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Giants-Patriots final score: Giants defeat New England, 12-9, in preseason finale

Giants win preseason finale.

Adrien Robinson can't haul in this Ryan Nassib pass in the end zone
Adrien Robinson can't haul in this Ryan Nassib pass in the end zone
Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants ended their preseason with a 2-2 record thanks to a 12-9 victory over the New England Patriots on Thursday.

The Giants sealed the game in the closing seconds when Damontre Moore stripped New England quarterback Ryan Lindley of the ball and Nikita Whitlock, playing defensive tackle, recovered.

Chris Boswell, subbing for Josh Brown, went 4-for-4 on field-goal attempts for all of the Giants' points.

Eli, Odell get the night off

Tom Coughlin took no chances with his two offensive stars. Breaking with his usual tradition of having Eli Manning play a series or two in the preseason finale, Coughlin gave Manning and Odell Beckham the night off.

"Didn't want to play 'em. Didn't need to play 'em," Coughlin said after the game. "I thought we had a pretty good week of practice and there wasn't a whole lot to be gained at this point in time."

Landon Collins can play

The Giants made a splash on draft day when they traded up seven spots to get Collins with the first pick of the second round. Recovered from his MCL sprain, Collins showed the full range of his skills in the first half on Thursday. He made plays in the box against the run. He defended the deep ball. He showed range to close and defend the pass in the middle of the field.

Ereck Flowers struggled

The rookie left tackle had a touch night, including being flagged for a face mask penalty when he was beaten badly around the edge by a New England pass rusher. Technique is always the topic with Flowers, and he appeared to pretty much flail at the defender on the play where he was penalized.

What the Giants want/need from Flowers is at least adequate play where he doesn't hurt them. In this instance, he did.

Good and bad of Damontre

Damontre Moore was flagged for three 15-yard penalties, including one that gave New England first-and-goal in the final minute. Then, Moore saved the game with a strip sack of Ryan Lindley This is why Moore is so frustrating. The talent is there, but the mistakes are tough to live with.

The puzzle that is Ryan Nassib

Watching Nassib play quarterback is really confusing. Entertaining, but confusing. He can make some great throws, especially on the run. He can also make some inaccurate throws, especially from the pocket. And he has an annoying tendency to want to get out of the pocket when he doesn't have to.

Nikita Whitlock's amazing night

Fullback, defensive tackle, special teams. Whitlock, 5-foot-10, 250 pounds played them all Thursday night -- and played them well. He recovered the fumble Moore created to seal the victory.

Injury news

Tight end Daniel Fells suffered a shoulder injury. Offensive lineman Brett Jones injured a knee. Neither player returned to the game. Ralph Vacchiano reported that Jones believes he sprained his knee, but Art Stapleton reported that Jones left Gillette Stadium on crutches.

By the numbers

-- Uani Unga led the Giants in tackles with seven. I will be flabbergasted if Unga isn't on the 53-man roster.

-- Nassib went 16-of-32 for 193 yards and had a passer rating of 68.9.

-- Orleans Darkwa had 10 carries for 39 yards and Kenneth Harper 10 carries for 36.

-- What a line for Whitlock. Two special teams tackles. A tackle and fumble recovery on defense. One carry for two yards on offense.

What's next?

The Giants open the regular season Sept. 13 on the road vs. the Dallas Cowboys.