Giants-Dolphins tale of the tape
The Giants hope to pick up their second consecutive win when they travel to Miami to take on the Dolphins in Week 13.
Big Blue got back in the win column last week when they defeated divisional rival Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium, 13-7. The defense forced four takeaways, including three interceptions, and held Eagles QB Jalen Hurts to just 129 passing yards.
Miami enters this matchup as one of the hottest teams in the NFL. Brian Flores and the Dolphins have won four consecutive games, with the defense allowing an average of 11.5 points per game during the win streak. Miami defeated the Carolina Panthers, 33-10, last week after forcing three turnovers and holding the Panthers to under 200 yards of total offense.
Sunday's game will be a reunion for several members of both the Giants and Dolphins coaching staff, starting with the head coaches. Joe Judge was a member of the Patriots' coaching staff from 2012-2019, beginning as a special teams assistant before taking over as the unit's coordinator. For the first seven years he spent in New England, Judge coached alongside Brian Flores, Miami's head coach since 2019. Assistant Head Coach Patrick Graham (2009-2015), Quarterbacks Coach Jerry Schuplinski (2013-2018) and Dolphins Defensive Coordinator (2006-2018) also spent time in New England.
Here are some notes and stats for players on both teams ahead of the Week 13 matchup.
*QB Daniel Jones passed for 202 yards & TD vs. 0 INTs for 94 rating last week. Is 1 of 4 NFC QBs (Kirk Cousins, Aaron Rodgers & Matthew Stafford) with 8+ games (8) with 90+ rating in 2021.
*QB Tua Tagovailoa completed 27 of 31 atts (87.1 pct. - career high as starter) for 230 yards & TD vs. 0 INTs for 108.3 rating last week. Become 2nd-youngest player ever with 85+ comp. pct. in single game (min. 30 atts.). Is 4th player ever with 80+ comp. pct. (min. 30 atts.) in consecutive games. Aims for 4th in row with 100+ rating. Has 0 INTs in 3 of 4 home starts in 2021.
*RB Saquon Barkley had 53 scrimmage yards (40 rush, 13 rec.) last week. Has 50+ scrimmage yards in 3 of his 4 road games this season. Had 143 scrimmage yards (112 rush, 31 rec.) & 2 rush TDs in last meeting.
*RB Myles Gaskin rushed for 49 yards & career-high 2 TDs last week. Aims for 3rd in row with 50+ scrimmage yards & TD. Had 72 scrimmage yards (43 rush, 29 rec.) in last meeting. Has 50+ scrimmage yards in 3 of his past 4 at home. Aims for his 6th in row vs. NFC with TD. RB Phillip Lindsay rushed for 42 yards last week in Mia. debut.
*WR Sterling Shepard had 9 catches for 111 yards in last meeting. WR Kenny Golladay led team with 50 rec. yards last week. WR Darius Slayton had a TD catch in last meeting.
*WR Jaylen Waddle (rookie) led team with 9 catches for career-high 137 yards & 4th rec. TD of season in Week 12. Aims for 5th in row with 60+ rec. yards & 3rd in row with 8+ catches. Leads rookies with 77 catches, 2nd-most every by player in 1st 12 career games. Can become 1st Mia. rookie ever with 85 catches. TE Mike Gesicki had 47 rec. yards in last meeting. Is 1 of 4 TEs with 50+ catches in each of past 3 seasons.
*S Xavier McKinney led team with season-high 8 tackles & had 2 PD & INT last week. Ranks tied-1st among safeties (Kevin Byard & Jordan Poyer) with career-high 5 INTs in 2021. Has 7 PD in his past 6. LB Tae Crowder had 1st-career INT in Week 12. Aims for his 10th in row with 6+ tackles. Is 1 of 2 LBs (Darius Leonard) with 75+ tackles (79) & 5+ PD (5) in 2021. CB James Bradberry ranks 2nd in NFL with 76 PD since 2016 & is only DB with 10+ PD in each of past 6 seasons. Has PD in 4 of his past 5 on road. CB Julian Love had 1st 0.5 sacks of his career & 1st-career FR last week. Aims for his 3rd in row overall & 4th in row on road with PD. DL Leonard Williams has TFL in 3 of his 4 career games at Mia.
*CB Xavien Howard had 25th-career INT last week & became fastest player (67 games) to reach 25 INTs since 1990. Aims for 3rd in row with PD. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. NFC with INT. Rookie S Jevon Holland had INT & FR last week. Aims for 5th in row with PD & 3rd in row with FR. LB Jaelan Phillips had 3 sacks last week, most by rookie in single game since 2019
View rare photos of the all-time series between the New York Giants and Miami Dolphins
Freddie Kitchens reaches out to players for input
Two of the Giants’ most important offensive players said today they were pleased with Freddie Kitchens' first game as the play-caller, but they'll be much happier when the attack generates more points and yardage.
"I feel like as an offense we were going out there and competing," wide receiver Kenny Golladay said. "We did some things well, but we also left some stuff out there … with the fades and everything. Just got to get on the same page a little more, a little bit more work at it."
Kitchens called the plays for the first time in the Giants' 13-7 victory against Philadelphia last week. He was given the assignment five days earlier after offensive coordinator Jason Garrett was dismissed following a loss at Tampa Bay.
"You really only could change so much Week 12, Week 13 of the season," running back Saquon Barkley said. "Obviously, we had a little bit of different wrinkles as you can see in the game. But as the season goes on and all the offensive guys get together, probably a little more wrinkles are going to come in. We've just got to come out in practice, run the plays, execute the plays in practice and then when they're called in the game, make it work."
Kitchens and the offense get their next opportunity to build on what they began on Sunday when the 4-7 Giants visit the 5-7 Miami Dolphins, who have won four consecutive games.
Kitchens made a point of soliciting suggestions from the players, who appreciated the outreach.
"It's huge," Golladay said. "You can come over to the sideline, and since you're the one out there running, you can actually tell them what you're seeing. It's one thing running it on the field and a coach standing on the sideline trying to get all the way on the other side of the field. Just going in there and giving them good information, and not giving them selfish information.
"I'm not saying there wasn't openness with Garrett, but Freddie did want to hear from us a little bit more."
"I think, as coaches, we always try to do that," Kitchens said of the importance of communication in the planning process. "You need to get a sense and feel for what they're comfortable with. To me, why would you call something, and this is the way our staff believes, why would you call something if a player's not comfortable running it? It's your job to get them comfortable running it. If you think it's a good scheme or a good play or whatever the case may be, it's your job to get them comfortable doing it. But if you can't get them to that point, it's kind of diminishing returns."
The Giants know they won't win many games scoring one touchdown and 13 points and totaling 264 yards, including 70 on the ground. But they did take one very important step against the Eagles.
"I thought the operation was smooth," said Kitchens, a former head coach and offensive coordinator with the Cleveland Browns. "It's our job as coaches to make it smooth, and it's the players' jobs to coordinate it smoothly once the call gets into the huddle."
Eli's Extras | Waiter Olympics with Food Network's Marcus Samuelsson
In this episode of Eli's Extras, presented by Dunkin', Eli Manning and Shaun O'Hara hilariously compete in the Waiter Olympics to decide who will be the new staff member at Marcus Samuelsson's restaurant.
Check out the video below to watch Eli and Shaun compete in the Waiter Olympics.