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Grading the Giants vs. Tampa Bay 

Saquon Barkley #26 of the New York Giants

Saquon Barkley #26 of the New York Giants looks on during warm ups before the game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium on November 22, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. Credit: Getty Images/Julio Aguilar


Their only touchdown came as a direct result of the one big mistake made by the Bucs (an interception that gave the Giants the ball at the 5) and was scored on a pass to the left tackle. That Andrew Thomas was the only Giant who walked out of Raymond James Stadium with a souvenir touchdown football in his suitcase is the best illustration of dysfunction imaginable. There might have been more dignity in being shut out. The Giants finished with 215 total yards, the second-lowest total of the 26-game Joe Judge era (they gained 159 yards in a loss to Arizona on Dec. 13, 2020). Only two of the Giants’ 54 offensive plays gained more than 16 yards. Their 15 first downs were a season low as was their 24:21 time of possession.


Tom Brady had all day to stand in the pocket and find open receivers. He completed 30 of 46 passes — including all of his first 10 attempts — for 307 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. He was the third quarterback to throw for at least 300 yards against the Giants this season, joining Washington’s Taylor Heinicke and Dallas’ Dak Prescott. This was the fifth game this season the Giants allowed at least 400 yards. There were times when the unit was able to firm up, such as when they held the Bucs to a field goal after an 18-play, 79-yard drive in the first half to keep the Giants in the game. Other than that, though, they were barely speed bumps to the Bucs’ efficiency.


Riley Dixon put three of his four punts inside the 20 and Graham Gano kicked a 37-yard field goal. The Giants mostly used directional kickoffs to keep the ball away from dangerous returners. Their own returner, Pharoh Cooper, was a non-factor with no punt or kickoff attempts (the Bucs’ seven kickoffs were all touchbacks).


The cleverness of throwing the ball to Andrew Thomas and letting Kadarius Toney attempt a downfield pass was nice, but it was erased by the absurdity that Kenny Golladay had just two targets for the second straight game. On a critical fourth-and-1, the Giants rushed to the line and tried to use tempo to their advantage, but it looked more as if they were in chaos trying to beat the play clock. The Giants' defense seemed ill-prepared for the things Brady has been doing for decades, using quick releases and short routes and throwing to Rob Gronkowski on key plays.

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