Oct 9, 2006

The D Steps Up - Giants Recap

This was a very nice all-around win. The only problem I might have is the red-zone futility.

The Skins scored first, but the Gints scored on each of their next 4 drives. Manning was great after a poor start - where he made 2 awful throws - to make some clutch throws under pressure for big gains. He led a very balanced offense. The most balanced it's been all year. Tiki started hot and had 123 yards on the day. The Big J, Brandon Jacobs, had only 26 yards, but they were all meaningful, picking up 3 first downs. The Gmen were able to sustain several long drives - 4 drives of at least 8 plays, while spreading the ball to 7 different receivers.

But the reason the offense was able to spread the ball around was the D, the story of the day. After the Skins amassed 500 offensive yards the last 2 games, the Giants D held them to just 164, and 3 points. Strahan, Osi and Robbins (the D MVP so far) all had sacks. They held Clinton Portis to 76 yards, and more surprisingly, held Santana Moss in check, with just 3 catches for 39 yards. Their weakness coming into today was the pass D, and they really stepped up. Washington had only 2 drives of more than 6 plays. And they were stopped on 3rd down (3-11), a huge factor in the win.

I'm not getting too excited about this win because it's following a bye week, against a team the Giants dominated at home last year. Eli's 4 bombs were successful, something that is very unlikely to happen every week. And most of all, Washington just didn't play well: they committed a lot of penalties, Brunell made some uncharacteristic bad passes, their D missed a lot of tackles, and the Giants recovered a fumble late in the game (that would have given new life to the Skins).

The positives were many. The pass rushers are starting to show life. Corey Webster improves every week. Sam Madison and Lavar Arrington played to their strengths - bump-and-run, and pass rushing respectively. Eli is making great passes more consistently. They committed fewer penalties. And the run D was still dominating.

19-3 Giants

3*: Eli, 23-33, 256 yds, 1 TD, 0 int, 4 carries, 6 yds
2: Pierce, 6 tackles, 1 pass deflection
2: Tiki, 26 touches, 139 yds
2: NY D, 0 TD, 3 sacks, 164 yds allowed
2: NY O-line, 0 sacks, 155 rushing yds
1: Toomer, 4 catches, 81 yds
1: Plax, 7 catches, 69 yds, 1 TD

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