What a total and complete team win for the Giants against a tough opponent. Get ready for a lot of superlatives, because the Giants and their coaches deserve every single one of them.
1) The Run game
2) The OL in run blocking
3) The Passing game
4) The OL in pass protection
5) Run defense
6) Pass defense, shutting down Vernon Davis
7) Pass Rush w lots of pressure and 5 sacks before garbage time sack
8) 3 Interceptions from Rolle(2) and Amukamara
8a) Amukamara's INT broke a lot of offensive momentum from the Niners
9) Cool and Calm Eli Manning, even better on the road than at home
10) Ahmad Bradshaw running for over 100 yards (116) vs a tough SF run defense
11) Domenik Hixon making some big catches to get the offense going
12) David Wilson in kickoff returns
13) Blitz pickup/pass protection of Bradshaw
14) DISCIPLINE of only 2 penalties
15) DISCIPLINE of ZERO turnovers
16) Resiliency- After SF had ball control for 11.5 out of the first 13 minutes, the Giants answered w nearly a 2:1 time of possession edge the rest of the way
17) Batted balls by JPP, others
18) Lawrence Tynes is quietly becoming consistent
19) ALL THIS WITHOUT NICKS HEALTHY!
Okay, let's get a couple of negatives out of the way so that we know the Giants can still improve and get better- (1) Osi on run defense still does not take care of the edge (2) Gilbride still had trouble in the red zone (2 for 5 before end of game)- use the TE there. There were other blemishes too, like Pascoe not blocking the edge at the end of H1 on a blocked FG. Or a wide open Manningham open on a bomb behind the defense which is not thrown well enough by Smith. And when David Wilson can fly on Kickoffs, your other 10 guys cannot hold because those errors nullify HUGE returns.
Gilbride gets credit for breaking open the offense by starting to pass more, which ended up setting up the run, and then more effectiveness with play action thereafter. I have no idea what Coughlin and Flaherty did with the OL, but they got those guys to make holes and hold their blocks vs a good DL.
Postgame anecdote... Antrel Rolle got the second INT pick because Ahmad Bradshaw yelled to him from the sidelines that Alex Smith was reading (looking off) him. So Rolle mixed it up, played the fade and let Smith go 'the other way' so that he could make the INT.
Small things I like- (a) More seasoning for Prince- he is still inconsistent and on a learning curve, but every snap this guy gets gets him ready for the playoffs, when we will really need him against better QBs and better WRs. (b) mentally tough road wins- the Giants have won 3 of their 4 Super Bowl titles by winning playoff games on the road... every team they face knows the Giants are a tough (tougher?!!!) road team. (c) the Giants are #3 in the NFL in Kickoff returns.
Big things I like - The Eagles and Cowboys cheesed it in Q4 losses this afternoon! The Giants are in 1st place in the Division, coming into the Washington home game next weekend.
Enjoy this big road win vs the Niners, ladies and gents. It really does not get much better than this, because it tells us that the Giants can play with anyone in the league when they come in with focus and play 4 Quarters.
Enjoying a complete win. Looking ahead (I can't resist) I disagree with Andy on one point:
"Small things I like- (a) More seasoning for Prince- he is still inconsistent and on a learning curve, but every snap this guy gets gets him ready for the playoffs, when we will really need him against better QBs and better WRs."
We are going to face those better QBs before the playoffs, and we will have to win at least some of them to get to the playoffs: Steelers, Packers, Saints, Falcons and Ravens (besides Cowboys and Eagles, to whom we already lost this season). There are no "gimmes" in the NFL.
That being said, the superlatives are all deserved, and let me throw in Tom Coughlin and Perry Fewell, who weren't mentioned.
Rivers took 7 snaps during this game, I'm not sure how that's "paying off" or really even "being back".
Well, a pretty unexpected thorough beating of the 49ers ... I guess the "The Giants got lucky in the Championship" nonsense is over.
The start was scary, 2 long drives for the 49ers, two very short ones for Manning & co ... Amukamara's INT was huge.
I thought the pass protection was good, especially considering the opposition. Beatty really looks like he can be a solid LT for us. Let's hope he stays healthy.I'm sure you noticed that Diehl only saw the field as an extra tackle. Either he isn't 100% yet or Locklear is the starter no matter what. I think it's the latter.
They were good in the running game as well. That last drive was a beautiful thing, running it down the 49ers throats to end it, in Candlestick ... Nice. 7 freaking minutes right there. You can consider it garbage time (the drive started at 23-3 with 11 minutes left), but sill, I liked that !
I'm still not convinced by Gilbride though, I thought during the game that the play call on the short field situations was bad : 3 end zone shots from the 13 yard line on one instance, then "run, pass on 3rd & 10 or so" the second time ...He stuck to the run when we had the lead this time, which I guess is an improvement over last week.
I gotta give it to Hixon. He made some very nice tough catches yesterday. Nobody (outside the organization at least) was really considering him on option in the "who's up to replace Manningham" sweepstakes. I don't have stats right now but I'd guess on a per game basis, he's over what Manningham did for us last season. And even when he doesn't catch the ball, it's not because he's running left instead of right ...
Clearly Nicks is still hurt, but he's a warrior.
Defensively, after those 2 early 12 play - 60y drives where they got 7 1st downs, they didn't do much. A couple of big plays, lots of no 1st down drives, turnovers ...Davis was a non factor, as was their running backs (good ypa, but 12 carries), which is huge.
I was pleased to see some DL play, and this time we know it's not because of subpar opposition. Umenyiora's still not playing at the level he should considering the money he got.I think Joseph had himself a pretty good day.
I almost went ballistic when I saw 4 DL & 4 LB on the field. I didn't notice it late and we didn't give anything big while using this package, but still ... wtf ?
Webster is still a liability back there, he's now the CB QBs target. He was lucky Manningham didn't catch that long ball in H2 or his sheet would be even more awful.
I noticed once again early that Hosley was in on base defense, meaning Amukamara was the nickel. 2 CB sets must have been pretty rare in H2, I didn't keep track of it during the whole game.
I thought we had bad safety play against the pass, althought I gotta admit that we only get all 22 and replays with safeties on the screen when they screw up .... Writing this I realize that Rolle had 2 INT and 2 nice returns :)
I was baffled to see such a good kick return, I actually could not believe it had just happened. Great stuff.
Good point on the penalties, it didn't hit me but yeah, now that you say that ... Both were ST penalties too.
A great win on the road, it feels good. Let's savour it before asking for a W in the division ;)
Yes, CGF, nice to have Rivers back. Meanwhile, am I reading this right? Beatty and Locklear have solidified OL allowing Boothe, Baas, and Snee to become . . . road-graders for Bradshaw (and Wilson's) forays up the middle? Reminiscent of Ard, Benson, Oates, Godfrey, and Nelson for Joe Morris in '86.
This win means the Giants are a legitimate Super Bowl contender. They are a different team with Keith Rivers at LB. soon we will be getting Chris Canty back. An upgrade from Kuhn. Hosley is a player. Wilson has talent. He just needs to learn blitz pickups better. Our depth at WR is awesome. Hixon made some nice grabs. To think with a healthy Nicks, we ate loaded. A lot can happen but I am liking what I see. Reese's off season moves, Bennett, Rivers, wilson, Randle, Hosley are all paying off! And who knows if this Ojomo guy is a hidden gem on the bench. Osi's future replacement? Maybe austin and Joseph will get better.
@crazygiantsfan I'd wait for a confirmation, another game ... we've seen this team do great things and then just fall flat many times lately.