Dottino: Game Balls And Gassers From The Giants’ Blowout Loss In KC
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By Paul Dottino
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It’s one thing to lose four straight games. It’s another thing to NOT HAVE WON a game. And it’s yet another thing when you consider that the Giants haven’t tasted any sort of victory since their preseason opener — which means, in reality, their emotions are on a seven-game skid.
Ironically, they don’t have to look far to find something to build on from their 31-7 loss in Kansas City. The Giants actually started to show a rushing attack (98 yards on 21 carries) and the injury-riddled offensive line did an adequate job of protecting Eli Manning, who was sacked three times by the Chiefs’ talented front seven although he usually had enough time to get off his passes.
Offense: WR Victor Cruz – He’s playing very hard and doing his best to get open, despite drawing the opponent’s attention as part of this struggling offense. He caught 10 passes for 164 yards, including a 69-yard TD on a go-route when he burned veteran CB Dunta Robinson in the first quarter. Manning targeted him 16 times on 37 throws.
Defense: CB Trumaine McBride – Veteran CB Aaron Ross had to leave at halftime because of a sore back and McBride was very solid in his first significant action of the season. McBride had two tackles and knocked down a pass, showing the type of coverage and tackling skills that allowed the veteran to steal a roster spot out of the preseason.
Special Teams: DE Damontre Moore – He deflected a first-quarter punt — He also had a block against the Steelers in the preseason — and although the official scorer only credited him with two special-teams tackles, he was in on three first-half hits as part of the coverage teams. Coach Tom Coughlin indicated that he soon may be able to help the pass rush. Remember that Moore missed some time with a bruised shoulder, and that set him back.
Offense: TEs Brandon Myers and Bear Pascoe – Myers has gone through blocking difficulties all season and Pascoe hasn’t fared very well, either. Both of them whiffed on a key 3rd-and-1 midway through the third quarter, allowing RB David Wilson to get stuffed for no gain around the right side at the Giants’ 45. Even worse, Myers did not produce in the passing game, dropping a third-quarter pass on his only target of the day.
Defense: Defensive ends – Justin Tuck, Mathias Kiwanuka and Jason Pierre-Paul had one tackle each. That’s it. Enough said.
Special Teams: PK Josh Brown and P Steve Weatherford – Brown pulled a 44-yard field-goal attempt to the left at the end of the half that would have tied the game at 10. With 1:34 left in the third, Weatherford outkicked his coverage with a 59-yard playable punt that Dexter McCluster returned 89 yards for a TD, making four players miss. That gave the Chiefs a 17-7 lead, which broke the Giants’ back.
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