The New York Giants finally have a win. They started 0-2 but turned things around by defeating the Houston Texans this Sunday on the road, in a result that should be encouraging to the fans. Not only did the offense stand up to pressure this time, putting up 27 points and not having the offensive line dominated like it was in the Jacksonville game, but the defense was able to contain Deshaun Watson and his arsenal of weapons.
Now, it’s time to keep the momentum rolling. The Giants return home in week four, this time facing the New Orleans Saints. There’s some important lessons that they can take from the Houston game, as they head into this one aiming to bring their winning percentage up to 50%.
What are those lessons?
In the first half of the Houston game, the Giants looked good. They went into halftime with a big lead and the offense clicked for the first time this season, with the players that were supposed to make big plays doing their jobs. The passing game in particular looked a bit better than it had in the previous games as Eli Manning was pressured less and would finish with his highest number of yards in any game this season.
In the second half, however, things slowed down and the Texans were able to cut into the two score lead that the Giants had built up. Houston only had three points in the first, second, and third quarters. But in the fourth, they had thirteen points and Deshaun Watson threw for two touchdowns. Granted, one of them was in garbage time and at the very end of the game, but last second touchdowns are still concerning.
After all, it could happen again in a situation that actually means something. Particularly, the secondary needs to step up in the second half, because against Houston, they looked more like the secondary that showed up earlier in the season. One that didn’t stop big plays as much as it should have.
There was definitely improvement between the second game of the season and the third, but it’s not time for that improvement to stop. If the players get complacent after picking up a good win and righting some of the earlier wrongs from the Jacksonville and Dallas games, they won’t achieve the winning streak.
The Giants have enough potential to get the win. They showed that in the first half of the Houston game when they had a 20-6 lead by the end of the second quarter. But if they allow a couple of touchdown drives in the fourth quarter against the Saints, their chances of winning two straight games are much lower.
They can get the win against New Orleans, there’s no doubt about that. They just need to be themselves, and they need to do it during every quarter.