The New York Giants suffered their first and only preseason loss at the hand of their fellow city brethren, the New York Jets. A drive in the final minute led by quarterback Chris Streveler resulted in a touchdown pass to Calvin Jackson as the Jets won the Snoopy Bowl, 31-27.
Here are five plays of note from the Giants’ 31-27 loss.
Play 1 (s) : Calitro’s way
The title name is courtesy of @NYGDaily on Twitter, but the linebacker I call Pitbull due to resemblance and him having eleven different stops in the NFL (MR. WORLDWIDE!) may have played his way onto the Giants roster in the preseason. Austin Calitro was also everywhere in this preseason game; he secured a Micah McFadden forced fumble, and made several more impact plays:
Smart & adaptive play from Calitro on 3rd & 3— Nick Falato (@nickfalato) August 28, 2022
Wink sends a double A-Gap blitz (of course) w/ 2 LBs while dropping the 2 EMOLOS into middle hooks
Calitro's blitz is picked up.
He sticks with the play and follows Flacco, reading his and sinking underneath RB w/ good timing pic.twitter.com/5v6hJ0dXwj
Brilliant play by Calitro (59) to adapt and stay with Joe Flacco (19) as the quarterback attempted to extemporize the play. Calitro worked underneath Michel Carter’s chip and release and promptly gained depth to undercut Flacco’s pass.
He then walked the tightrope like Nik Wallenda, keeping his balance for a defensive touchdown. Calitro had two impressive short yardage stops in high leverage spots:
Calitro sets up a third-and-short after diagnosing the outside zone run of Ty Johnson (25). Calitro shoots through the A-Gap as the tackle in the DEUCE block climbs, and the center is engaged; he delivers good pop to the near hip of Johnson and drags the ball carrier down for a loss. He wasn’t done.
On fourth-and-1, the Giants aggressively crash down the line of scrimmage on the Jets Y insert play; Kenny Yeboah (88) is the Y, inserting into the designed rushing lane after the Jets washed the Giants down the line of scrimmage. Johnson had a cutback lane at the line of scrimmage but missed it, and Calitro - along with Yusuf Corker (21) - stuck Johnson for a stop.
Calitro was signed at the beginning of training camp and had quality plays in the Giants’ preseason games. With the injury to Darrian Beavers, I think Calitro is likely to make the team over Carter Coughlin.
Play 2: Austin Allen’s touchdown
Austin Allen’s roster spot is not a lock, but he had a quality performance in his third career preseason game. The 6’8 (97th percentile) tight end watches the football all the way into his hands for the touchdown on this boundary YY post-wheel concept:
Tanner Hudson (88) is the No. 1 receiver to the boundary and he’s in a reduced split (off the numbers) of about a yard with Allen as the wing to the boundary. Hudson angles his stem slightly outward to garner the attention of the player with deep responsibility to the boundary. Allen releases into space, matched by a much shorter linebacker whose attention is held by the running back leaking. Davis Webb (12) puts the ball right where it needs to be, and Allen secures it for six.
Play 3: Corbin on fourth down
Webb led a 12-play, 75-yard drive that ended in a Jashaun Corbin rushing touchdown where Webb showed the perfect amount of enthusiasm:
One of the most critical plays on the drive was the fourth-and-4 conversion by Corbin on a wheel route adaptation of the mesh concept. Corbin flared to the flat while both inside receivers ran pivots, and Hudson - the No. 1 WR to the play side - ran a deep spot route. The throw wasn’t perfect, but good enough for Corbin to catch and pick up 20 yards.
The running back battle is tight. Matt Brieda hardly saw the field in the preseason game but was inefficient with his three touches. He quickly came off the field for Gary Brightwell, who was relieved by Antonio Williams.
Corbin and Sandro Platzgummer handled all the running back duties in the second half, which may not be a strong case for Corbin to make the final 53. He did well with his opportunities, specifically as a receiver; he caught all five of his targets for 33 yards and rushed for 23 yards on six carries. I think he’ll ultimately land on the practice squad.
Play 4: Wan’Dale’s Jets
This play wasn’t a huge momentum-swinging play; it was an 11-yard pickup on second-and-10, but it’s important. Most of the other players featured in this article are fringe roster players but not Robinson.
The second round selection started camp off strong with daily reports about his successes. However, he didn’t show much in his limited work through the first two preseason games. The speed and explosiveness are evident when Robinson touches the football.
In a third preseason game with most starters sitting, any glimpse of play making ability from a young impact player is noteworthy, and we saw Robinson’s burst on full display. Daboll and offensive coordinator Mike Kafka dial up an end around to the field with “fullback” Chris Myarick lead blocking. Robinson follows his blocks and accelerates for a first down.
A play like this could be run as early as Week 1 against Tennessee. The Giants are going to look to find easy ways to get the football into Robinson and Kadarius Toney’s hands, so it was nice to actually see Robinson showcase his athletic ability and skillset, even if it was on a simple play like this one.
Play 5: Touchdown to seal the deal
The 2021 Giants were guilty of surrendering far too many late-half touchdowns, and the 2022 team followed the trend in this preseason loss. Chris Streveler led a 10-play, 76-yard drive that ended in a touchdown with 22 seconds on the clock. The drive starter just north of the two minute warning, and the Giants forced the Jets to convert on fourth-and-goal - who would play for a tie in preseason?
The Giants appear set to send seven rushers, but two players to the boundary come off and take the running back who released into his route. With no safety help and the Giants playing man coverage across the board, Streveler hit the seven route to the field in space.
This was pitch and catch; Khalil Dorsey (31) had inside leverage against the wide receiver just outside of the field hash. Jackson tempoed his release, and the underneath route from the No. 1 WR occupied the outside cornerback, meaning Dorsey had a ton of space to cover and was out-leveraged against that play.
Mike LaFleur with a good play call against a tendency that Martindale likes to employ. It’s preseason; see if your players can execute the assignments that your team will run come Week 1.