X's and O's for GI Staff

QUARTERBACKS Eli Manning fired a strike between two Seahawks defensive backs, a perfect pass TE Jeremy Shockey caught for a 24-yard gain that brought the Giants to Seattle's 7 with 1:23 left in the first half.

Manning's pump fake to Shockey moved two Seattle defensive backs off WR Amani Toomer just long enough for Manning to complete a pivotal 20-yard pass at the beginning of the Giants' last drive of the first half, which culminated with a Shockey touchdown. Bottom Line: Manning played superbly for a second straight week.


Working off a huge hole up the middle created by LG David Diehl and C Shaun O'Hara, Tiki Barber made a timely cut at the point of attack to get loose for a 49-yard run down the Seahawks' sideline that helped set up Jay Feely's third ill-fated FG attempt. Overall, seven of Barber's 31 touches accounted for first downs. FB Jim Finn made two catches, each of which went for a first down. Bottom Line: Barber outplayed Shaun Alexander.


WR Amani Toomer made an incredible catch with 1:59 left. With FS Marquand Manuel draped all over him, Toomer, falling backward, caught Manning's floating pass, dropped his left foot in the end zone and dragged his right foot inbounds for a score that brought the Giants within two points. WR Plaxico Burress leaped high to make a 20-yard reception on a ball that was thrown a little behind him on a third-and-13 play from the Giants' 27 late in the third quarter. TE Jeremy Shockey held on just long enough for a seven-yard touchdown with 1:07 left in the first half, before Manuel unloaded on him from behind and jarred the ball loose in the end zone. Eight of Shockey's 10 catches went for either first downs or touchdowns. Bottom Line: Burress and Shockey were sensational.


LG David Diehl was called for holding early in the fourth quarter and two false starts late in the third quarter on consecutive drives that ended with Jeff Feagles punts. On their previous drive, Diehl allowed LDT Chartric Darby to overpower him and pressure Manning up the middle, which made Manning grossly underthrow a pass to Toomer that was intercepted by SS Michael Boulware at Seattle's 4 with 6:41 left in the third quarter. LT Luke Petitgout was flagged for three false starts in the first half, the last of which was one of the primary reasons they had to settle for a Jay Feely FG with 4:03 left before halftime. Petitgout added false starts in the fourth quarter and overtime, too. Bottom Line: We're calling him Puke Petitgout until further notice.


LDT Kendrick Clancy was sealed off by C Robbie Tobeck, a block that created a huge hole up the middle on RB Shaun Alexander's go-ahead, four-yard score with 4:33 left in the fourth. Backup LDE Justin Tuck wrapped up moving QB Matt Hasselbeck, who was intercepted by FS Brent Alexander as he tried to avoid a sack early in the third quarter. The Giants converted the turnover into a 43-yard Jay Feely FG and a 13-7 lead. RDE Osi Umenyiora beat LT Walter Jones for two first-half sacks, using his speed and power to record one apiece. On the first sack, Umenyiora showed tremendous awareness by reaching back with his left arm and stripping Hasselbeck as he was pushed past him by Jones. Seattle recovered, but the play forced the Seahawks into a third-and-18 situation from their own 17 late in the first half. Bottom Line: Umenyiora upstaged arguably the NFL's best pass protector.


MLB Antonio Pierce disguised his intentions well before blitzing up the middle to sack Hasselbeck for a nine-yard loss on a third-and-10 play from Seattle's 22 early in overtime. Pierce's play forced a punt and initiated a Giants drive near midfield. Pierce batted away Hasselbeck's throw to TE Jerramy Stevens midway through the third quarter. Pierce popped Alexander near the line of scrimmage to force a fumble that Stevens recovered in the first quarter. Bottom Line: Pierce was worth every penny.


RCB Corey Webster strangely stopped covering WR D.J. Hackett, which allowed a 38-yard gain that brought Seattle to the Giants' 24 on the Seahawks' game-winning drive. RCB Curtis Deloatch got turned inside and was then beat to the front corner of the end zone by WR Joe Jurevicius for a 16-yard, go-ahead touchdown with 4:36 to play in the third quarter. LCB Will Allen adeptly used his right arm to reach around, swipe and strip WR Bobby Engram, whose fumble Allen recovered at the Giants' 43 with 8:26 left in the second quarter. Webster mistimed his leap late in the first quarter, a miscalculation that enabled Jurevicius to grab a 35-yard touchdown pass away from him in the front of the end zone. Bottom Line: Does anyone else miss Will Peterson?


K Jay Feely slightly hooked his 40-yard attempt at the end of regulation to the left. His 54-yard miss in overtime was on target, but fell about two yards short of the crossbar. A holding penalty by RB Brandon Jacobs cost the Giants 10 yards on a punt return late in the second quarter. Backup CB Frank Walker was whistled for flinching on back-to-back fourth-down plays in the second quarter. The two false start penalties cost the Giants 10 yards in field position. A holding penalty by backup MLB Chase Blackburn was the biggest block that sprung KR Chad Morton for his 81-yard return, which was called back late in the first quarter. Bottom Line: This obviously wasn't a Feely-good story.


The coaching staff should've come up with a more effective way to combat the crowd noise that accounted for so much miscommunication along the offensive line. Bottom Line: They were well prepared for a game they should've won.

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