The New York Giants fell to the San Francisco 49ers 30-12, but that score is not indicative of their performance. The Giants were in the game through three quarters, at one point only being down 17-12. Their effort in the first half was the best all season, but it was not enough to overcome a talented 49ers team. Lack of explosive plays on offense and failure to get off the field defensively on third and long stymied their chances at a victory. One player shined throughout the night for the Giants: linebacker Micah McFadden
Micah McFadden Shines While Rest of Giants Defense Falters
Micah McFadden Shined
Through the first two weeks, the Giant’s defense has failed to force a turnover. In week three, the ball did not bounce their way. There were many opportunities to intercept Quarterback Brock Purdy throughout the game, but they could not convert on his errant passes. The defense did notch their first two sacks of the season, one by Kayvon Thibodeaux, and a combined sack by Leonard Williams and D.J. Davidson. The defense found themselves in favorable situations forcing third and long through the game. Unfortunately, they allowed the 49ers to convert on third down by allowing screen passes to gain chunk yards.
The theme of the night was the inability to tackle efficiently. There were too many times when the 49ers playmakers were bouncing off of attempted tackles. Linebacker Micah McFadden bounced back positively. McFadden had a forgettable performance against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 2. He consistently missed tackles which raised concerns of his effectiveness heading into Week 3. McFadden put those worries to rest, notching ten total tackles, including four tackles for loss. McFadden will have eleven days to recover before a Monday night matchup versus the Seattle Seahawks, they will need him again to perform.
Micah shined throughout the game, unfortunately, his effort and energy did not carry over to most of his teammates. Safety Xavier McKinney continues to be a liability. McKinney is missing too many tackles and is getting beat in coverage with ease. McKinney is a free agent after this season, his play does not warrant a new contract. The defense is leaving too much meat on the bone, luckily an extended break in between week four will be the key to addressing their deficiencies.
Where Is The Offense?
The Giants offense produced a paltry 150 yards of total offense. They only controlled the ball for 20:50, and a lack of explosive plays was apparent. With an offensive line unit that is struggling to protect the quarterback, running the ball seems like a more logical option to take the pressure off Daniel Jones. The Giants only had 11 rushing attempts all night.
There were numerous occasions throughout the game where the Giants called passing plays on all three downs, the 49ers were well prepared for it. Whether by design or other reasons, the Giants called Daniel Jones‘ number once on a designed run. Wide receiver Jalin Hyatt was targeted zero times, and tight end Darren Waller mustered only three catches for 20 yards. Jones had difficulties finding a rhythm with his playmakers throughout the night. The 49ers defense had an easy time defending the Giants offense.
The Giants superstars were not at their best last night. Offensively, they cannot afford to make mistakes against the elite teams in the NFL. It is not ideal to play from behind every single time. The health of left tackle Andrew Thomas and running back Saquon Barkley are paramount to the stability and success of this offense. Defensively, Coach Wink Martindale needs to reel in his defense and correct the mistakes they continue to make. They need to fix their tackling, and they need to start generating turnovers. They may have found a long-term starter at linebacker with Micah McFadden, but they’ll have to be patient with his occasional missed tackles. An extended break may be exactly what they need.
Main Photo: Kyle Terada – USA Today Sports