The New York Giants found themselves down by two touchdowns to the Cleveland Browns before most fans were comfortable on their couches, but the taste of Ahmad Bradshaw's early fumble and Brandon Weeden's long touchdown bomb didn't last long as Big Blue went on to seal a 41-27 victory behind 200 yards of Ahmad Bradshaw running and three touchdowns from Eli Manning to Victor Cruz.
The Giants defense looked all sorts of disorganized and, honestly, seemed to be lacking energy early, although opening the game defending deep in their own territory thanks to a Bradshaw fumble didn't exactly help. But they stiffened and giving up only two field goals the rest of the way before a garbage time touchdown. Timely interceptions from Stevie gave and Chase Blackburn shut down any hope for the Browns offense, as the Giants own offense had quite a field day, umm, on the field.
What went right…
The Giants seem to have found their running game. While much of the credit should go to an offensive line unit that opened up some holes, Ahmad Bradshaw's state line tells the story: 200 yards even on 30 (yes, 30!!!) carries. Rookie David Wilson took one forty yards late in the game to put a cherry on top of Bradshaw's sundae. Bradshaw showed that he can still be a productive workhorse back if he gets some blocking and Wilson got a chance to show the explosiveness he might get to use if Andre Brown is out for a while the head injury.
Eli Manning and co. sure did their part too. Victor Cruz had three touchdowns, Domenik Hixon had a workmanlike day that netted 55 yards on five catches (some tough ones, among them), and Reuben Randle had a coming out party. Six catches for 82 yards for the rookie, who looked like Eli's go-to guy for a moment there. Eli hitting the open guy no matter who's in there. Same old story.
There were a lot of new faces on the defense, and after settling down they didn't look so bad. Rookie Markus Kuhn started at defensive tackle and we didn't notice much of a drop off in play at the position. Safety Stevie Brown had the big pick and fellow backup safety Will Hill had a few physical plays of his own, including a forced fumble on a kickoff return. With players like Jayron Hosley, Keith Rivers, Chris Canty and Kenny Phillips hopefully returning to action soon, this defense needs to build on today's second half performance and show us less of what they did in the first half.
What went wrong…
Gumble and the guys in the CBS booth seemed to be really surprised the Giants pass rush wasn't getting home, but for us Giants fans it's all too familiar. To their credit the Giants batted down a handful of balls, and Blackburn's beeline caused the Brown interception, but overall the pass rush is still lacking. The defensive line hasn't been getting home and hasn't been containing the running game (at all). Fewell and co. need to figure it out.
Of course, the injuries. Martellus Bennet left with a knee injury and although he returned to finish the game, he wasn't moving well and clearly wasn't totally right. Hopefully nothing serious, since he was able to return. Andre Brown, whose seat on the bench was made more comfortable by Bradshaw's big day anyway, banged his head on the turf on a kickoff return and didn't return. Not a terrible toll, all in all (if that's all it is of course).
Why the Giants won…
We'd like to give the credit to the defense for holding the Browns in check after being down 14-0 in the blink of an eye, but the offense did put up 41 points. Ahmad Bradshaw ran for 200 and Eli had three touchdowns, and that's a pretty good recipe for a 41-27 victory.
What's on deck…
Perhaps the toughest matchup we'll have all year: The San Francisco 49ers. In San Francisco. Hopefully the Giants don't get too hyped on the victory over the 0-5 Browns and put their big boy pants on to face the hard hitting '9ers.
Oh, and the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins both lost. Not a bad Sunday afternoon.
- Be sure to like Giants 101 on Facebook, follow Giants 101 on Twitter & +1 Giants 101 on Google+
- Check out the latest line of GMEN shirts, including the new pink version which supports the fight against Breast Cancer
- Listen to Gameface with The Frattman every Sunday morning at 9 AM EST on 940 ESPN Radio
Related VideosReturning Soon!!!!
No related posts.
Short URL: http://sport-ne.ws/lba