Nov 282023
Jalin Hyatt, New York Giants (November 26, 2023)

Jalin Hyatt – © USA TODAY Sports


-Tommy DeVito: 17/25 – 191 yards / 1 TD – 0 INT / 103.9 RAT

Add another level to DeVito’s ascending performances this season. Add another level to DeVito’s comfort and responsibility within this offense. And add another level of trust that DeVito has earned in the eyes of both coaches and fans. The fun ride continues and it feels like he (and the team) have found the exit inside a dark tunnel. That light is still far away but it has at least been located and the team is inching toward it. Without getting too ahead of ourselves, I just want to break down a few elements of his game that credibly mean something. One, his ability and confidence to progress through reads as he reads the coverage. His internal clock is improving with each week. Two, his release and accuracy on downfield passing are notable. He is comfortable and confident as he throws the deep ball. He hit Jalin Hyatt near the sideline for gains of 41, 29, and 22 yards. Zero hesitation, pinpoint placement, and repeatability. And last, footwork and ball fakes. DeVito’s mechanics for the position look outstanding. It does not mean everything, but it means something. Everything he is doing right now looks clean. An undrafted rookie who looks like this on a team that has been losing like this? Hard to remember seeing anything that resembles what he is doing in the league.


-Saquon Barkley: 12 att – 46 yards / 1 rec – 6 yards

40 of Barkley’s yards came in the first half on 8 carries. Two of those runs came in the first quarter that gained 33 yards. Overall, it was a quiet game for him with a congested point-of-attack and inconsistent run blocking inside. The big runs were to the right side where the crease was big enough and there long enough for him to burst through. Barkley had two negatives on the day – an allowed sack and a drop. Those show up too often.

-Matt Breida added 6 yards on 2 carries and a 10-yard gain in the passing game. He was on the field for just 10 snaps.


-One of the best traits DeVito has shown is the ability to spread the ball out to his pass catchers. He knows what his guys are good at, and he knows where to use them the most. Enter Jalin Hyatt. A career-game for the rookie who has been frustrating to watch for no reason other than lack of usage. He caught 5 passes for 109 yards. Three of them were explosive plays (20+ yards) and all three were high-level plays. I have been saying it since the beginning of the season, Hyatt has a few special traits that are hard to find together. We can see the speed and acceleration. But the plays on the ball he made near the boundary with the combination of coordination and footwork can make him a lethal weapon. And I mean, absolutely lethal. The move he put on J.C. Jackson after the catch was not something I expected to see either, as the short area change of direction and hip fluidity were a bit of an unknown with the ball in his hands.

-Wan’Dale Robinson was used underneath over and over, totaling 26 yards on 4 catches with one drop. The average depth of target was just 2.8 yards. That will often be the case. His usage (and frame) are similar to Zay Flowers from Baltimore (Flowers is a tier or two higher with what he can do downfield) in that you will often see games like this, an average-per-catch that looks like what you see out of a running back who had a good game on the ground. The explosive plays will come, though. Just wait.

-Isaiah Hodgins scored the lone touchdown of the game for NYG on a 12-yard pitch and catch where he used his pure strength on a stiff arm to finish off the play into the end zone. Sterling Shepard had a catch for 6 yards and a drop, and Parris Campbell caught one ball that resulted in a 2-yard loss.


-Daniel Bellinger played the majority of the snaps with Lawrence Cager occasionally showing up on the field. Mike Kafka used 11 personnel for most of the game. Bellinger caught his one target for 8 yards and performed as usual in blocking roles. He was solid in the trenches, but he struggled to get across the face of his man when he needed to cut off the backside. It caused a TFL on one play and a stop at the line of scrimmage on another.


-Left tackle Andrew Thomas is human after all. He allowed 1.5 sacks on plays where he lost the initial angle and was unable to recover. He usually shows enough lower body adjustment to put himself back into the right position to make a save, but it appears his anchor is not 100%. Even though it was not his best day, those truly were his only losses of the day.

-Tyre Phillips and Ben Bredeson were the ones who paved the way on the best running gains we saw on the afternoon. Bredeson also did a fine job as a pass blocker, albeit against a low-level group of interior pass rushers. This is where Phillips struggled. He allowed 1.5 sacks and 3 hurries. His lockout game is a difference maker as a run blocker because of his length and heaviness. But in pass protection, where swifter footwork is necessary and the ability to react is more important, this is where he struggles. He did receive help from the tight end on occasion and it made a big difference. Considering Bellinger is not much of a threat in the passing game, I do feel that this is a better role for him. Help out then run a short-delayed route for dump-offs.

-Rookie center John Michael Schmitz allowed a pressure and a TFL. I am seeing a repeated problem with his outside zone blocking. He gives a bit too much ground (in an effort to get more downhill momentum) but the guy he is assigned to beats him to the spot and out-leverages him, creating more lost ground. Combine the two and the running back is multiple yards behind the line of scrimmage when he has to make his first adjustment. Schmitz gets the job done when he does not need to move far from the starting point, but he continues to struggle when he gets further away from it.

-Justin Pugh allowed 2 pressures and a TFL as well. He was the one getting pushed around when NYG tried to run left and did not have success. He is the one getting displaced and even though he can recover well, the point still remains. He is not getting enough movement at the point-of-attack.


-As I have said in previous reviews, there are always things to keep an eye on when it comes to the team and future. This was the first game Kayvon Thibodeaux has been on the field without Dexter Lawrence. Leonard Williams was traded weeks ago. So how did Thibodeaux respond to being the one guy on this front who needed to be schemed against? He finished with 5 tackles, 2 TFL, a half-sack, and a forced fumble. I thought it was some of the best run defense we have seen out of him and the reaction speed to screens (which NE ran a ton of) was excellent. Combine that with what I read about his preparation + leadership shown during the week, and I would say that is nearly as good as you can expect for Thibodeaux without Lawrence on the field.

-Jihad Ward and Azeez Ojulari essentially split reps. While they don’t exactly play the same role and alignments, Ward was on the field for 40 snaps, Ojulari 38. Ward is the one who played the better of the two and it was by a sizable margin. He finished with 5 tackles and 1.5 sacks. One of those came on a 3rd down in the fourth quarter, a big play in a big moment. It is the first time Ward has had more than 1 sack in a game over his 8-year career. Ojulari had a QB hit early on, but was shut down the rest of the game again.

-Benton Whitley, just recently signed off the Vikings practice squad, played three snaps and made an impressive play on a pass break up. He’s bounced around a few different practice squads since 2021. He is a heavy-handed, vertical threat with the straight-line burst to put some pressure on a tackle. He will also factor on special teams.


-A’Shawn Robinson and Rakeem Nunez-Roches were the starting interior defenders with Dexter Lawrence sitting out with a hamstring injury. Nothing against these two but what a difference it was to not have #97 in there. Robinson can hold his own and he plays an active game. He finished with 5 tackles and Nunez-Roches added one pressure.

-D.J. Davidson and Jordon Riley rotated in, and while they struggled to get off blocks in the passing game, I thought their stoutness against the run was solid. Where they currently struggle is shedding the blocks and making plays on the ball carrier. Riley missed two tackles.


-Bobby Okereke had another high-impact game. He had 8 tackles and added 3 pressures. He missed a tackle on a play that would have resulted in a sack. Mac Jones threw an interception right to him. He took possession of the ball inside the red zone and returned it 55 yards giving NYG the ball on the NE 26-yard line. This is the drive they ended up scoring the lone touchdown, further strengthening how big of a play it was.

-Micah McFadden added 6 tackles (with one miss), including one TFL on a play where he read the screen in a blink of an eye and broke on the receiver instantly.

-Isaiah Simmons had 2 tackles and a miss on a third down that resulted in a first down. His untouched pressure led to the Okereke interception. When McFadden missed a few snaps with a hand injury suffered by friendly fire, Simmons played the inside linebacker role. I noticed there and other alignments as well that he is simply late. That is the way to describe his game. Big-time athlete who can do a lot – but he is almost always late. Late to recognize, late to see, late to react.


-Adoree’ Jackson returned and remained outside with Deonte Banks on the other side and Cor’Dale Flott in the slot. I’ve always felt this has needed to be their trio of starters at the position. Jackson did miss two tackles, but he was steady in downfield coverage. Banks intercepted a pass in the first quarter near the sideline. Nice catch, good awareness and read. Banks has cleaned up some of his footwork in zone coverage and it is encouraging to see him advance throughout his rookie year. He had to offer a public apology for, you guessed it, a social media mistake. That really isn’t worth addressing here but I am glad he came out and played a solid game with a big play in a defensive battle. Banks does need to shore up some of his run-defense habits. They are borderline atrocious.


-Xavier McKinney is on a hot streak and it hit the climax on one of the better interceptions you are going to see a safety make in this league. It was a thing of beauty – the way he tricked Mac Jones into thinking he was dropping deep, knowing the route concept, breaking back down at the exact right moment so Jones had no idea, and then finishing the play off by coming down with the ball. Oh, and he led the team with 10 tackles and broke up another pass. While he was not perfect in coverage, he kept things in front of him and showed a good feel for what the Patriots were doing.

-Jason Pinnock played all 68 snaps and added 6 tackles, 1 of which went for a loss. With the number of screens and quick passes New England used, Pinnock did a nice job of getting to the action and disrupting. That quick trigger means a lot for this defense and even though he finds himself on the wrong side of blocks at times, he is getting the job done.


-K Randy Bullock: 1/1 (Made 42)
-P Jamie Gillan: 8 Punts / 45.4 avg – 40.3 net


-S Xavier McKinney, EDGE Kayvon Thibodeaux, WR Jalin Hyatt


-OT Tyre Phillips, EDGE Azeez Ojulari, RB Saquon Barkley


(1) Mac Jones is up there with the worst starting quarterbacks in the league. While the situation around him leaves much to be desired, it is hard to see where the future is. From my summary in 2021: “The upside is where I lose it a bit with him. He will be solid, but I don’t ever see him being great”. Remember this was after an all-time season with Alabama and there were rumors San Francisco was going to take him #3 overall (they opted for Trey Lance). He’s been yanked multiple times, he has gone backwards after a solid rookie season, and there simply isn’t anything to his game that stands out in a league where you need to have a trait or two that stand out.

(2) There is smoke surrounding Head Coach Bill Belichick. He’s been there since 2000 (the year Kerry Collins led NYG to the Super Bowl, Ron Dayne’s rookie season). He is 264-117 as the Head Coach for NE and he’s won 6 Super Bowls and 9 AFC Championships. But this team has gone 27-34 since Tom Brady left town. He has made several odd, head-scratching decisions involving the offense,  including operating without a true offensive coordinator in 2022, cutting Bailey Zappe in the preseason, and playing games with Jones’ status as the starter. Add in some odd draft decisions on that side of the ball that would have been harshly lambasted in any other city and it appears to be time. Would that be the end? Or does the 71-year old get another crack with a win-now team? Looking at you, Chargers.

(3) There is a good chance New England winds up with the first or second pick of the draft. Because they currently have no hope at quarterback and a pretty awful roster (especially on offense), one has to think they will press the restart button and draft one of the top 3 quarterbacks: Caleb Williams, Drake Maye, or Jayden Daniels. Does Robert Kraft bring back someone he loves in Josh McDaniels (for a third time)? Or does he go after the hottest name in the league in Bobby Johnson from Detroit? NYG fans should want that because you don’t want him calling the shots in Washington.


(1) The Giants head to their bye week with a 4-8 record (somewhat still in playoff contention by the way) before the final five games on the schedule. They have two matchups against the Eagles and three games against 5-6 teams (Packers, Saints, Rams). Three of the five are at home. Take away your desire for a high draft pick for a moment. What do you want to see out of this team? What can they use over those five games to help build the future? First of all, it is DeVito or bust the rest of the way. Each game that comes is another opportunity to answer a key question for the 2024 season. Who is the backup quarterback moving forward? Tyrod Taylor can come back to be second string, a nice security blanket. But DeVito has played better. He simply presents more upside and carries some unknowns with him. We know what Taylor is. That is the component that needs to be figured out.

(2) I’m not sure if “turnaround” is the right word for where the Giants are right now since their November 12th 49-17 loss in Dallas. But they have won two in a row and are +13 in turnover margin since week five. By the way, that ranks NUMBER ONE in the NFL. It is the BIGGEST margin of any 8-game span in the league all year. Yes, since October 8, NYG leads the NFL in turnover margin, one of the most sure-fire stats to impact wins and losses. Criticize the coaching staff all you want, but the truth is, they have steadied the ship. On both sides of the ball.

(3) The offensive line cannot be considered a strength, but like the team overall, it has become a reliable-at-times unit. Andrew Thomas being on the field means a ton. It cannot be understated. But watching them on tape, the unit simply looks cleaner. The first half of the season was full of defenders getting free runs to the backfield. We had blockers running into each other. And we had whiff after whiff. It is clear NYG will need to add a body or two in the offseason, that fact will not change. But can any of these guys be brought back to provide depth? Possibly even a starter spot? Chemistry means a lot and we cannot just assume they can fill these spots with a rookie or journeyman free agent. I do not believe spending big will be in their budget plans.

Nov 262023
Jason Pinnock, New York Giants (November 26, 2023)

Jason Pinnock celebrates – © USA TODAY Sports

In an ugly football game played by two bad football teams, the New York Giants prevailed 10-7 against the New England Patriots on Sunday afternoon at Metlife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. With the win, the Giants improved their overall record to 4-8.

Like last week’s game against the Washington Commanders, the Giants came up on top because of turnovers. New York won the turnover battle three to one, with two interceptions setting up both scores by the Giants. The game was secured when the Patriots missed a 35-yard field goal with three seconds left that would have sent the game into overtime.

Overall, New England out-gained the Giants in first downs (18 to 10), total net yards (283 to 220), net yards rushing (147 to 58), and time of possession (34:06 to 25:54). The Giants did pass for more net yards (162 to 136).

The Giants and Patriots each had seven first-half possessions. The results:

  • Giants: Fumble, punt, punt, punt, punt, touchdown, punt.
  • Patriots: Punt, punt, interception, punt, interception, punt, end of half.

The Giants actually drove deep into Patriots’ territory on their first possession, with quarterback Tommy DeVito throwing a 29-yard deep pass to wide receiver Jalin Hyatt. But two plays later, New York fumbled the ball away at the New England 26-yard line. After four consecutive punts, cornerback Deonte Banks intercepted a deep pass from quarterback Mac Jones at the New York 43-yard line near the end of the 1st quarter. However, following a 19-yard run by running back Saquon Barkley, the Giants were halted again and punted.

After the Patriots and Giants exchanged two more punts, inside linebacker Bobby Okereke intercepted Jones at the New York 19-yard line and returned the interception 55 yards to the New England 26-yard line. DeVito threw a 12-yard pass to Hyatt on 3rd-and-8 to the 12-yard line. Then on 3rd-and-10, DeVito found wide receiver Isaiah Hodgins for the 12-yard catch-and-run for the score.

Both teams exchanged punts again in the final two minutes of the first half. At the break, the Giants led 7-0.

The Patriots benched Mac Jones at halftime with Bailey Zappe now playing at quarterback to start the 3rd quarter. New England proceeded to tie the game on their first possession of the second half, driving 60 yards in 11 plays, including a 4th-and-1 conversion. Running back Rhamondre Stevenson scored from seven yards out.

In the first half, the New York offense generated eight first downs and 155 yards of offense. In the second half, the Giants only managed two more first downs and 65 more yards, with 20 of those wiped out due to penalties. Not counting the final kneel down, the Giants had four possessions with three ending in punts. The second and last “scoring drive” was a 7-play, 8-yard possession that resulted in a 42-yard field goal by kicker Randy Bullock after an interception by safety Xavier McKinney. The Giants went ahead 10-7 with just over eight minutes to play.

Both the Patriots and Giants exchanged punts before the Patriots had one final chance to tie or win the game. Starting at midfield, New England kept the drive alive by converting on 4th-and-4. Then a 13-yard run by Stevenson reached the New York 22-yard line. The Patriots gained five more yards on the next three plays, setting up a game-tying, 35-yard field goal attempt. However, kicker Chad Ryland missed wide left with three seconds to play. Giants win.

DeVito completed 17-of-25 passes for 191 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions. He was sacked six times. His leading target was Hyatt who caught five passes for 109 yards. Barkley was held to 46 yards on 12 carries.

Playing without nose tackle Dexter Lawrence, the defense held the Patriots to just 283 yards, but surrendered another 147 yards on the ground. The Giants intercepted three passes and generated two sacks (1.5 by linebacker Jihad Ward and 0.5 by linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux). McKinney was credited with 10 tackles, two pass defenses, and one interception. Okereke had eight tackles, two passes defenses, and an interception.

GAME VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS are available on YouTube.

On Saturday, the Giants activated RB Eric Gray off of Injured Reserve. Gray was placed on IR last month with a calf injury.

Inactive for the game were RT Evan Neal (ankle), NT Dexter Lawrence (hamstring), RB Jashaun Corbin, OLB Boogie Basham, and S Gervarrius Owens.

DL Jordon Riley (finer) and ILB Carter Coughlin (hip) left the game with injuries.

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

General Manager Joe Schoen, Head Coach Brian Daboll, and select players will address the media on Monday.

Nov 242023
Saquon Barkley, New York Giants (November 19, 2023)

Saquon Barkley – © USA TODAY Sports

As addressed previously, we’re in a weird dynamic right now where the games are a distant secondary to the upcoming offseason. This has pretty much been the case ever since the Giants lost heartbreakers to the Bills and Jets in Weeks 6 and 8, respectively. So now the Giants stand at 3-8, with two of the team’s three wins coming against the Washington Commanders. What makes matters even more depressing is that the Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys continue to demonstrate on a weekly basis the huge gap that lies between them and the New York Giants. The Cowboys have already swept the Giants by a combined score of 89-17. The annual bitch-slapping by the Eagles will occur in Weeks 16 and 18.

Giants vs. Patriots? It used to have a special meaning. But those days are long gone.


  • RB Eric Gray (ankle – questionable)
  • WR Darius Slayton (neck – doubtful)
  • WR Sterling Shepard (hip – probable)
  • OC John Michael Schmitz (finger – probable)
  • LT Andrew Thomas (knee – probable)
  • RT Evan Neal (ankle – out)
  • OT Tyre Phillips (knee – probable)
  • NT Dexter Lawrence (hamstring – doubtful)
  • DL A’Shawn Robinson (back – probable)
  • ILB Bobby Okereke (hip/rib – probable)
  • CB Adoree’ Jackson (concussion – probable)
  • CB Tre Hawkins (shoulder – probable)
  • S Bobby McCain (illness – probable)

Despite the team’s record, these remaining games are important for many players, and one of those guys is Tommy DeVito. Midnight may be approaching for the Cinderella story, undrafted rookie free agent who won “Rookie of the Week” honors for his performance against Washington. Instead of throwing three touchdowns this weekend, he is just as likely to throw three interceptions. But the Jersey kid seems to be having fun and making the most out of his opportunity. Despite being sacked nine times last week, DeVito did something Daniel Jones has not been able to do in four years, that is, throw three touchdown passes in one game. Now he has six touchdowns on the season. Daniel Jones and Tyrod Taylor have combined for four. What if DeVito has another strong performance? Do the Giants stick with him after the upcoming bye week, or does Daboll turn back to Taylor, if the latter is healthy? DeVito could make the decision easy or difficult for Daboll based on how he plays against the Patriots.

DeVito and the offense had a 24-point “explosion” against the 29th-ranked defense last weekend. The 16th-ranked Patriots will be a tougher test, especially given their top-10 run defense. Bill Belichick has a knack for taking away the opposing team’s best offensive threat so I anticipate him focusing the defense’s complete attention on Saquon Barkley as a runner and receiver (Barkley is coming off an impact game as a receiver). I also expect him to do a better job of confusing the rookie quarterback by more effectively disguising his coverages. Can DeVito and the coaching staff adjust? Complicating matters is that another favorite target for DeVito, Darius Slayton, appears to be battling a stinger injury.

The book on DeVito coming out of school was a tendency to hold onto the ball too long. His emphasis on looking for bigger chunk plays down the field paid off against Washington and stood in stark contrast to Daniel Jones, but it also led to nine sacks. Another day like that and DeVito has a good chance of getting hurt with Matt Barkley entering the game. While I am dying to see DeVito take a couple of deep shots to Jalin Hyatt, he also needs to use the short passing game more when coverage and/or the pass rush dictates that response.

Speaking of pass rush, the Giants’ offensive line continues to disappoint. While not all of the nine sacks were on them, it’s astounding that a team that was winning the turnover battle 5-0 had to rely on the sixth turnover to seal the victory. The nine sacks and shoddy first-half run blocking were a big reason why. Andrew Thomas, despite playing injured, is still clearly the best OL on the team. John Michael Schmitz is battling injuries and still learning on the job. Justin Pugh, Ben Bredeson, and Tyre Phillips are not playing well and likely are not NFL-calibre starting material. I find the decision to start Pugh over Glowinski more than a tad curious. I also wonder if Schmitz wasn’t so green that we might be seeing more of Marcus McKethan, but the coaches have already alluded to the benefits of Schmitz being flanked by two veterans. Regardless, the offensive line ONCE AGAIN needs massive work in the offseason. Evan Neal’s wasted year has been devastating.

Assuming the Patriots take Barkley out of the game, someone else needs to step up. Wan’Dale Robinson? Daniel Bellinger? Jalin Hyatt? Will anyone answer the bell?

One last item to note. With the bye coming up after this game, the Giants may be getting some reinforcements back in December such as Tyrod Taylor, Darren Waller, and Evan Neal.

The defense’s six turnovers won the game for the Giants last week. But that was clearly an anomaly. What is absolutely driving me nuts is Wink Martindale’s horrific run defense. I don’t get it. With the Ravens, in a very tough division, his run defenses were ranked 4th, 5th, 8th, and 1st the four years he was defensive coordinator. With the Giants? 27th and 28th. 2022 made more sense given the lack of quality and injury issues on the defensive line and inside linebacker. What’s the excuse this season? Wink’s defense is allowing 135 rushing yards per game. It just gave up 174 rushing yards to the Commanders. You can’t win consistently allowing these kind of numbers, and this is happening with arguably the best nose tackle in the game and an inside linebacker who is near the league-lead in tackles. It doesn’t make sense. I’d prefer the Giants to not change defensive coordinators this upcoming offseason, but Wink has a lot of explaining to do.

On the flip side, I was impressed at how well the Giants rushed the passer last week. I’ve harped on this for a couple of weeks, but the departure of Leonard Williams really hurt the team’s ability to get after the quarterback. The Giants’ two best pass rushers right now are Kayvon Thibodeaux and Dexter Lawrence. Opposing teams know it and concentrate the blocking on these two as no one else is picking up the slack. Azeez Ojulari has returned from injury, but thus far, he has been a complete non-factor. Don’t be shocked when the pass rush completely disappears against better offensive lines. The Giants don’t have the numbers to make other teams really sweat. It’s why as much as the Giants need to address quarterback and the offensive line in the offseason, pass rush is right up there too.

As for the Patriots, they are struggling this year because their quarterback play has been awful. It’s not clear who will even start against the Giants and we may see multiple quarterbacks play in the game. The Patriots are also not rushing the ball well, being limited to less than 95 yards per game. However, if Dexter Lawrence does not play or is limited, things could get really ugly in terms of the run defense and pass rush.

I do think the Giants signing developmental prospect Cade York off of Tennessee’s Practice Squad a few weeks ago was a bit of a red flag. While York was waived this week and re-signed to the Practice Squad, his presence in addition to the signing of Randy Bullock makes me wonder if Graham Gano’s knee injury has the Giants concerned beyond 2023. That would be bad news, not only because Gano is one of the NFL’s best, but because the Giants had just re-signed him to a 3-year, $16.5 million contract. This is something to note moving forward.

The special teams finally contributed on the field last week with a forced fumble that was recovered by the Giants. This is the type of play I talked about last week that was missing. Good job.

I find myself rooting for the Giants but worrying about losing draft position. I can’t help it. I know we still need that quarterback. The Patriots do too. So you can see where my mind is going here. Is a win really a win? Is a loss really a loss?

Nov 212023
Tommy DeVito, New York Giants (November 19, 2023)

Tommy DeVito – © USA TODAY Sports


-Tommy DeVito: 18/26 – 246 yards / 3 TD – 0 INT / 137.7 RAT

The ascent continues. DeVito went from a guy who the coaches did everything within their power to prevent from throwing a pass in a close game to producing the highest QB rating a Giants quarterback has had since September 23, 2018 (among games with 20+ passing attempts). In addition, the three touchdowns were the most by a Giants quarterback since Week 16 of 2019 (also a game against Washington). Say whatever you want about the future of the Giants quarterback situation, but what DeVito has done in a short time is nothing short of impressive. He did all of this on a day where he was sacked nine times. There were a few instances of mental mistakes, mainly holding onto the ball too long when the pass rushers outnumbered the blockers, but it was a clean game for the undrafted rookie. He sprayed the ball all over the field and came up with three high level balls while avoiding turnovers. I look forward to seeing if he can continue the climb.


-Saquon Barkley: 14 att – 83 yards / 4 rec – 57 yards – 2 TD

For the third straight week, Barkley averaged over five yards per carry. The last time he did that was in 2018, his rookie season. While he was fully contained on the ground in the first half (-2 yards on 6 carries), he made two elite catches, one being the first of two touchdown receptions. His explosive plays were vital to the team’s offensive success. He rattled off two 30+ yard runs and was responsible for 4 of the 7 largest gains for the offense. Barkley’s one dent was the fact he allowed two sacks. Running backs are not expected to sustain blocks for a long time, but he barely even made an impact on these two whiffs. This is an area of his game that has never solidified. All in all, the team does not win this game without this performance by Barkley.


-Despite missing the second half with a hand/wrist injury, Darius Slayton led the team with 82 yards on 4 catches, including a touchdown, his first of the season. On that play, we saw an impressive burst to the end zone after a subtle stutter-step that froze the WAS defender just enough to create that lane to the end zone. That kind of athleticism is part of what creates the optimism around his game. A drop on third down is what creates the frustration around his game. The up and down element to his game lives on.

-Wan’Dale Robinson had 3 catches for 35 yards, including an explosive play that gained 21 yards. That gain was essentially all him after the catch. We have seen the flashes over the last month that strengthen the notion he will be an important building block next season and beyond. I also noted a couple of high-effort blocks he made.

-Rookie Jalin Hyatt was thrown to twice and he caught one of them for seven yards. While it is disappointing that they seem to struggle getting him consistent targets, I am optimistic DeVito will throw the ball downfield to him in the coming weeks. The training wheels are coming off. One question I would like the answer to is how well does Hyatt know the playbook? While watching the game from the All-22, there were a couple plays where there appears to be miscommunication between the two. It is hard to tell who that’s on, but that could be a reason for the disconnect between what I think Hyatt can do and what opportunities he gets.

-Isaiah Hodgins added 22 yards on 2 catches and Sterling Shepard had 1 catch for 7 yards. The latter was targeted in the end zone as well.


-It was another full day for Daniel Bellinger. He had 38 yards on 3 catches and played most of the snaps. His 26-yard gain that ended just shy of a touchdown was his longest of the day. As Waller sits out, I am interested to see if the second-year pro from San Diego State gets some of his swagger back. Some players need a lot of reps to get and stay fresh. Bellinger did allow a TFL on a play where he lined up at fullback, but his blocking was better in this game than previous weeks.

-Tyree Jackson and Lawrence Cager shared spot duty and both were manhandled by the physical Washington front a few times. Neither were thrown to.


-On paper, the offensive line was torched. But on tape, it was not nearly as bad as the 9 sacks make it look and they had stretches of solid pass protection. While the OL still is a significant weakness that holds the offense back, they have now gone up a step on the ladder from dysfunctional to inconsistent. Having Andrew Thomas back is such a difference maker, and it is an easy example to point to when discussing the sheer value of a high-quality left tackle. He allowed one pressure and created good push it the running game.

-Tyre Phillips is a hit or miss blocker. Because he has lower body movement limitations, he needs to get the initial win. When he doesn’t, the odds of him coming out on top are slim when there are deeper drop backs. He allowed 2 pressures and 1.5 sacks in addition to being flagged for illegally blocking downfield. Justin Pugh allowed a sack and was poor in the run game. His initial punch does not displace or stand anyone up. Therefore, he needs to be incredibly precise and when he is off by just a little bit, the operation blows up. Jonathan Allen ate his lunch a few times.

-Ben Bredeson allowed two pressures and a half-sack and rookie center John Michael Schmitz had his worst game of the season. The latter allowed 2 TFL and a sack. I’ve highlighted his movement issues recently and it appears the league has caught onto them as well. The lateral speed and adjustments are a notch too slow, and it’s lessened his power impact. He was put on ice skates a few times and it disrupted the zone running game.


-Kayvon Thibodeaux shined once again as he lined up across from Washington left tackle Charles Leno. If you do not watch much outside of the Giants games, you may not know that Leno is probably one of the ten best pass-blocking left tackles in the game. About a month after Thibodeaux recorded 1.5 sacks vs. Washington in New York, he added 2 sacks, 3 pressures, 1 QB hit, and 5 tackles to his season total. He now has 10.5 sacks and is the first player in a Wink Martindale defense to reach double digits in that department. There are six games left. He won inside, he won outside, he won with burst, he won with power.

-Jihad Ward recorded a sack very much because of a pressure from Thibodeaux that made Sam Howell run right into his arms. He and Boogie Basham excel at controlling a gap but when it comes to lateral speed and adjustments, they’re awfully slow and lethargic. Brian Robinson ran for 73 yards, the second most of the year, and a lot of it stemmed from that lack of speed on the outside.

-Azeez Ojulari was nowhere to be found following a pressure he had early in the game. On 49 snaps, he had zero tackles and nothing outside that first pressure.


-Dexter Lawrence should pay rent for the amount of time he spent in the Washington backfield over their two matchups this season. He had 4 pressures, 2 TFL, and a sack. Double teams, single teams, and even triple teams do not stop the eventual All-Pro.

-A’Shawn Robinson played just over a third of the snaps but he came up big in big spots. He ended with 4 tackles, one of which was a big third-down stop, and added 2 pressures. That snap count works well for him because while I do not think he has the engine to play a full snap load, he can still be effective in flashes.

-Rakeem Nunez-Roches and D.J. Davidson spelled Robinson a lot through the second half. The former had a pressure and a tackle and the latter added one tackle. Nunez-Roches is a hustler, too. He was 20-30 yards downfield chasing guys down. That kind of effort matters, especially from a backup.


-Another active and productive game for the linebacker duo of Bobby Okereke and Micah McFadden. Okereke led the team with 14 tackles and forced two fumbles. McFadden added 8 tackles, one of which was for a loss, and recovered a fumble in addition to a pass break up. They both missed tackles, one of three by McFadden’s led to a touchdown. The two seem to feed off each other, displaying chemistry. Watch some of the top linebacker pairs in the league and you will see that often. They move off each other well and can control an extra gap. These two have been fun to watch.

-Isaiah Simmons made an impact play for the first time since being acquired via trade from Arizona 12 weeks ago. He intercepted Sam Howell (the team’s sixth forced turnover of the day) and returned it 54 yards for the pick-six. He added 3 tackles on the day and missed one. This could be the turning moment for Simmons that he needed.


-It was an active game for the young group. Rookie Deonte Banks allowed a touchdown but was otherwise very solid in coverage down the field. Cor’Dale Flott continued his ascent with a forced fumble and two tackles. These two have been positives we will look back on after the season when projecting the potential of this defense moving forward. Their movement traits are both outstanding, but looking at them from the All-22 is encouraging as well. Their feel and route recognition are notably better.

-Nick McCloud intercepted his first pass of his career in the first quarter to set the defensive tone. It was an outstanding play on a deep ball where he displayed speed, ball tracking, and hands on a diving, over-the-shoulder grab. McCloud is a nice player who was a key part to their secondary in 2022 who we have not seen much of this season. He also added a team-high two special teams tackles. He is a guy who wears multiple hats for this team that all good defenses have.

-Also picking off a pass was Darnay Holmes, who has done just enough to stick around over his four-year career. If he does shake free in the offseason, you can bet your bottom dollar he will get signed. It was his second pick of the year. Tre Hawkins struggled, leading the defensive backs in yards allowed, and he was flagged for illegal contact (a questionable call). A big part of the remaining balance of this season will be getting the young guys more and more snaps, Hawkins included. The tough question will be how much and at what expense? McCloud does more for this defense right now.


-Xavier McKinney and Jason Pinnock were on the field for 100% of the snaps yet again. McKinney deserves the mention, as he seems to be in the crosshairs of some because of comments to the media and a lack of playmaking overall. He was outstanding. He finished with 12 tackles, 1 TFL, and a fumble recovery. While he did get beat in coverage a few times, he did a nice job of containing and keeping the action in front of him. He was all over the field and played with a ton of grit and hustle.

-Dane Belton had 5 tackles and continues to add a needed physical element to the defense.

-Welcome to the playmaker’s list rookie Gervarrius Owens. He made a tackle and recovered a fumble on special teams. The safety room is crowded but this kind of experience will be good for the 7th rounder who opened eyes throughout preseason.


K Randy Bullock: 1/1 (Made 36)
P Jamie Gillan: 7 punts / 45.4 avg – 42.6 net


-EDGE Kayvon Thibodeaux, DT Dexter Lawrence, QB Tommy DeVito


-EDGE Azeez Ojulari, OC John Michael Schmitz, CB Tre Hawkins III


1. It’s safe to say the Giants have the Commanders number similar to what Dallas has done to the Giants in recent years. Different regimes, different quarterbacks, different personnel. No matter the case, NYG over WAS has become a near-given as of late. The one thing I sense about the Commanders, especially offensively, is the fact they have nobody on offense who truly scares you. Terry McLaurin is a solid player, but he won’t keep anyone up at night when preparing for them. They have plenty of quality wins against good opponents over this span of NYG dominance, but the fact they do not have any elite playmakers (and haven’t for a long time) is a key reason why they have not gotten over the hump.

2. With that in mind, this thought crossed my mind in relation to roster building. Would you rather have a couple of elite pieces you can build around but a lesser support system around them, or a solid supporting cast with volume of quality players but missing the elite pieces that are the cornerstones? Washington has a lot of usable pieces, but they no longer have the defining players. The Giants have a few elite players, but they’re missing the much-needed depth. Something to chew on.

3. Washington traded not one, but both, of their defensive ends who were heading toward free agency this upcoming March. They received a second-round pick from Chicago (likely a top 35 pick) and a third rounder from San Francisco (likely a top 96 pick). The writing was on the wall, as Washington already locked up the interior guys Jonathan Allen and DaRon Payne and the resources have to be spread out when it comes to the larger contracts. Sweat and Young will both be getting monster deals this offseason. It is a new era coming in Washington and the next move will be the firing of Ron Rivera. I cannot see him making it to 2024.


1. This is an awkward time of year for fans. They have their eyes firmly set on the NFL Draft. Any and every win lessens their chance of getting the top pick and the player they feel will change things around. I do understand it, but I’ve always felt it was a meaningless approach and a waste of time. Texans Head Coach Lovie Smith was crushed by the fans and media for a meaningless win last year at the end of the season. It pushed them out of the number one overall pick. Here they are a year later with the second quarterback taken and will end up as the comeback team of the season. It looks like they may have the next big thing at quarterback. We see examples of this all the time. Giants fans were upset they did not get Chase Young and had to settle for Andrew Thomas. The team needs to find the pieces on this roster who are worth building around. They need to find guys who are good at football and who can be relied upon. That is the goal. If they find them, it will lead to wins, period. This would be a net-positive even though it may mess with your mock drafts and fantasies.

2. Turnovers change everything. It took seven games for the Giants to reach six turnovers for the season. They took the ball away six times in this game alone. I can recall discussing the lack of turnovers early in the year (zero through 4 games) as being the defensive catalyst to poor play. The Giants are now +3 in turnovers on the year, an encouraging sign because that ratio is tied to win-loss as much as any stat in football. For me, it has been the pass rush that has led to increased number of turnovers. It is more effective, and it now has a true inside-out force. Add another piece (or two) and watch how much this will change the outcomes of games. The offense needs personnel improvements, yes. But the pass rush is close to being something that makes a true difference.

3. I am interested in seeing how this coaching staff handles the workload of Saquon Barkley moving forward. He is on pace for the most touches per game in a season over his entire career. We all know about the contract situation, and we all know there is nothing behind him who comes even close to matching what he can produce. There is a lot of football left and Barkley has proven to be a team-first guy, but if they do not slow down his usage, we could see him suffer another breakdown. Yes, “it is part of the game” but I do wonder if there will be a point where they pull him back a bit, especially if they plan to keep him around in 2024.

Nov 192023
Isaiah Simmons, New York Giants (November 19, 2023)

Isaiah Simmons – © USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants won their third game of the season by defeating the Washington Commanders 31-19 on Sunday at FedExField in Landover, Maryland. The Giants are 3-8 on the season, having swept the Commanders.

The story of the game was turnovers. The Giants did not turn the ball over while the Commanders turned it over six times. On the other hand, the Giants had no rushing yards until the last play of the 3rd quarter and allowed nine sacks to the Commanders.

Overall, the Commanders out-gained the Giants in first downs (28 to 13), total net yards (403 to 292), net yards rushing (174 to 91), net yards passing (229 to 201), and time of possession (34:51 to 25:09). The turnovers were the great equalizer.

The Giants received the ball to start the game, picked up 19 yards, and then punted. On the fourth snap of Washington’s first drive, quarterback Sam Howell’s deep pass down the middle was intercepted by cornerback Nick McCloud at the New York 13-yard line. The Giants went three-and-out on their second possession.

On the second snap of Washington’s second drive, cornerback Cor’Dale Flott forced tight end Logan Thomas to fumble after a short catch. Safety Xavier McKinney recovered the ball at the Washington 45-yard line. Three plays later, on 3rd-and-13, quarterback Tommy DeVito threw a 24-yard strike to wide receiver Darius Slayton. On the very next snap, DeVito threw a deep pass to running back Saquon Barkley in the end zone for a 24-yard touchdown. Giants 7 – Commanders 0.

The Commanders responded with a 9-play, 70-yard drive that stalled at the New York 5-yard line. Washington settled for a 23-yard field goal to cut the score to 7-3. The Giants and Commanders then exchanged three-and-outs. On New York’s fifth possession, they gained 41 yards, but could not convert on 3rd-and-2 and 4th-and-2 at the Washington 34-yard line, turning the ball over on downs.

After another three-and-out by Washington, New York went ahead 14-3 with a 6-play, 62-yard drive that ended with a 40-yard touchdown pass from DeVito to Slayton. A key play on this possession with DeVito connecting with wide receiver Wan’Dale Robinson for 11 yards on 3rd-and-8.

Washington responded again to the Giants’ score, this time driving 75 yards in 12 plays. With just over a minute and a half to play before halftime, Howell scrambled from seven yards out for a touchdown. The extra point was missed and the Giants led 14-9. Both teams had the ball once more before the break, but the score remained the same at halftime.

Washington received the ball to start the second half, but Nick McCloud forced the Commanders’ kick returner to fumble. Safety Gervarrius Owens recovered the loose ball at the Washington 34-yard line. Two sacks by Washington pushed New York back 11 yards and the team was forced to punt. The Commanders then kept the ball over seven and half minutes, driving 68 yards in 13 plays. They settled for a 42-yard field goal, cutting the Giants’ lead to 14-12.

The Giants gained 21 yards on a pass play to start their next possession before a penalty and sack stalled the drive. The Commanders were threatening to score again late in the 3rd quarter when inside linebacker Bobby Okereke forced the ball carrier to fumble. Fellow inside backer Micah McFadden recovered the ball at the New York 32-yard line.

The Giants ground game finally got going on the last play of the 3rd quarter with Barkley breaking off a 36-yard run to the Washington 32-yard line. DeVito then connected with tight end Daniel Bellinger for a 26-yard gain. Two plays later, on 3rd-and-goal, DeVito threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Barkley. The Giants were up 21-12 with 13:32 to play.

On their ensuing drive, Washington picked up one first down. Then on 3rd-and-10 from their own 38-yard line, Howell threw a poor deep pass that was intercepted by cornerback Darnay Holmes. The Giants proceeded to drive 46 yards in seven plays, setting up place kicker Randy Bullock for a 36-yard field goal that gave the Giants a 24-12 advantage with less than seven minutes to play.

With nothing coming easy to the 2023 New York Giants, Washington cut the score to 24-19 on their next possession. On this 12-play, 75-yard drive, the Commanders overcame a 3rd-and-20, 4th-and-10, and 4th-and-1 to keep the drive alive. The Giants got the ball back with 2:16 left in the game and were unable to pick up a first down.

Down by five, the Commanders started at their own 19-yard line with 1:49 left in the game. Washington picked up 20 yards on two plays. An interception by cornerback Tre Hawkins was erased due to Hawkins’ own illegal contact penalty, giving Washington another first down. Howell then converted on 3rd-and-2 and the Commanders were at the New York 43-yard line.

After a false start penalty on Washington moved them back five yards, safety/linebacker Isaiah Simmons sealed the game by picking off an underthrown pass from Howell and returning it 54 yards for a defensive touchdown with 16 seconds left on the clock. Ball game.

DeVito completed 18-of-26 passes for 246 yards, three touchdowns, and no interceptions. He was sacked nine times. His leading receivers were Slayton (4 catches for 82 yards and a touchdown) and Barkley (4 catches for 57 yards and two touchdowns). Barkley also carried the ball 14 times for 83 yards.

Defensively, the Giants picked off three passes and recovered two fumbles (another fumble being recovered on special teams). Outside linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux was credited with two sacks with nose tackle Dexter Lawrence and outside linebacker Jihad Ward also getting to Howell. The defense also had six tackles for losses and eight pass defenses.

GAME VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS are available on YouTube.

On Saturday, the Giants activated (standard elevation) TE Tyree Jackson and PK Randy Bullock from the Practice Squad.

Inactive for the game were RT Evan Neal (ankle), CB Adoree’ Jackson (concussion), S Bobby McCain (illness), RB Deon Jackson, OT Joshua Miles, DL Jordon Riley, and PK Cade York.

WR Darius Slayton (arm) 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

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

Nov 172023
New York Giants Super Bowl Trophies (January 5, 2016)

© USA TODAY Sports

Given that I run one of the oldest New York Giants fan sites on the internet, I think I have a pretty good feel for pulse of the fan base. My sense is that fan morale is at an all-time low, probably reaching levels not seen since the 1970’s. And it’s not that fans are angry or upset. It’s reaching the more troublesome indifference stage. I’m seeing more and more fans who have posted for years on this site, fans who live and breathe Giants football, simply say, “I’ll DVR the game and watch it if they win” or “OK, I’m turning this off. I can’t take it.”

We’re talking about a fan base that once patiently waited 30 years (1956 to 1986) to see their team win another championship, and filled waiting lists and stadiums in the interim. It’s not just that the Giants are losing (only one winning season in the last seven years), but it’s that they aren’t even competitive. In the old days, the Giants were lovable losers. They usually came up short in the W-L column, but they scratched and clawed, and you were still usually watching the game in the 4th quarter because the contest was still undecided. The Giants would break your hearts, but at least you were being entertained. Now it’s just sad and depressing with games over by halftime. Coaches and athletes making millions of dollars per year and simply going through the motions. Only a masochist would want to watch the thing they love get humiliated on a weekly basis.

Governments, institutions, organizations, and companies that are poorly run use a neat trick. They find ways to distract the masses from their incompetence. So like clockwork, in less than two months, John Mara will stand in front of the press and convince many that he understands our pain and that changes will be made. Heck, he may even fire the general manager and head coach again. Or some of the assistant coaches may be forced out. In the past, this has worked. The scapegoats made fans feel better in the short term, buying ownership a couple of years, until the cycle was repeated. Are we really going to fall for it again? Some will.

So how do the Giants turn this around? Make better personnel decisions, draft better, don’t spend like crazy in free agency, find a difference-maker at quarterback, focus on the lines of scrimmage, hire competent coaches, acquire tough players rather than soft, injury-prone ones. The Giants lose because they haven’t done these things. They don’t have a quarterback. They don’t control the lines of scrimmage. They never have cap space. There is no depth. And they are soft and always hurt.


  • QB Tommy DeVito (left shoulder/knee – probable)
  • RB Saquon Barkley (ankle – probable)
  • RB Deon Jackson (concussion – probable)
  • WR Wan’Dale Robinson (knee – probable)
  • WR Jalin Hyatt (concussion – probable)
  • LT Andrew Thomas (knee – questionable)
  • RT Evan Neal (ankle – out)
  • OLB Kayvon Thibodeaux (concussion – probable)
  • OLB Azeez Ojulari (ankle – probable)
  • ILB Bobby Okereke (hip – probable)
  • CB Deonte Banks (ankle – probable)
  • CB Cor’Dale Flott (shoulder – probable)
  • CB Adoree’ Jackson (concussion – out)
  • S Xavier McKinney (rib – probable)
  • S Jason Pinnock (thumb/ankle – probable)

As predicted, Dallas’ 3rd-ranked defense toyed with New York’s dead-last offense. A last-second, garbage-time touchdown was the only thing preventing the Giants from being held to 10 points again. The Giants are basically dead in the water with Tommy DeVito learning on the job at quarterback. But would the offense really be that much better with a healthy Daniel Jones or Tyrod Taylor starting? Sadly, DeVito already has more touchdown passes than either.

On this side of the ball, the entire focus of the front office in the offseason should be acquiring a legitimate quarterback and fixing the offensive line once and for all with tough guys who don’t miss games. A game-breaking wideout would be really nice, but what difference would he make if you don’t have someone to throw him the ball or an offensive line to allow anything to function?

I’ve said for years that fans should not over react to the last game, but look for trends. The defense was trending in the right direction for three games, albeit it against struggling offenses. In the past two games, the defense has played like dog shit. The defense is demoralized, the loss of Leonard Williams is having an impact, injuries are mounting, young players are hitting the wall, and the competition has improved. Regardless, it is completely unacceptable to allow seven touchdowns and over 600 yards against any opponent, let alone a division rival. I’ve been a big advocate for Wink Martindale and his style of defense, but he’s losing me at this point. The Giants may not win another game this year, but we expect competent defense moving forward. Do your job and fix it.

In the offseason, again, focus on the line of scrimmage. Find tough guys who don’t get hurt and who can rush the passer.

The Giants special teams are just so bland and boring. In the old days, when Giants’ teams were bad, it was mainly because the offense was terrible. But the defense and special teams kept New York in games and made the contests somewhat exciting with a big hit, forced turnover, downed punt, blocked kick. Now, this is just another part of the team that loses on game day. And as has been pointed out by many, strange personnel/coaching decisions were made all year that negatively impacted the special teams product on the field.

Washington is a better team than the Giants faced a month ago. New York is a worse team. This game should cement the Giants dead-last finish in the NFC East.

Nov 142023
Tyre Phillips, New York Giants (November 12, 2023)

Tyre Phillips – © USA TODAY Sports


-Tommy DeVito: 14-27 / 86 yards / 2 TD – 1 INT

The first career start for Tommy DeVito was his third game with extensive playing time. Even though the numbers look ugly, I can say there is progress with each one of these games. And this is the first time he prepared all week as the starter. Early on, as expected, there appeared to be a lack of rhythm and feel. He missed a couple of easy throws to the flat (equivalent to a layup in basketball or a routine ground ball for a shortstop in baseball) and then evaded non-existent pressure in the pocket, which in turn created pressure. DeVito got to show off his arm a few times and while there was an underthrow deep to Jalin Hyatt that resulted in an interception, he proved he can sling it well to the outside. DeVito can make the throws, he can create with his legs, and there is a toughness about him. With that said, it is glaringly obvious he is in over his head now and offers little chance at leading this team to a win against a quality opponent. It is worth noting that both of his touchdown passes, the second one specifically, were well-placed balls with tempo and touch. Remember, a win here would be DeVito cementing himself as a capable backup for the future.


-Saquon Barkley: 13 att – 66 yards / 1 rec – -5 yards

Another gutsy performance by Barkley who had minimal-to-no space to run through for most of the game. For the second straight week, he averaged over 5 yards per carry. That is the first time we have seen that since weeks 16/17 of 2019. They took him off the field late in the game as it got out of hand and there was no point in exposing him to more injury. Barkley was the victim of a couple poor throws by DeVito as well.

-Matt Breida and Jashaun Corbin got a couple looks late in the game but there was not anything noteworthy. Corbin did catch all three of his targets for 12 yards.


-Darius Slayton led the receiver group with 3 catches and 21 yards. There appeared to be some drama with him on the sideline and at the time of this writing, I’m not sure what happened. There is not much worth commenting on. But after a game where I simply don’t have much for you from an evaluation and analysis perspective, let me say this, the players are frustrated too. This does not even seem like competitive football at times. The offense can barely function and at any given point, it is understandable and even acceptable to see a player lose his cool on the sidelines. This happens more often than people think (on every sideline) but media coverage can sway viewers into thinking a certain way as they look for intra-game storylines in a matchup that offers very little to watch between the lines. That’s all.

-Sterling Shepard caught one pass for a two-yard touchdown. We do not know when he will catch his final touchdown in a Giants uniform and this could have easily been it.

-Wan’Dale Robinson had two catches for 6 yards and Paris Campbell had one catch for 6 yards. They also handed the ball off to Robinson once and even though it ended as a no-gain, it left me wanting to see more of him in this kind of offense. Robinson can be a key part to the team moving forward but we need to see the scheme force-feed him a bit more. Get his experience level up, let him show which plays he can make and which he cannot, and allow the coaches to gain chemistry with the skill set.

-Speaking of breeding experience for the sake of potential future gains, Jalin Hyatt had just one target again. It is the fifth time he has had 1 or less targets in a game. He is being thrown to, on average, once every 21 pass plays. He was underthrown, again. Hyatt almost seems too fast for the NYG quarterbacks no matter who is back there. The effortless burst and always-available next gear is fun to watch but there is much more to chew off here than what we have seen.


-Darren Waller was placed on Injured Reserve after suffering a hamstring injury before facing his former team last week. Daniel Bellinger and Lawrence Cager will see an uptick in playing time and snaps. Even though we have not seen much improvement in year two for Bellinger as a blocker, this set up will likely result in some increased effectiveness in the trenches. He led the team with 34 yards on 2 catches and Cager scored the first NYG touchdown on a 10-yard pitch and catch. His burst and agility showed up and reminded us what he can do in open space. A definite weapon for the Giants to try and use in the coming weeks.

-Tyree Jackson, a former quarterback, saw his first snaps with the Giants and was primarily in there to block.


-Andrew Thomas started at left tackle in consecutive games for the first time since the playoff loss in Philadelphia last January. He pitched a shutout, albeit on 32 out of 57 snaps because of an injured ankle. The positive is that he came back in after the injury and did not look too different than pre-injury. Signs point to him coming back and that means we do not need to watch more of Justin Pugh at left tackle. Thomas also made a couple of key blocks on running plays when they got him moving laterally.

-Pugh essentially split his snaps between left guard and tackle. He allowed 3 pressures and a QB hit and got tossed around in the running game. Pugh and rookie center John Michael Schmitz were displaced by Dallas defenders for most of the game, lacking anchor and balance. Schmitz spends too much time on the ground and the reaction speed looks labored. There are some Evan Neal traits here (no, I am not comparing the level of play to Neal) in that his ability to recover his body control when initially lost is concerning. It will be high up on the list of skills he needs to work on.

-The right side consisted of Ben Bredeson and Tyre Phillips. They both allowed 4 pressures and the latter allowed two sacks, the former allowing one. Bredeson was the bigger disappointment here and it caused issues with DeVito, who already seemed jittery in the pocket early on, as his pressures were right in the face of the undrafted rookie. Phillips at least made a positive impact as a run blocker on some of Barkley’s better runs while Bredeson just did not seem to compete.


-Kayvon Thibodeaux played just 40 snaps before leaving the game with a concussion. On those 40 snaps he did not register a single tackle or pressure. In three out of four games against Dallas, Thibodeaux has one pressure. One of the best performances of his career also came in a matchup against DAL in November of 2022 where he had 9 pressures as he abused Tyler Smith as a rookie (now their left guard).

-Azeez Ojulari returned from his ankle injury he suffered Week 5 in Miami. He played just 17 snaps but did show up a few times. He came up with a big 4th-and-1 stop and had 2 pressures. One of the few positives to keep an eye on in the coming weeks will be when he and Thibodeaux play together. We have not seen it much over the past year and a half.

-Boogie Basham saw an uptick in playing time and Jihad Ward continued his presence as the stout edge setter. Both missed a tackle and Ward added a QB hit, Basham added 4 tackles. For guys who are going to be near non-factors against the pass, I think they need better run game prowess than what they offer.


-Dexter Lawrence had one hurry and one QB hit as a pass rusher. This is the first time we have seen two consecutive “quiet” games out of the sure-thing All Pro. I thought his run defense was exceptional on two fronts, however. He created a logjam inside on multiple occasions that resulted in stops (wins for the defense) and made yet another impressive tackle on the move near the sideline. Do not underestimate how special that ability is from the A-Gap.

-I thought D.J. Davidson flashed late in the game where his snaps saw an uptick. He had 2 pressures and 2 tackles. He has shown a knack for getting to the passer via a strong bull rush. A’Shawn Robinson added 2 pressures and 2 tackles. He gets turned too often in the running game and it hurt the Giants in short-yardage situations. The high pad level has something to do with that. I also see a conditioning shortcoming when he is on the field for longer spurts. He had this issue in Los Angeles as well.

-Rakeem Nunez-Roches played 35 snaps for the second straight week. He made 3 tackles but was a non-factor on 17 pass rush attempts.


-Bobby Okereke and Micah McFadden were solid for most of the afternoon despite DAL averaging over 5 yards per carry. Okereke finished with 11 tackles and a QB hit. McFadden added 6 tackles, 1 TFL, and 1 pressure. Both are seeing the game well, much better than early in the year. I am going to mark them as a positive to this team moving forward which is important. Not having Leonard Williams up front is a problem, however, especially for McFadden. He is getting out-angled by offensive linemen and that is a result of the downgrade up front.

-Isaiah Simmons is a third-down defender and special teamer who remains more athlete than football player. NYG did not give up much for him but I would be lying if I said I was not disappointed by the lack of impact.


-Deonte Banks is inching toward the league lead in flags. He needs to learn to play with and trust his feet. The movement traits are all there. He knows it and we know it. It is easy to see. But when a player gets this grabby it is a sign he lacks the confidence in his ability to make the right reads. That is where he resides right now and good receivers/quarterbacks know how to take advantage of it with lots of double routes and late breaks. This will be the approach with him until he proves he can be better.

-Cor’Dale Flott and Darnay Holmes both picked off Prescott. Flott left the game early with a shoulder injury, opening the door for a lot of different players to try and slow down the Dallas secondary. Simply put, they were burned badly. CeeDee Lamb and Brandin Cooks combined for 20 catches / 324 yards / 2 TDs.

-Nick McCloud allowed 5 catches on 6 targets, Tre Hawkins allowed a 41-yard touchdown where he struggled to locate the ball, Holmes gave up 128 yards on 8 targets. No matter who the Giants threw out there, it was ugly. And the Dallas first stringers did not even play the entire game.


-With the instability at corner (and Adoree’ Jackson being out to begin with) we saw more multiple safety packages. Xavier McKinney and Jason Pinnock were still the mainstays, combining for 19 tackles. McKinney performed better in coverage and Pinnock missed two tackles.

-Dane Belton and Bobby McCain saw most of their snaps in the second half. McCain allowed a touchdown but also broke up a pass while Belton allowed a 28-yard reception on the one pass he was targeted on. He also added a pressure. McCain has surprisingly seen very little action this year, as I thought he would take on the hybrid Julian Love role. Belton is still the guy I want to see more of down the stretch because I want to have a better grasp of what he is. There is talent here but he does not show the proper feel. That could simply be an experience thing.


-K Randy Bullock: 1/1 (Made 40)
-P Jamie Gillan: 7 punts / 50.0 avg – 45.9 net


-OT Andrew Thomas, DT Dexter Lawrence, CB Cor’Dale Flott


-OG Ben Bredeson, CB Darnay Holmes, Nick McCloud


1. Is Dallas as good as some want to believe? I have leaned on point differential when looking at season-long success and evaluation. It is not the only marker, but it does break ties in my head. Dallas is +104 nine games into the season. That is third best in the NFL. But look at these wins they have. 40-point win over NYG, 20 point win over NYJ, 35 point win over NE, 3 point win over LAC, 23 point win over LAR, 32 point win over NYG. Their losses? 12-point loss vs. ARI. 32-point loss vs. SF, 5-point loss vs. PHI. It does not take much analysis to realize they’re head and shoulders above the worst teams in the NFL, but I still have a hard time accepting they are in the same tier with the best the NFL has to offer.

2. DeMarcus Lawrence is playing some of the best football of his career. The 31-year-old is turning into another Cameron Jordan-type player on the back half of his career. Early on he evolved into a double-digit sack guy and league leader in pressures. While his pure pass-rush effectiveness might be a tad less, it is still well above average, and his run defense has turned into an elite trait for an edge defender. This is something all young edge guys should be watching, Thibodeaux included. His power, strength, and techniques have constantly improved, and he is now an every-down threat, one who can line up all over the defensive line.

3. The one area this offense needs to improve the most is in the red zone. This is where they miss Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore and running back Ezekiel Elliot the most. Their offensive line is more than good enough, and their weapons are too. The play calling and execution are not. If they want to win multiple games in January, those hidden points are going to be the deciding factor.


1. Something to keep an eye on I the coming two months of football. How much does Dexter Lawrence and Kayvon Thibodeaux need another big defensive line performer to do their jobs at a high level effectively? Lawrence is playing at better defensive tackle than everyone in the NFL now. Nine weeks in, I can say that with confidence. Thibodeaux is up and down, understandably so with what has been going on around him and the skill set he currently possesses. But since the trade of Williams to Seattle, we can make the case they have been a bit quiet in the passing game compared to where they were. I like Jordon Riley and I like D.J. Davidson, but I am not sold they are the kind of player who will line up next to Lawrence rather than behind him. If we see a quiet Lawrence + Williams duo the rest of the way, another inside pass rusher needs to be a priority in the offseason.

2. At some point we need to start seeing more of Tre Hawkins and Jordon Riley. If/when Gervarrius Owens is up to speed and fully healthy, he needs to be in that group as well. While the Giants offense needs to be the primary focus next offseason, we cannot overlook a defense that has allowed the 4th-most points in the league, 2nd-most yards per attempt in the passing game, and 4th-most yards per rush. I think many are overlooking how bad this defense really is simply because they were solid against the Jets, Commanders, and Bills. And NYG needs a strong grasp on what these guys are.

3. I’ll honest and transparent here. This game review was hard to do. Re-watching that twice from different angles was hard to do. It feels like I am not breaking down professional football right now. But when it comes down to what I am supposed to do for Eric and BBI, I suck it up and do the job the best I can. There is still a lot of football to break down and there are certain players to keep an extra close eye on regarding the future. What disappoints me now is watching how some (not all) members of the media and some (not all) members of the NYG organization cannot seem to maintain integrity and respect for the people that provide the money that allow them to work in football for a living. Made up stories. Trashing a player for spending time with his family. Lame attempts late on a Monday night to act in a condescending manner to fans on X. Yes, all are signs of a losing franchise (an all-time losing team and run of losing teams) but the character of some of these guys can be tough to look past. Break the game down, agree of disagree respectfully, keep the other stuff out. You know who you are, too.

Nov 122023

The Dallas Cowboys obliterated the New York Giants 49-17 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas on Sunday. The Cowboys swept the Giants for the third season in a row and sixth time in the last seven seasons. Dallas outscored New York 89-17 in their two games this year. The Giants are now 2-8.

The game was not as close as the lopsided final score, as the Cowboys led 28-0 at halftime and 42-7 late in the third quarter. The overall final team statistics tell the story:

  • First downs. Cowboys 32. Giants 16.
  • Third-down efficiency. Cowboys 6-of-12. Giants 0-of-12.
  • Total net yards. Cowboys 640. Giants 172.
  • Average gain per offensive play. Cowboys 8.3. Giants 3.1.
  • Net yards passing. Cowboys 472. Giants 61.
  • Time of possession. Cowboys 37:21. Giants 22:39.

At halftime, the Giants only had one first down and 27 yards while the Cowboys had 20 and 368 yards. Dallas also had ten plays of 21 or more yards in the game.

Quarterback Dak Prescott completed 26-of-35 passes for 404 yards and four touchdowns. He also ran for another score for a total of five touchdowns on the day. His back-up, Cooper Rush, completed 7-of-9 throws for 68 yards and another score. Both Dallas quarterbacks were picked off once.

Quarterback Tommy DeVito finished the game 14-of-27 for 86 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. No Giants player had more than three catches. Running back Saquon Barkley carried the ball 13 times for 66 yards.

Other than the two interceptions, the defense was humiliated, allowing over 600 yards of total offense and seven touchdowns. It was the second-most yards in Cowboys’ history. The team did not sack any Cowboys’ quarterback for the fourth time in two seasons. Two receivers – CeeDee Lamb and Brandin Cooks – combined for 324 receiving yards alone. The Cowboys also rushed for 168 yards.

GAME VIDEO LOWLIGHTS are available on YouTube.

On Saturday, the Giants activated OLB Azeez Ojulari (ankle) to the 53-man roster from Injured Reserve. The Giants also activated (standard elevation) TE Tyree Jackson and PK Randy Bullock from the Practice Squad.

Inactive for the game were RB Deon Jackson (concussion), RT Evan Neal (ankle), OG Mark Glowinski (personal matter), CB Adoree’ Jackson (concussion), DL Jordon Riley, S Gervarrius Owens, and PK Cade York.

LT Andrew Thomas (knee) left the game, but returned. WR Jalin Hyatt (concussion), OLB Kayvon Thibodeaux (concussion), CB Deonte Banks (ankle), CB Cor’Dale Flott (shoulder) 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

  • Head Coach Brian Daboll (Video)
  • QB Tommy DeVito (Video)
  • RB Saquon Barkley (Video)
  • WR Sterling Shepard (Video)
  • LT Andrew Thomas (Video)
  • OG Justin Pugh (Video)

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

Nov 102023

Thank you sir… may I have another?

Once again, a part of the site that is supposed to be dedicated to analyzing specific games has turned into a running commentary on the season. But at this point, I see no reason to get into X’s and O’s for a team basically playing out the string.

For fans, this is a really bad situation. It’s not like there are only two or three games left to play. There are eight, which is half the schedule. And with little to play for other than pride, and factoring in the remaining opponents and the situation at quarterback, many anticipate the losses to continue to pile up. The Giants could be looking at a disastrous 2-15, 3-14, or 4-13 type season. With each loss, the emotional toll will build. More and more fans will advocate for another complete overhaul simply for cathartic purposes.

And there’s the rub. Each time a general manager or head coach is fired, the rebuilding clock gets set back to zero. I’ve tried to make this point for years but I still don’t think many fans completely accept this principle. If the Giants fire their fourth coach in a row after two seasons, we’re talking about Dan Snyder level of turnover/incompetence. On the other hand, if you don’t have the right general manager and head coach, you’re not going to get better either.

John Mara has hired three general managers (Jerry Reese, David Gettleman, Joe Schoen) and four head coaches (Ben McAdoo, Pat Shurmur, Joe Judge, Brian Daboll). It’s not a great batting average. If you start over, there is absolutely no guarantee the next duo is going to be better than Schoen and Daboll. On the flip side, do you trust them to get the quarterback right when they just gave Daniel Jones a 4-year, $160 million contract? In their defense, are two drafts and one legitimate free agent period enough time to rebuild what was a horrific roster? Back and forth…argument and counter-argument.

It boils down to this. The Giants are going to finish the season with a horrible record. They may not win another game. Bill Parcells would have a hard time winning another game with a rookie undrafted quarterback. The Cowboys will complete the sweep on Sunday. The Eagles will embarrass the Giants two more times. If you think that is on Schoen and Daboll, you’ll want them gone. If you think the roster is the issue, you’re more inclined to give them more time. My gut tells me Mara has already made the decision to bring both back. I don’t think Daboll is stupid enough to melt down like Judge and force Mara’s hand.


  • RB Jashaun Corbin (hamstring – questionable)
  • RB Deon Jackson (concussion – out)
  • WR Parris Campbell (hamstring – questionable)
  • LT Andrew Thomas (hamstring – probable)
  • RT Evan Neal (ankle – out)
  • OG Justin Pugh (ankle – probable)
  • OG Mark Glowinski (personal matter – questionable)
  • OLB Azeez Ojulari (ankle – questionable)
  • CB Adoree’ Jackson (concussion – out)
  • S Dane Belton (back – probable)

This is how bad it is:

  • Total yards per game: 268.9 – dead last in the NFL
  • Passing yards per game: 155.0 – dead last in the NFL
  • Points per game: 11.2 – dead last in the NFL (no one else is close)

Coaching? Perhaps. But Brian Daboll has been in this league a long time. I still contend it’s been a combination of countless offensive line issues and lineups, injuries to the most important players, and poor quarterback play. Whatever the reason, you can’t win these numbers. The Giants might not score 200 points this year.

I don’t buy the argument that Schoen and Daboll were smart for the way Daniel Jones’ contract situation was handled. No, Schoen and Daboll would have been smart to slap a 1-year franchise tag on Jones. They gambled that Jones was more likely to keep playing like he did down the stretch in 2022. They lost that huge gamble. It was the worst move of an offseason that otherwise looked pretty strong (good draft, decent free agent period, re-signing players like Andrew Thomas and Dexter Lawrence and passing on guys like Leonard Williams, Adoree’ Jackson, and Xavier McKinney). But because it was the quarterback position and because it involved $160 million, it was a big miss. Regardless of who the GM or HC are, the Giants are stuck with Jones for one more year, either as a lame duck starter or expensive clipboard holder. It will be an uncomfortable situation for all parties.

The final kick in the nads for Jones will be if Tommy DeVito shows any signs of life in the final eight games. No, I’m not talking about him being an answer at quarterback, but simply if the offense begins to generate more than 11 points per game. Jones finished 2023 with two touchdowns. If DeVito throws one more TD, he ties Jones in that department (he’s already tied him with rushing TDs with one). Through nine games, the three New York Giants quarterbacks have thrown five touchdown passes. FIVE. It makes one long for the days of Dave Brown.

Regardless, everyone is coming to the realization that the Daniel Jones era is about over. Two neck injuries and an ACL tear for a quarterback who does his best work on the run is simply the exclamation point. Hopefully, common sense prevails over warm, fuzzy feelings by Mara for Jones.

2023 was also a disaster for Evan Neal, who never seemed to get into a groove due to alternating poor play and injury issues. He’s out again now with an injury that may sideline him much of the remainder of the season. When Neal did show some small signs of improvement, he got hurt. Like Jones, the Giants simply cannot afford to assume Neal will be part of the solution in 2023. They have to have bring in a legitimate insurance policy, either in free agency or the draft. The disappointment is so great that the offensive line coach may have to be fairly or unfairly scapegoated.

As for the game, the dead last Giants offense will be facing the NFL’s third-ranked defense. Oh boy.

Status report:

  • Total yards allowed per game: 338.3 – 21st in the NFL
  • Passing yards allowed per game: 211.2 – 11th in the NFL
  • Rushing yards allowed per game: 127.1 – 25th in the NFL
  • Points allowed per game: 24.1 – 24th in the NFL

The defense started off slow, improved markedly in weeks 6-8, and then regressed last week. It hasn’t been helped by an anemic offense and shoddy special teams play. The kick to the groin was going 1-2 during a three-week span where the defense gave up a total of 34 points (11 points per game), effectively ending the season. Then they saw one of their most respected defensive leaders and effective two-way players traded away.

Moving forward, the defense simply has to accept the situation for what it is, do its job to the best of its ability, and not complain. You deal with the chips dealt to you. And the players will be judged and evaluated on the effort and performance they give. The last eight games are not just about 2023, but 2024. Xavier McKinney may have already dug his own grave.

Losing Williams hurt the pass rush. It makes it easier for teams to deal with Dexter Lawrence and Kavyon Thibodeaux. The Giants may get Azeez Olulari back, but he has to prove he can stay on the field and be an effective two-way player.

As for Dallas, again, this looks like trouble. The Cowboys are 10th in the NFL in yards per game and third in scoring. They are averaging 27.5 points per contest and will be facing a team that scores less than half that mark. Yikes.

The Giants are so bad on offense that they didn’t even get to test one of their two new kickers last week. Here comes the Cowboys, whose blocked field goal in Week 1 was the catalyst for New York’s downward spiral.

As a lifelong New York Giants fan, I can never root against the team. When they lose, I’m in a bad mood. When they win, I’m happy. But I cannot move past the notion that the higher their first pick is in the draft, the more likely the team will be able to select their preferred solution at quarterback. I appreciate the counter-argument and agree with it… that the only way to build a winning culture is to win. But New York is in quarterback hell right now. Until they fix that, they aren’t a serious football team. The Giants have painted me into a position where if they win, I’m not sure it is a good thing. And that’s a bad place to be.

Nov 072023
Deon Jackson, Justin Pugh, Evan Neal; New York Giants (November 5, 2023)

Dejection – © USA TODAY Sports


-After missing three games with a neck injury (his second in three years), Daniel Jones was back under center for NYG. He looked rusty, air mailing a simple throw to Saquon Barkley in the flat, misfiring to Darius Slayton which should have been intercepted, and overthrowing Jalin Hyatt on a deep route by four yards on a route where he had three steps on the corner. To rub salt in the wound of what has been just a torturous 2023 season for him and the Giants, he went down with a non-contact knee injury in the second quarter. Jones walked off the field on his own but as of the time of this writing, the likely result is a ligament tear that will need season-ending surgery.

-Tommy DeVito came in for the second straight game as Tyrod Taylor was placed on IR. The undrafted rookie led the offense last week with training wheels, a life jacket, and bubble wrap surrounding his body. This time around, the Giants coaches let him play football. The results were what one would expect out of someone who nobody in the league wanted to draft last April. He did end up completing 15 of 20 passes for 175 yards including his first career touchdown pass. He, too, underthrew Hyatt on a potential touchdown and it resulted in his first of two interceptions (the second one was not his fault). He ran himself into a couple sacks as well but considering all the circumstances, DeVito competed. He showed the offense can be run through him well enough to at least use the entire playbook. This is who the Giants will be using for at least the next three weeks, and I look forward to seeing the opportunity for growth out of the local kid. The glass half-full approach with him is the fact he will compete hard and brings an element of toughness and athleticism to the field. We are not watching Jake Fromm or Mike Glennon.


-Saquon Barkley: 16 att – 90 yards / 3 rec – 23 yards

A week after carrying the ball more than any NFL running back since 2017, Barkley played another solid game when looking at his per-touch average (5.9). This is a positive considering we have seen poor games out of him following big usage in the past. Barkley took a nasty blow to the ribs/throat that caused him to miss a few snaps. He was in obvious discomfort throughout the rest of the game but continued to gut out physical, hard-nosed runs. He had a couple plays where the elite movement traits showed up. Barkley moves like very few guys at his size can and it is nice to see he still has it along with a team-first mentality within this dumpster fire of a season. One must wonder how much he truly will want to push through pain over the second half of the season.

-Matt Breida added 11 yards on 3 touches, one of them being a catch and Deon Jackson got a carry late in the game when it was out of hand.


-Wan’Dale Robinson caught the lone touchdown of the game added 35 yards on 4 receptions. He is not even a year removed from his 2022 ACL injury and while timelines have quickened when it comes to recovery, getting back to a full 100% does take a year-plus. I see his movement traits improving as the year goes on and the best is still ahead for the second-year pro.

-Darius Slayton led the team with 59 yards on 4 catches but also had a ball bounce off his hands and ending in an interception. I was impressed with his blocking on the edge on a couple of the big Barkley runs.

-Jalin Hyatt beat the LV secondary on three occasions in which the ball was thrown his way. On all three plays, the quarterback misfired. Hyatt still came down with an amazing, body-twisting grab on the first one, but Jones put it a bit too close to the sideline and Hyatt came down out of bounds. Then there was an overthrow, then there was an underthrow. This kid can make things happen and he did his job, but the quarterbacks did not. Hyatt did catch two balls underneath for 19 yards and fumbled (which was recovered by NYG).

-Parris Campbell caught 2 passes for 15 yards and Isaiah Hodgins dropped the one target thrown his way.


-Darren Waller was put on IR with a hamstring injury, opening the door again for Daniel Bellinger who has had a rough go this season. He caught 3 passes for 43 yards and while I did see a slight improvement as a blocker, the overall performance in that department still fell below average. His initial contact was clean and physical, but the lack of latch showed up with both him and Lawrence Cager. Bellinger was also flagged for a false start prior to a 4th-and-inches conversion attempt.


-Left Tackle Andrew Thomas finally returned from a hamstring injury suffered Week One after Graham Gano’s field goal attempt was blocked on that rainy night in early September. It is amazing how long ago that seems and what has transpired since that game. While Thomas’ did seem to lose his body control at times (likely a result of not being in game shape), it was the best left tackle play this team has had all season by a country mile. He allowed a pressure and a half-sack but showed some highlight-reel caliber blocks in the running game. If you do not watch much outside of NYG football or focus much on offensive line play, do yourself a favor and watch Thomas. This is how the job is supposed to be done and it is a great barometer to use for evaluating other linemen. It is then easy and obvious to see just how far away the rest of this line is, unfortunately. Nonetheless, it was great to see Thomas out there and I expect his conditioning to improve in time.

-After missing three games with an ankle injury, Evan Neal injured his other ankle on a play where Maxx Crosby put the second-year pro on his butt. I want to say this is some bad luck for Neal, but I cannot get past this at least partially being the result of poor footwork and insecure movement traits. Neal just looks further and further away from a pro athlete the more I study him. He has a hard time picking up those feet and staying centered. I can see the oversetting, the lack of reaction speed, and the lack of mental anticipation leading to the ankles/feet not being where they need to be. Throw that on a 325+ pounder and things like this happen. Neal also reached for his oblique after a play, showing obvious pain. As for his game, he allowed 1.5 sacks and a pressure in addition to the 4th-and-1 false start on the first drive that drew the ire of Daboll. It was not all bad and ugly for Neal, as he did have a few wins against Crosby and his run blocking was a positive difference maker.

-The interior was the best trio we have seen this season. Justin Pugh moved back to his more natural position (left guard) and while he did allow 3 pressures, his game was mistake free mentally. That has been a significant cause of line problems this year and he communicated and reacted well along with center John Michael Schmitz, who allowed just one pressure. The versatile Ben Bredeson shifted over to right guard and finished with the lowest grade on the line. He allowed 1.5 sacks (one could be argued was not his fault), 1 pressure, and 1 TFL. All three were solid in the running game and I would sign up for this caliber of performance out of them for the rest of the year right now.


-Following on the best game of Kayvon Thibodeaux’s season was one of his worst. He was shut out as a pass rusher and his run defense, especially in the first half, was terrible. He was dancing around blockers rather than taking them on which created creases for Josh Jacobs to burst through. He showed no feel for the misdirection plays, played too much catch up, and he missed two tackles. He did pick it up a bit in the second half when things were more predictable but it was a game to forget for him.

-Jihad Ward was stouter and played his best game of the season, finishing with 3 tackles and a TFL. This matchup was more up his alley with a smash-mouth running game and scaled back version of a passing game.


-Leonard Williams spent Sunday afternoon in Baltimore playing for the Seahawks. A’Shawn Robinson got the start in place of him and played an excellent game. He had 6 tackles, including one for a loss, and caused another TFL via penetration. He played half the team’s defensive snaps for the first time since last November while playing with the Rams. Rakeem Nunez-Roches played five more snaps in his backup role, making one tackle.

-Dexter Lawrence was game-planned around and run away from. He saw a ton of double/triple teams but still finished with three tackles and had multiple “teach tape” plays against the run. He has such a unique ability to play big and wide but with tremendous pad level and leverage. There is a lot to be unhappy about in Giants land right now, but Lawrence (and Andrew Thomas) are among the best the game has at their positions right now and maybe the best ever NYG has had at their respective positions in franchise history.


-Micah McFadden is getting better every week. He does something very few linebackers can do. Immediately, post-snap, he runs to a spot and beats the blocker by a mile and will even beat the ball carrier there. That is something that made Luke Kuechly the game’s best linebacker for a few years. He finished with 6 tackles and 2 TFL. Bobby Okereke had 7 tackles and a TFL of his own. These two lead the NFL off-ball linebacker duos in tackles for loss.

-Isaiah Simmons added 3 tackles on 13 snaps.


-Deonte Banks was put in a blender off the line in this one. Jakobi Meyers and Davante Adams, both top-shelf route runners, had their way with him. Rookie Tre Tucker also torched him for a long completion. He needs a better plan in press coverage, and he seemed a bit too lackadaisical, not being set pre-snap. He has not earned that right, yet. He did have a nice pass break-up and 7 tackles, along with 1 missed tackle.

-Adoree’ Jackson missed half of the game with an injury to nobody’s surprise. Versatile defensive back Nick McCloud stepped in and did not have to do much. Cor’Dale Flott manned the slot for most of the game again. Nobody in the defensive backfield had a strong game but I am happy to see Flott becoming more aggressive because it means he is becoming more confident.


-Jason Pinnock and Xavier McKinney were active, as the LV running game had several runs that went through the second level of the defense. Pinnock had 3 tackles and a pass break-up as he fought through a lower body injury. McKinney led the team with 10 tackles and had a pressure, one of just three on the day for the defense.

-Dane Belton played 18 snaps, the second most of the season, and added 3 tackles with some physical play. This guy has some of the heaviest and most violent contact on the defense. If his mental game catches up to the physical talent, this defense has something.


-K: N/A
-P Jamie Gillan: 4 punts / 42.3 avg – 40.8 net


-WR Wan’Dale Robinson, LB Micah McFadden, RB Saquon Barkley


-CB Deonte Banks, ED Kayvon Thibodeaux, OG Ben Bredeson


1. Head Coach Josh McDaniels was fired just days before this matchup. He made it through just 25 games. The Raiders have not had the same head coach for more than four consecutive seasons since Art Shell in the early 90’s. Where do they go next? I am very curious to see how Antonio Pierce handles the back half the season here. The former Giants linebacker was made for coaching and when I saw him get linked up with Arizona State in 2018, I had a feeling he would end up in this exact role. Will he go elsewhere like Dan Campbell did after being an interim head coach in 2015 with Miami? Or will Las Vegas hold onto him? This organization loves to go after the headline names, but I think Pierce, like Campbell, will be the proper fit to form a real culture.

2. Next up? The quarterback. Nobody truly believes Jimmy Garoppolo is the long-term answer. Even though I have talked to people I respect when it comes to quarterback play who say Aidan O’Connell can start in this league, I cannot get behind him on a win-now team. The trade for Adams last year and the extension of left tackle Kolton Miller and Maxx Crosby makes them win-now. Add in the type of ownership they have and the fact they will not be within striking distance of a top quarterback in the draft makes me think they could be the team that pursues a quarterback via trade next offseason. Who could that be? Kyler Murray, Justin Fields, and the crazy one that I think could have some legs to it is Dak Prescott.

3. Maxx Crosby is one of the top three edge defenders in the NFL. Myles Garrett must be number one and then it gets cloudy. Bosa and Watt are there but when I watch Crosby, I just see a guy who makes more impact snap to snap. Because he is on a bad team, he may not have the respect he deserves. This guy has played 98% of the team’s snaps this year, 96% in 2022. Bosa? 79% / 74%. Watt? 83% / 83%. Garrett? 79% / 79%. Crosby – the league leader in pressures, sacks, and TFL – is a 4th rounder from Eastern Michigan and an absolute rock in the locker room. He is only 26-years old.


1. The season is over for Daniel Jones. While there will be several discussions surrounding his status with the team from now up until Draft weekend, this will be the last time I address him in game reviews. First, I don’t believe Jones is going anywhere. He will not be traded, he will not be released. The contract is structured in a way where they can’t really do anything with him unless they want to absorb a record-type dead cap hit. Even if they go after a quarterback in the draft, it would be wise to keep him around for 2024 (see Kansas City following the Mahomes selection). In the same breath, Jones did not do anything to cement his status with the team beyond 2024. Whether you think he had a fair shot or not is irrelevant. If NYG is in position to take a guy they think can be a big-time quarterback, they absolutely must go in that direction. But they must make sure it is the right guy. See you in the offseason.

2. Sticking with the quarterback position. What happens when Tyrod Taylor returns? All accounts point toward him being available in a few weeks. He is the (well-paid) backup. He gives this team the best shot to win. I know many fans want the losses to pile up for the sake of the 2024 Draft, but you know the coaches and players will not sign up for that. Taylor is going to be the quarterback and he should be. The only way that changes is if DeVito comes back and plays lights out. Anything is possible and I do like a few things about him. I would like to see if he can continue to progress on some of these downfield throws. Even if he can solidify the QB2 role on this team, that is a big deal moving forward based on economics.

3. Through 8 weeks of the season, the Raiders did not score 20 points once. In this matchup against the Giants defense that was relatively healthy, they scored 24 points in the first half with a Day Three rookie at quarterback. While I understand much of the talk will center around Jones, the injury, and the lack of scoring (rightfully so), this defense was such a letdown in a game where they could have kept it close. As we are learning, such is life when having your defense run by Wink Martindale. Peaks and valleys. More valleys than peaks.