Most didn’t predict the New York Giants would overcome the Green Bay Packers on Sunday in a Week 13 matchup littered by snowflakes and rain. Not even Michael Strahan could find the confidence within to pick his former team to walk away with a win, and he was spot on, as most analysts were before the start of the contest.
The Giants fell 31-13, as rookie passer Daniel Jones threw three interceptions during the blowout. The first half saw the Giants creeping up on Green Bay before the inevitably pulled away with ease.
Let’s take a look at three players that were up and down for the New York Giants:
1.) Kaden Smith – UP
The 22-year-old rookie earned his inception into the NFL last week, coming down with his first score. Against the Packers, he didn’t pepper the stats with incredible numbers, but he did display great balance in the passing game, logging six receptions for 70-yards.
Smith has quietly worked his way up the depth chart and has filled in valiantly for the injured Evan Engram and Rhett Ellison. He’s in line to receive more playing time due to his reliable performance.
2.) Antoine Bethea – DOWN
It’s no surprise that Bethea was burned in coverage once again, but to be man-handled by Allen Lazard on a deep touchdown pass was the icing on the cake. Lazar simply changed directions, turning Bethea all the way around, putting him in no position to make a play.
He has shown quality near the line of scrimmage, but he has been a liability in the defensive backfield all season long.
3.) Julian Love – UP
For the second straight week, rookie safety, Julian Love, looked solid in coverage and even came up to make several excellent stops near the line of scrimmage.
JULIAN LOVE with the forced fumble on Davante Adams, in his first career NFL start
(rolled out of bounds but still a great play by the former Irish CB)
— Barstool Irish (@BarstoolIrish) December 1, 2019
This was an excellent sign for the Giants defense, considering their lack of quality across the field, Love has been a breath of fresh air heading into the dead-portion of the season. The Giants are officially eliminated from playoff contention, so any positives from their young players are essential to the team’s growth.
4.) Sam Beal – DOWN
Beal was lined up across from Packers No. 1 receiver DeVante Adams far too often on Sunday. This only indicates that Big Blue is more concerned with logging film on their rookie than winning the football game. Beal struggled heavily in coverage, allowing an easy touchdown to Adams in the fourth quarter.
While Beal has missed the majority of the season, the Giants didn’t allow him to gain confidence as they matched him up with one of the league’s best receivers.
5.) Darius Slayton – UP
If there’s any takeaway from this season that’s positive for Big Blue, it’s that they have something special in wide receiver, Darius Slayton. The former Auburn standout has seen his hands become glue, and his clutchness evolve throughout the season.
His trust with Daniel Jones has progressed nicely, and Slayton’s ability to come up on third downs has shined through. Without Golden Tate on the field on Sunday, Slayton picked up the slack, managing six receptions for 44 yards. Those numbers aren’t noteworthy, but his presence has undoubtedly been felt on offense.
6.) Markus Golden – DOWN
Golden didn’t have the worst game of the season, but he was almost non-existent in the pass-rush. He recorded just one QB-hit but managed to log eight total tackles.
Golden has been the Giants’ best pass-rusher this season, but a ghost-performance on Sunday helped officially eliminate the Giants from playoff contention. He’s looking to cash in on a productive season, but games like this hurt his value.