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JPP caps big game vs. Bears with clutch sack


Jason Pierre-Paul capped a big day with a clutch strip-sack late in the fourth quarter:

After giving the ball back to the Bears with three minutes to play, the Giants, holding onto a six-point lead, knew the outcome of Sunday's game would come down to the defense. It was a reversal of the prior week when Rashad Jennings ran out the clock for a victory.

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But no one panicked, even after Jay Cutler's 35-yard completion to Marquess Wilson on the first play of the final drive and another 23-yarder to Joshua Bellamy to bring the Bears down to the Giants 30-yard line at the two-minute warning.


"It is time to bow up," Jason Pierre-Paul told his fellow defenders.

Actions spoke louder than words.

As if he gave the pep talk in front of a mirror, Pierre-Paul drove back right tackle Mike Adams on the next play until he broke free and swatted the bicep of Cutler's throwing arm. The ball dropped to the turf on the strip sack, and while Adams was able to jump on it for the recovery, safety Landon Collins intercepted a pass two plays later with 1:11 to play. Eli Manning came on and took a knee.  

"I can't just do the talking," Pierre-Paul said after the game. "I have to show up, and we came out with a win."

The veteran defensive end stuffed the box score in his team's fifth consecutive win with five tackles (one for loss), three quarterback hits, 2.5 sacks, a forced fumble, and a pass defensed. It was his 15th career game with more than one sack and first since the 2014 season finale against the Eagles. The 2.5 sacks also tied a career-high for Pierre-Paul, who had that many on Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III in Week 15 of the 2014 season.

"JPP told me before the game, 'You are going to get one [interception] today,'" said Collins, who continued his Pro Bowl campaign with his fifth pick in four games. "I was like, for him, there is no reason he can't get two sacks. He definitely did. He got a forced fumble on one, and that was amazing. That opportunity of him saying that to me shows he has a lot of confidence in me to make a play."

Everyone made plays, particularly in the second half.

The Giants allowed 16 points in the opening two quarters to a team that averaged 15.7 points per game entering Week 11. However, Chicago never added to the scoreboard in the final 30 minutes, while Manning threw touchdowns to tight end Will Tye and rookie wider receiver Sterling Shepard to take the lead for good.

The Giants recorded all of their season-high four sacks in the second half. The defense now has 14 sacks in the last five games after having just four over the first five outings.

"It helps a whole lot knowing that that side is going to be shut down [by Pierre-Paul]," said defensive end Olivier Vernon, who notched a sack in his third-straight game. "You can make a lot more things happen as far as rotation of guys that we have on our defensive line. He is a monster."

Added Vernon: "JPP is JPP, man. Ain't nothing changed about him. He is still a beast out there."

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