By Jeff Moeller/thenyextra.com
Trust Your Journey.
Disney marketed the slogan for its Frozen Two production (They later were involved in a legal battle over it).
The Giants’ stingy 17-12 victory at Seattle Sunday afternoon further solidified and began to galvanize their journey this season.
Believe. It has been magical. Four straight wins and the latest to the first-place Seahawks (8-4), who were 5-0 at home this season
The road to the highly improbable postseason became smoother when Philadelphia was decimated by Green Bay. Washington and Dallas face Herculean tasks with Pittsburgh and Baltimore respectively over the next two days.
Come Wednesday morning, the Giants should be sitting comfortably alone in first place with their 5-7 record.
Expectations now have been raised. They posted a tightly woven win over the first team with a winning record.
They once again did it against Seattle like they have been with a slow overall start and a frugal defensive finish.
Any doubts have been erased. The Giants have reached a higher wrung on the ladder. They are legitimate.
Backup quarterback Colt McCoy looked erratic and rusty in his first full start since last season, and the defense began to be bent back by all-everything quarterback Russell Wilson, who pinpointed holes for 108 yards and 10 passing first downs, and the running game added 84 yards.
A blocked punt for a safety didn’t help and Seattle rode their defense to a 5-0 halftime lead, as the Giants’ magic appeared to be fizzle out.
Running back Wayne Gallman, who was reborn over the past five weeks, had only six of the team’s 96 total yards at halftime.
Time for a halftime adjustment, and first-year head coach Joe Judge has been among the best this season. He surely outcoached Pete Carroll in the second half.
The Giants found a way to uncork Gallman the second half behind their unheralded and smooth offensive line, and he ran for 129 yards – a 60-yard burst that swung the momentum in the third quarter – and McCoy did enough to manage the game the rest of the way under a consistent plan from offensive coordinator Jason Garrett.
Leading tackler linebacker Blake Martinez – 10 at the half- didn’t play after halftime due to an injury, but the Giants responded with their usual cavalcade of defensive heroes.
Leonard Williams’ second sack of the day with 48 seconds left Seattle with a fourth-and 18, and Wilson’s Hail Mary, jump ball was batted away by James Bradberry.
The Giants’ defense harassed Wilson the entire second half, recording five overall sacks and 10 quarterback hits. Julian Love couldn’t hold onto an interception that would have sealed it earlier.
Yes, the difference has been the coaching staff that has inspired these lunch-pale, blue-collar Giants to grind out a workday for the past four Sundays.
They have checked all the boxes except for a smudge on special teams aside from Graham Gano, who did miss his first extra-point of the season.
The Giants will return home Sunday to Met Life – that would have been swamped if this was a regular year – to face the reeling 6-6 Arizona Cardinals, who have dropped three straight.
The timing and the magic is there.
Trust their Journey
It isn’t over yet.