The New York Giants traveled down to Nashville to face off against the Tennessee Titans to open their 2022 regular season schedule on Sunday afternoon.
The Giants ushered in a new era with head coach Brian Daboll and general manager Joe Schoen leading the brigade of new faces in the coaching ranks, front office and in the locker room.
It was also the 21st anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center and The Pentagon. Giants players and coaches wore hats and other apparel to commemorate the first responders lost on that day.
The game went nothing like anyone expected it to go. This new era of Giant football promises to be fun if nothing else.
- Head coach Brian Daboll didn’t panic when the Giants’ offense stalled in the first half. He gave the struggling offensive line some confidence by running the football and then began mixing up the plays. Credit OC Mike Kafka here as well.
- Daniel Jones made a back footed throw down the field to Sterling Shepard that led to their first touchdown.
- Saquon Barkley lived up to his promise that he was back from his devastating knee injury from two years ago. He ran with authority and reclaimed his place among the elite back in the league with several big plays.
- The defense made key stops all throughout the game. They stepped up on third downs and hemmed Derrick Henry in enough to force the Titans to punt more often than they wanted.
- The Giants outgunned the Titans, 394-359, and made their red zone opportunities count, going 2-3 and 2-2 in goal to go situations.
Titans kicker Randy Bullock hooked a 47-yard field goal wide left with no time remaining on the play clock. For old timers such as myself, that is the exact distance and juncture of the game that Buffalo’s Scott Norwood pushed his 47-yard attempt wide right in Super Bowl XXV, giving the Giants a one-point victory.
- Running back Saquon Barkley told you all summer that he was back. On Sunday, he showed it by rushing 18 times for 164 yards and a touchdown. He also caught six passes for 30 yards and scored a two-point conversion in the fourth quarter that proved to be the game-winning points.
- Quarterback Daniel Jones was under siege early but came back to put in a gritty performance. He was 17 of 21 passing for 188 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran six times for 25 yards.
- The defense, including linebacker Tae Crowder, stepped up and held Titans running back Derrick Henry to 82 yards on the ground. They also did not allow a a reception to a receiver over 27 yards and limited Tennessee to 2-of-10 on third down.
Giants rookie wide receiver Wan’Dale Robinson left the game in the first half with a knee injury and was ruled out for the remainder of the afternoon. He had one reception for five yards. Robinson was the Giants’ second-round pick (43rd overall) out of Kentucky in April’s NFL draft.
Defensive back Nick McCloud also left the game with a hamstring injury and did not return.
Giants head coach Brian Daboll will hold a Zoom call with the team’s beat writers on Monday afternoon before a few players are also made available.
The Giants will return to practice on Wednesday ahead of a Week 2 game against the Carolina Panthers on Sunday, September 18 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Kickoff is 1:00 pm. ET.