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5 players to watch in Giants vs. Bucs on MNF


Here are five players to watch when the Giants take on the Buccaneers on Monday Night Football:

QB Daniel Jones

Jones has good memories in Tampa Bay. In the Giants' last visit to Raymond James Stadium in Week 3 of the 2019 season, Jones made his first NFL start and threw for 336 yards with two touchdowns for a 112.7 rating. He also added two rushing touchdowns in a 32-31 win. Jones became the first rookie with at least 300 passing yards, two passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns in a single game since the league merger in 1970.

Monday night will be Jones' third prime time game against Tom Brady-led teams in as many seasons. In his fourth career start, Jones played the New England Patriots on a Thursday night in Gillette Stadium. The quarterbacks matched up again in Brady's first season in Tampa Bay in 2020.

"I think when you look at that game, it was back and forth, it was a four-quarter game, down to the end," Jones said. "We made plays, they made plays. I think when you look at it, there were a couple costly turnovers in the second half that hurt us, and you see how important those plays are in a game that goes down to the wire. So, we've got to do a good job protecting the football and making plays when they come. There are things we'll be able to learn from how they played us and how they game planned and what we were able to do. We'll certainly look to that game."

CB James Bradberry

Bradberry, who spent his first four seasons in the NFC South with the Panthers before joining the Giants last season, will see a familiar foe in Mike Evans. The wide receiver is second in the NFL with nine touchdown catches this season and has eight receptions of 25+ yards, tied for sixth in the league.

"I think he's just who he is," Bradberry said. "He's a physical, big receiver, able to use his body well and he attacks the ball. He has a huge catch radius."

WR Kenny Golladay

Golladay is the healthiest he has been since the overtime win in New Orleans, where the Giants were close to full strength and resembled the offense they envisioned. The Giants will await the status of running back Saquon Barkley and left tackle Andrew Thomas, who are hoping to return.

"That's pretty close to what I envision," Golladay said of the Week 4 game. "Everybody touched the ball. DJ threw for like 400. Say had a long touchdown reception, then he capped it off with the game-winning rushing touchdown. That's a pretty damn good game. But I mean, I feel like we left some plays out there as well, so I feel like it can get better."

WR Kadarius Toney

Toney is one of five rookies leading his team in receiving yards in 2021. joining Cincinnati's Ja'Marr Chase, Atlanta's Kyle Pitts, Philadelphia's DeVonta Smith, Miami's Jaylen Waddle. A week after Toney caught six passes for 78 yards at New Orleans, he had a season-high 10 receptions for 189 yards in Dallas – so the road has been good to him.

S Xavier McKinney

In his last game before the bye, McKinney intercepted two passes – and scored on one – in the victory over the Raiders. He was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week as he became the first Giants defender to record five interceptions in his first 15 career games since cornerback Will Allen in 2001-02. McKinney, along with Julian Love, will have to step up if defensive captain Logan Ryan cannot play due to COVID-19 protocols. Love said he will dye his hair half blonde if McKinney makes the Pro Bowl in his second season. "He's a rising superstar in this league," Love said. "Wise beyond his years."

Click through the history of the New York Giants facing legendary quarterback Tom Brady, a series that includes two meetings in the Super Bowl.

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