Huge win. It wasn’t pretty, but it counts. The Eagles are now 3-1. The Giants are 2-2, 0-2 vs the NFC East. Nice, huh?
In the end, this felt like a game where the Eagles were saved from themselves. They had a 13-10 lead and drove down the field. A 20-10 lead might just put the game out of reach, but the Eagles have to settle for a FG. Did any Eagles fan on Earth feel safe leading 16-10? No way. Sure enough, Eli led the Giants to an easy TD and they led 17-16.
This is the 2012 Eagles, though, and they don’t fold. Michael Vick led them on a methodical drive down to inside the 5-yd line. A TD would be huge. Of course the Eagles come up short and have to settle for a FG. They now lead 19-17. The Giants get the ball back and march down the field. A legit penalty on DRC keeps the drive alive. A few plays later, a questionable penalty turns 3rd/10 into a 1st down and puts them in solid FG range. Oh, the humanity.
The Giants try to run, but Cullen Jenkins stuffs the play. 1 yard. 24 seconds. The Giants could run again or throw a safe pass. Instead, Eli Manning gets greedy and throws downfield. Ramses Barden does what he has to in order to prevent an INT. The refs make the highly unusual, but totally correct call of offensive pass interference. At that moment, O-P-I seemed like the greatest 3 letters in history. Some have questioned the call. Ridiculous. Barden had his hands around Nnamdi’s head. It looked as though Nnamdi was a bottle cap and Barden was trying to unscrew it.
That penalty moved the Giants back to the 36-yd line. They had to decide on kicking a 54-yd FG or trying one final play. Thankfully, they went with the kick. There was 15 seconds on the clock and they had no timeouts. They feared a mistake that would let the clock run out or a penalty that would move them out of FG range. Plus, no one misses long FGs vs the Eagles. We all know that.
And then Lawrence Tynes did miss. Wide. I started to celebrate until I realized that Andy Reid had decided to ice the kicker. In the name of god, why???? I hate icing the kicker. It has been proven not to help. Coaches do it. Dumb. At that point, I just assumed Tynes would nail the second attempt. Could he miss 2 against the Eagles?
Yes. Thank god, yes. Tynes made sure to get this kick straight and high, but it came up a yard or two short. The Eagles won, but it sure did feel like the Eagles were saved from themselves.
This was a typical Eagles-Giants game. The defenses dominated at times. The offenses dominated at times. There were big plays and small ones. There were turnovers, penalties, and just some odd moments. It really felt like a boxing match, where the teams were trading punches. The Eagles had chances to put the Giants away, but just couldn’t do it. This is the way most of the Eagles-Giants games go. Another classic.
And it was fitting that on the night that Dawk had his jersey retired, the Giants tried to get to 20 points, but were denied. The Football Gods knew that the number 20 wasn’t meant for the Giants on such a special night.
Back and forth with Big Red. The team was fired up and ready to go. They weren’t hanging their heads after the Cardinals debacle. The team was loose and aggressive. They were ready to deal with the Giants. That was good to see.
I had no problems with the initial gameplan. The running plays had worked last year vs the Giants. Unfortunately they had made adjustments and were shutting us down. Reid did adjust by the middle of the 2nd Qtr and he and Marty did good things from that point on. I didn’t love every play, but they did a good job overall. The offense looked worlds different than the group from the disaster in the desert.
Reid challenged a call after listening to DeSean’s pleading. This turned out to be a wise decision and we got the catch.
There were no critical 4th down decisions. I did like the fact that when a couple of drive stalled, Reid kicked the FG. Points were at a premium in that game. Don’t get overly greedy.
There were 2 things I hated. I detested the 3rd/GL call on our final drive. That rollout near the endzone just doesn’t work for us, but they call it over and over and over. If given a choice of curing cancer or having that play removed from the playbook…I’d have to seriously consider both options. That should tell you how much I hate that play. The other thing…icing the kicker. I can’t stand it. Shanny invented this back in 2007. It has worked a couple of times, but it does not work as much as coaches would like to believe. More than a few have been burned by doing this and seeing a bad kick or blocked kick go to waste. Just last week this burned the Dolphins. You only ice the kicker if you’re desperate. If he’s got a 32-yarder to win. That’s a gimme. Roll the dice. 54 yards? That’s hard as heck. Don’t ice that guy. Make him beat you. I was ready to kill Andy when he did that Sunday night. Thankfully, everything worked out in the end and I’m not headed to prison.
3rd/13. Middle of the 2nd Qtr. We ran a QB draw. Got 12. Why do that on 3rd/13? Odd. Almost worked.
3rd/9. Late in the half. Shotgun. Pro set. Twins left. Celek and both RBs blocked. Only 2 men went downfield. DJax ran post corner and Mac crossed with him. That delayed Rolle maybe half a second, but left DeSean wide open. Vick made good read, accurate throw. Easy TD. Corey Webster really got burned more than anyone on the play. He was covering the post and never saw DJax make the break for the corner. Terrible coverage by a veteran CB.
1st/10. Opening drive of 3rd Qtr. I-formation, twins left, TE to right. Giants had 7 in the box and a S that snuck down basically in. However, we had good numbers on the right side of the O, left side of the D. Blocker for every defender. Evan Mathis had to seal the backside DT with a good reach block. Did a great job with that. Brent chipped the DE, then sealed the MLB. Todd got the DE. Danny & Dallas doubled the onside DT and put him on the ground. Havili got a kick-out of the OLB. Shady had a perfect running lane and hit it at full speed. Brent stuck with his block for almost 10 yards and that gave Shady a free run down the sideline. That play went for 34 yards.
1st/10. Very next play. Same formation, set by us. Giants line up in Wide-9. All 3 LBs are between the tackles. This time Brent goes upfield and seals the OLB. Todd engaged Tuck and controlled the edge. Havili flew around the edge with no one to block. Shady had a free run to the sideline. Havili blocked a DB. Shady made one DB miss about the 10-yd line and was tackled by Kiwi at the 1-yd line. Very good blocking by Evan, Danny on the DTs. Kept them from being involved in the play at all.
1st/GL. Dennis Kelly lined up at RT. Todd was beside him as a TE. Kelly got a very good block. There was some room to the right. Unfortunately Dallas was unable to get his hands cleanly on Rocky Bernard and he tackled Shady from behind.
2nd/GL. Same look. Another good block by Kelly. The guys to the right got some movement. Havili engaged a defender at the GL and was pushing him wide. Shady had a small area to Havili’s inside. There was a gap to attack. Unfortunately he decided to bounce the play wide and got stopped at the 1.
3rd/GL. Power set, but to the left. Shady tried to go wide. Giants pursued well and stopped him at the 1.
3rd/GL. Final play of last drive. 3 WRs (2 to left), split backs. Havili cut the LB to the left and Vick rolled that way, looking for Mac and Avant. Standard RZ rollout we’ve used for years. Didn’t work so Vick slid to keep the clock running. I hated this play to infinity. It is safe because it lessens the reads for Vick and gets him on the move, but is very low percentage as well. I would have gone 4 wide and spread the D, then run Vick behind Shady on a QB draw. No guarantees there, but the D isn’t bunched and chasing Vick. He’s got some holes to choose from and one mistake by the D can lead to a TD. Happened in the Ravens game.
* First series was safe, conservative. Poor execution, though.
* Only went 4 of 12 on 3rd downs.
* 1 of 4 in Red Zone. Not good. Almost cost us the game.
* Field position was a major problem. We had 2 drives start outside the 20 all game (our 30, our 44). Ugh.
* We didn’t punt in the 2nd half. Only had 4 in the game.
* No turnovers.
VICK – Really good game. Was 19-30-241. Had a TD. NO TURNOVERS. That was huge. Most importantly, Vick played a smart game. He adjusted plays at the LOS. He used his hard count effectively. He made good reads and smart decisions. There was one throw into coverage that I thought was dumb. There were a couple of bad throws. Vick played with confidence. He trusted his blockers and his receivers. He ran the ball 6 times for 49 yards. He didn’t run for his life. He ran for 1st downs. The game slowed down for him and he looked good. This is the Vick that defenses fear. He can beat you with his arm or legs. He also used his head. He was aggressive, but not risky. If we see more of this, 2012 will be a good season.
* Used his hard count effectively a few times in the game. Smart.
* First highlight play came on 3rd/11 on 2nd drive. Vick did small roll to his left. Waited for DJax to come open and threw a good pass just as JPP was hitting him. Got 32 yards on the play and it got us out of terrible field position.
* Hit Celek with a laser on 3rd/2. Had to thread the ball between 2 LBs.
* Almost hit DJax for a 45-yd TD. Play was perfect, but S blitzed off the edge and had a free run at Vick. He still threw the ball and almost got it to DJax for the score, but the pass was about a foot or two too far.
* Had pass deflected by blitzing LB in the mid-2nd Qtr.
* Vick made 3 terrible throws all night. First was in the mid-2nd Qtr. Dropped back on play-action and had tons of time. DeSean was open. For some reason, Vick short-hopped the pass to him. Was he scared? Just a weird throw? Impossible to tell. Next one was in the mid-3rd Qtr. Real good play action fake. Had tons of time. Only 3 guys ran routes so he had limited options. Threw awkward pass in traffic that a Giant LB had a shot at. Dumb, dumb throw. Final head scratcher came on 1st/10 near the RZ in the early 4th. Vick had a clean pocket. Aimed for WR in the end zone, but the ball was closer to a pair of Giants than the WR. If he was just throwing that away, should have been safer and really thrown it away.
* Took a big hit from blitzing S, but got the ball off to Damaris and that turned into a gain of 17. Tough.
* Had a great Vick scramble on 3rd/4 late in the half. Got pressure from Osi, but he’d lost contain so Vick went wide and used his speed to blow by him and get upfield for 5 yds. Only Vick and RG3 have the speed to do that. Great acceleration.
* Ran for 18 yards late in the 3rd on what appeared to be a broken play. No one blocked Osi. Luckily Osi took a poor angle and Vick ran around him and up the field for a good gain.
* Ran for 1st down on game winning drive. Did go out of bounds at 4-minute mark. Would have helped if he’d slid, but I can’t be too angry with him being focused on avoiding getting hit since there were defenders closing in on him.
SHADY – Huge game. Started slowly, but that was due more to blocking than anything else. Had 6 carries for 2 yards at halftime. Finished the game with 23-123. Flat out great in the 2nd half.
Put an amazing move on Kenny Phillips on the second drive and cause Kenny to leave the game with an injury. His knee was not meant to bend like that. I’m pretty sure Shady sold his soul to the devil for that kind of cutting ability. Had an up and down night in pass pro. Got beaten by Stevie Brown (Phillips backup) on blitz. Brown hit Vick, forced errant throw. Tried to throw a screen to him in the mid-2nd Qtr, but the Giants were all over it – incomplete pass. Caught swing pass from the I-formation and got 12 yds on the play. That was his first chance to really get going in the open field. Caught short pass in space late in the half and S Brown made a great tackle of him for no gain. Really popped Shady.
In the 2nd half, Shady came alive. He used his speed to run wide. He was disciplined and also ran inside on some plays. He showed good vision on his cutback runs. The fact he did all 3 things kept the Giants off balance. They couldn’t sell out to take away the edge if he was going to cutback. Guys who did stay disciplined on the backside weren’t able to chase him down on runs that did go wide and up the field. Shady got greedy by the goal line and tried to go outside too much. Needed to find a small crease and attack instead of going wide.
B BROWN – Okay game. 4 carries for 5 yds. Never had a chance to get going, though. Had a couple of 1st half carries, but no room to run. Made effective cut block of DT on short passing play. Ran on 2nd/3 in the early 4th Qtr. Hit the hole hard and got 3.1 yds. Got carry on 2nd/GL late in game. Reid wanted fresh legs, bigger body. Giants stuffed the play. Brown got a yard, but that’s it.
HAVILI – Really good game. Had 2 carries for 15 yards and looked good running the ball. Caught one pass for 7 yards. Blocked well. Dropped short pass on the second play of the game. Wasn’t going to do much, but would have been nice to get the offense headed in the right direction. Highlight of the night was a 2nd Qtr pass play when Stanley got a chip block on JPP and knocked him to the ground. Got blown up by Kiwi on run play to open the 3rd Qtr. Apparently DE/LB types are bigger and stronger than FBs. Good lead block on Iso run. Engaged LB. Then pushed him to the ground. We need our FB to have a nasty streak. Legally required in PA. In the early 4th, he got the ball on a tackle trap and gained 8. Not a new play, but interesting wrinkle to give the ball to the FB. Talented runner. Has vision, can move. Gained 7 on another run in the 4th. Same play, other side. Put good move on Kiwi to get something. Lined up close to the LOS on 4th Qtr run and then pulled around the outside. Took out 2 guys with good cut block. Had good block of Osi on cutback run in the 4th. Knocked the ballerina back a couple of yards.
CELEK – Had 4 catches for 57 yards. Added another long play to this year’s resume with his 27-yard grab. Celek is among the league leaders in catches of 20 or more yards. Caught short pass on 3rd/2 late in the 1st Qtr. “Sat down” between defenders and Vick got him a laser. Caught ball 6 yds upfield, then added 11 RAC yds. The long catch came in the mid-3rd. Good play-action pass. LBs bought the fake and Brent was wide open. 12 of those 27 yards were of the RAC variety. Huge when Celek can get a pass in space and then run.
Up and down night in blocking. Had good block of JPP on cutback run. Was just supposed to keep him from pursuing, but Shady cut to the right and Brent had to stay in JPP’s way to give Shady a chance. That play went for 13. Other times he was overwhelmed by defenders, on run and pass plays. Brent won his share of battles as well. You don’t run for 191 yds without some good blocks from the TE. Most interesting moment was when Avant and Brent double JPP on pass play. Was effective, but not pretty.
HARBOR – Quiet game as a receiver. Only targeted once, when he caught a 7-yd pass over the middle on 2nd/21. Only in the game for 19 snaps. Victim of us using the I-formation so much.
MACLIN – Quiet game. Targeted 3 times, but only caught one pass in the game. Did come on the game winning drive and it did move the chains. I didn’t see Mac getting open all that much. I’m sure he’s not 100 percent. And give the Giants credit for doing a good job on him.
D JACKSON – Good game. Came up with gain of 32 on corner route early in the game. Made sure to slow down as he neared the sideline. Was able to make the grab and get both feet in. Made a terrific catch as he fell to the ground late in the 1st Qtr. Ruled incomplete, DeSean demanded that Andy challenge and he did. Replay showed that DeSean got his arm under the ball so that it did bounce, but off his arm and not the ground. Nice grab. moved the chains. Caught pass for 14 on opening drive of 3rd Qtr. Sat down between 2 LBs, got the ball, and then added RAC yards. No hesitation with working the middle or playing in traffic. Was actually mad at himself for not breaking it and delivering a huge play. Finished the game 6-99-1.
AVANT – Only had 2 passes come his way. Caught them both for a total of 30 yds. First catch came on final drive of the 1st half. Caught short pass on the right side, but hurt his wrist and left the game for a bit. Best moment came in the early 4th. Caught a pass over the middle and got 23 on the play. Had some good blocks in the game.
D JOHNSON – Lined up as RB for a play and got the ball. We were in a spread set, but the Giants knew something was up and kept everyone in the box. Damaris had nowhere to run and lost a yard. Caught one pass. Got a short throw on the right side, then put a good move on the DB and went upfield. Got 17 yds on the play.
* There was confusion early. First play of game was a run. Giants had a 7-man front. We had good numbers on them. S came flying down at the snap and that blew up the play. Evan Mathis pulled out wide and had 2 guys to block. Who do you take? I think this is a case where you give the Giants credit for making the perfect defensive call.
* Early pass play…Watkins let guy go to the inside, as if expecting help. Reynolds was looking to his left. DT got big pressure on Vick. Not sure who was to blame on that.
BELL – Up and down showing. Got completely owned by JPP in the late 1st Qtr and that almost got Vick’s head taken off. Great elusive move allowed Vick to run for a couple of yards. Struggled on some run plays, both with Osi and JPP. I have to give Bell some credit. About halfway through the 2nd Qtr, he started to play with more confidence and did a better job. Failed to block Osi on 3rd Qtr pass play. Tried to help Mathis with DT. Osi came in free and forced Vick to run. I find it hard the play was designed for Osi to come free, but it worked well as Vick ran for a 1st down. Reid says the TE was supposed to chip Osi. Sloppy block on DL on 3rd/6 led to Vick getting hit and throwing errant pass. Stopped drive that resulted in long FG. Had good block of JPP on run. Play started away. Bell stuck with him. Shady cutback. Bell then got a good shot on JPP. Shady had good room to run. Had a great sequence on the next play. We threw a pass. Bell blocked JPP straight up. While engaged with him, a blitzing S tripped on Bell’s foot and gave time to Vick to hit Avant. Beat by Osi off the snap, but stuck with the play and rode him wide/deep. That gave Vick room to step up and get the pass off. Good block on run play late in game. Helped Mathis double the DT, then peeled off and got LB. Shady cutback and hit that hole. Bell’s block gave him room to get upfield and secure 1st/Goal.
MATHIS – Good game. Solid in pass pro. Generally controlled his guy. Wasn’t able to sustain block on DT on one play and his guy pressured Vick. Had some really good run blocks. Sealed off the backside DT on runs to the right side. That’s important because it gives Shady the freedom to cut back if he wants to. Great block on 4th Qtr run up the middle. Drove DT 3 yds off the ball and gave Shady room to run. That was an old school drive block.
REYNOLDS – Rough start. Beaten by Kiwi on early play and he pressured Vick. Got better after that. Didn’t seem to miss assignments. Was able to get to the 2nd level and block LBs. Helped Danny double team DTs on runs to the right (we went to that side a lot). Solid in pass pro. Good block of MLB on 4th Qtr run right up the gut. Moved the guy off the ball and cleared up space. Showing progress. He’s learning each week.
WATKINS – Up and down game. As always, pass pro is a bit of an adventure. The Giants don’t have the most athletic DTs so he did fine vs them, but blitzers caught him off guard a time or two. S Will Hill attacked his gap a couple of times and was able to get Danny off balance. Danny is very strong so that tells you he didn’t have his feet set and/or didn’t see the blitzer coming. Good block of LB on run play to his side late in the half. Got upfield, sustained it well. Walled off DT on Shady run up the middle in the early 4th. Pulled to the left on run play in the 4th and sealed Boley so Shady had running lane.
HERREMANS – Rough going early in the game. Had a holding penalty on run to his side when JPP got some penetration. Wiped out a nice gain. On next play we tried to run his way and JPP just shoved Todd out of the way and blew up a run. Called for completely bogus holding penalty in the 1st Qtr. Tuck was at DT and Todd was focused on the DE. Tuck hit Todd, causing him to fall. Tuck landed on top. The ref saw that and assumed Todd had pulled him down. Didn’t hurt us since the pass was dropped on the play. Got beaten to the inside by DE, who then hit Vick. Not sure what Todd was thinking. There was a LB near him, but you always block inside out. He let DE go for 1/2 second, then grabbed at him. Odd. JPP shoved Todd back and completely disrupted a run play to his side. That led to TFL. Ran to his side late in the half. Todd couldn’t get outside leverage on Osi and the run just went for a couple. Tough block. Had terrific backside block of DT on run in early 4th. That gave Shady room to cutback. Did a good job when dealing with Tuck, Osi. Had some good run blocks on the plays that came to his side in the 2nd half. Overall played well, but wasn’t looking good in the 1st Qtr.
KELLY – Played in some GL sets and looked like a good run blocker. Might have been too upright, but got some movement with good down blocks.
3rd/3. Giants were at our 15. Castillo made a good call here. Blitzed and wanted Eli to throw slant to Cruz, who was in the right slot. Boykin had coverage there. Ryans was closer to the middle of the formation. At the snap, Ryans was to buzz out wide and get in the passing lane, right where the slant would go. Play worked perfectly, except Ryans was a step slow. Looked like he hesitated for a moment. Cruz caught the pass and got in for the TD. Good idea, sloppy execution.
1st/GL. Giants had bunch set to the left. Kendricks took Pascoe in the flat. Nate covered Bennett in the endzone. DeMeco covered Cruz on short route. DRC stayed back in the endzone. Eli didn’t anticipate this. He threw the ball to Bennett, but instead it went right to DRC. There was some pressure on the play, but Eli wasn’t under duress. Bad read, dumb throw.
2nd/GL. Giants used bunch set from last GL series. This time someone screwed up. Pascoe went to the middle and no one covered him. Kendricks took Cruz in the flat. Nate took Bennett in the endzone. Ryans looked to be the one who was lost. He seemed to be undercutting Bennett. Easy pitch and catch for TD.
* Pass rush wasn’t great. Didn’t have any sacks. Still, it was effective in some ways. Giants were just 2 of 10 on 3rd downs. Eli had lowest completion percentage and QB rating of the season. Giants only scored 17 points. Did draw 2 holding calls. The guys up front had a big part in that even though they didn’t deliver a sack.
* Giants were 2 of 4 in the Red Zone, but we did have a takeaway.
* Held Giants to just 57 yards rushing.
* Had to call timeout n 3rd/2 in 1st Qtr due to some confusion.
* Field position was a problem for the D. The Giants had 4 drives start at the 39 or better. Amazing we held them to 17 points.
* Generally tackled well. Coverage was tight. There were only a couple of blown assignments.
COLE – I was disappointed in Trent. Had some good plays, but wasn’t a disruptive force. Had to deal with some chip blocks and other things, but I expect Trent to still make his presence more noticed. Helped to stuff the RB on the first run of the game by beating the TE to the inside. Got tackled on third down pass play and drew a holding call. Dove at Eli’s feet on 3rd down and affected pass that ended up incomplete. Came free on stunt late in the half and got a decent shot on Eli. Beat TE block in early 4th and was ready to level Eli, but the ball was already out.
BABIN – Quiet game. Got a lot of extra attention because their RT was a backup and only a so-so player. Beat the RT and hit Eli low just as he was releasing the ball on 3rd/10. Wasn’t able to affect the pass. Had a dumb penalty in 2nd Qtr. Got his hands in face of RT and knocked the guy’s helmet off. That penalty came on 3rd/long and extended a drive. Did hustle in pursuit.
LANDRI – Solid game. Credited with being in on 4 tackles. Hit Eli on the opening drive by beating the LG with a great spin move. Drove the LG back into Eli on pass play, but the ball was out by then. Hustled downfield to tackle RB on screen pass. Split dbl tm and tackled RB as he started upfield. Got in on tackle of RB 5 yds downfield on first drive of 3rd Qtr. Got pressure on pass play in the late 3rd, but Eli was able to dump the ball off.
JENKINS – Good showing. Very active game. Chased plays all over. Made tackle on dump off pass to RB on 3rd/long. Bradshaw wasn’t expecting to be hit from behind by #97. CuJo tried to rip the ball out, but Bradshaw held on. Got 1st Qtr TFL when he fired through gap and hit the RB. Used swim move to cleanly beat the LG on that. Came free on loop late in half and flushed Eli. Tackled RB on draw play, but we did give up 9 yds. Chased down Bradshaw from behind on pass play in the late 3rd. Eli couldn’t get hold of the snap on 2nd play of final drive. CuJo was close to hitting him as he picked it up. Had he gotten there, could have been a huge play. Good effort. Made a key tackle on the final drive. Got Bradshaw on run when Giants were trying to get 5 easy yds to help with FG position. Instead, they got nothing and the clock kept going. Credited with 4 tackles and the team’s only TFL. Played hard, made things happen.
TAPP – Quiet game. Wasn’t credited with any tackles. Didn’t stand out as a pass rusher at all.
GRAHAM – Played 10 snaps. Beat the RT on the opening drive by bullrushing him and then going to the inside. Brandon got into the backfield, which forced Eli to roll out wide. Wasn’t credited with any tackles. Looked okay when he was in there.
COX – Very good game. Got a hit on Eli on opening drive and forced throwaway. BG flushed Eli and Cox came off his block to close in and get to him. Got free up the middle on the next play and hit Eli again, also forcing an errant throw. Grabbed RB on play that started the 2nd drive and limited him to a couple of yds. Shed the RG to make that play. Got pressure on 1st Qtr pass play, but Eli threw a perfect pass before Fletch got in his face. Fought off dbl tm and helped tackle RB on inside run in mid-3rd. Blew up 3rd/1 run to his side. Drove the RG back, then got an arm on the RB as he tried to get upfield. Landri, CuJo helped. Got pressure on Eli on final play. There was a stunt and Fletch came free off the edge as Eli was moving to that side. Fletch made him throw on the move so that Eli couldn’t make some sensational pass. Had to throw it away. Credited with 2 solo tackles and a PD, but was much more productive than that. Strong night.
HUNT – Beat the RT and drew a holding call. Used inside move, quick burst to get pressure late in the half. Holding could have been called, but wasn’t.
THORNTON – Good game. Got upfield on run his way and tackled the RB for just a short gain. Shed block and tackled RB on play that came his way in mid-2nd Qtr. Credited with 3 solo stops. Pass rush needs work, but is becoming a good run defender.
KENDRICKS – Quiet game. Had some struggles with overrunning plays early on. Missed WR Hixon out in space with diving tackle, but only cost us 2 or 3 yds. Got in on tackle of RB on play to his side in the mid-3rd. Made good tackle of FB in flat after very short pass. Made smart decision on final drive. On the play where Eli had to pick the snap off the ground, Mychal got into the backfield. Eli got the pass off and MK pulled up instead of hitting him. Don’t give the refs a chance to flag you, even if it would have been close. One of the concerns with Mychal was him covering the big TE Bennett. Got burned for 38 yards on early play, but holding call wiped that out. Giants didn’t isolate MK on Bennett like we guessed they might.
RYANS – Gamebook shows him with 2 solo stops, but had a more active game than that. Got blocked by OL on screen pass and the RB was able to get upfield for a 1st down. Tackled Hixon upfield on 3rd/long pass play when he got loose over the middle. Tackled Bradshaw on play to DeMeco’s left. Short gain. Lined up in a floating blitz look on 3rd down and Ryans was unblocked up the middle. Forced Eli to throw the ball away on 3rd down. Helped to stuff the 3rd/1 run. Fought off blocker to get in on the tackle. Stuffed 1st/GL run for minimal gain. Up and down night in coverage.
CHANEY – Got the start at WLB. Tackled FB on inside run play. Got in on tackle of RB on play that came his way. Missed chance for TFL in mid-3rd when RB put a good spin move on him. Helped Ryans stuff 1st/GL run. Solid showing. Credited with 3 tackles.
ALLEN – Pretty good game. Assignment sound. Made diving attempt for pass in the mid-1st, but the ball was on the ground before Nate could get to it. Had good coverage on deep ball thrown to TE Bennett. Nate jumped for ball, but it was too far out in front of them. Missed tackle of RB, but Kurt cleaned up for him. Nate tried to wrap, but the guy ran through it. Almost picked off downfield throw to Hixon where Nnamdi had good coverage. Nate couldn’t hold onto the ball as he went to the ground. Nnamdi hit him on the helmet a couple of times, as if to punish him for not making the INT. Made good tackle of Hixon after short catch late in the half. Made good tackle of Cruz on final drive of half. Tackled TE Bennett on next play. Couldn’t keep him from getting to the sideline. If the tackle happens inbounds, the Giants might not be able to get the FG unit out there. Finished with 3 solo tackles, PBU.
COLEMAN – Active in run support, although that proved costly at one point. Stuffed RB for short gain on 3rd Qtr run play. Bit on play fake in the early 4th and Eli burned him with pass to Barden for 31-yd gain. Got caught out of position on the very next play and Eli hit Hixon for a gain of 41. Ugh. Got away with an incredibly dumb act on final drive. On the play where Nam was called for PI, Kurt launched himself at the WR. The guy went low so Kurt didn’t hit him. You cannot launch at players anymore. That’s 15 yds. I have no idea what the hell Kurt was thinking. Take away the 4th Qtr and Kurt had a good game. Led the team with 6 total tackles. Solid in coverage. Tackled well. Made some dumb decisions in the 4th Qtr. Luckily, they didn’t cost us the game.
NNAMDI – Gave up 1st down catch to Hixon. Perfectly thrown pass. Nnamdi had no chance to play the ball. Had good coverage of Hixon on downfield throw. Nate broke up that play. Left game in the early 2nd Qtr with eye injury. Took a finger to the eye from WR. Returned to game in 2nd half. Made real good tackle of RB in the early 4th. Guy had room to run. Beaten by Barden for downfield catch on next play. Kurt was supposed to help, but bit on play fake. Knocked ball away from Barden on pass play on final drive. Very close to being a catch, but Nam got the ball loose before Barden had full possession. The very next play was another pass to Barden. Pass was incomplete. Nam was called for PI. Ticky-tack call. Was there contact? Yes. Did Nam gain much of an advantage due to the contact? No. Had inside position on pass play down the sideline. Eli threw that way. Barden could have gone up and just knocked the ball away, but instead he decided to make sure it wasn’t going to be picked off by trying to twist Nnamdi’s head like it was a bottle cap. I don’t see how any sane human being with decent vision could have the least doubt about that being offensive pass interference. Barden had one arm pinning Nam’s arm to his side and the other arm on Nam’s helmet, in a tight, unpleasant fashion. This wasn’t light contact. That would be my idea of a dream date with Megan Fox.
DRC – Had short throw come his way in the mid-1st and tackled the WR right after the catch. Called for IC on 3rd/2. Legit call. Had his hand on WR for more than 5 yds. Dumb. Tackled RB on screen pass where the guy was lined up out wide. Short gain. Hixon beat DRC for long gain on final drive of 1st half. Good coverage. Great throw, good catch. Gave up short completion to Hixon along the sideline on the next play. Got burned by Cruz on 4th/1. Cruz lined up in slot. DRC was slow to turn inside as Cruz released that way. So quick. That created separation and it was an easy pitch and catch from there. DRC tackled him down at our 8. That proved to be a key tackle. On the very next play DRC picked off Eli in the end zone. Called for PI on 4th/1 on final drive. Good call. DRC was all over the guy. Had tight coverage of WR on final play and forced Eli to throw the ball away. Finished the game with 5 tackles and an INT.
BOYKIN – Blitzed from slot on opening drive. Was blocked, but I think his presence affected Eli and helped lead to errant throw. DT was free up the middle, but Boykin to the side gave Eli nowhere to run. Missed tackle of Hixon on 3rd/17. Hixon ended up getting 15 on the play. Can’t miss those guys in space. Had tight coverage of Cruz on downfield pass late in the half. Giants tied to burn him with a double move, but Brandon played it perfectly. Gave up completion to Cruz on sideline on next play. Really good catch. Gave up catch to Cruz on next play. Was once again in very good position, but just missed the ball by inches. Gave up 9-yd pass to Cruz on final drive. Gave up catches and yards, but overall was solid. Was in the right position. Does need to work on his tackling.
HUGHES – Good game. Took over for Nnamdi at about 11:45 of 2nd Qtr. Broke up downfield pass to Hixon on 3rd down. Played pass at end of half perfectly. Had inside position on Hixon. Eli shouldn’t have thrown the ball. Hughes got his hands on it and should have made the catch, but just couldn’t hold on. Hixon beat him for catch in mid-3rd with back shoulder fade. 2 tackles, 2 PBUs.
MCBRIAR – Averaged 45.5 per punt. Had 2 downed inside the 20, but no touchbacks. No problems as the holder. Will Hill got pressure on a couple of punts, but I felt like McBriar was also acting and trying to get the roughing the kicker call.
HENERY – Great job on FGs. 4 for 4, including a long of 48. That was right down the middle. Hit GW kick inside the final 2 mins. Ball looked almost wide on TV, but that proved to be a deceptive angle. Kick was easily good. Kickoffs could have used better depth. No touchbacks. Only one had good depth.
KOR – Boykin has been a major diasppointment in this area. Averaged just 16.7 on 3 returns. Isn’t getting good blocking, but also isn’t helping matters. Looks a bit hesitant as he tries to read blocks. Just go!!!
PR – Damaris started shaky, but got better. Made FC at the 10 to start off. Looked like he had some room to run. Caught another punt at the 7. I know some people hate that. I think we need to find out if Bobby April says that is okay or he’s coaching Damaris not to do that.
* KO coverage was terrible. David Wilson was 6-217 (36.2).
* Brian Rolle missed a tackle on the opening KO. He struggled all night on KO coverage.
* Mardy Gilyard hustled to chase down Wilson and make the tackle on the opening KO. He made a tackle on KO in the 2nd half. The 2nd one might have saved a TD.
* Jon Dorenbos made the tackle on the first punt.
* Brandon Hughes made good tackle in punt coverage. He and Curtis Marsh were the gunners. Marsh can really fly, but isn’t as good at covering punts.
* Hunt made diving attempt to block punt and just missed in mid-2nd Qtr.
* Chaney, Marsh made tackle on 2nd Qtr punt.
* Casey Matthews chased down Wilson on KO late in the half and made tackle. Did the same thing in the early 3rd Qtr.
* There was a KO in the late 3rd where Casey, Chaney, and Rolle all got blocked to the inside with ease. Looked like the 3 Stooges out there. Ugh.
* Good coverage on KO in early 4th. Havili held his ground, affected Wilson. Marsh, Chaney made the tackle.