The New York Giants overcame a 17-point second-half scoring run that put them behind the Detroit Lions 20-13 thanks to a pick-six by safety Will Hill, which forced the game into overtime, and a 45-yard field goal by Josh Brown for the 23-20 win.
Hill, who was arrested Friday night due to a warrant related to child support, came up with the big play when he picked off Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford and returned the ball 38 yards with 5:06 left.
Defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka, whom Pro Football Focus ranked as the worst 4-3 defensive end in the NFL (subscription required) prior to this week’s game, recorded both of the Giants' sacks in what was his best showing of the season.
Justin Tuck, who appeared to be struggling at times in the second half with some sort of physical ailment, also came up with a big play when he tipped a pass and caught the rebound for an interception.
On offense, receiver Jerrel Jernigan, who saw his snaps increase thanks to the absence of Victor Cruz, put together another solid effort, leading the Giants in both receptions and receiving yards (six catches for 80 yards) for the second week in a row.
Jernigan also scored his first touchdown on a 20-yard pass from Eli Manning in the second quarter, and he made a big catch in overtime to set up Brown's game-winning field goal.
"I had a little in route, pretty much read the coverage, and when I came out I saw the linebacker, so I stopped and Eli saw me in that little hole," Jernigan said of his big catch in overtime.
"He threw a great ball to me," Jernigan said. "Either I was getting it or nobody else."
The win improves the Giants' record to 6-9 with one game remaining. The loss, meanwhile, eliminated the Lions from the postseason hunt.
"It’s huge," said defensive end Justin Tuck of the Giants' ability to bounce back from their second shutout of the year. "That’s why we play the game, whether we are playing to get into the playoffs or no."
"Every time you go on the football field, you to go out there and play your best and have a good feeling coming back into this locker room and celebrating with your teammates," Tuck said.
Let’s look at this week’s grades.