The Giant Insider Online

Giants come up short against Kamara, Saints, 33-18

The only way the New York Giants were going to beat the New Orleans Saints this afternoon was if they could find a way to score somewhere near 30 points, a threshold they last breached 36 (now 37) games ago.

Or, if they couldn’t go blow-for-blow with Drew Brees and Co., they would need their defense to hold the Saints’ powerful offense to a reasonable score. Then, they just might be able to scratch out a win.

Nothing doing. The defense played their role early on, but the offense sputtered again. Too many checkdowns and lack of chutzpah in the play calling kept the offense from finally opening up. The defense, which was bending all game, finally broke late and the Giants’ hopes of evening their record at 2-2 went right down the tubes.

Giants won the opening toss and deferred once again. After the defense forced a New Orleans punt, they marched right down the field, going 75 yards on ten plays. Wide receiver Sterling Shepard made a fingertip grab on a Manning pass in the end zone on a third-and two from the Saints two yard-line.

But after that first drive, the Giants’ offense fell flat. They managed only one first down on their next three possessions, punting twice and turning the ball over on a fumble. They managed just 97 total yards in the first half against the Saints’ 30th ranked defense.

The Giants defense was excellent in the first half, keeping the Saints out of the paint on four trips into the red zone, holding them to field goals each time. The halftime score was 12-7 and the game was very much in reach.

They got little help from Pete Morelli’s officiating crew, who called a borderline horse-collar tackle penalty on cornerback Janoris Jenkins and then ruled that running Wayne Gallman fumbled on a bang-bang play which could have been ruled an incomplete pass. As the game progressed, the officials continued to get calls incorrect.

Quick hits

If you’re looking for bright spots in this game, you’d be hard pressed to find any. The Giants are miles away from being a contender because the offense is so inconsistent. No defense in the NFL has figured out how to slow the Saints’ offense down, so this loss is going to be hung on the Giants’ offense. The Saints were allowing 34.2 points per game and the Giants looked sad against them.

The Saints passing defense came into the game allowing 11.2 yards per attempt. Mysteriously, the Giants rarely challenged them. Manning’s longest completion was for only 11 yards until he hit Sterling Shepard for 23 yards with 3:48 remaining in the third quarter.

This was the 37th consecutive game the Giants failed to score 30 points. It was the third time this year and the 23rd time since the end of the 2015 season they scored under 20 points.

Things aren’t going to get any easier for the Giants the next three weeks. They go to Carolina next week, play the Eagles at home the week after and then travel to Atlanta. Ouch.

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