Saturday, August 12, 2017

Backups listless in Giants 20-12 Loss to Steelers


What did we learn from Friday night's preseason opener between the New York Giants and Pittsburgh Steelers? Not much. Not much at all.

With the starters on both teams spending much of the game on the sidelines, heck neither Ben Roethisberger nor Eli Manning took a snap in this snooze fest, the Giants backups looked the part in a 20-12 loss to the Steelers.

What Looked Good: 

The Giants did play most of their defensive starters on Friday, and they looked good, granted it was against a second team offense for Pittsburgh. Landon Collins had five tackles, including blowing up Pittsburgh running back Terrell Watson. New York also sacked quarterback Joshua Dobbs three times, and forced two interceptions. Devin Taylor and Valentino Blake both had picks in the effort for Big Blue.

Mike Nugent and Aldrick Rosas continue their kicking competition camp with perfect nights against the Steelers. Nugent's long was 45 yards, while Rosas hit one from 52 yards out.

What Didn't Look Good: 

Geno Smith. What a shock? He may have switched uniform colors, but Geno Smith was still the same old Geno Smith. He had moments of brilliance, like rolling out of the pocket and finding open receivers down field, and also had moments of buffoonery. With the Giants lead 12-10, Smith threw  a costly interception at New York's own 30 yard line. Pittsburgh turned the gaff into three points to take the lead for good at 13-12.

Smith was also sacked twice in the defeat, as it was clear he is likely behind Josh Johnson in the battle to be Eli Manning's backup.

Rookie quarterback David Webb looked the part on Friday. He had the proverbial "deer in the headlights" look in his eyes all night, but still managed to complete eight of 16 passes. He is a project that is years away from ever seeing the field.

What Didn't We Learn? 

Still not 100% sure that Josh Johnson is a solid pick to be Manning's back-up. He was underwhelming. The only thing he had going for him is he didn't make the mistakes Geno Smith made.

We didn't see the Giants high octane passing attack of Odell Beckham, Brandon Marshall and Sterling Shepherd. Relax, we'll see them together by next week's contest.

What's Next? 

The Giants face the Cleveland Browns on Monday, August 21. These aren't your typical Browns. They have a young prospect in Deshone Kizer who looked real good in Cleveland's preseason opener against New Orleans. Kizer is competing with journeyman Brock Osweiler for the starting quarterback job.

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