Giants grades

Jerricho Cotchery of the Pittsburgh Steelers runs through

Jerricho Cotchery of the Pittsburgh Steelers runs through Mark Herzlich (58) and Stevie Brown (27) of the Giants during a game at MetLife Stadium. (Nov. 4, 2012) Photo Credit: Getty Images

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F Where do you want to start? A running game that gained 68 yards on 22 carries? A passing game that gained 125 yards? Pass protection that allowed two sacks? How about the penalties that pushed the Giants out of a scoring opportunity late in the first half, or the inability to convert Corey Webster's interception into more than a field goal after getting to the Steelers' 2? Eli Manning and Victor Cruz didn't look to be on different pages as much as different books.


C There were a few positives, such as the two sacks by Justin Tuck, the interception by Webster and the sack by Jason Pierre-Paul. The defense also scored a touchdown for the second straight week, this time on Osi Umenyiora's strip-sack and Michael Boley's 70-yard return. But they also allowed 349 yards, including 158 on the ground to a team without its best running back and 216 through the air to a team without its best receiver for most of the game. Isaac Redman ran for 147 yards; at least half must've come after initial contact.

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D Do you credit the Giants for stopping the fake field goal or blame the Steelers for trying it? Michael Coe made the play, but it was set up by one of a series of poor special-teams plays that allowed Emmanuel Sanders a 63-yard punt return. Nice job by Steve Weatherford to make the tackle and prevent the TD.


D Did Tom Coughlin put too much pressure on the players to not only beat the Steelers but act as a salve for a region that had such a difficult week? Maybe. The last time they tried to shoulder such a load, they lost last year's opener in Washington on the 10th anniversary of Sept. 11. Carrying emotional baggage beyond football is not a strong suit for this team. Penalties count against the coaches, and the two false starts that squashed an opportunity for points late in the first half plus the offsides against Jayron Hosley on a key third-down stop on the game-winning drive were hard to take.

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