Good morning, New York Giants fans!
The junior varsity New York Giants, playing a lineup filled with almost exclusively backups, lost to the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, 22-16. The 9-7-1 Giants, the No. 6 seed in the NFC playoffs, now head to the playoffs, where they will face the third-seeded Minnesota Vikings as a 3 point underdog.
The Giants lost to the Vikings in Minnesota during Week 16, 27-14. That game was decided on a last-second 61-yard field goal by Minnesota’s Greg Joesph.
Sunday’s victory allowed the 14-3 Eagles to clinch the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs.
From Big Blue View
- 4 Downs: Takeaways from the Giants’ 22-16 ‘loss’ in Philly
- Big Blue View mailbag: Our final mailbag of the regular season
- Resting players, Davis Webb’s chance, coaching carousel, more Sunday thoughts
- The Giants’ new pass-heavy offense (!), by the numbers
- Giants-Eagles inactives: Saquon Barkley being held out of season finale
- Giants-Eagles, Week 18: Live updates
Other Giant observations
Mike Kafka, Giants offensive coordinator. The former practice squad journeyman turned Andy Reid disciple joined Brian Daboll in New York this season and has helped Daniel Jones save his career and Saquon Barkley get his groove back. Kafka, 35, worked with Patrick Mahomes as Chiefs quarterbacks coach and eventually passing game coordinator from 2018 to ’21. He was mentioned as a potential head coaching candidate last offseason and should draw interest again after helping the Giants end their playoff drought.
Wink Martindale, Giants defensive coordinator. The trend around the league is the young, fresh-faced head coach. But Martindale, 59, could prove to be the exception. The longtime Ravens assistant joined Daboll’s staff and has helped transform the Giants defense into one of the stingiest units on third downs, which ranks among the key factors in New York reaching the postseason for the first time in six seasons. In addition to his X-and-O skills, Martindale’s leadership, transparency and motivational skills are praised by players.
Webb Gem (h/t to New York Post’s Ryan Dunleavy)
“Yeah, he’s been shut down before,” said McKinney. “So yeah....Just how he puts on all his [clothes], we do the same thing. We’ve got really good [defensive backs]. I’m not worried about it at all. He’s a good player. He’s going to make plays. But he’s not somebody that we haven’t seen be stopped before. We’ve seen it. I’ve seen it. So we’ll be all right. He’s human just how we’re human. So that’s how we treat it.”
“He’s going to come out and perform to the point where he can say that he’s a starter in this league, whether it’s with the Giants or anybody else, we don’t know that," said Plaxico Burress. "But moving forward, I think they’re in a great position. Going into the Wild Card, all you really want to do is get into the tournament and roll the balls out to play.”
“Brian has done a great job with his team,” said Coughlin . “His team has bought in. They’re playing hard. The coaches have done an outstanding job and they have really taken their athletes and improved them and they are playing really well. Brian will make the right decision about all of that...We’re talking about 15 years ago and a circumstance and a situation. We did the right thing. Whatever Brian does, I’m sure it will be the right thing, too.”
Q: This is your fourth season as a Giant. Why would you love to stay here?
A: Been enjoying my time here, I couldn’t really tell you anything as far in this building that I dislike. I like my teammates, I like this organization, I like the way it’s ran, I like the food we serve here. Most of my gripes with being here is about Jersey, the weather and stuff like that. But as far as being here, being a Giant, I don’t have any complaints.
Q: Do you think you’ve shown enough to make them want to keep you when your contact ends after the season?
A: I think so. I think if you take my body of work since I’ve been here, and you look at what I’ve done over four years I’ve been here, I would say so.
This week’s opponent
Dalvin Cook and Alexander Mattison led an effective ground game, Kirk Cousins and backup quarterback Nick Mullens each played a half and K.J. Osborn anchored the receiving corps in a 29-13 victory for the Vikings.
Mattison scored a career-high two touchdowns and recorded a season-high 54 yards rushing and 10 carries, while Cook added 37 yards on 11 attempts.
Around the league
Week 18 of the NFL season is near completion and positioning for the 2023 NFL Draft continued, most notably in Indianapolis, where the Houston Texans trailed the Colts by seven in the final minute of the game, but scored a touchdown and added a two-point conversion -- costing themselves the No. 1 pick after the Bears lost to the Vikings.
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