Their defense had taken a huge step back after leading the NFL in turnovers in 2020, their young offensive line was getting torched on a weekly basis, and their quarterback situation was messy because of injuries. However, they came into this one winner of 4 straight and inching their way back into AFC playoff contention. NYG on the other hand was without starting quarterback Daniel Jones thanks to a neck injury and still without 2 of their top 3 receivers, Sterling Shepard and Kadarius Toney. Two former Bill Belichick disciples from a coaching tree that has had very little success trying to lead their respective teams out of the bottom third of the league and into the top half.

Mike Glennon was under center at the start of the game for the first time with NYG. It was his 28th career start over his 8-year career. He completed his first 8 passes but the biggest play of the 1st quarter came on a deep shot to Darius Slayton into double coverage. One of those 2 defenders was cornerback Xavien Howard, a physical 6’1”/203, sixth-year veteran who leads the NFL in interceptions since 2018. He was the one that came down with the ball. But after review, his long return past midfield was erased. MIA had to start their drive inside their own 5-yard line. MIA went 3-and-out, giving NYG the ball back at the MIA 37-yard line thanks to a 15-yard punt return by Pharoh Cooper.

After reaching the 21, NYG went 3 straight plays without gaining a yard. Kicker Graham Gano then booted one through the uprights for field goal, giving NYG the initial lead. MIA responded with a field goal of their own to tie it up. NYG could not respond with anything of note, and with Kenny Golladay off the field with an injury to his ribs, they were simply trying to play a field position battle.

MIA got the ball back with just over 4 minutes left in the half. They were in a somewhat-hurry up offense heavily consisting of a quick, short passing game. Tua Tagovailoa completed 9 of his first 10 passes, spreading the ball out effectively. He then completed 2 more to end the drive, the second one being a 5-yard touchdown to Mack Hollins with under 30 seconds left in the half. NYG opted to let the clock run out once they got the ball back and MIA went into the half with a 10-3 lead and getting the ball back to start the 3rd quarter.

After a MIA 3-and-out, NYG put together their best drive of the day. Thanks to a pass to Evan Engram and a run by each Saquon Barkley and Devontae Booker, NYG gained 57 yards on 3 plays. They got into the red zone with a 1st-and-10, but the worst red zone offense in the NFL gained 1 yard on 3 plays, forcing another field goal attempt. Gano nailed it from 34 yards, making it 10-6.

The two offenses then traded 6 straight punts, with four 3-and-outs. The NYG drive that ended the 3rd quarter was about as ugly as one can create after gaining some momentum. After converting a 3rd-and-7 with a run by Barkley, the wheels fell off and we were quickly reminded what this Giants franchise has become. NYG “earned” a 2nd-and-23 thanks to a sack by rookie Jaelan Phillips; they used a timeout to avoid a delay-of-game penalty, and then Phillips record yet another sack. The final kick between the legs came on a delay-of-game penalty. 3rd and 33. NYG ended up punting by the way.

There was blood in the water and winning teams take advantage of it. Is MIA a winning team? They’re approaching that tier, and even though September + October was a complete nightmare for them, this was the point in the game where NYG seemed most vulnerable. The MIA response would say at least something about them. Tagovailoa went 5/5 on the drive, spreading the ball out to 5 different pass catchers. The final one was a 2-yard touchdown to Isaiah Ford and gave the home team a 17-6 lead.

In today’s NFL, an 11-point lead with over 11:00 left is not near-secure. Unless, of course, the losing team has scored the least number of touchdowns in the NFL and is being led by a backup quarterback with multiple injuries to the skill positions. Glennon was misfiring left and right and the NYG pass protection had a hard time with the blitz-heavy defensive scheme deployed by MIA. They did add 3 points via a 51-yard field goal by Gano to get within 8. However, MIA responded with another 3 points of their own.

This game was all but over as NYG got the ball back with 1:11 left. They got the ball across midfield as MIA softened up the defense. Gano was sent out on a 2nd down to try and get the team within 1 score so they could try an onsides kick + Hail Mary attempt. Gano missed the 56-yarder and MIA then took a knee to end it.

NYG loses 20-9.

QUARTERBACK

-Mike Glennon: 23/44 – 187 yards / 0 TD – 1 INT / 53.9 RAT

Expectations cannot be high for a backup, especially one who has been in the league for 8 years and won’t take anyone by surprise. Especially one who cannot move in space with any sort of fluidity or speed. And especially one who is playing in this kind of offense surrounded by such a poor supporting cast. I said before the game I would be surprised to see this offense put-up double-digit points. Glennon fought an uphill battle but the blame still needs to be put on him. He was downright terrible. He lost track of his timing in the pocket, he missed open receivers, and he was throwing the ball into double coverage. He started off 8-for-8, then went 15-for-36 from there. He is also being evaluated for a concussion.

RUNNING BACK

-Saquon Barkley: 11 att – 55 yards / 6 rec – 19 yards

Barkley’s per-touch production was better than what we’ve seen pretty much all year minus the win at New Orleans. The positive mark is that he had multiple solid plays rather than just a lone run that padded the stats. He showed a little more toughness between the tackles, pushing piles and falling forward. However, Barkley still ended with a negative grade here. He dropped 2 passes and allowed 2 pressures. There is so much more to playing running back than breaking off the big play here and there. Barkley appears to fear contact and lack natural skill/fluidity.

-Devontae Booker added 54 yards on 10 touches. He continues to bring the same, if not better, level of play to the offense as Barkley. Something to keep in mind this offseason when looking at the team’s economics.

WIDE RECEIVER

-Kenny Golladay had 3 catches for 37 yards, all of which came in the first half. He was forced off the field for a while because of a minor rib injury, but he insisted on coming back into the game. Admirable effort, but he didn’t do a thing from that moment-on.

-Darius Slayton added 2 drops to his season. He is approaching a 10% drop percentage, one of the worst in the NFL among receivers (3rd in the NFL). Poor against contact, inconsistent hands, and a fragile frame.

-John Ross played under a third of the snaps and received 1 target, a poorly placed ball by Glennon. It may be time for him and Slayton to switch roles.

TIGHT END

-Evan Engram had a solid game. His 61 yards were a season high, and he came up with 3 first downs. The one negative was on a deep ball downfield where he turned in the wrong direction while tracking the ball, leading to an incomplete pass on what should have been the biggest offensive gain of the day.

OFFENSIVE LINE

-The offensive line was attacked with a blitz heavy game plan by MIA. A lot of extra bodies, a lot of stunts and twists. They, and the backs/tight ends in charge of providing aid, did not respond well. There weren’t any bright spots on the line besides backup Ben Bredeson, who filled in at left guard during the 3rd quarter. He played 30 snaps (just under half) and performed well. I would like to see him more in there. Starter Matt Skura allowed 2 TFL and a pressure during his half of the snaps and offers no upside.

-Nate Solder allowed another 4 pressures and was getting manhandled at the point-of-attack in the running game. Zero push or sustainability led to many of the no-gain rushing attempts. On the other side, Andrew Thomas allowed 1 pressure and 1 sack. A case can be made that Glennon held on to the ball too long on that sack, but Thomas was beat on the play by the rookie Phillips.

-Will Hernandez allowed 2 sacks, both a result of him simply not moving his feet when engaged. We are 57 games into his career, and he still shows zero comprehension of staying home against stunts. Other teams know and exploit it weekly. Billy Price allowed 2 pressures and mightily struggled in the run game.

DEFENSIVE LINE

-It was a quiet day from this group overall. I was expecting more because of how much the young MIA offensive line has struggled all year. Even though they have played better over the past month, Leonard Williams and Austin Johnson especially didn’t make their presence known very often. Yes, the quick passing game hurt NYG’s chances of making a difference up front, but the opportunities that did come their way were not exploited.

-Dexter Lawrence led the group in snaps. That hasn’t happened often and I’m not completely sure why that was the case.

LINEBACKER

-Tae Crowder led the team with 9 tackles and added an untouched pressure. He played solidly in this game; I would say one of the better performances we have seen in his two years. The speed and twitch are a nice add-on to a defense that has the slower guys Reggie Ragland and Benardrick McKinney playing alongside of him.

-Azeez Ojulari and Quincy Roche were the 2 bright spots on defense. They both recorded a sack while Ojulari added a pressure and pass break up. I liked what I saw out of them in run defense as well. They set the edge, got off blocks, and finished plays.

-Throw in the 21 snaps we saw out of Elerson Smith, and this was the best takeaway from the game for me. Smith didn’t produce anything, but I want to see him out there more and more and he did show off some fancy technique work. The movement, suddenness, and pad level further proved in my mind that this guy has a good shot at being a good player. Now we just need to see him on the field instead of Lorenzo Carter.

CORNERBACK

-Rookie Aaron Robinson played every snap. That was nice to see, as it would be a big deal to have a strong idea what NYG has here heading into the offseason. He had 7 tackles and a pass break up. While there were some negatives when it came to his ball skills in general, Robinson is proving he can be what he needs to be. His reaction speed is excellent.

-James Bradberry was beat on two 3rd downs and allowed a touchdown while in zone coverage. He added 2 tackles, one of which was a nice play and big hit. Teams seem to be attacking him more and more underneath and intermediate.

-Jarren Willams saw his first action of the year and performed well. Good lower body movement and burst.

SAFETY

-Logan Ryan was back on the field after missing a couple games wit Covid-19. He made 8 tackles and was solid in coverage. Ryan and Julian Love, who added a pass break up and 2 tackles, are such key assets to a defense that remains playing at a solid level. They just don’t get the attention from most because of how bad this team is.

-Xavier McKinney recorded 6 tackles and a TFL. He allowed a touchdown and was beat on 3rd down once. Not a bad game for him, but he was tricked by Tagovailoa’s eyes a few times. It almost looked like the two knew each other from college or something.

SPECIAL TEAMS

-K Graham Gano: 3/4 (Made 39, 34, 51 / Missed 56)
-P Riley Dixon: 6 punts / 41.3 avg – 36.8 net

3 STUDS

-OLB Azeez Ojulari, OLB Quincy Roche, K Graham Gano

3 DUDS

-OT Nate Solder, OG Will Hernandez, QB Mike Glennon

3 THOUGHTS ON MIA

(1) Can MIA really bounce back from 1-7 and into the playoffs? This is something all fan bases should keep in mind. Sure, a rough start creates very low odds of moving on to the postseason, but these things happen. As short as a football season seems in contrast to other sports, a lot can and does change after October. Miami went 10-6 last year and is now 6-7 in the middle of a 5-game winning streak. They have a bye followed by a game against the Jets (3-9) and Saints (5-game losing streak). An easy slate of games along with confidence that they know how to win games combine for something very noteworthy to say the least.

(2) What can we make of Tua Tagovailoa? His first 2 years have been cloudy partially because of injuries and a coaching staff that yanked him back and forth for a bit. When breaking him down, there doesn’t appear to be a “wow” factor with his arm. He is an average athlete at best. He isn’t very big. But what I like here is the accuracy he has short and intermediate. He shows tremendous touch, he throws catchable balls. I wouldn’t call him a sure thing yet, but I feel safe with Tagovailoa at the helm. He has created the most from a poor overall offensive situation in Miami.

(3) What is the key to the Miami turnaround? Two things in my opinion. Their defense is forcing turnovers like they did in 2020. They have forced 11 of them over their last 5 weeks. They had forced just 9 in the previous 8 games. Second, their young offensive line is maturing. Right tackle Jesse Davis was signed to the Practice Squad in 2016. Besides that, all 4 starters were drafted in the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd rounds over the past 3 years. It hasn’t been all positive, however. Their line was atrocious early in the year, similar to what NYG has been showing. Patience and development paid off, however, and they are clicking at the right time for a cheap price.

3 CLOSING THOUGHTS

(1) Is there anything to take away from MIA that can apply to NYG and their short-term future? Their head coach is from the Belichick family. They’re under .500 since the transition. They have a quarterback under a rookie contract. They’ve used multiple offensive coordinators. Their offensive line has been awful. They’ve had a hard time scoring points. There are a few deeper, more detailed analytic-type similarities between the two, but I will stop there. The point is the gap between these 2 teams is minuscule at the same time as it is enormous. Much discussion in the coming months will center on how NYG can improve the team. This will come down to the draft. Over the past 4 drafts, MIA has derived big time results. I would subjectively say they have hit on 22 out of 36 picks. More importantly, they’ve hit on all 16 selections from rounds 1-3. Success rates above 66% in that tier is considered good. Regardless of who leads the Giants next year, the emphasis must be on improved drafting. It can turn around fast if that is the case. Organic growth.

(2) I write this just a few hours after the Patriots won in Buffalo using 3, yes 3, total passes in the entire game. The weather dictated the approach, obviously. But NE went into a hostile environment against a top 5-defense, a top 5-run defense in particular. They ran it 46 times. I watched this game and naturally reflected further on NYG. Even though the game has changed a lot even within my lifetime (I’m only 35), the ability to pound the ball with the running game is still the most economic and safest way to play football. NYG won’t ever run the ball without 3, maybe even 4 new starters on this offensive line. I already have some thoughts in relation to how this organization needs to build for 2022 and beyond, but I will let the rest of the year play out first. However, I will say this right now: if this team wants to succeed and get on track, their draft resources noted above need to be thrown into this position group. Over and over.

(3) Looking forward, NYG has games against 4 teams with credible playoff chances. They’ll be underdogs in all of them (not including the game vs Chicago). These teams will be hungry and much of football revolves around collective effort and desire. NYG will be overmatched on paper, but I am looking for who will be playing hard and who hustles for all 60 minutes. I am old fashioned in that regard. It means something to me and it should mean something to whomever builds this team’s future. Between that and the young guys, there is a ton to watch and look for. The guys I am most excited to watch are Elerson Smith, Aaron Robinson, Xavier McKinney, Andrew Thomas, Azeez Ojulari, and Kadarius Toney. They can be a huge part of the turnaround but the on-field play and passion for the game need to be demonstrated at a high level.

Dec 052021
 
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Oompa Loompas

New York Giants offensive line in action!

MIAMI DOLPHINS 20 – NEW YORK GIANTS 9…
For all intents and purposes, the New York Giants’ season ended on Sunday when they were decisively beaten by an unimpressive Miami Dolphins team 20-9. With the loss, the Giants fell to 4-8 with five games left to play in the 2021 regular season.

The dreadful New York offense looked even worse with Mike Glennon subbing for the injured Daniel Jones at quarterback. The Giants scored a season-low nine points. (The team has scored more than 20 points this year in only four games). After the game, Glennon was diagnosed with a concussion.

Overall, team stats were comparable with the Dolphins holding slight advantages in offensive plays (68 to 64), first downs (19 to 16), total net yards (297 to 250), and time of possession (30:40 to 29:20). The Dolphins held a significant advantage in net passing yards (229 to 159), while the Giants out-rushed the Dolphins (91 to 68). Miami also won the turnover battle, 1 to 0.

The Giants only gained six first downs and scored three points in the first half, the results of their drives being:

  • 6 plays, 28 yards, 1 first down, punt
  • 7 plays, 45 yards, 3 first downs, interception
  • 7 plays, 16 yards, 1 first down, 39-yard field goal
  • 6 plays, 23 yards, 1 first down, punt
  • 1 play, 7 yards, end of half

It wasn’t much better in the second half, as the Giants only gained 10 first downs and six points (5 of those first downs and 3 of those points came when the game was out of reach):

  • 10 plays, 69 yards, 4 first downs, 34-yard field goal
  • 3 plays, 0 yards, 0 first downs, punt
  • 3 plays, 8 yards, 0 first downs, punt
  • 6 plays, 2 yards, 1 first down, punt
  • 3 plays, -8 yards, 0 first downs, punt
  • 10 plays, 25 yards, 2 first downs, 51-yard field goal
  • 6 plays, 32 yards, 3 first downs, missed 56-yard field goal

Glennon finished the game 23-of-44 for just 187 yards (4.25 yards per pass play) with no touchdowns and one interception. He was sacked three times and was credited with a 53.9 quarterback rating. In terms of catches, running back Saquon Barkley was his “leading” receiver with six catches for 19 yards. Tight end Evan Engram caught four passes for 61 yards. Barkley rushed 11 times for 55 yards and Devontae Booker rushed six times for 36 yards.

Defensively, the Giants performed decently, but they yet again gave up a touchdown drive right before halftime as the Dolphins drove 84 yards in 14 plays to take a 10-3 halftime lead. Two of Miami’s first-half drives resulted in points. The defense also allowed a 7-play, 61-yard touchdown drive early in the 4th quarter that all but sealed the game with the Dolphins now up 17-6. This was after the defense had forced four straight punts in the 3rd quarter. When the Giants cut the score to 17-9 with five minutes left in the game. The defense could not hold again, allowing a 10-play drive that ended with a field goal. Overall, the defense did not force a turnover and was credited with two sacks.

Video lowlights are available at Giants.com.

ROSTER MOVES, PRACTICE SQUAD ACTIVATIONS, INACTIVES, AND INJURY REPORT…
On Saturday, the Giants signed S Steven Parker to the 53-man roster from the Practice Squad. In addition, the team elevated WR/returner Pharoh Cooper and CB Jarren Williams from the Practice Squad.

Inactive for the game were QB Daniel Jones (neck), WR Kadarius Toney (quad), WR Sterling Shepard (quad), CB Adoree’ Jackson (quad), OG/OC Wes Martin, and LB Oshane Ximines.

WR Kenny Golladay injured his ribs in the game, but later returned. After the game, QB Mike Glennon was diagnosed with a concussion.

POST-GAME REACTION…
Video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Joe Judge and the following players are available at Giants.com:

  • Head Coach Joe Judge (Video)
  • RB Saquon Barkley (Video)
  • WR Kenny Golladay (Video)
  • CB James Bradberry (Video)
  • S Logan Ryan (Video)

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

Dec 032021
 
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Chris Myarick, New York Giants (November 28, 2021)

Chris Myarick – © USA TODAY Sports

THE STORYLINE:
The New York Giants defeated the hated Philadelphia Eagles last Sunday. That would normally be a source of great joy but fans came away largely unimpressed. Not only did the offense score only 13 points, but the Giants were a Jalen Reagor catch away from one of the more devastating losses in a rivalry that is filled with devastating losses. The Giants forced a turnover, got the ball back near midfield with 1:34 left on the clock, and still almost lost the game. Imagine the fallout from that potential catastrophe!

After a 1-5 start to the season, the Giants have gone 3-2 over the course of the last five games. The W-L-W-L-W results have team fans alternating between tepid hope and apathetic despair. Nevertheless, because of the sorry state of the NFL playoff race, the Giants are still alive. Can the Giants go 5-1 or 4-2 in the last five games? Probably not, but there is still a glimmer of hope. The Giants must beat the 5-7 Miami Dolphins. With teams like the Chargers and Cowboys coming up, the wiggle room is gone.

THE INJURY REPORT:
Two weeks removed from the bye week and the Giants are still one beat up team.

  • QB Daniel Jones (neck – out)
  • FB Cullen Gillaspia (calf – questionable)
  • WR Sterling Shepard (quad – doubtful)
  • WR Kadarius Toney (oblique/quad – doubtful)
  • WR John Ross (illness/quad – questionable)
  • TE Kyle Rudolph (ankle- questionable)
  • TE Kaden Smith (knee – out)
  • OT Nate Solder (elbow – questionable)
  • LB Trent Harris (ankle – out)
  • CB Adoree’ Jackson (quad – out)

NEW YORK GIANTS ON OFFENSE:
On losing teams, fairly or unfairly, the two most reviled individuals are almost always the head coach and quarterback. After a promising rookie season, Daniel Jones has opened himself up to immense criticism as the quarterback of a team that struggles to put points on the board and win games. Now for the third year in a row, Jones is out with an injury. Joe Judge has not definitively said if he will return this year. Enter Mike Glennon, who holds a lousy 6-21 record as a starting quarterback (Jones is an almost equally lousy 12-25). Daniel Jones’ detractors eagerly await to see if the quarterback change will cause any sort of offensive improvement from a team that is currently averaging a pathetic 18 points per game.

(Quick aside, if Jones is done for the season, the team can’t feel good about its quarterback situation entering 2022. Combine that with Saquon Barkley’s productivity falling off a cliff and 2021 is turning out to be a worst-case scenario disaster for the franchise).

A month ago, Miami was 1-7. Today they are 5-7. Some will question the caliber of competition, but a 4-game winning streak is impressive in today’s mediocre NFL environment. The Dolphins are hot, and much of that is due to their aggressive, blitz-heavy defense. Indeed, Miami leads the NFL in blitzes. This is going to put tremendous pressure on New York’s struggling offensive line and a starting running back (Barkley) who doesn’t do well picking up the blitz. It doesn’t help that Kadarius Toney (a perfect blitz-beating weapon) is most likely out yet again. Slot receiver Sterling Shepard is likely to miss another game too.

The Miami game plan seems pretty obvious. As bad as Barkley has been in running the ball this year, they have to come into this game concentrating on him and forcing Mike Glennon to beat them. I expect Miami’s defense to stack the line of scrimmage, give Barkley no room to operate, and blitz the heck out of Glennon. They know New York can’t block and that Glennon has thrown 27 interceptions in 27 starts.

How do you beat the blitz? Screen passes to Barkley. Quick slants to the wideouts. If the protection holds up, take your shots on one-on-one match-ups down the field. This is where Kenny Golladay, John Ross, and Darius Slayton could make an impact. But it comes down to protection. Furthermore, Miami is tied with the Giants in forcing 19 turnovers this year. Protect the football.

One more aside, for those who missed it, watch Offensive Coach Rob Sale describe why Matt Peart isn’t playing right tackle in this video, starting at the 21:15 mark. Sales’ facial expressions tell the story. The Giants came into 2021 hoping that Andrew Thomas, Shane Lemieux, Nick Gates, Will Hernandez, and Matt Peart would be the future. Lemieux missed the season with a knee injury and remains an unknown. Gates suffered a potentially career-altering leg fracture. In his fourth season, Hernandez has only proven to be an incredibly inconsistent player who can’t be completely relied upon. And the Giants’ offensive line coach all but called Peart a “pussy.” In other words, the Giants are no further along on their offensive line rebuild than they were a decade ago with the exception of Andrew Thomas. The next GM of the Giants may be forced to spend both 1st-round picks on an OL-rich offensive line draft.

NEW YORK GIANTS ON DEFENSE:
Patrick Graham’s defense won the game last week. It may sound over-the-top picky to complain, but I am still not thrilled with his defense’s play at the end of halves. A bad throw by Jalen Hurts saved New York at the end of the first half, and two drops by Jalen Reagor saved the team at the end of the game. Finish must be the mantra moving forward.

Starting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (a lefty) has missed four games this year. The Dolphins are 3-4 with him starting. His best football has come in the last two games where Miami has scored 57 combined points. RPO and play-action is a big part of Miami’s offense and Tagovailoa gets rid of the ball quickly, preferring the short game. Much of this is a reflection of a bad offensive line, which has allowed too much pressure. The Dolphins also struggle to run the ball, with only the Texans averaging less yards per game. Turnovers are also a problem for Miami, as they have 20 on the year (the Giants have 14 by comparison).

The most dangerous weapon on the team is rookie wideout Jaylen Waddle. He’s been target 103 times on the season, catching 77 passes and four touchdowns. He’s an incredibly quick and fast player who can run by defenders, but the emphasis on the short passing game is highlighted that Waddle is still averaging less than 10 yards per catch. Don’t be lulled by that figure. Also highlighting the dink-and-dunk nature of this offense is that the other primary targets are tight end Mike Gesicki (52 catches on 79 targets) and running back Myles Gaskin (43 catches on 54 targets). The Dolphins will also throw to back-up tight end Durham Smythe.

Bad news is that Adoree’ Jackson and Darnay Holmes (on IR) are out. Good news is that Logan Ryan is back and Aaron Robinson is coming off a strong game. Nevertheless, the Giants are down to James Bradberry, Robinson, and Keion Crossen at corner. Ryan and Julian Love will probably have to play some corner in this game, particularly Love in the slot.

In a nutshell, as long as the Giants stay disciplined with the RPO and play-action and don’t give up the big play to Waddle, this is an offense that they should be able to mostly keep in check. Tagovailoa gets rid of the ball quickly, making it hard to get pressure, but this is an offensive line that can have issues in pass protection. We may see a good game from some of the Giants’ pass rushers. That said, the underneath coverage against the backs and tight ends is key. The Giants still very much miss Blake Martinez.

NEW YORK GIANTS ON SPECIAL TEAMS:
Riley Dixon is an overpaid, underperforming punter. In general, Giants’ special teams are not hurting them this year, but they aren’t winning games either. Joe Judge did mention this week that the Dolphins like to run gadget plays on special teams.

FROM THE COACH’S MOUTH:
Offensive Line Coach Rob Sale on what Matt Peart needs to do to improve:Go out there and put your hands around somebody’s neck and freaking choke ‘em. Plain and simple.

THE FINAL WORD:
The season is on the line. The Giants either improve to 5-7 or fall to 4-8 with five games left. It’s up to them.

Teams often will rally around the back-up quarterback for a game or two. It will be interesting to see how Glennon performs.

Nov 302021
 
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Tae Crowder, New York Giants (November 28, 2021)

Tae Crowder – © USA TODAY Sports

QUICK RECAP

The 5-5 PHI Eagles, winners of 3 of their past 4, traveled up the turnpike to take on a 3-7 Giants team that hadn’t won since November 7. The division foes split their matchups against one another in 2020, both have a very unsure quarterback situation, and both can’t seem to get over the hump into credible NFC playoff contention. PHI and NYG are both removed from the basement tier of the NFL, but they also both have had a hard time putting together consistent performances on either sides of the ball. PHI entered the game on the NFC playoff bubble, while NYG was on a downward slope on a short week after getting dismantled by Tampa Bay the previous Monday night.

Without receivers Kadarius Toney and Sterling Shepard in addition to tight end Kyle Rudolph, the NYG offense yet again came out less than full strength. It began with a 3-and-out, but PHI responded with the same. NYG’s second drive with new play caller Freddie Kitchens (who took over after the Jason Garrett firing) resulted in 3 points. In just two short drives, one could easily notice a key difference in the Giants’ offense. They were using more pre-snap motion, a common and well-known shortcoming in the Garrett-era. Graham Gano ended the drive with a 35-yard field goal.

PHI got into NYG territory on their next drive. On the first play in the red zone, a 3rd-and-5 from the NYG 20, Jalen Hurts threw an interception over the middle to Darnay Holmes. 11 games into the 2021 season and NYG has forced at least one turnover in all of them. It was Holmes’ second interception of his young career. NYG was not able to convert the turnover into points, as Gano missed a 51-yard field goal attempt. Hurts followed that with 2 more incomplete passes, leading to another PHI 3-and-out.

Saquon Barkley opened the next NYG drive with a 32-yard run. The passing game gained 23 yards combined on the following 2 plays and NYG’s momentum was in full swing. After a Devontae Booker 6-yard run, NYG was 1st-and-10 from the PHI 26. But the ugliness of this offense reared its head yet again. A 1-yard loss on a Barkley run, a holding penalty on Andrew Thomas, a 3-yard loss on a Barkley run, and an incomplete pass to Evan Engram brought out the NYG punt unit. Another scoring opportunity down the drain.

PHI started with the ball on their own 7-yard line. They used 14 plays, just one of which was a 3rd down, to reach the NYG 1 yard line. With :08 left in the half, Hurts threw his second red-zone interception of the half into the hands of linebacker Tae Crowder. That, along with 2 holding penalties by center Nate Herbig (in for the injured Jason Kelce) put NYG on the other side of end-of-half debacles for a change. PHI went into the half scoreless much thanks to their own doing.

The PHI running game began the second half with 35 yards on 3 carries. From there, Hurts threw two poor incomplete passes with PHI just needing 2 yards for a first down. They turned it over on downs, giving NYG their first possession of the second half just 9 yards away from midfield. Jones looked crisp and sure on the drive and for the first time, NYG got inside the PHI 10-yard line. The last-ranked red zone offense in the league has been, in my opinion, the biggest issue with this offense. More than the leaky offensive line, more than the banged-up skill positions, more than the up-and-down quarterback performances. Playoff teams put points on the board when they get inside the 20. Super Bowl contenders score touchdowns the majority of their red-zone trips. NYG hasn’t been doing either at an even above average rate since 2014. That was Odell Beckham’s rookie year (arguably his best season of his career).

Thanks to a 3rd-down pass interference penalty on PHI corner Steven Nelson, NYG had a fresh set of downs from the PHI 1. 1st down play-action has been a huge benefit for this offense and that is where they turned to here. Tight end Chris Myarick, who was cut by Miami in August and signed to the NYG practice squad in September, caught a pass in the end zone after nearly dropping it to the turf. The ball missed the ground by mere inches but nonetheless, NYG had the 10-0 lead.

On the second play of the next PHI drive, Hurts tried to throw the ball downfield to Jalen Reagor. Budding star safety Xavier McKinney broke on the ball, clearly had the best track to it from the beginning, and intercepted his 5th pass of the season. He is tied for third in the NFL and for the most by a safety in that department. The PHI offense looked helpless. NYG could not capitalize, however, as their initial offensive play after the turnover was a whopping 13-yard loss on a reverse rushing attempt by Darius Slayton.

With Hurts unable to get anything going with his arm, PHI almost exclusively went with the running game. As the contest entered the 4th quarter, PHI gained all 66 yards of their drive on the ground. Hurts threw the ball once, the opening play of the drive which fell incomplete. Boston Scott ran it in for a 1-yard touchdown. Scott now has 11 career touchdowns, 7 of which have come against NYG.

The lead was just 3 points. NYG went 3-and-out and PHI had the ball back. If it wasn’t known already, this one was going to come down to NYG’s defensive performance. They had to play all 4 quarters here, not just a half. Their lone sack of the day came at the right time on a 3rd-and-4 from midfield. PHI opted to punt, giving NYG the ball back at their own 9-yard line with just over 10 minutes left.

NYG’s best drive of the game ensued. 12 plays, 7:22 of game clock, and 3 points via a 39-yard field goal by Gano was the end result. Jones completed all 6 of his initial passes on this drive, using 4 different receivers and showing precise accuracy. These were key moments, some of these throws were into tight windows, and it was when the plays counted most. Jones did throw an incomplete on the final 3rd-and-7 prior to the field goal.

PHI got the ball back twice in the closing three minutes. That first drive ended in a Scott fumble, caused by Dexter Lawrence and recovered by Julian Love. The final drive did bring them within striking distance of a game-winning touchdown. Two plays resulted in drops by 2020 first rounder Jalen Reagor, the second one being on 4th-and-10 which led to an NYG kneel down the play after.

NYG wins 13-7.

QUARTERBACK

Daniel Jones: 19/30 – 202 yards / 1 TD – 0 INT / 94.0 RAT

Jones also added 30 yards on 9 rushing attempts. Make no mistake about it, this was another horrid offensive day for the Giants when taking a step back and looking at the big picture. 264 yards of offense, 4.6 yards per play are bottom of the barrel. There were a few things that went wrong, but I think Jones was one of the main reasons this team won. Was it a standout performance? No. But he went 11/16 in the 2nd half and a near-essential 6/7 on the final drive that resulted in points to put NYG up by more than a field goal. He made a few tough throws and stood in the pocket strong, showing awareness and toughness with quality footwork.

RUNNING BACK

Saquon Barkley: 13 att – 40 yards / 4 rec – 13 yards

32 of Barkley’s 40 rushing yards came on one play. That one play is similar to why bad golfers always keep going back for another round. That one play, that one drive off the tee, somehow makes it easy to forget that pretty much every other play (or swing) was a disaster. I stand strong on the observation that his running style has changed, he has more stiffness in his lower half than I’ve ever seen since 2018, and there is too much mental hesitation that causes a lack of vision. That said, he was contacted behind the line of scrimmage on 6 of his 13 carries, 3 of which were untouched by a blocker. You can’t succeed in that environment. We still don’t know what #26 is.

WIDE RECEIVER

-No Shepard, no Toney yet again. Shepard has missed six games this year; Toney has missed two (and two of Toney’s other nine games included less than six  snaps in each). Combined, they have played under half of the team’s offensive snaps.

-Kenny Golladay led the team with 7 targets. He ended the day with 50 yards on 3 catches, all of which resulted in a 1st down. The team took 2 shots into the zone at him. Both were low-success rate, fade-type passes. I would love for NYG to get more creative with him in the red zone. Simply lofting the ball in the air and hoping he can end up on the right end of a 50/50 ball rarely works. Inside the 5, it is actually one of the lowest-success rate plays, historically speaking.

-John Ross and Darius Slayton, the two deep threats, combined for 5 catches / 68 yards. Just over 13 yards per clip which is not considered deep, at all. The issue here is the offensive line cannot be trusted to have these two run deep routes. That part of the route tree takes time to progress to and because of that, we aren’t seeing what these guys can actually offer with their skill sets.

TIGHT END

-Chris Myarick had one career target coming into this game. He doubled that number, catching both on similar play-action plays where he had to sell the idea he was staying in to block. Both receptions were huge plays and one resulted in a touchdown. They combined for just 11 yards, but both were huge plays.

-Evan Engram had 3 catches for 37 yards and a drop. Both tight ends allowed a TFL in the running game when they were matched up against defensive ends.

OFFENSIVE LINE

-Excellent bounce back performance by Will Hernandez, a game after the worst performance of his career in Tampa Bay. It was quietly a dominant grade, as I had zero negative notes on him. Not one.

-Matt Skura and Billy Price were beat up inside. Both are poor athletes and the PHI front seven exposed their limitations. Skura allowed 2 pressures, Price allowed one. The biggest red flag was their lack of push in the running game. They were stood up and/or driven back in the power game and they (Price especially) could not reach their gap assignments on outside zone runs. It is such a deterrent to the running game.

-Andrew Thomas allowed a pressure and was flagged for a hold. He did allow a sack late, but I did not dock him on my personal bookkeeping because it was a play where Jones opted to take that sack to keep the clock moving. Another positive game grade for the second-year tackle.

-Nate Solder had the worst grade of the group. He allowed 2 pressures and 2 TFL. More on this below but to sum it up, I don’t think anybody thinks Solder can play anymore. And that is a bigger indictment on Peart than it is Solder.

DEFENSIVE LINE

-Leonard Williams led the way with 4 tackles and 4 pressures. An active game for him even though he couldn’t seal the deal as a pass rusher. He hasn’t had a sack since 11/1 vs KC.

-Dexter Lawrence may be one of the more volatile players on the team. He needs to get to, and stay at, nose tackle. His lack of range showed up against the PHI outside zone running game. He also wasn’t much of a presence as a pass rusher. Lawrence did record 1 pressure and his forced fumble was an enormous play. But one can make the case that the bad is outweighing the good this season and I think at least a part of it is the fact he is out of position.

-Austin Johnson added 4 tackles and split the lone sack on the day with Julian Love. Danny Shelton was on the field for just 9 snaps and didn’t do much. He was out of position on the Darnay Holmes interception return, which led to the cornerback taking a huge hit that could have been avoided. Not a smart player and I am pretty sure that is why Bill Belichick got rid of him.

LINEBACKER

-Again, the biggest culprit in PHI’s running game success revolved around this group. They averaged 6.3 yards per carry and the success was spread out among pretty much everyone who carried the ball. In fact, if I am a PHI fan, I am most perturbed by PHI not running it even more than they did, and their ratio was basically a 50/50 split! That doesn’t happen much anymore.

-Tae Crowder had 6 tackles and an interception and Reggie Ragland had 5 tackles with a TFL. Doesn’t look like a bad day in the box score but the All-22 tape says otherwise.

-Lorenzo Carter was back on the field after missing a few games. He split duties with Quincy Roche but saw slightly more playing time. Had 1 tackle and 1 pressure. His presence when it came to setting the edge was much better than Roche, who really struggled in that department and made no impact as a pass rusher. Azeez Ojulari added 5 tackles and was active in pursuit. Things are clicking a bit better with him mentally and even though the pass-rush impact hasn’t been there in a few weeks, I am seeing encouraging signs there. I bet he has a big game soon.

CORNERBACK

-Adoree’ Jackson was lost early in the 2nd quarter with a quad injury. The story here is that it opened the door for more playing time for rookie Aaron Robinson. In my opinion, playing corner as a rookie in the NFL is one of the most difficult tasks in football. Robinson responded in a big way. He had 6 tackles, 2 PD (1 of which on 4th down), and added a pressure. He was all over the field and looked sticky short and intermediate. Now, he was the beneficiary of poor WR play from PHI on 2 occasions and he did get beat on 3rd down twice, but this was a highly-encouraging performance for a corner that, remember, NYG traded up for.

-Darnay Holmes stepped up as well. He had an interception in the red zone and provided quality deep coverage against both Devonta Smith and Jalen Reagor, both credible deep threats. I like how he showed he can play the outside and even though there are, and likely always will be, slight skill-set issues in coverage, I continue to admire the way he plays when it comes to his aggression and physical nature.

-James Bradberry had a quiet game. 3 tackles and was rarely targeted, allowing just 2 short completions.

SAFETY

-Xavier McKinney is the budding star, not just on this team, but in the entire league at the safety position. Watching the All-22 tape further confirmed my notion on him. He is making reads earlier than most, he is baiting quarterbacks already, and the burst to the ball is something to see. Get excited about him, NYG fans. This is real.

-Logan Ryan was out with Covid again, and Julian Love stepped in without letting the defense skip a beat. While the talent level may not be overly noteworthy, this kid is savvy and smart. When you want to teach how important gap-assignment football is, Love’s tape can be used as an example. He is where he needs to be at all times and he creates plays from it. He had 4 tackles, a half-sack, a PD, and a fumble recovery. His versatility is such a key part to the defense as a whole.

-J.R. Reed had 5 tackles and looked more comfortable in his second sizable chunk of action with NYG. He made a key stop at the goal line.

SPECIAL TEAMS

-K Graham Gano: 2/3 (Made 35, 39; missed 51)
-P Riley Dixon: 5 punts / 39.2 avg – 35.6 net. Terrible game for him.

3 STUDS

-S Xavier McKinney, DT Leonard Williams, OG Will Hernandez

3 DUDS

-OT Nate Solder, OG Matt Skura, LB Reggie Ragland

3 THOUGHTS ON PHI

(1) I labeled Jalen Hurts a career backup when he came out. He is a dangerous player because of how much he can do with his legs and there is indeed arm talent, but my notes on him centered around a lack of true feel in the pocket and very inconsistent accuracy. Hurts has only started 16 games and what he had to work with down the stretch last season was as bad as it gets. The jury is still out. Even though there are flashes, and he does have talent, I don’t see him being a guy to build around in a passing league. Ideal backup who can still win games if the #1 guy goes down, but nothing more. Carson Wentz looks good in Indy, by the way.

(2) Another draft blunder by Eagles GM Howie Roseman? Wide receiver Jalen Reagor was drafted 1 slot ahead of Justin Jefferson. How on earth did that happen? They weren’t close in my eyes. I had Jefferson stacked at #5 on the position stack and even that was probably too low. I had Reagor at #13. What a whiff that was! Reagor impressed during workouts with speed and jumping, but his tape was pretty poor all things considered when looking at 1st-round grades. His 2 drops were awful, yes. But his routes and ball tracking were even worse. This was on tape at TCU for all to see, too.

(3) Let’s not count these guys out. We’ve seen the song and dance before. They do have a couple of quality wins as of late (@ DEN, NO) and an attractive schedule coming up. But the one thing that makes me hesitate to nail their coffin shut is how effective they are on both sides of the ball when it comes to the running game. They’re 2nd in yards-per-carry and they’re 6th in yards-per-carry allowed. That fares well in December/January. I also think their pass rush can take over games when they’re clicking.

3 CLOSING THOUGHTS

(1) How is Matt Peart not playing? He clearly presents more upside than Nate Solder. I say that because there is no upside with Solder. He cannot beat NFL defenders on any sort of consistent basis, and this is known across the entire league. I have a different angle here. I don’t think it is on the coaching staff, I think it is solely on Peart. He hasn’t proven enough in practice, he may not know assignments, and I don’t think he has the edge that the staff wants. I have some background on Peart and I will just say that he doesn’t have a burning desire to go in there and compete. That shows up eventually, it cannot be hidden. I think that is why we are seeing Solder instead.

(2) Let’s collectively tip our cap to the defense for getting right. PHI averaged 34.5 points over the previous 4 games. They scored 44 at DET, 24 vs LAC, 40 vs NO, and 30 @DEN. Holding a team under 10 points in the NFL is incredibly rare and to do it against an offense that came in red hot is even more impressive. Starting with the win vs CAR on October 24, NYG is averaging 15.2 points allowed per game. The best defense in the NFL allows 15.8 per game on the year. Imagine what could be if this team gets a credible pass rusher or two!

(3) NYG has another game coming up against a team that is hot. Miami started off 1-7, much thanks to a defense that wasn’t forcing turnovers at the rate they were in 2020 and a quarterback injury situation that caused a ton of disruption to the offensive flow. Lastly, they have the worst OL in football. However, they have now won 4 in a row. They have plenty of momentum, and Tua Tagovailoa is playing smart, efficient quarterback. 3 of the 4 wins in a row were against HOU, NYJ, and CAR. While that is almost as easy as it gets, they’re playing with more confidence. But NYG needs to separate themselves from teams like this. MIA is not bottom of the barrel, but they aren’t a good team either. The NYG defense won’t have any excuse here. They need to keep them under 17 points, no question. And time for these NYG skill players to get on the field and step up.

Nov 282021
 
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Aaron Robinson, New York Giants (November 28, 2021)

Defensive backs react to Jalen Reagor’s dropped game-winning touchdown

NEW YORK GIANTS 13 – PHILADELPHIA EAGLES 7…
The New York Giants prevailed in an ugly 13-7 win over Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday afternoon at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. With the victory, the Giants improved their overall record to 4-7.

The Eagles out-gained the Giants in first downs (19 to 17), total net yards (332 to 264), and net yards rushing (208 to 70). The Giants held advantages in net passing yards (194 to 124), time of possession (32:02 to 27:58), and most importantly, forced turnovers (4-0). Yet despite the huge turnover margin, New York only sealed the win when Eagles wideout Jalen Reagor dropped two game-winning touchdown passes on Philadelphia’s final, desperate drive.

Both teams exchanged three-and-outs to start the game. New York moved the ball 47 yards on 11 plays on their second drive, setting up a 35-yard field goal by place kicker Graham Gano. Philadelphia too moved the ball their second drive, gaining 54 yards and reaching the New York 20-yard line. However, on 3rd-and-5, cornerback Darnay Holmes intercepted quarterback Jalen Hurts at the 5-yard line, ending the scoring threat.

After picking up 47 yards on eight plays, the Giants’ attempt to extend their 3-0 lead failed when Gano missed a 51-yard yard field goal. Both teams then exchanged punts again.

Philadelphia’s final drive of the half began at their own 7-yard line and reached the New York 1-yard line after 14 plays. On the 15th play, facing 3rd-and-goal, Hurts was chased out of the pocket and he threw a pass towards the end zone that was intercepted by linebacker Tae Crowder at the goal line. Crowder returned the ball nine yards before fumbling it out-of-bounds with no time on the clock.

At the half, the Giants led 3-0.

The Eagles received the ball to start the second half. After gaining 35 yards on their first three plays, the drive stalled at the New York 40-yard line. Philadelphia went for it on 4th-and-2, but Hurts’ pass fell incomplete with cornerback Aaron Robinson in coverage. The Giants followed this up with their only touchdown of the game as New York drove 59 yards in 10 plays. On 1st-and-goal from the 1-yard line, quarterback Daniel Jones found tight end Chris Myarick for the score, despite the ball coming close to touching the ground as Myarick bobbled the catch. It was Myarick’s first career reception. Giants were now up 10-0.

It got worse for the Eagles on their second possession. On 1st-and-18 from the 9-yard line, Hurts’ deep pass intended for Reagor was intercepted by safety Xavier McKinney at the New York 46-yard line. Unfortunately, the Giants’ offense failed miserably to take advantage of the field position, as the unit actually lost 14 yards, forcing a punt.

Momentum then switched in Philadelphia’s favor as they easily drove 66 yards in 10 plays for a touchdown. After an incomplete pass to start this possession, the next nine plays were all runs with Giant-killer running back Boston Scott scoring to cut the score to 13-7 early in the 4th quarter.

Both teams exchanged punts again. Starting at their own 9-yard line with 10:16 left in the game, the Giants managed to put together a 12-play, 70-yard drive that took 7:22 off of the clock. Unfortunately, the drive resulted in a field goal rather than a touchdown as New York’s red zone woes continued. With just under three minutes to play, the Giants were up 13-7.

Starting at their own 30-yard line, the Eagles gained 21 yards on their first three plays. On 1st-and-10 from the New York 49-yard line, Scott picked up four yards on a run to the right. However, pursuing defensive lineman Dexter Lawrence forced a fumble that was recovered by defensive back Julian Love at the 37-yard line.

The Giants had the ball with just 1:34 left in the game. The Eagles had all three of their timeouts so New York needed one first down to seal the win. The Giants netted no yards on their first two plays. On 3rd-and-10, Jones was sacked for an 8-yard loss. Worse, punter Riley Dixon only managed a 39-yard punt that was returned nine yards. Unbelievably, the Eagles had the ball back at their own 41-yard line with 1:11 left on the clock. The Giants had only burned 23 seconds off of the clock and the Eagles were nearly back right where they had started before turning the ball over.

After picking up 21 yards on two passing plays, Hurts threw a perfect deep pass down the left sideline to Reagor that should have resulted in a 38-yard game-winning touchdown against rookie corner Aaron Robinson (who also looked like he interfered on the play but wasn’t called for it). However, Reagor dropped the the ball, as did Love, who should have intercepted it off of the deflection. Hurts then completed an 11-yard pass to the New York 27-yard line with 38 seconds left in the game. After spiking the ball to stop the clock, Hurts’ next two passes were contested and fell incomplete. On 4th-and-10, with 25 seconds left, Hurts, with far too much time, threw another deep pass that could have resulted in the game-winning touchdown, but Reagor dropped the ball near the 1-yard line. Eagles turned the ball over on downs. Game over.

Jones finished the game 19-of-30 for 202 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions. None of his targets caught more than four passes or accrued more than 50 yards. Running back Saquon Barkley had a 32-yard run in the game but his 12 other carries only picked up eight yards.

Defensively, the Giants allowed over 200 yards rushing to the #1 rushing team in the NFL. Hurts was held to 129 yards passing, but he did rush the ball 77 yards on eight carries. Aside from the four forced turnovers (three interceptions, one fumble recovery), the Giants only had one sack, shared between Love and nose tackle Austin Johnson. Hurts was only officially hit three times. However, the Giants were credited with 10 pass defenses.

Video highlights are available at Giants.com.

ROSTER MOVES, PRACTICE SQUAD ACTIVATIONS, INACTIVES, AND INJURY REPORT…
On Thursday, the Giants signed TE Deon Yelder to the Practice Squad. The 26-year old, 6’4”, 255-pound Yelder was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the New Orleans Saints after the 2018 NFL Draft. Yelder has spent time with the Saints (2018), Kansas City Chiefs (2018–2021), Washington Football Team (2021), Tennessee Titans (2021), and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2021). Yelder has played in 29 regular-season games with two starts. He has 11 career receptions for 86 yards.

On Saturday, the Giants elevated S Steven Parker to the 53-man roster from the Practice Squad. In addition, WR/returner Pharoh Cooper was activated from the Practice Squad as a COVID-19 replacement for S Logan Ryan (Reserve/COVID-19 List).

Inactive for the game were FB Cullen Gillaspia (calf), WR Kadarius Toney (quad), WR Sterling Shepard (quad), TE Kyle Rudolph (ankle), TE Kaden Smith (knee), and OG/OC Wes Martin.

CB Adoree’ Jackson (quad), CB Darnay Holmes (chest), and LB Trent Harris (ankle) left the game with injuries.

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 won their third consecutive home game for the first time since they won their last six games in MetLife in 2016. The Giants are 3-3 at home. They have matched their home victory total for the entire 2020 season.

The Giants are 4-0 in division home games under Joe Judge.

The Giants have won two consecutive games against the Eagles after suffering losses in the previous eight meetings.

The Giants have a takeaway in each of their first 11 games for the first time since 2005.

The Giants committed a season-low two accepted penalties for just 15 yards.

Daniel Jones did not throw an interception for the seventh time in 11 games.

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