New York Giants: The Heroes and the Duds of Preseason Week One

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New York Giants: The Heroes and the Duds of Preseason Week One
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Heroes

Victor Cruz

Cruz has been impressing coaches all week during training camp and really made a name for himself last night, catching six passes for 145 yards and three touchdowns. Cruz has put up a huge fight for a roster spot and it looks like he’s going to earn a spot on the 53-man roster. After his performance last night, there’s no way another team wouldn’t pick him up off of the waiver wire. Cruz’s best play came when he made a one handed 64-yard touchdown catch over the head of Dwight Lowery.

Eli Manning

Manning may not have had the sharpest performance of his career, but I have to give him a round of applause for his toughness. Any player that can take a hit like that, get up, and then just say “I’m fine” is a winner in my eyes. He finished 4/7 for 77 yards and a QB rating of 83.9. However, 51 of those yards came on a shovel pass to Ahmad Bradshaw. Manning did have to evade a lot of pressure on that play, though, which was impressive. Manning also had two passes that were nearly picked off by Antonio Cromartie. He also had an easy pass dropped by Ramses Barden.

Antrel Rolle

Antrel Rolle got things off to a good start in the first quarter when he intercepted a tipped pass from Mark Sanchez. Rolle returned the pick 59 yards all the way to the one-yard line.

Deon Grant

Grant had the tipped pass that led to Rolle’s interception. He looked like he’ll be fine as a starter if Kenny Phillips isn’t ready to go week one. I might just be excited because the safeties weren’t atrocious like last season.

Rhett Bomar

Bomar was very impressive, completing 6/7 passes for 67 yards and a touchdown. I actually was more impressed by Bomar than Jim Sorgi. Bomar also had a nice 23 yard scramble late in the game, too.

Duds

Matt Dodge

Dodge struggled greatly and the only thing saving his stat line is one 52-yard punt that just happened to take a really good bounce. His punts had no hangtime at all. One punt actually had a hangtime of .01 seconds. He also had one of his punts blocked, but that looked as if it could have been the fault of Andre Brown for missing a block. Dodge will really need to improve, though.

Kick Return team

Year after year the Giants can never figure out how to block for their kick returners. Andre Brown had three returns for 53 yards (17.7 avg) and Danny Ware had one return for 21 yards. The team will really need to work on its fear of getting past the 20 yard line. I hear it does wonders and the offense is usually very appreciative.

Ramses Barden

Ramses who? All of the talk as training camp opened was on Barden being a big difference maker this season. He hasn’t done anything yet. Many felt fine just handing the fourth receiver job off to Barden and making him Manning’s number one red zone threat, but that won’t be happening under the watch of this week’s hero, Victor Cruz. Barden only had two receptions for 12 yards last night. He dropped one pass on a slant route, too. It appeared that he heard footsteps coming and lost focus on the ball.

Running game

Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs combined for seven rush attempts and just one yard gained. I know there are a lot of injuries on the offensive line, but that’s simply atrocious for a team that once had the most feared rushing attack in football.

DJ Johnson

He had an interception late in the game, but that was a pick anyone could have made. Johnson blew a few assignments and was a liability in coverage. He stood out for the wrong reasons and struggled in one on one situations. Not good news, especially since the Giants really don’t have a fifth cornerback.

This article was originally posted here.

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