Eli Manning completed 6-of-7 passes for 57 yards and a touchdown on the
Giants' final drive, but it was too little, too late. Down 17-7 early
in the fourth quarter, Manning, rushed by blitzing SLB Chris Gocong,
was fortunate that his errant deep throw toward WR Domenik Hixon was
dropped by LCB Asante Samuel. Bottom Line: The wind and drops hurt his
Brandon Jacobs ran around right end for 23 yards, a gain that advanced
the Giants to their 48 early in the second quarter. On the next play,
FB Madison Hedgecock let what should've been an easy reception fly
through his hands. Bottom Line: Jacobs and Derrick Ward combined to
average 5.1 yards per carry
WIDE RECEIVERS/TIGHT ENDS
Steve Smith mishandled Manning's pass even before Samuel hammered
him. The drop on fourth-and-3 from Philadelphia's 42 cost them a first
down late in the second quarter. WR Domenik Hixon beat RCB Sheldon Brown
deep, but dropped a perfectly thrown ball by Manning at Philadelphia's
35 on the first play of the second quarter. Had Hixon caught the pass,
it would've gone for an 85-yard touchdown that would've given the
Giants at least a 6-3 lead. Bottom Line: They didn't help make matters
easier on Manning.
Trent Cole's spin move froze LT David Deihl and allowed Cole to pressure
Manning into an incompletion on fourth-and-1 from Philadelphia's 38,
with 9:26 to go in the game. Deihl's awareness allowed the Giants
to retain possession early in the second quarter. He recovered Ward's
fumble at the Eagles' 46. Bottom Line: Their run blocking was solid
and Manning wasn't sacked.
Tra Thomas recovered just enough to nudge RDE Mathias Kiwanuka away
from QB Donovan McNabb. Kiwanuka came back toward McNabb, but he was
too late to stop a short pass to RB Brian Westbrook that went for a
40-yard touchdown and gave the Eagles a 17-7 edge at the 13:38 mark
of the fourth quarter. LDE Justin Tuck's right-handed swipe just missed
affecting McNabb's throw on that play, too. Bottom Line: They pressured
McNabb more than they did in their game last month.
Antonio Pierce's pass interference infraction on WR Jason Avant cost
the Giants 8 yards and allowed the Eagles to advance to the Giants'
26 just before halftime. Four plays prior to that penalty, Pierce's
attempt to hold down Westbrook by the legs, as time ticked away on the
Eagles late in the second quarter, was so obvious it looked ridiculous.
The 5-yard penalty, after Westbrook's 11-yard gain, moved the Eagles
to the Giants' 42, eight plays before K David Akers attempted an ill-fated
32-yard FG. Bottom Line: The three starters combined for 29 total tackles.
Kenny Phillips got away with pass interference on TE L.J. Smith around
the Giants' 10, on a third-and-3 play from the Giants' 16 early
in the third quarter. But the incompletion caused Philadelphia, up 10-7,
to settle for a 34-yard FG try, which CB Terrell Thomas partially blocked.
LCB Aaron Ross got lost when crossing paths with two Giants in coverage,
which allowed WR Kevin Curtis to make a 32-yard catch that moved the
Eagles to the Giants' 30 late in the first quarter. Akers kicked a
51-yard FG four plays later for a 3-0 lead. Bottom Line: The Eagles'
receivers didn't do the bulk of the damage in the passing game.
Justin Tuck slid between linemen Jamaal Jackson and Winston Justice
and used his right arm to block Akers' FG attempt just before halftime.
CB Kevin Dockery scooped up the ball and scored a 71-yard touchdown
that cut Philadelphia's lead to 10-7. Jeff Feagles' 61-yard punt
from deep in Giants' territory prohibited Philadelphia from starting
a drive with good field position midway through the second quarter.
Feagles forced PR DeSean Jackson out of bounds, too. LS Jay Alford took
too long to rise from his stance, which permitted Cole to hurdle him
and block K John Carney's 47-yard FG attempt at the 9:26 mark of the
second quarter. Bottom Line: These units were up and down all day.
The Giants had a FG blocked for the second time this season because a defender leaped over Alford. That's on special teams coaches Tom McGaughey and Tom Quinn. Tom Coughlin called a timeout just before the end of the first quarter, which forced Akers to try a 51-yard FG into the wind. Akers connected, but using that timeout was wise. Bottom Line: Their execution was poor, but they're still 11-2.