Even with Eli Manning toying with Philadelphia’s secondary for much of the game, the New York Giants barely held off the Eagles on Sunday.
Manning threw for four touchdowns and New York’s defence had two interceptions and three stops on fourth downs to beat Philadelphia 28-23 on Sunday.
The Giants (5-3) won their third-straight game, stopping the Eagles (4-4 after a 3-0 start) from the New York 17 after Manning was intercepted with less than two minutes to go.
“At the end of the game you have to go out there with confidence, confident that are going to stop them,” cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie said.
“We have been playing well in games and when they get the ball down there and our backs are against the wall, we know we have to stand up.”
Two of Manning’s touchdowns went to Odell Beckham Jr., with the others to Roger Lewis and Sterling Shepard.
It was a game marked by big plays on offence – six of more than 30 yards in the first half alone– and defence (four interceptions) and special teams (Jason Pierre-Paul’s block of a field goal, Darren Sproles’s 66-yard punt return). Most of Sunday, it was a mismatch of Manning and his receiving corps against a sieve of an Eagles secondary.
New York picked on every Philly defensive back, with the biggest Leodis McKelvin, no matter who he tried to cover.
Less than two minutes in, Landon Collins made his third interception in the last two games; he had one pick as a rookie last year. Manning found Beckham on a slant after McKelvin failed to bump him at the line, and Beckham surged into the end zone for a 26-yard score.
Andrew Adams, a rookie safety from UConn, had no interceptions in his previous five games. He sure knew what to do with the ball after hauling in Carson Wentz’s high pass moments later, returning it 19 yards. Manning hit Lewis three plays later after McKelvin and Jaylen Watkins collided and it was 14-0.
Manning’s third TD throw came on a one-yard jump ball to Beckham over McKelvin to make it 21-10.
Wentz looked like a rookie from an FCS school in the first half, often appearing befuddled by coverages. Twice, the Eagles failed on short fourth downs while in field goal range.
But he came out of halftime a different player, quickly guiding the Eagles 70 yards to Kenjon Barner’s three-yard TD run.
Manning, though, was just as precise and decisive on the ensuing drive, capped by his fourth TD throw, 32 yards to rookie Shepard. That gave Manning his first four-TD game since Game 14 last season.
Wentz remained much sharper in the second half, leading the Eagles to two field goals by Caleb Sturgis. But Philly went 3-for-15 on third downs, 1-for-4 on fourth downs.
Eagles players said veteran safety Malcolm Jenkins spoke up in the locker room after the game, saying they needed to learn how to finish games.
Speaking for the defence, whose two interceptions in the fourth quarter resulted in no points, Jenkins said: “Are you giving your team a chance to win defensively? There were a couple of plays here and there [early in the game] we feel we’ve got to have back. Those small mistakes – there might be only one or two – for our team to win we need to make those plays.”
Manning moved into ninth place in career yards passing with 46,428. Manning, in his 13th NFL season, threw for 257 yards against Philadelphia.
He passed Vinny Testaverde, who had 46,233 yards through the air.Report Typo/Error