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Giants vs. Patriots final score: Giants win preseason opener, 23-21

We got our first glimpse of the new-look Giants

NFL: New York Giants at New England Patriots
Richie James and Tyrod Taylor celebrate a touchdown in Thursday’s preseason game against the New England Patriots.
Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants defeated the New England Patriots, 23-21, in their preseason opener Thursday night at Gillette Stadium. Graham Gano kicked a game-winning 24-yard field goal as time expired to give the Giants the victory.

All of the Giants’ healthy starters played at least a few snaps, with Kadarius Toney, Leonard Williams, and Blake Martinez among the inactives nursing minor injuries.


Daniel Jones went 6 for 10 for 69 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.

Tyrod Taylor completed 11 of his first 13 passes and finished 13 for 21 for 129 yards and one touchdown. He led an 11-play, 86-yard touchdown drive in the second quarter.

Davis Webb went 8 of 16 for 51 yards.

Saquon Barkley only played during the opening drive, but he was the obvious focal point of the offense for that span. He rushed four times for 12 yards and had an eight-yard reception on the 12-play drive. Antonio Williams rushed nine times for 61 yards and a touchdown.

Collin Johnson made his case for a spot on the 53-man roster with seven receptions for 82 yards. He had a 17-yard catch and run on the opening drive but also fumbled once. Johnson was the only Giants wide receiver with more than three catches.

Injury news

Left guard Shane Lemieux headed to the locker room with a toe injury after the first drive. According to the broadcasters, the Giants had intended for him to take some reps at center. Lemieux was on the sideline in a walking boot during the second half.

Rookie cornerback Cor’Dale Flott was ruled out with a groin injury.

Backup right guard Jamil Douglas was ruled out with an ankle injury.

[Full injury story]

Other standouts

Wide receiver Richie James had two key catches during the Giants’ second-quarter touchdown drive. He caught a deflected pass for a big gain and nabbed a seven-yard touchdown after he appeared to be bottled up near the line of scrimmage.

Rookie linebacker Darrian Beavers displayed impressive instincts. He had one tackle for loss and likely would have had another if the receiver didn’t drop the ball before getting hit.

Undrafted running back Jashaun Corbin did a little of everything. He showed some nice burst on kickoff returns for 34 and 20 yards. He made a difficult 5-yard catch in between two defenders on a dart from Taylor. And he converted a fourth down with a powerful run up the middle.

Highlight reel


  • The offensive line was impressive overall, even with Andrew Thomas and Lemieux departing after the first drive. Jones was sacked once when the entire pocket collapsed on New York’s second drive, but he was rarely pressured otherwise.
  • Jones targeted Kenny Golladay three times for only one 6-yard completion. The first miscue was slightly overthrown by Jones, but the second went right through Golladay’s hands and forced the Giants to settle for a field goal.
  • Aaron Robinson struggled as the No. 2 cornerback opposite Adoree’ Jackson, with New England consistently targeting his side of the field. During the Patriots’ second drive, Robinson allowed both a 33-yard catch and a touchdown. He was also called for holding and unsportsmanlike conduct (though I don’t think he can really be blamed for this taunting call).
  • We didn’t see a ton of trickery from the offense, but wide receivers Darius Slayton and Robert Foster were both used in the run game.
  • The Wink Martindale blitz was as advertised.

What’s next?

The Giants will hold their last public training camp practice this Sunday at Quest Diagnostics Training Center. Game 2 of the preseason is at home against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, August 21 at 7 p.m.