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Instant Analysis: Buccaneers 25, Giants 23

Posted Oct 1, 2017

Get an instant postgame recap of the Giants' Week 4 loss to the Buccaneers:

AT A GLANCE

Finding themselves in another back-and-forth fourth quarter, the Giants lost on a last-second field goal for the second week in a row. Nick Folk’s 34-yarder as time expired gave the Buccaneers a 25-23 victory over the Giants, who dropped to 0-4. Big Blue lost last week to the Eagles on a 61-yard field goal.

>> WATCH GIANTS VS. BUCCANEERS HIGHLIGHTS

UP NEXT

The Giants return to MetLife Stadium to host the Los Angeles Chargers, who are also 0-4 after losing 26-24 to Philadelphia in Week 4. 

WHAT WE LEARNED ON OFFENSE


*The Giants shuffled their offensive line again in Week 4 with right tackle Bobby Hart missing his second consecutive game. Justin Pugh, like he has done since Hart injured his ankle, moved from left guard to right tackle. On Sunday, John Jerry flipped from right guard to left guard, and D.J. Fluker made his first start as a Giant at right guard. The line had more movement when center Weston Richburg was evaluated for a possible concussion and Brett Jones replaced him.

*The Giants’ first rushing touchdown of the season came from none other than Eli Manning. The 36-year-old quarterback scampered for a 14-yard touchdown late in the first half, his first since Week 4 of 2014 at Washington and the sixth of his career. He finished with 22 yards on the ground, 12 yards short of his career high that he set in a 2009 game at Philadelphia. Through the air, Manning completed 30 of 49 passes for 288 yards and two touchdowns.

*Four different players had five catches or more: Odell Beckham Jr. (seven receptions for 90 yards), Brandon Marshall (six for 46), Evan Engram (six for 62), and Sterling Shepard (five for 54).

*On his 23rd birthday, rookie Wayne Gallman made his NFL debut in Week 4. The fourth-round pick rushed for two yards on his first attempt, finishing the game with 42 yards on the ground. His biggest play was a four-yard touchdown catch on second-and-goal to give the Giants a 17-16 lead with 4:19 left in the third quarter. The opportunity for Gallman to play presented itself with Orleans Darkwa dealing with a back injury.

*Tight end Rhett Ellison, who had three catches entering Week 4 and none in his last outing, caught a touchdown on third-and-goal at the two to give the Giants a lead with 3:16 left in the game. The Giants showed an interesting look on the play with defensive end Kerry Wynn lined up at fullback.

WHAT WE LEARNED ON DEFENSE


*Big plays hurt the Giants early on in Sunday’s game. Jacquizz Rodgers broke a 36-yard run in the first quarter to set up a short touchdown pass from Jameis Winston to Mike Evans. On the Buccaneers’ next possession, Winston had a wide open pass to rookie tight end O.J. Howard, who took it 58 yards for a score. The Giants had allowed just five passes of 20 yards or more heading into Week 4, tied with Tampa for the second-fewest in the league.

*B.J. Goodson returned to the starting lineup at middle linebacker after missing two games with a shin injury. Undrafted rookie Calvin Munson had been playing in his place. 

*The defense had a key goal-line stand at the end of the first half, propelled by a tackle by linebacker Devon Kennard behind the line of scrimmage. Winston then threw two incomplete passes, forcing Tampa Bay to settle for a field goal and keep it a one-possession game. This all happened after a Winston-to-Evans touchdown was reversed and the ball was spotted at the one-yard line.

*A point of emphasis coming out of the first three weeks was getting off the field on third down. The Giants did that for the most part on Sunday with the Buccaneers converting just three of 11 third downs. However, they failed to stop the Buccaneers on the most important one when tight end Cameron Brate hauled in a 26-yard catch on third-and-one to set up the game-winning field goal.


WHAT WE LEARNED ON SPECIAL TEAMS

*Aldrick Rosas missed his first field goal attempt of the season, a 43-yarder that went wide right at the beginning of the fourth quarter (Rosas made a 30-yarder earlier in the game). On the other end, the Giants benefitted from two missed field goals and a missed extra point by Buccaneers kicker Nick Folk. However, Folk got redemption to hit the winner at the end of the game.

*Brad Wing had a 15-yard punt out of bounds with 9:25 left in a one-point game. He averaged 41.0 yards on five punts in the game.

INACTIVES

NYG: OT Bobby Hart, RB Orleans Darkwa, QB Davis Webb, CB Michael Hunter, LB Deontae Skinner, TE Matt LaCosse, DE Avery Moss

TB: LB Kwon Alexander (hamstring) S T.J. Ward, LB Lavonte David, OT Leonard Webster, C Joe Hawley, TE Antony Auclair, DT Sealver Siliga

LINEUP CHANGES

NYG: Pugh for Hart at RT; Fluker for Jerry at RG; Jerry for Pugh at LG

TB: Kendell Beckwith started at MLB; Adarius Glanton at SLB; Devante Bond at WLB

INJURY REPORT

NYG: WR Odell Beckham Jr. (finger, returned), DE Olivier Vernon (ankle, did not return), DT Damon Harrison (bruised knee, returned), RB Paul Perkins (rib, did not return), C Weston Richburg (concussion, did not return)

TB: S Keith Tandy (hip)

GAME CAPTAINS

Jason Pierre-Paul, Justin Pugh, and Kerry Wynn were out for the coin toss along with season captains Eli Manning, Jonathan Casillas, and Zak DeOssie.