Giants vs. Eagles: Giants Fight Back, Give Game Away in Fourth Quarter

By Jeff Shull

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The Giants defense did all it could to stifle Michael Vick and did a very good job of it too, keeping them in the game by holding them to field goals in the 2nd and 3rd quarters. Too bad the offense saw fit to give the game away with five turnovers, the most costly being an Eli Manning fumble on the potential game-tying drive.

Michael Vick did a good job of getting the ball out for most of the game, but nearly every time they got in to the red zone the defense tightened up and got the three points.

Two of those occasions the Giants offense set up the Eagles deep in their own territory with a Bradshaw fumble followed by a Manning interception; the defense again came to the rescue.

Perry Fewell had a brilliant game plan, forcing Vick to his right on several occasions by bringing pressure from his safeties on Vick’s left. Vick rarely moves right and throws the ball down the field, and the Giants were obviously aware of this.

The defensive game plan was executed so well it’s a damn shame that the offense was unable to pull out the victory.

The Giants offense failed to get anything going even on drives when they did not turn the ball over. Ahmad Bradshaw had without a doubt his worst game of the season and the offensive line injuries are starting to take their toll. They still protected Manning all game, but for the second week in a row could not get any push on run plays.

After a field goal from a 8:22 drive to open the second half, the Giants stormed back from a 16-3 deficit to take the lead early in the fourth quarter with two touchdown passes to Travis Beckum and Derek Hagan. The second touchdown was set up by a Tuck play when he beat three Eagle blockers to sack Vick and force a fumble.

It seemed as if the Eagles were starting to unravel; that’s when it really started to unfold for the Giants, unfortunately.

Despite all the momentum shifting to the Giants and the crowd out of the game the Giants managed to give the game away on a stupid penalty followed by horrible defense on a 4th down.

On 3rd and 6 the Giants manage to get to Vick and force a bad throw to set up 4th down and a sure fire punt from midfield, but Jason Pierre-Paul jumped offsides and gave the Eagles another opportunity to convert.

After an incomplete pass by Vick, they completely caught the Giants off guard with a pitch to LeSean McCoy who basically made one move and walked to the end zone for a 50-yard score. The Giants concentrated everything to stop the QB sneak and the Eagles made a perfect call, converting the two-point conversion to take a 24-17 lead.

With 4:25 left in the ball game and the Giants needing a touchdown to tie, they looked to Manning to lead them down the field. On a 4th and 6 play he took off for the first down and got the Giants in to Eagles territory.

Unfortunately the former first round pick couldn’t hold on to the ball while going down and when he hit the ground he fumbled, despite not being touched by an Eagle player. The refs saw this and ruled the play a fumble on the field.

Even though it was bleak, the Giants still had the opportunity to get the ball back, having two timeouts and the two minute warning left. All they needed was the defense to do what it had all game long save for one play and stop McCoy from getting a first down.

On the second play of the drive McCoy took the ball 40 yards and basically ended the game. The Eagles were held to a field goal that stretched the lead to 27-17, but with only 20 seconds left all hope was lost.

Once again, the game came down to two huge plays, the same as it did in the Cowboys game. The McCoy 50-yard touchdown run and the Manning fumble on the 4th down conversion.

The Giants have started the second half of the season 0-2, and even NBC noted how Tom Coughlin’s Giants have played very poorly down the stretch. If they can’t build off this defensive performance and take care of the ball down the stretch, things are going to start to look very bleak.

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