It is so much more fun writing these when the Giants win. Yes, the Giants are 2-7, but they are excited about winning a game (as am I) and the progress they have made together. This is all due to the coaching and the culture. They are building a program and team that is gritty, respectable, and full of heart and energy.
Was it pretty a pretty win? Absolutely not. However, the Giants secured the dub, AND, covered the spread (+3). I was starting to question the Giants ability to close out games, because in their last three losses, they blew double digit leads. Ugh. Not this week, though! The Giants forced forced two turnovers late in the fourth quarter and a total of five against the Washington Football Team to avoid blowing a 17-point lead. The final score was 23-20 victory. The defense receives the gold star of the day, but Daniel Jones performed to his expectations, the young offensive line created a solid run game, and Joe Judge unites the team and leads them to victory.
Photo: Greg Fiume/Getty Images
If Daniel Jones only played against Washington, he would be a first ballot Hall of Famer. Jones is 4-0 in his two-year career against Washington. He is 1-16 with 16 consecutive losses and counting against the rest of the league. Today, he played very well. Daniel Jones was turnover-free for just the second time in 22 career games played. Both those games were against (you guessed it) Washington. The QB also completed 23 of his 34 passes for 213 yards. His 50-yard completion to rookie Alex Mack was the Giants' longest pass play of the season.
The Deeeeeeefensseeeeeee (and Special Teams!)
The defense is the only legitimate unit the Giants posses. The defense balled out today, forcing FIVE turnovers. This was the most in a game for the team since 2014.
Blake Martinez has been unreal and today, he collected ten total tackles and an interception. On the year, Martinez has 92 total tackles with two sacks and now his first interception of the season. With eight more tackles, Martinez would have his fourth straight 100-plus tackle season in the NFL. Leonard Williams gets some love to, recording his 5th sack of the year.
Gotta give some credit the special teams. Riley Dixon punted the ball and it was muffed by Isiah Wright. The Giants recovered at the 16-yard line, which led to a rushing TD by Gallman.
The key players of the day though, were the Safety duo of Jabrill Peppers and Logan Ryan. On the first play for Washington, Logan Ryan forced the ball out of running back Antonio Gibsons hands, where Jabrill Peppers snagged the fumble recovery. Later in the game, the pair of defensive backs intercepted quarterback Alex Smith twice in the final two and a half minutes, which secured the win for the G-Men. Jabrill Peppers had a sack, fumble recovery and interception in the game, this was the first time a Giants defender had the triple play since Kerry Wynn in 2014.
Rookie O-Line and the Run Game
The young combo of Andrew Thomas - Shane Lemieux - Matt Peart I hope develops into a David Diehl- Chris Snee - Shaun O'Hara squad. I know its very premature, but I love what I am seeing from this group. Andrew Thomas stopped Chase Young and protected Daniel Jones, and Shane Lemieux is showing that he is a steal of the draft. They also helped the offense move down the field. We saw the best running performance by the Giants this season. Wayne Gallman scored a rushing touchdown for the third straight week, and former pro bowler Alfred Morris combined for 134 yards on the ground.
Give the kicker some love
Graham Gano > Aldrick Rosas. I won't be taking questions at this time. Gano the Golden Boot, kicked field goals of 38, 48 and 42 yards and has succeeded on 18 consecutive attempts.
Joe Judge putting down the hammer
The Golden Tate - Giants drama continued this week, after the veteran receiver wasn't traded at the deadline. He (and his wife) were very vocal during the Bucs game last week and social media for not getting a fair chance to compete for this team. Coach Joe Judge wasn't messing around with these actions, and played Golden Tate on the scout team during practice. He ended up leaving Tate behind, for " consequences for his actions against Tampa." The benching worked out in Judge's favor, because rookie Austin Mack recorded five receptions for 72 yards.
Not Good, Not Bad
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Giants declined multiple offers for Evan Engram ahead of the trade deadline. I didn't want to give up on the promising tight end, but his play has been very underwhelming. I am glad they hung onto him, and I hope he bounces back. Today's game, he was alright at best. Evan Engram did make an awesome diving grab, to score a 16-yard touchdown catch to extend the Giants’ lead to 20-3. However, with around 13 minutes left in the game, Daniel Jones through a 18-yard pass over the middle, but somehow the wide open Engram dropped it. He ended the game with 5 catches, 48 yards (9.6 average) and a touchdown. A fine performance, but nothing over the top.
We're just going to enjoy this win right now...
I am not really sure what was too much of a con for the Giants during this performance. They need to clean up some things, and not let up second half points to lose their double digit leads. Yes, the secondary did allow 387 passing yards between Kyle Allen and Alex Smith, but the three interceptions make up for that. Overall, I was impressed with this game, and so should you. It feels good to win.
Photo: Giants Wire / USA Today
The Eagles are coming to MetLife for a 1pm Sunday game. The last time they played, it was a very close one. I think the Giants can clean some things up and win this ball game. If they play like they did today, it is not out of the question that the Giants win the NFC East.