The New York Giants came up short against the Dallas Cowboys on Thursday. We come to the “Kudos & Wet Willies” after the Giants’ third loss in four games.
Darius Slayton — What a catch by Slayton to set up the Giants’ only touchdown.
He finished Thursday’s game with three receptions for 63 yards. He now has 27 catches for 476 yards and two touchdowns. Where would the Giants’ passing offense be without him?
Graham Gano — Gano tied Aldrick Rosas’ franchise record with a 57-yard field goal. He added a 47-yarder, bouncing well after dropping two extra points Sunday when he was kicking despite being so ill it looked like he should have been at home in bed.
Kayvon Thibodeaux — Thibodeaux was a handful for the Dallas offensive line. He had one tackle and did not record a sack, but had five quarterback hits. Coming into the game, he had just three QB hits in his first eight games. His only flaw of the day was a pass on what should have been a sack by Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott in the third quarter.
Kayvon Thibodeaux had 21 rushing passes and generated pressure on 38.1% of them.
Among players with more than 20 PR shots in a game, this was the third-best performance of the year.
Baron Browning, week 5: 20 PR shots, 10 prsrs (50%)
Za’Darius Smith, Week 9: 23 PR shots, 9 prsrs (39.1%)
— Jim Ayello (@jimayello) November 25, 2022
Richie James — James led the Giants with five receptions and a touchdown, though the touchdown and a couple of those catches came in trash time. James made an outstanding catch on a Daniel Jones wide-field throw on a third-and-4 to extend the Giants’ only touchdown drive. By the way, his 28 receptions are the most by any Giants wide receiver.
Jamie Gillan—The Giants’ punt rebounded nicely after a couple of poor games that earned them “Wet Willies.” Gillan dropped punts twice that could have been downed inside the 5-yard line only to see coverage unable to guard the ball. On one of these, Nick McCloud dropped the ball at the 1-yard line. Gillan’s other two punts resulted in fair catches and he didn’t allow a single return yard in his four punts.
Rodarius Williams — Forced into significant employment due to injuries, the second-year cornerback responded with an interception off a late Prescott pitch and a pair of passes defended. He was part of a depleted secondary that forced a couple of interceptions and competed well.
Gary Brightwell — The Giants used some Brightwell in a two-back set with Saquon Barkley, and Brightwell finished with five carries for 31 yards.
Read Willies to…
Saquon Barkley — The Giants’ star running back had only 39 yards on 11 carries. He also had a game-changing drop on a 4th-and-1 play into Giants territory late in the third quarter with the Giants trailing by a run.
If you will, be critical of Jones’ pitch on fourth and 1. This is justified. The ball, however, must be caught, and Barkley knew it. Be critical of blocking the run from the ever changing offensive line. This is also justified. The Giants, however, must have more from their best player if their playoff dreams are not to go up in smoke.
Daniel Jones – If I have to give Barkley a “Wet Willie”, I have to give Jones one too. If the quarterback gives Barkley a good pass on that 4th and 1, it might have been a touchdown, not just a conversion. Jones was off target on some key shots that could have been first-down conversions. He didn’t throw any interceptions or make any egregious errors, but the Giants’ margin of error is razor thin and plays that should be made have to be made if they are to win games. Jones lost some of those on Thursday.
Darnay Holmes — Maybe this ‘WW’ should really go to the idea of covering Cowboys wide receiver CeeDee Lamb with a player who is basically an average slot cornerback. Holmes, however, was given that job and was no match for it. He had two pass interference penalties, one declined and one highly questionable, but without reviewing the play it appeared that most of Lamb’s six catches for 106 yards came with Holmes trying unsuccessfully to keep up with him.
Andrew Thomas – I hate to give Thomas this because the Giants left tackle was playing despite not feeling well. However, while the Pro Football Focus breakdown hasn’t been released yet, Thomas will likely end up facing charges for both of Jones’ sackings of Micah Parsons. Those would be the first two sacks Thomas has allowed this season.