Giants saw something special from backup safety in Week 17

nfl: los angeles rams at new york giants, dane belton
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants had a surprise contributor in their 26-25 loss to the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday. 

Giants: 2 Interceptions From Belton Almost Saved The Game

Dane Belton came in for the injured safety Jason Pinnock who went down with an ankle injury in the 1st quarter and had himself a day, collecting two interceptions at pivotal stages of the game.

Belton’s first pick came on 2nd & 9 at the Rams’ 42-yard line. Matthew Stafford tried to zip the ball down the middle to Pua Nacua but was read perfectly by Belton. 

He followed that up with a key interception with two minutes left in the third quarter. Down 20-16, the Giants were in danger of falling down to a two-possession deficit before Belton picked off Stafford once more in Rams territory.

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Belton’s Big Day & Pinnock’s Injury Opening Door For Elevated Role in Week 18

Prior to week 17, Belton had only played in 18.48 percent of the Giants’ defensive snaps in 2023. The second-year defensive back matched his career interceptions total as well as that of Pinnock’s season total on the day. 

The 6-1, 190lb talent stepped up for the Giants despite the loss and made a great bid for more playing time in their season finale against the Philadelphia Eagles next Sunday. 

Giants head coach Brian Daboll has been committed to giving his young talent more looks, especially with receivers Wan’Dale Robinson and Jalin Hyatt. Belton is likely to join that list and show what he’s got heading into the off-season.