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Instant Analysis: Giants Defeat Steelers


PLAY OF THE GAME:** Rookie defensive end Damontre Moore blocked Drew Butler's punt on the opening series of the game. Louis Murphy recovered the ball deep in Steelers territory, and the Giants turned it into three points with a field goal shortly after.

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SACK OF THE NIGHT: Cullen Jenkins sacked Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger for a loss of eight yards in Steelers territory, setting up Moore's blocked punt on 4th-and-24.

TURNING POINT: Victor Cruz provided the bulk of the first-team offensive production on one play. Late in the first quarter with the game tied 3-3, Eli Manning found Cruz, who took it 57 yards for a long touchdown. It was Cruz's only catch of the game but was enough to propel the Giants to a lead, which they would not give up.

WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT THE OFFENSE: The big play is still there. Manning and Cruz showed that on Saturday, but the Giants couldn't find a consistent run game as they averaged 2.5 yards per carry on 33 rushes. Meanwhile, David Carr proved why he is a trusted backup, completing 7 of 11 passes for 64 yards and zero interceptions.

WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT THE DEFENSE: They can get pressure. Moore showed his explosiveness on defense and special teams while Jenkins showed his versatility. The Giants ended with five sacks as a team thanks to Adewale Ojomo (1.5), Justin Trattou (1.0), Charles James (1.0), and Frank Okam (0.5). Meanwhile, the Giants still need to be able to get off the field on third-and-long, broken down best by Tom Coughlin at halftime: "The first half [the Steelers] had a couple drives on us. They knocked some first downs out. They recovered from like a 3rd-and-15, which, that always bothers me.  We're in our first preseason game."

WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT SPECIAL TEAMS: Kicker Josh Brown, making his Giants debut, went 3 of 4 on field goals with a long of 47 yards and an extra point. His lone miss was a 38-yard attempt midway through the third quarter. Punter Steve Weatherford averaged 49.5 yards with two inside the 20 and a long of 58. The Giants had just three returns in the game, and none were from Wilson or Rueben Randle. Jerrel Jernigan returned a kickoff for 27 yards and Jayron Hosley returned a punt for four yards. However, it was their coverage teams that stole the show. Aside from Moore's punt block, safety Tyler Sash recovered a fumble on a Pittsburgh punt return, forced by the oncoming long snapper Zak DeOssie.

ROOKIE WATCH: QB Ryan Nassib 1 of 4, 29 YDS, lost fumble; RB Michael Cox 9 ATT, 34 YDS (3.8 AVG).

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