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Giants’ Revamped ‘D’ Hopes To Get In Face Of Saints’ Brees

New-Look Unit Out To Make Sure Veteran Quarterback Doesn't Torch Big Blue Like He Did Last Year

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — The New York Giants aren’t getting too excited after opening the season with a win for the first time since 2010.

It’s one game and all they did was beat a Dallas Cowboys team that was playing with a rookie at quarterback.

Winning the second one might say a lot more about Ben McAdoo’s team. The Giants face the New Orleans Saints (0-1) in their home opener on Sunday, and that means finding a way to stop Drew Brees.

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The Giants were shredded by the Saints veteran quarterback last season in a 52-49 loss. Brees completed 40 of 50 passes for 511 yards and seven touchdowns. The yardage total was the most against New York and the TD total tied the highest in an NFL game.

“Drew Brees, it’s crazy how he is getting better every year,” said Giants linebacker Jonathan Casillas, who played with Brees on the Saints.

“He is still throwing for 5,000 yards like he is a young kid out there. He looks like he is having fun, like he always has been doing. It’s going to be interesting this week.”

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The Giants’ revamped defense did enough to beat Dak Prescott in his first start. While it gave up yards and allowed Dallas to keep the ball for long periods of time, the Cowboys only scored one touchdown and settled for four field goals in New York’s 20-19 win.

Casillas said the Giants did nothing right in the loss to the Saints in New Orleans last season.

“We weren’t good at all in any phase or in any part of the game,” he said. “We didn’t tackle that great, we blew coverages, we let people run free. You want me to keep going?

“It just wasn’t a good showing. It was one of those games you look back and you just don’t watch the film because you are disgusted by it.”

The positive for the Giants is that Brees is going to be seeing a much different defense.

New York signed defensive end Olivier Vernon, tackle Damon Harrison, cornerback Janoris Jenkins and middle linebacker Kelvin Sheppard as free agents and drafted cornerback Eli Apple and safety Darian Thompson in the first and third rounds, respectively.

The Saints’ offense also will be seeing Jason Pierre-Paul this season. He missed the first eight games of last season after injuring his right hand in a fireworks accident. The last game he missed was the Saints’ game.

The new unit did an outstanding job of limiting the Dallas running game, but it did not get much pressure on Prescott.

Casillas, who led the Giants with 10 tackles, felt the defense was resilient last week and it never felt it was going to lose the game.

“We are in no place to be content,” Casillas said. “What happened at the end of the day, we beat a rookie quarterback in his first game. That should happen more times than not.”

Brees will grind up the Giants again if they are not in the right spots, Casillas said.

“Drew’s intangibles are immeasurable,” Casillas said. “He is unbelievable. He is not that tall, but he gets the ball down the field and gets the ball to the guys he needs to.

“He doesn’t play small. He plays big, like a big tough guy all the time. He is always bound to make that perfect pass, that perfect play. He is such a cerebral player. He has full control over his offense. No one operates like him.”

Eli Manning had a pretty good game in the loss, throwing for 350 yards and six touchdowns.

“It was a wild game,” Manning said. “It’s fun to play in those games. You feel offensively you can score most times you get it and you feel you have to score most times you get it. It’s fun scoring touchdowns and having a lot of excitement but obviously you would like to get the W, it would mean a little more.”

NOTES: Backup G-C Brett Jones lined up in a fullback position for a couple of plays on Sunday. The Canadian had never done that before. He laughed when asked about carrying the ball. “As an offensive lineman you always want to carry the ball. Definitely, it would be cool.” … PK Josh Brown, who returned from a one-game suspension, did not want to talk with the media Tuesday.

(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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