New York Giants’ QB Eli Manning definitely could have had a better game, throwing two interceptions, with one being returned for a touchdown by the New Orleans Saints. However, it is one of Manning’s impressive performances considering how he was able to spread the wealth around.
Manning threw four touchdown passes to different receivers. WR Victor Cruz, WR Hakeem Nicks, WR Domenik Hixon and TE Martellus Bennett had a touchdown reception each. Those are Manning’s top receiving options, so to have them playing well together is very dangerous for the rest of the league.
Cruz led all receivers with eight catches. Bennett caught five passes while Nicks caught four and Hixon caught three. Manning was definitely comfortable throwing to these guys and it showed, with the Giants scoring the most points in their franchise in over 25 years. This is coming off a game where they were only able to score 16 points in a loss.
The Giants were able to maintain consistency in their offense in the second half. Manning threw two touchdown passes in each half, and the Giants were able to top their 21 first half points with 31 in the second half. Also, the first interception Manning threw, which was returned for a touchdown, was thrown to WR Jerrel Jernigan, someone Manning isn’t too comfortable with.
Hixon finally returned to action after missing the past two games with an ankle injury he suffered before the bye week. Having him back was great for Manning, as the touchdown from Manning to Hixon came on a corner fade route that was timed perfectly.
All of this came against the worst-ranked defense in the league, so we don’t exactly know if this is just a blip or a trend. Time will tell if Manning’s favorite targets are healthy and are on the same page with him. Playing in Atlanta and Baltimore in consecutive weeks is a difficult task. Solid offense through the air will be needed.