Week 11 Recap: Points-Off-Turnovers Propel New York Giants Past Tampa Bay Buccaneers

By Danielle McCartan (@CoachMcCartan and www.Facebook.com/CoachMcCartan)

BERGEN COUNTY, N.J.- A single-possession game entering the final two minutes of play, the New York Giants certainly gave their fans reason to stay in their seats through the end of the game.  In the end, to the delight of fans, players, and coaches alike, the Giants were able to hold on to secure their first victory at MetLife Stadium this season.  Let’s review my keys to victory for both teams and analyze how each played a factor in today’s game.

NEW YORK GIANTS KEYS TO VICTORY

1. Turnovers: Entering play, the Buccaneers are last in the league, having turned the ball over 25 times.  Today, they turned it over four more times on four interceptions. I wrote that the Giants “need to capitalize on points-off-turnovers“. That, they did. Alec Ogletree intercepted, at the 15-yard line, a Ryan Fitzpatrick pass. He promptly hit paydirt for six points (and the subsequent extra point).  After a Curtis Riley interception of Fitzpatrick, the Giants posted 3 points off an Aldrick Rosas 52-yard field goal. Having only won the game by a margin of three points, the Giants needed this aspect of their game.

2. Cover the Tight End: The Giants did a good job keeping tight ends O.J. Howard and Camron Brate in check. While Howard accumulated 78 yards and Brate notched 16, both were kept out of the end zone today… that’s all that matters.

3. Giants’ Passing Offense: Eli Manning sure is back and in business. The highest possible passer rating is 158.3. Today, Manning posted a 155.8 rating. Today, he was 17/18, threw two touchdown passes on 231 yards (and zero interceptions).

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS KEYS TO VICTORY

1. Buccaneers are the NFL’s #1 offense…really: Again, the Buccaneers posted over 500 yards of total offense… and lost. Different than last week, they did have 35 points to show for it. This game came down to a couple of turnovers at key points of the game, which, unfortunately, was not enough for Tampa Bay to come away with the win.

✅ 2. Red Zone Efficiency: The Buccaneers were four for five on their red zone possessions today (80%). That is a drastic improvement upon their 54.29% red zone efficiency entering play today. Unfortunately, the Buccaneers were unable to prevent the Giants from scoring on their red zone possessions (five for five).  As Manning said in his post-game interview, the Giants “ran the ball great”. Of their 163 ground yards, Saquon Barkley posted 142, including two touchdowns for the Giants.

❌3. Pressure on Eli Manning: “Honestly, I had this game checked off since I left there, so emotions running big,” Pierre-Paul said on a conference call with Giants reporters prior to the game. “I’m coming, man. I’m bringing the house down.” Today, Pierre-Paul contributed a game-high 1.5 sacks.  In his first, the cameras captured him picking Manning up from the ground, a classy move for two Super Bowl winning teammates. Manning, in his post-game on-field interview credited the push from his offensive line, which bought both him and running back Saquon Barkley plenty of time to make the right decisions.

He pointed to the fact that in the Giants’ opening drive, play-action was “great”. It set up a  41 yard pass to Odell Beckham, Jr. that eventually set up a touchdown pass from Manning to Barkley.

Manning said “It’s not perfect”, and that he wants to “improve upon 3rd downs”, in particular. He added: “We knew after the bye week we had a new season, 8 games. It’s fun when you’re winning football games and coming together as a team.” The Giants will take their two-game winning streak down the New Jersey Turnpike to Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia next Sunday afternoon. Early odds have the Eagles as the favorites, Giants as the underdogs. The Eagles defeated the Giants in East Rutherford on October 11 34-13.

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