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Cover 4

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Cover 4: Takeaways from Giants vs. Seahawks


The crew reviews the 24-3 loss to the Seahawks on Monday night and what's next for the Giants:

Dan Salomone: There's no way to ignore the fact that the Giants allowed the most sacks in franchise history (since they became official) on Monday night, and they might have to move ahead with yet another starting offensive line on a short turnaround to Sunday in Miami. With left Andrew Thomas considered "week to week" with a hamstring injury, the Giants will await the status of rookie center John Michael Schmitz, who left in the first quarter with a shoulder injury. But the NFL waits for no team. The Giants' current issues are bigger than any one injury or unit.

"I think that's just team offensive football," said coach Brian Daboll, whose team has been outscored 77-9 in the first half this season. "There's going to be pressure, I'd say, on a considerable amount of plays in the National Football League. Whether it's free runners, just congestion versus jail break and there's times where it's just jail break and [Daniel Jones has] got to do a good job of saving the play. Congestion, moving in the pocket, keeping our eyes downfield, but again, that's a team thing, too. Receivers being where they're supposed to be, line working together, quarterback throwing on time, and we haven't done a good enough job of that."

Lance Medow: There's one noticeable trend that has contributed to large deficits and very few chances to rally – and that's turnover differential. The Giants were minus-3 in that department on Monday night, and to make matters worse, one of Daniel Jones' interceptions was returned 97 yards for a touchdown. When all three facets of your team are struggling, the last thing you can afford to do is turn the ball over because you're losing possessions and shortening the field for opponents. How can you dig yourself out of a hole if you don't have at-bats?

On the season, the Giants now have a turnover differential of minus-8. That's tied for the second-worst mark in the NFL only behind the Raiders (minus-9). Opponents have produced 34 points off those eight mishaps, including two defensive scores, and the Giants have had no takeaways to counter that. At this time last season, the Giants' turnover differential was plus-1 (six takeaways, five turnovers). We're talking about complete opposite ends of the spectrum. Daniel Jones and company had 11 possessions against the Seahawks, and in all 11, they had at least one negative play.

Matt Citak: In the second game without running back Saquon Barkley, the Giants gained 112 yards on 29 carries, good for an average of 3.9 yards per carry. However, Daniel Jones accounted for 66 carries on 10 attempts, while Wan'Dale Robinson, a receiver, added a seven-yard run. As for the running backs, Matt Breida and Gary Brightwell combined for just 39 yards on 18 rush attempts (2.2 avg.), although they did total six receptions for 58 yards.

It's no surprise that Barkley's absence caused the run game to take a hit, but it's more than that. A healthy Barkley helps the entire passing attack. In the second half of the Giants' historic comeback in Arizona, Jones had most of his production while running play-action passes. Jones completed 13 of 19 passes for 229 yards, 12.1 yards per attempt, and a 109.3 passer rating in play-action, all of which had Barkley in the backfield. The Cardinals' defense had to pay close attention to Barkley, leaving them more susceptible to big plays. Fast forward to Week 3 when Barkley was sidelined, and Jones threw for just 32 yards on six completions in play-action, an average of only 5.3 yards per attempt. It only got worse against the Seahawks, when Jones completed four of five attempts for 13 yards in play-action, good for an average of 2.6 yards per attempt. Getting Barkley back on the field is crucial. While he was able to practice in a limited capacity all of last week, it remains to be seen if he will suit up for Sunday's game against a Dolphins defense ranking 28th in points and 26th in yards allowed this season.


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