Thursday, October 11, 2012

Despite Slow Start, Giants Blow Out Browns

Sunday, October 7 2012
Post Game Recap
Final Score: Cleveland Browns: 27 New York Giants 41
Giants down Browns despite Slow Start

Before there was a sweat broken by either team, the Giants found themselves down 14-0 to the winless Browns.  It proved to just be a little blip on the radar for the Giants, who eventually got warmed up and rolled the Browns 41-27, rattling off 20 unanswered points in a 13 and a half minute span.  The Giants will need to avoid slow starts like this as the outcome will not be as pleasant against upper echelon teams.

This was a game the Giants needed to have and after a rough start they handled business.  This was a prototypical trap game for the Giants, but they overcame the slow start and finished strong.  No one epitomized that more than Ahmad Bradshaw.
Bradshaw started the game by fumbling, after running into Chris Snee on the first play from scrimmage.  The Browns followed the turnover with a touchdown, putting the Giants in the early hole.  Bradshaw ran like a man possessed the rest of the afternoon, tearing the Browns defense up for a career high 200 yards on 30 carries and a touchdown.  Bradshaw also contributed in the pass game with four receptions for 29 yards. 

It was an impressive performance for Bradshaw and one the Giants needed badly; backup running back Andre Brown suffered a concussion on a kick return in the first quarter, leaving Bradshaw as the workhorse.  David Wilson made a cameo in the backfield and made the most of it, ripping off a 40 yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.  Wilson looked like he was shot out of a cannon with how fast he was moving, looking to have a lot of pent up energy after not being featured in the offense much throughout the season thus far.

Eli Manning also did his thing for the Giants, even without starting wide receiver Hakeem Nicks for the third straight game and Martellus Bennett suffering a hyper-extended knee.  Ramses Barden also was out with a concussion, but the next players in line stepped up and performed extremely well, as Manning showed once again that no matter who is put on the field he can make them produce.

Rookie second round pick Rueben Randle got his first extended action of the season and made the most of it, catching six balls for 82 yards.  Whatever talk he had with Manning during the week in practice must have worked, as Randle had his most impressive showing thus far in his young career. 

Domenik Hixon also had a strong game, starting opposite of Victor Cruz with Nicks’ absence.  Hixon caught five balls for 55 yards, working all over the field for the Giants.  Cruz had a big game for the Giants as well, catching all three of Manning’s touchdown passes.  He ended the game with five receptions for 50 yards and the three touchdowns.
The Giants defense at first look at a very underwhelming day, but a few players stood out and both happen to be substitutions.  Stevie Brown, starting for the injured Kenny Phillips at safety, and Will Hill seeing his playing time increased because of injures, both had major impacts on the game. 

Brown made a momentum changing interception in the second quarter off Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden, which the Giants turned into a touchdown to a tying score.  On the ensuing kickoff, Hill forced a fumble on return man Josh Cribbs and Brown was on the spot to make the recovery.
Brown has been very productive when on the field filling in for Phillips and Antrel Rolle.  Brown should continue to start in place of Phillips, but Hill will not be seen for at least four weeks.  Hill was suspended four weeks by the NFL for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.  Tyler Sash will take Hill’s roster spot for the time being, as he is also returning from his own suspension because of the same incident.

Next up for the Giants is a rematch from the NFC Championship game, as they will travel to San Francisco to take on the 49ers and some old faces in Mario Manningham and Brandon Jacobs.  

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