Giants’ Loss Shouldn’t Be Judged on Jones Alone
By Jeff Moeller, The New York Extra/thenyextra.com
Joe Judge quickly went from the next Bill Parcells to the next Ray Handley.
He will be the Monday morning bullseye. His rising credibility will take a real hit unlike his early inexperience.
But, wait, there is more to this story.
The Giants were seen as legitimate coming into Sunday’s game against Arizona at MetLife, and they still are.
All signs in Giants’ camp Saturday pointed to quarterback Daniel Jones being fit to play from his hamstring pull. The Giants believed he could manage a game with their upstart running attack and swarming defense.
Ease Jones back into the lineup as a game manager like Colt McCoy the previous week, and let everything else take its course. Jones stumbled, fumbled, and bumbled his way all the way through until the final three minutes, and looked like someone not ready to play.
Everything blew up in the Giants’ face like a Three Stooges cigar. This wasn’t supposed to be the outcome of a now former four-game winning streak.
Judge already has been and will be further skewered for allowing Jones back into their lineup in their 26-7 thrashing by Arizona.
There is more.
Again, this one wasn’t simply about allowing Jones to play. It was about being partly outcoached and out hustled by a desperate team.
Arizona had lost three straight and four of their last five after a blistering 5-2 start. It was either win or pack your playoff hopes.
Credit Arizona defensive coordinator and former Broncos coach Vance Joseph for shutting down Jones and the Giants’ running attack.
Joseph countered Giants’ offensive coordinator Jason Garrett’s moves the majority of the afternoon.
Joseph devised schemes that allowed mainly his defensive front to harass and batter Jones and late arriver McCoy (2:34 left in the game) for eight sacks, a new team record.
Former Giants’ Devon Kennard and Markus Golden were part of the sack party that dismantled the Giants’ offense line and shut down lanes for a paltry 159 yards of total offense.
The offense was stymied by the Cardinals’ defense, and the Giants’ defense stayed on the field an inordinate amount of time as compared to recent weeks. They couldn’t get to Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray, who eluded them enough to make his share of plays.
Credit Cardinals’ wunderkind offensive minded head coach Kliff Kingsbury, who missed the efficient and effective balance for Murray and his 390 yards of total offense.
This was supposed to be the clincher before the anticipated rocky three-game road ahead.
Instead it was the clunker that brought the present back into the picture.
The short stay atop the NFC East has been vacated.
The 6-7 Washington Football Team (you want to say Redskins, too) is now in first ahead of the 5-8 Giants.
Decisions can affect outcomes, but so can desperate teams and breaks.
For the first time in five weeks, the Giants didn’t fall into either category.