The New York Giants No longer undefeated, having fallen by the hand Cowboys in Dallas Monday night 23-16. Let’s touch on the always-assured Kudos & Wet Willies, our unique way of reviewing which giants are worthy of praise, and which are worthy of criticism.
DANIEL JONES – Some of you will look at 20 of 37 for 196 yards and a night interception, in Jones’ passing rating of 57.9, at the fact that the Giants only scored one touchdown and 16 overall points, scoffing at the idea that the quarterback deserves “glory” for his performance on Monday night.
But in my view, Jones definitely deserves “glory” after what he did against Dallas.
Forget passing stats and pass rating. Jones played bravely. He played with determination. For most of the night, it was the crime of the giants.
Aside from Sacon Barkley’s 36-yard run, the Giants’ best attack of the night came when Jones escaped a broken pocket on a number of occasions to play with his legs. Jones was running 17 and 14 yards. He ran nine times for 78 yards, 8.8 yards per carry. The Giants had 10 first descents with the ball, and Jones carried six of them.
Jones has been fired five times in 42 times. Official statistics indicate that he was beaten 12 times, although it seemed like much more. NextGen Stats said Jones was pressured by a 17-fold, or 40.5%, drop. Again, it seemed like much more than that. If you can find 59.5 percent of backtracks that aren’t pressed, please let us know. I think our friends at NextGen might be telling a lie, a little white lie on “White Out” night.
Something really interesting happened in the locker room after the match – something I don’t remember for the previous three seasons. Player after player was talking about how they had let down the quarterback.
“We just have to go out and get a better rhythm and get back (Daniel Jones) 8 times,” said starting midfielder John Feliciano. “Everyone knows we have to help 8, especially when he’s out there doing what he’s doing: Just never giving up, taking big hits, or playing with his legs. I mean, he did everything he could there. And that loss is on us up front, not at 8.”
David Sales, who slipped and was unable to complete his way, blamed the interception that ended the Giants’ hopes of a comeback.
“You can’t let an offense down like that, you can’t let an eight down like that. We have a lot of fighters on this team,” said Sales. As you know, our captain number eight is the greatest fighter ever. I love watching that guy play. I love watching him compete. He knows we all stand behind him because he will definitely have our backs.”
Left tackle Andrew Thomas said he felt “certainly” the offensive line had let Jones down.
“As an offensive line we want to protect the DJ. We know we are facing good impulses but our job as an offensive line is to protect the depth and width of the pocket.” “We do our job and then our DJ and game makers can make the plays for us. If we don’t that makes it difficult for them.”
Saquon Barkley was another player who felt the attack wasn’t doing enough to support the midfielder.
We have to give him plays,” Barkley said. “Daniel, he’s a hell of a competitor, he’s a great player. I know a lot of people say a lot of negative things about him, but like I said, everyone comes to work today and he made some great plays today – one of the best throws I’ve seen I think – (WR) Ritchie (James) on the sidelines. It was just a play, especially when we needed it most.”
Graham Gano – The veteran game maker has continued to be an incredible weapon for the giants. Jano made a pair of field goals at 51 yards, the fifth time in 35 games as a Giant, with two field goals over 50 yards. The only other player in franchise history to do so is Raul Allegri, who took kicks for 52 and 53 yards in a 1987 game against Philadelphia Eagles. Janu blocked the 47-yard attempt.
Saquon Barkley – His 36-yard run made the Giants’ only touchdown. Barkley had 81 yards in 14 carts (5.8 yards per attempt) and grabbed four passes for another 45 yards.
Aziz Ogulari – In his first game of the season, Ogulari only got one tackle. He drew a pair of penalties and a false start, though the Cowboys struggled to deal with the rush of passes.
Wet Willis to…
Evan Neal – Beginner’s correct tackles give up three sacks for veteran defense DeMarcus Lawrence. You made a false start. This was a game most likely unlike any seventh overall game ever chosen, and it left him struggling to master it.
Neil sat on a chair in front of his locker after the match, looking at his feet as he tried to explain what had happened to a group of media professionals. He answered the questions politely, but did not once look at the group around him.
“I just have to throw it in, man. Watch the movie, allow myself to grieve for it tomorrow and go back to work on Wednesday. We have Chicago on Sunday,” Neil said. “I hate to be at the end of this, to be honest, but all I can do is Going out on Wednesday with good behavior, getting better.”
Well, the Giants gave him a chance on Monday night. He played 24 frames and failed miserably. He was targeted three times and did not pass. Golladay dropped a pass for the fourth, third, and 13th quarters where he would have had the opportunity to rise forward and challenge for the first time had he gotten the pass. He said he was “beating myself” over the drop of water.
“I was running before I really got the ball. That’s pretty much all it was. Those things can’t happen, especially when 8 (Daniel Jones) does pretty much everything to get the ball for us and to put us in a position to win a game football,” Goladay said. “I want to be a guy who can do this play, so I definitely put that on myself. She was third and that just can’t happen.”
Golladay also wasn’t able to pull off a fourth pass and a second in the second quarter that was behind him, but he may still be easy to come by.
If you are going to file a complaint, produce when you have the opportunity you are looking for. Golladay did the first part last week. He couldn’t get the second part against the Cowboys.
Golladay had a 20-yard disallowed penalty kick, but his night simply wasn’t productive.
offensive line – Neil was hardly the only offensive line man struggling. Aside from Thomas, none of the workers played well. Mark Glowinsky, John Feliciano and Ben Bradison – who played every moment in the left guard – all had their difficulties.
Jones didn’t really have a chance to get the ball to the court. The ball is quickly eliminated or starts to escape from the Cowboys’ dash on most passing attempts. Only one of Jones’ 20th completions was to pass more than 15 yards down the field.
The Giants opened up some holes for Barkley’s second-half run, but most of their best plays were Jones escaping his collapsing pocket and making something happen.
“I don’t think we played well up front and in other places that are not my job,” said Feliciano. “And they know. Everyone knows we have to help 8, especially when he’s out there doing what he’s doing: Just never giving up playing, taking big hits, or playing with his legs. I mean, he did everything he could there. And that loss is upon us in Introduction, not in 8.”
“We like to keep him more straight in the pocket and let him be able to throw because when we get the time he can be accurate. He can make plays for us, but we just have to do a better job,” Thomas said. “As an offensive line we want to protect the DJ. We know we take on good pushers but our job as attacking lines is to protect the depth and width of the pocket. We do our job, then our DJ and game makers can make the plays for us. If we don’t that makes it difficult for them.”
Turn on the defense – The Giants gave up 176 yards revving in 30 gigs, 5.9 yards per lunge attempt. Tony Pollard averaged 8.1 yards per carry (13 hauls, 105 yards) and had a yard length of 46 yards. Ezekiel Elliott had a 27-yard highlight for 15 yards, 73 yards night.
pass by rush – While Jones ran for his life on nearly every pass attempt, Dallas quarterback Cooper Rush was sitting comfortably in the pocket checking the field. Rush was never fired while going in 21 of 31 for 215 yards and touchdowns. He was only injured twice and was rarely bothered by the passes of the rushing giants.
The Giants didn’t want to use Leonard Williams’ absence as an excuse to struggle up front, but just a reminder that Williams (with an MCL sprain) missed the first game of his eight-year career on Monday night.