The New York Football Giants have stayed alive (so far) for contenders to win the NFC East. Their fate is in the hands of the Washington Football Team and the Philadelphia Eagles tonight on Sunday Night Football. With a Washington win, the Giants are eliminated. With a Washington loss, the Giants are in the playoffs for the first time since 2016. The Giants knocked off the Dallas Cowboys earlier this afternoon with a score of 23-19. Here are some studs and duds from the game.
DE: Leonard Williams
Leonard Williams probably had his best game as a Giant today. He was a forced in the pocket, disrupting Andy Dalton and the Dallas Cowboys offense all day. He finished with 7 tackles (3 for loss), 3 sacks, and 5 QB hits. He had many key sacks that stalled the Cowboys offense. His biggest moment came when he forced a pressure on Dalton to lob the ball into the end-zone to get picked off by rookie safety Xavier McKinney. Williams is showing the trade for him was of value and he is going to look to get paid this off-season.
S: Xavier McKinney
McKinney had his best game today. He missed most of the fist half of the season due to injury and made his way into the lineup during the second half of the season. His number was called today when Julian Love was used as the outside corner, so McKinney filled in for his spot. McKinney had a game-ending interception in the end-zone to put the game away. He almost could have had two interceptions if the first one wasn’t called back for a defensive penalty. He also finished with 8 tackles to end the night.
WR: Sterling Shepard
Shepard had a team-high ten targets in today’s game. He caught 8 of them for 112 yards and a TD. He also had 2 rushes for 24 yards and a TD as well. Shepard made many key catches to extend the Giants drives, and was a reliable target of Daniel Jones. Shepard was tagged with an illegal crack back block that stalled a Giants’ drive (which was a questionable call).
WR: Dante Pettis
Pettis had his first TD with the Giants today with a nice pass from Jones on a seam route. Pettis made a great concentration catch and found his way in the end-zone. He had his number called last week against the Ravens and made a few plays and was called again today when he seemed to step in place of Austin Mack down the stretch. It was a good sight to see Pettis out there making plays, and makes you feel good about him being a potential weapon down the road.
QB: Daniel Jones
Jones’ numbers may have not been incredible, but they were good for what he’s gone through this year. A few throws got away from him, or not enough on them, and then there were some that were just simply dropped by the skill players. The credited Jones with a fumble (although in my opinion that should have went to Gallman) on the fumbled handoff. Jones had one interception that most Giants fans will tell you was a well-thrown ball that should have been caught by Engram. Jones finished with a QB rating of 106.9, his best rating all season. He also threw 2 TDs, which he only did three times this season before today. Also seeing Jones able to run and move in the pocket was a good sign to see that he’s getting healthy, maybe in time for the playoffs if they make it.
C: Nick Gates
I just want to say this guy is as fired up as a player can get. I loved seeing the fire in this guy during the game, getting into it during the games, and was drawing penalties on guys for unsportsmanlike conduct. The Giants haven’t had many “nasty” linemen for some time other than Will Hernandez, and I justloved seeing it.
RB: Wayne Gallman
Gallman almost lost the game for the Giants today. He got the first down at the end of the game to seal the game away. Instead of going down, he kept running (which I don’t hate), but doing so he hit the ball out of his own hands and lost the football on the ground. All Giants’ fans hearts had to of stopped for a moment. Luckily, he recovered it on the bottom of the pile. He also had a fumbled exchange from Jones earlier in the game resulting in Dallas recovering in the red-zone. We’ve road the Wayne Train all year, and this was the first knock on him. I think Giants fans would be a little more harsh on him if the fumble resulted in a loss at the end, but we will take the outcome that did happen.
TE: Evan Engram
Engram’s drops continue, and one resulted in a Daniel Jones interception. Both drops were certainly catchable, and they were crucial. One was almost the turning point in the game, and the second one stalled a Giants drive. Engram is very talented, and was nominated to the Pro-Bowl this year, but today he didn’t look like he was deserving of that. He will make spectacular catches and then drop the easy ones. It’s been a common theme this year, and you would hope it gets better in time.
WR: Darius Slayton
Slayton didn’t do a lot of bad things, but he also didn’t do many good things. He had a ball hit him right in the helmet and made a good catch. Slayton has been real quiet and there were many times he could not find the separation. I still wonder if he has a slight foot injury that he had this year that’s been nagging him. Drops have been an issue for Slayton as he has six this year, tied for 4th at his position (NBC Sports).
As a whole, the Giants looked much better than they did the last three weeks, and they hope to keep their hopes for the playoffs alive. They would likely face Tampa Bay next week if they did make it.
Tune into Sunday Night Football on NBC at 8:20 tonight to watch the game between the Washington Football Team and Philadelphia Eagles! As much as it hurts to say for many Giants fans, for the next three hours after 8:00…
Photo Credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sterling_Shepard_In_2019.jpg
About Dylan Davis
Dylan Davis is a graduate of the State University of New York at Canton, where he obtained a B.A.A in Sport Management. He is a former athlete of football and baseball and sports fan for much of his life. Dylan creates content for 366 Sports and New York Giants 366, and is also a host on his own show, “The J&D Sports Show”.