Let’s go to the All-22 film for a look back at Sunday’s 28-23 victory by the New York Giants over the Philadelphia Eagles.
As always, I remind you that I am not a scout. I won’t try to be one, so I’m not breaking down plays or techniques in intricate detail. These are overall impressions, interesting observations, things I didn’t necessarily see from the MetLife Stadium press box.
Victimizing Leodis McKelvin
What Odell Beckham Jr, did to Philadelphia cornerback Leodis McKelvin on his 26-yard touchdown grab is absolutely ridiculous. The play is a slant route it looks like Eli Manning checked to at the line of scrimmage, an obvious staple of the Giants’ offense, and a predictable call with the Eagles showing a single-high safety.
Beckham takes one step with his right foot and very nearly causes McKelvin, staggering backwards, to fall over.
The Giants also victimized McKelvin on their second touchdown, the 30-yard pass to Roger Lewis. McKelvin has Lewis, who simply streaks up the field, and he has safety help. Unfortunately for McKelvin, around the 15-yard line he leaves Lewis and runs straight into his own safety, leaving the wide receiver wide open for an easy score.
Beckham’s 1-yard touchdown catch, on a fade route, also came over a helpless McKelvin.
Eli Apple’s tough day
- The bad day for Eli Apple started with 9:43 left in the first quarter when he lost Trey Burton on a 43-yard pass play. Apple is lined up on the closed side of the formation with no wide receiver to cover. When Carson Wentz fakes a toss away from him, Apple gets caught peaking in the backfield. Burton, a tight end, is past him before Apple sees the play action. By then it’s too late and the Eagles get a big play.
- Later in that same drive, Apple gives wide receiver Bryce Treggs a massive cushion that leads to an 11-yard completion.
- Apple lost contain on Ryan Matthews’ 8-yard touchdown run in the second quarter. As with the Burton play, he is on the closed side of the formation. For whatever reason, when he sees the handoff to Matthews he moves inside the hash marks. When Matthews breaks outside, you see both Devon Kennard and Landon Collins throw their hands in the air. They know Apple isn’t where he should have been.
- In the third quarter, Apple lined up offside.
- Finally, a few plays after lining up offside, Apple missed a tackle after a short throw to Nelson Agholor. Instead of Agholor being down at the Giants’ 20-yard line, Andrew Adams forced him out at the 3. Trevin Wade replaced Apple on the next Philadelphia possession.
- Jason Pierre-Paul’s 5-yard tackle for loss on Carson Wentz is a thing of beauty. The Eagles had second-and-10 at the Giants’ 11-yard line and tried to run the zone read at Pierre-Paul. JPP read the play, didn’t commit to either Wentz or running back Darren Sproles, then had the speed to make Wentz regret keeping the ball.
- Damon Harrison might not be a great pass rusher, but he made a great play right after Pierre-Paul hauled Wentz down for a 5-yard loss. On third-and-11 at the Giants’ 16-yard line, Harrison barreled into a double team and took two blockers to the ground. That caused chaos in the pocket and led to to an incompletion and a Philly field goal.
- The Giants ran an innocent-looking screen pass to Rashad Jennings that went for 3 yards. If John Jerry, out in front of the play, had gotten turned upfield quickly enough to see Philly’s Jordan Hicks, who made the tackle, this might have been a huge play.
- Justin Pugh suffered his knee injury when he was pushed backwards and fell over a prone Bobby Hart, who appeared to have missed a block on Fletcher Cox that led to a 4-yard loss by Paul Perkins.
- The Eagles’ 58-yard pass to Treggs in the second quarter that set up their first touchdown appeared to be a case of Nat Berhe and Janoris Jenkins passing off receivers, but Berhe reacting a split-second late.
- Brett Jones is listed at 6-foot-2, 318 pounds. He simply can’t be 6-2. Lined up between the 6-6, 329-pound Ereck Flowers and the 6-3 Weston Richburg, Jones looks tiny.
- Quick rules explanation: I was asked on Twitter what would have happened if the Eagles had recovered the fumble by Janoris Jenkins after the Pierre-Paul blocked field goal. Cyd Zeigler of Outsports, a college official, explained that basically, the ball never crossed the line of scrimmage and, had Philadelphia recovered Jenkins’ fumble, the Eagles would have had possession of the ball with a first-and-10.
- The Eagles’ final play: There has been some debate over whether Wade made an excellent play, which is my view, or whether Wentz made a bad throw. Both Wentz and Eagles coach Doug Pederson said the ball was thrown too far outside, and you clearly see Jordan Matthews having to re-direct toward the boundary with the ball in the air. So, the ball wasn’t where it was supposed to be. Thing is, Wade had inside position and there is no way the ball was going to be completed had it not been thrown to the outside. At least, that’s how I see it.