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Instant Analysis: Defense propels Giants to victory

GIANTS-RAIDERS

AT A GLANCE: Two interceptions by second-year safety Xavier McKinney, including a pick-six, and a late forced fumble by rookie linebacker Quincy Roche propelled the Giants to a 23-16 victory over the Raiders on Sunday at MetLife Stadium.

UP NEXT: The Giants (3-6) enter their bye week on a high note and return for a Monday night game against Tom Brady and the defending Super Bowl champion Buccaneers (6-2) in Week 11. The Giants have won seven of their past nine games against Tampa Bay, including a 2007 Wild Card victory. They lost their most recent matchup last season, 25-23, at MetLife Stadium in their first game against Brady in a Buccaneers uniform.

View photos from the New York Giants' Week 9 matchup against the Las Vegas Raiders.

WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT THE OFFENSE

*Wide receiver Kenny Golladay, who was listed as questionable for Sunday's home game against the Las Vegas Raiders, played in his first game since suffering a knee injury in Dallas on Oct. 10. He had two catches for 28 yards against the Raiders.

*Running back Saquon Barkley, who was injured in the same game as Golladay, was ruled out for the fourth consecutive week with an ankle injury. In addition, wide receiver Sterling Shepard (quad), linebacker Lorenzo Carter (ankle) and safety Nate Ebner (ankle) were ruled out. Wide receiver Dante Pettis was placed on injured reserve this week after he suffered a shoulder injury Monday night in Kansas City.

*Daniel Jones completed all nine of his first-half passes for 79 yards, but only one was to a wide receiver (Golladay). He threw a 30-yard touchdown pass to tight end Evan Engram on the first drive of the game. Jones finished 15 of 20 passing for 110 yards. He also added 17 yards with his legs, including an eight-yard spinning scramble to convert a key third down and bleed the clock some more in the fourth quarter.

*After recording a career-high 125 yards from scrimmage last week, running back Devontae Booker nearly outdid himself with 122 on Sunday. He ran 19 times for 99 yards and caught three passes for 23 yards as he again served as the lead back in place of Barkley. He left in the fourth quarter with a hip injury.

*Entering Week 9, the Raiders, who already had their bye, led the NFL in quarterback pressure percentage (38.7) and quarterback hits (61). Yannick Ngakoue (28) was leading the NFL in QB hurries, while teammate Maxx Crosby was tied for second. The Raiders had three sacks in the first half alone, including a strip by Ngakoue on Jones. Las Vegas recovered and turned the takeaway into three points on the ensuing possession.

*Wide receiver/return specialist Pharoh Cooper was elevated from the practice squad for Sunday's game.

*Running backs coach Burton Burns tested positive for COVID-19 this week, has been away from the team and did not coach the game Sunday.

WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT THE DEFENSE

*Safety Xavier McKinney, who missed two days of practice this week before being cleared from COVID-19 protocols, scored his first NFL touchdown on a 41-yard pick-six off Derek Carr to start the second half. Carr was looking to hit Hunter Renfrow on the left sideline, but McKinney jumped in front of the pass and took it the other way for the score, giving the Giants a 17-13 lead. He wasn't done there. McKinney later intercepted Carr again in the fourth quarter for his second multi-interception game of the season (two against the Rams in Week 6).

*The Giants have preached situational football as their path back to success, and they held up in key situations on Sunday. They held the Raiders to 4-for-12 on third down and 1-for-6 in the red zone against one of the most explosive offenses in the league.

*Rookie linebacker Quincy Roche sealed the victory with a strip-sack in the red zone, and defensive lineman Leonard Williams recovered the ball with less than a minute remaining.

*Linebacker Trent Harris was elevated from the practice squad for Sunday's game, and rookie linebacker Elerson Smith, a fourth-round draft choice, was activated from injured reserve for his NFL debut.

WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT SPECIAL TEAMS

*Riley Dixon had all three of his punts downed inside the 20-yard line, including pinning the Raiders at their own 12 with six minutes left in a four-point game.

*Cooper, a new addition to the roster, handled punt and kickoff return duties.

*The Giants benefitted from a Raiders miscue when Daniel Carlson missed a 25-yard field goal attempt wide left with his team down by four points in the fourth quarter. It was the shortest missed attempt in the league this season.

IN-GAME INJURY REPORT

NYG: TE Kaden Smith (evaluated for concussion), RB Devontae Booker (hip)

LV: CB Keisean Nixon (ankle), LB Nick Kwiatkoski (ankle)

INACTIVES

NYG: RB Saquon Barkley (ankle), LB Lorenzo Carter (ankle), DB Nate Ebner (ankle), WR Sterling Shepard (quad), LB Oshane Ximines

LV: OT Jackson Barton, RB Peyton Barber, CB Amik Robertson, DE Malcolm Koonce, NT Damion Square

In honor of the NFL's Salute to Service military appreciation initiative, the Giants featured a special pregame demonstration by the U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team.

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Giants x Marvel Collection at Giants Team Shop

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