New York Giants vs. New York Jets: What We Learned About the G-Men
So David Wilson looked superb again, showing that speed he was picked in the first round for. And with Ahmad Bradshaw suffering a hand injury, the running back situation will be interesting to watch in New York this week.
Eli Manning isn't completely cured from what plagued him in 2010
Manning looked relatively good and flashed that great chemistry with Victor Cruz, but he threw a pair of baffling passes. One—an ill-advised toss-up to Cruz in the end zone—almost worked, but Kyle Wilson got away with pass interference. The other was an absolutely dreadful, inexcusable, Favre-like pick to LaRon Landry.
In both cases, Manning faced a lot of pressure. It's great that he rarely gets sacked and has a quick delivery, but those mistakes can be even more costly.
Ramses Barden won't be the No. 3 receiver
Barden has had plenty of chances to earn playing time during his first three seasons, but he's never been able to deliver. The 2009 third-round pick had a big opportunity with plenty of early snaps against the Jets, but he had a big dropped pass on one play and ran an ugly route and couldn't get any separation from Darrelle Revis on an end-zone pass on the same series.
He hasn't been bad in camp, but Barden's case for a roster spot took a big hit Saturday night. Unless things change dramatically, I can't see Barden starting the season in the No. 3 spot—especially considering how good Rueben Randle looked against Gang Green. Oh, and Jerrel Jernigan had a positive night, too.
The pass rush is back on track
They failed to get much pressure against the Jaguars, but the first-team defensive line was fantastic against the Jets. Jason Pierre-Paul and Osi Umenyiora brought consistent heat, and the G-men were better on third downs. Despite not having Justin Tuck for most of the first half, they sacked Mark Sanchez three times in the first two quarters.
It helped, of course, that the Jets were shooting themselves in the foot all night. Sanchez made some terrible decisions, and right tackle Wayne Hunter was a turnstile.
They weren't great against the run up front, but that was without Michael Boley and Chris Canty. And Linval Joseph looked great again. (It should be said that Rocky Bernard had fantastic penetration on big fourth-down stuff.)
The second-team pass-rushers aren't too shabby, either
We've heard over and over again about all the injuries to the defensive line, but without Shaun Rogers, Marvin Austin and Chris Canty, the Giants' defensive line still dominated when facing Tim Tebow and the Jets' reserves in the second half. Shoutouts to Adewale Ojomo and Markus Kuhn, both of whom face an uphill battle to make the team, but looked good Saturday night.
Run blocking could still be an issue
The Giants are supposed to be better on the ground this year, but you can't get much worse than they were last season. Plus, David Wilson adds a punch, and Ahmad Bradshaw might be able to stay healthier (although tonight wasn't a good indication that'll be the case).
But with the first-team offense in the game, Bradshaw and DJ Ware failed to find holes. The backs might be in better shape, but the offensive line hasn't changed much. They didn't perform well Saturday night.
Jayron Hosley could have what it takes to be a starter
Hosley was OK on returns and didn't muff anything, which was key. But, he again looked good in the secondary, flashing his play-making ability with a superb pick six in the second quarter. Hosley had a sack in the opener, too, so he's showing off his versatility.
Rookie cornerbacks struggle, but Prince Amukamara is basically a rookie anyway. Right now, I might go with Hosley over Amukamara. In a perfect world, Terrell Thomas returns soon, and Michael Coe gets healthy and contributes. But if that doesn't happen, Hosley could be counted on early in his rookie season.
Keith Rivers should push for significant reps as well
The former top-10 pick looked very stout against the Jets and so did Mathias Kiwanuka. Kiwanuka and Boley are locked in as starters. But, Chase Blackburn didn't do anything of note. I would love to see Rivers get some snaps at middle linebacker.
OK, we already knew this. But, we got a reminder on Saturday night. It was a big one for the Giants' trainers, who had to deal with various injuries to Justin Tuck, Adrian Tracy, Mark Herzlich and Ahmad Bradshaw.
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