Despite the ugliness of the New York Giants’ 24-7 loss on Sunday to the Seattle Seahawks, dropping their record to 1-6, there were a few players worthy of praise. There were also plenty deserving of criticism. Let’s review with our traditional “Kudos & Wet Willies” review.
Kudos to ...
Evan Engram — We can continue to argue over whether GM Jerry Reese should have used the Giants’ first-round pick to help the offensive line — Reese should have done something substantive to upgrade that group and did not. What we really can’t argue about is that Engram is a heckuva player.
The rookie tight end had six catches for 60 yards on 12 targets despite everyone knowing he was the only real weapon Eli Manning had. He also nearly had a 70+ yard catch-and-run, but was pushed out of bounds and called for an illegal touch penalty. The Giants got only 74 total yards from the other seven players who caught passes on Sunday.
Avery Moss — The rookie defensive end forced the fumble that led to the Giants’ only touchdown, had a hit on Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson, was in the backfield providing pressure on a handful of occasions and made three tackles. He is showing signs of developing into a nice player.
Eli Apple — The second-year corner has been much better the past couple of weeks. He would have given up a touchdown had Jimmy Graham held on to the ball on fourth-and-goal at the 1-yard line, but you can argue that Graham only had a chance for the catch because he pushed off. Apple allowed only two catches on six targets and had two passes defensed.
There might be a handful of other players deserving of praise, but I’m going to have to take a closer look at the film to be certain.
Wet Willies to ...
The entire offense (except Engram) — What is there to say? The Giants gained 177 total yards. They got 14 first downs, six of those courtesy of Seattle penalties. They held the ball for only 24:34. They went three-and-out five times. The longest Giants’ drive of the day was 57 yards.
- Eli Manning wasn’t good. He passed for 134 yards — one week after passing for 128. It’s hard to know if some of Manning’s throws were off-target, or if his junior varsity corps of wide receivers weren’t where they were supposed to be. Maybe a combination of both. Twice Manning hit Travis Rudolph in the numbers, but Rudolph didn’t get his hands up to catch the ball. If you’re expecting Manning to lift this rag-tag group, that’s not going to happen. This mess is not Manning’s fault, but he has never been the kind of quarterback who could rise above this kind of chaos.
- Rudolph, Tavarres King and Roger Lewis Jr. combined for five catches on 15 targets. Awful.
- The running game ground to a halt with 46 yards on 17 carries (2.7 yards per attempt). There weren’t any holes for Orleans Darkwa or Wayne Gallman to run through.
Aldrick Rosas — A 5-yard false start penalty on Bobby Hart pushed him back, but when your team is scuffling for points, momentum and victories you can’t miss potential game-tying 47-yard field goals. Rosas did in early in the fourth quarter, and the Giants never had a chance after that. The rookie kicker is now 7-of-10 on field goals this season.
Jerell Adams — The second-year tight end completely whiffed his block, leading to the partially blocked punt suffered by Brad Wing. That was a chance for the Giants to at least flip field position on a day Wing was punting well.
Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie — Said after the game that he had decided before the ball was even snapped that he was going to jump outside on what turned into a 22-yard touchdown pass to Doug Baldwin down the middle. Why DRC would do that when the Giants were in an all-out blitz with no safety in the middle of the field I have no idea. We can argue all day about the wisdom the play call by Steve Spagnuolo — it wasn’t a great idea — but you can’t intentionally give up the middle of the field when you know you have help there.
Kwillie to ...
Landon Collins — The Giants’ star safety had a 32-yard fumble return. He had the WWE-style slam of Tyler Lockett. He lost a fight for the ball with Paul Richardson Jr. on a game-changing touchdown. He missed a tackle on a 29-yard catch-and-run by Jimmy Graham that helped set up Seattle’s go-ahead TD in the third quarter. Doug Baldwin burned him badly on a deep ball that Wilson overthrew. It was an active game for Collins, with some good and some bad.