The Giants went into Philadelphia controlling their own fate, with an opportunity to clinch a Wild Card spot, and the number five seed for the playoffs. They took on the 5-9 division rival Philadelphia Eagles.
Not The Same Team
The Giants came out flat from the start. After going three and out on their first drive, the Giants allowed a seven play, 78 yard scoring drive, capped off by a Darren Sproles rushing touchdown. Two plays into the Giants next drive, Eli Manning threw a pick-six, and just like that the Giants were down 14-0 early.
The Giants finally got their offense going on their fourth drive of the game. Pinned down at their own five, Paul Perkins broke a 20 yard run to get the Eli Manning some breathing room. Manning hit Sterling Shepard for 11 yards, then Odell Beckham Jr for 30 yards, and the Giants were driving. However, the drive stalled in the red zone as the Eagles bend don’t break defense held the Giants to a field goal. That bend don’t break defense showed up again two drives later as the Giants were moving in Philly territory again. The Eagles got a huge stop on 3rd and 9 from their own 17, holding the Giants to yet another red zone field goal.
The Giants were finally able to find the end zone on their final possession of the half. Eli Manning hit Victor Cruz on a huge 29 yard play on 3rd and 3 to set the Giants up in Eagles territory. With 33 seconds left in the half, Eli found his favorite red zone target as of late, Sterling Shepard for a 13 yard touchdown.
Offense Sputters Late
The second half, the Giants offense was held to only six points. Eli Manning struggled mightily throwing two more interceptions, including one on the last play of the game. Eli also missed open receivers often as he was showing some signs of fatigue, he threw a total of 63 passes. The bright spot of this Giants offense came from Paul Perkins. He ran the ball 15 times for 68 yards. No those aren’t huge numbers, however Perkins was still very impressive. Odell Beckham did his thing again, pulling in 11-of-20 targets for 150 yards.
The Giants defense looked a little out of sorts this week, which may of had to do with the absence of starting corner Janoris Jenkins. However, this defense bailed up Eli Manning time after time again keeping the Giants in this game. Their biggest stop of the game came when they pulled off a goal line stand, stopping the rushing attack four straight times at the goal line. Late in the game the defense also came up with two huge stops, getting the Giants the ball back and a chance to pull off the comeback.
New York Giants Still Clinch
The Giants loss Thursday night resulted in them not being able to clinch a Wild Card spot. However, due to the Saints defeating the Tampa Bay Bucs, the Giants did clinch this weekend. New York will be the fifth seed in this years playoffs. This will be the first time the Giants have made the playoffs since they won the Super Bowl in 2014. Time to see if Eli Manning has a little more postseason magic up his sleeve.