This was a well deserved win for the NY Giants. They fought for 4 quarters and prevailed in OT. It starts and ends at the Line of Scrimmage. The big news today was the Offensive Line. They were terrific in run blocking and pass protection. We never heard Chad Wheeler’s (pictured) name called. We saw Fluker and Jerry do what Guards are supposed to do, creating space for the RBs. Flowers has been quietly effective. Jones has done well at Center. Let’s keep giving these guys snaps and see them get better. The Giants OL as a unit gave up 0 sacks, and what is more they gave up few pressures. To quote one tweet from Rick Preato, “Give Eli time and he’s not so old.”
The Giants Offense scored 12 points. Let’s not kid ourselves. When you’re gift wrapped a TD on a shovel pass INT which starts a drive at your opponent’s 26 yd line, and the other 10 drives in regulation amount to a FG, it is not good. The Chiefs Offense was not much better. The Giants paid attention to Kelce, giving him multiple defenders consistently. And they wrapped up Hill not much past the line of scrimmage so that he did not run wild in the open field. The Chiefs have now lost 4 of the past 5 games, so it is not who you play but when you play them.
Rudolph, King and Lewis each made 3 receptions. Yet they all seemed to be important ones. Let’s remember that Sterling Shepard was out with migraines, so the Giants did lose their breakout receiver from last week. Lewis came through with a huge 34 yd catch on 4th and 5 to win the game.
Alex Smith ran into a lot of trouble. Between his 2 picks, and 1 by Kelce on a flea flicker, that was 3 turnovers for a team that typically protects the ball to win games. They did not protect the ball. Their Offense is too concentrated in the hands of Kelce and Hill, as the rest of the team generated 12 catches for 53 yards, or less than 5 yds per reception. It was small ball taken to an extreme, and critics said (postgame) that this KC Offense needs to get more vertical.
Before anyone gets too excited and starts believing McAdoo about the Giants prospects for a run, the Defensive Line gave up 4.5 yds/carry and generated 0 sacks. That last factoid is what will be a killer when they go up against more competent QBs and WRs. The Giants are last in the league in sacks. So let’s not get carried away with this win and start talking about saving jobs. We’ve been tweeting relentlessly about JPP’s crickets, how $62M ($40M guaranteed) have been spent by Reese on a guy who simply has not made enough impact this year. He disrupted that shovel pass that was picked off by Harrison. That was the sum of his day. He plays hurt, but that’s part of who he is- a player that is hurt a lot. If you take away his 3 sack performance last year vs CLE and this year vs DEN, he’s got 5.5 sacks in the other 19 games. You can’t spend $62M on a guy who is invisible most of the time. So don’t go cooling off Reese’s hot seat. (We’ll save McAdoo’s hot seat for another discussion.)
Summary: The Giants are 2-8 on the solid performance of the Offensive Line. With players like Shepard and Beckham in that mix, there will be much better performance coming in future seasons. One game does not change a season of underperformance. It was a nice win for the hometown fans who showed up.