- Vincent Zahler
Giants Fall to Lions 24-10: Week 2 Review
Missed opportunities, and miscues are the theme of a frustrating night. ..
A week after the Giants were smothered by division rival Dallas Cowboys, the team went home and dropped the ball both literally and figuratively. On a night where Odell Beckham returned and the 2007 Super Championship team was honored, the Giants failed to capitalize. Dropped passes, poor pass protection, and a seemingly reluctant offense, led to the type of game that left fans irritated to say the least. Home field fans had no problem showering the Giants with well deserved boos throughout the game. There were some flashes of life by the stagnant offense but flashes aren't enough and the Giants better put it together before they drop to a major 0-3 hole.
Right off the bat, the Giants pass protection looked horrible until Bobby Hart went down with an ankle injury and the offensive line was finally tweaked. Justin Pugh was moved to right tackle and Brett Jones was inserted at left guard. Instantly, pass protection improved. Outside of Ereck Flowers' struggles against athletic freak defensive end Ezekiel Ansah(3 sacks), Eli Manning suddenly had more than 3 seconds to throw the ball regularly. Coverage sacks came with the extra time unfortunately as the Giants receivers struggled all night with getting open and when they did we saw drops.
While the Giants defense did what they always do even without all-pro cornerback Janoris "Jackrabbit" Jenkins in the defensive backfield and week 1 stud BJ Goodson a late scratch and replaced by undrafted rookie Calvin Munson, they could only do so much. Early on, the Giants struggled as they did the week before and the Lions took advantage of a defense the kept getting forced back on the field due to the offense's inability to sustain a drive early. An early touchdown to Marvin Jones jr put the Giants into an hole in the 1st quarter. It wasn't looking good.
It was soon after the offensive line tweak that the Giants offense came to life with an impressive drive ending in the teams first touchdown of the season. A highlight reel worthy touchdown pass to rookie tight end Evan Engram.
By the end of the half, the Lions pulled away some with a long 56 yard field goal by Matt Prater that bounced off the cross bar before going in as well as a Mathew Stafford coming back from getting poked in the eye by Devon Kennard to throw a touchdown pass to tight end Eric Ebron.
Before the half ended, Ben McAdoo and the Giants had possession and 30 seconds on the clock. Instead of taking a shot or two downfield with 3 receivers that run sub 4.5 40s, the Giants opted to run the ball for a short gain and run out the clock much to the dismay of the fans in attendance.
Coming into the second half, the Giants managed to move the ball and shockingly even took a shot over 30 yards downfield and were rewarded with their rare offensive aggression with a 38 reception by Jerrel Adams which led to a field goal after the Giants embarrassingly had a delay of game penalty when going for it on 4th and goal from inside the 5.
At this point the Giants were within a score from tying the game being down just 17-10. Just as things started looking positive for the Giants, a critical deep and potentially game changing drop by Brandon Marshall was followed up by the Lions' return man Jamal Agnew bringing a punt back for a touchdown making the score 24-10. This score would remain till the end as the Giants offense plagued by dropped passes from the likes of Brandon Marshall, Evan Engram (dropped a touchdown) and even Odell Beckham as well as bizarrely conservative play calling to go with Eli seeing ghosts.
Despite the score, the game was still in hand midway through the 4th quarter. Thanks to the theme of the night which was missed opportunities and miscues, the Giants could never get a grasp and make a real threat at the outcome especially after failing to convert on two 4th down attempts late causing the bulk of those in attendance to head for the exits.
Overall, an even more frustrating game to watch than what took place a week ago. The offense has been called extremely conservatively as pass attempts of 20+ yards are far a few between. Far too many inexcusable mistakes for a veteran team to make has now left the team at the bottom of the division at 0-2. Ben McAdoo, Eli Manning and co. have just one more week to get their act together or not only will the Super Bowl aspirations diminish more than they already are, but the season may end prematurely enough to put some prominent names on the hot seat by the time the season comes to a close.