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Week 16 Game Recap: New York Giants 19, Philadelphia Eagles 24


What you need to know

New York Giants

· Eli moved the ball well up and down the field but was very reckless at times with the football. He knows to get Beckham/Shepard involved in games and threw some very nice balls short- intermediate and along the sideline. His turnovers were quite poor and the decision making must improve or he will sink this team going forward this season. · Perkins has begun to take the lead back role away from Jennings and it is about time as his talent is undeniable while Jennings has been ineffective this season. Shepard/ Beckham jr. remain strong plays, everyone else can be ignored.

Philadelphia Eagles

It has been a roller coaster all year long in Philadelphia, but they are showing a commitment to their young quarterback and his development. The real story was the Eagles defense today with three interceptions off Eli Manning and even returned one for a touchdown. The other big story coming out of this one is running back Ryan Mathews suffering a herniated disk in his neck. The Eagles top running back is expected to miss significant time and may have played his last snap for Philadelphia. The Eagles get the division champion Dallas Cowboys on New Year's Day to close out their season.

New York Giants

QB Eli Manning, 89 offensive snaps, Pass: 38 - 63 - 356 - 1 TD / 3 INT
Eli Manning threw for a lot of yards on Thursday night but his interceptions really dragged down the performance for himself and his team. Early in the game, he was forcing passes to Beckham that kept getting broken up due to tight coverage and ended up throwing a costly pick six. Manning made a terrible decision as he tried to squeeze a ball in between double coverage over the middle that was easily intercepted by the Eagle defense. He found Beckham open deep down the sideline with a perfectly placed ball over his shoulder to secure a big first down. Manning could not capitalise on this drive however. Shepard was open on a corner route in the redzone but the pass was too late and got broken up with a nice play from the Eagle secondary. Manning did find Shepard over the middle on a deep post but Shepard couldn’t come up with it and it fell incomplete. He was very accurate at times in this game, just made some terrible decisions and was reckless with the football. Manning hit Cruz with a perfect over the shoulder fade pass along the sideline, just giving his receiver enough room to catch it in bounds. His only touchdown came on a slant pattern in the redzone to Shepard. Shepard did an excellent job of creating massive separation from his defender at the line of scrimmage and gave Manning a big window to throw into. Manning was somewhat erratic for the rest of the game and never found the endzone again. He was picked off for a second time after one his balls was underthrown towards the sideline and easily snagged by the defense. Manning then did the opposite by overthrowing Beckham on a deep fade pattern, just missing his target by a yard or two. His final interception was more of a “hail-mary” attempt as time was expiring. Manning moved the ball well between the 20’s, but turnovers and settling for field goals sunk his team in this game.

RB Paul Perkins, 34 offensive snaps, Rush: 15 - 68 - 0, Rec: 1 - 9 - 0 (2 targets)
Paul Perkins is slowly turning into the lead back in this offense as it is evident that Jennings cannot carry this team on the ground. His workload has more or less slowly grown in every game in the second half of this season and he deserves an opportunity to grow in this offense. Perkins was not a factor in the passing game but this is typical for Giants backs as their dynamic receivers are the focal point of the offense. Perkins has excellent speed and quickness and did a good job of exploiting any gaps in the Eagle defense on Thursday. On several occasions, Perkins exploded into the open field with nice blocks set up front. He is slippery with the ball in open field and can make the first man miss in the hole. There isn’t a big variety of running plays to work with in this offense and he often gets simple dive/zone plays left or right. The running game is more of a complementary part of this offense as clearly the passing game is more dangerous for defenses. Regardless, the Giants show a commitment to the running game most of the time and especially when they can maintain a lead over the opposing team. Perkins has great potential moving forward in this offense but nothing is guaranteed.

RB Rashad Jennings, 41 offensive snaps, Rush: 9 - 44 - 0, Rec: 4 - 7 - 0 (5 targets)
Rashad Jennings owners should be worried as Paul Perkins has begun to overtake the veteran running back in terms of touches and carries. The Giants seem more interested in giving the young Perkins a bigger workload than Jennings as Jennings has been ineffective for most of this season; expect this trend to continue into the New Year/ week 17. Jennings had a few nice runs, using vision to find massive gaps up the middle in the defense and exploding through them. He rarely gets goal line touches however, with a lot of that due to the offense in which he plays. His overall mediocre season cannot be ignored though and he should not be started in week 17. He got 4 catches out of the backfield, showing nice hands but was never able to convert these into big plays. Jennings is a simple one cut runner that does not have youth on his side anymore.

WR Odell Beckham Jr, 88 offensive snaps, Rec: 11 - 150 - 0 (20 targets)
Beckham jr. wasn’t able to score on Thursday but was instrumental in keeping the Giants in this game. Beckham jr. looked dangerous everytime he touched the football and the Giants were intent on throwing him passes throughout the game to keep the Eagles worried. Manning somewhat struggled to find him early in this game but eventually the duo connected on a well thrown lofty bomb down the sideline. Beckham jr. then began to dominate over the middle of the field and picked up many big first downs on curls/in breaking patterns to take advantage of one on one coverage. His speed and quickness at the line of scrimmage is often too much for a defense to contain for the entire game. He turned a short slant outside pattern into a massive yards-after-catch gain as he outran several Eagle defenders along the sideline. Beckham jr. had a shot at a touchdown late in this game on a fade pattern but the pass was slightly overthrown from Manning and it fell incomplete.

WR Victor Cruz, 53 offensive snaps, Rec: 8 - 84 - 0 (13 targets)
Victor Cruz had a surprisingly strong game on Thursday despite being largely ignored this season. He displayed strong pair of consistent hands for the most part and was crucial in converting several downs for the Giants. Cruz snagged a terrific over the shoulder grab from Manning deep down the sideline, doing an excellent job to keep his feet in bounds and keep the ball away from the defender. He continued to haul in short curls/outs to keep the Giants moving and had good separation at times from the Eagles defense. He was not targeted in the redzone/endzone much unfortunately and this level of production is more of an anomaly for Cruz this season. Beckham and Shepard are often targeted a lot more than Cruz and he doesn’t quite have the same level of speed/youth that they possess, leaving him on the outside. He is still a strong play with his hands and versatility but could be gone from the Giants after this season.

WR Sterling Shepard, 88 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 2 - 0, Rec: 7 - 61 - 1 (11 targets)
Sterling Shepard had a strong performance on Thursday night but could have even had a bigger day. Shepard was wide open in the endzone on a corner route but Manning was slow getting the ball to him and it was broken up as a result. Shepard was targeted over the middle on a deep post route but wasn’t able to haul in a slightly high pass from Manning. He was very important at converting short down/distance situations and providing his QB a window to throw into in times of trouble. Shepards touchdown was incredibly impressive in the redzone and displayed his amazing route running potential. He got off the line of scrimmage and put a move on his man outside before breaking inside to become wide open for an easy score. Shepard works well in the slot and Manning trusts the young receiver to make a play anywhere on the field, he is a solid fantasy receiver going forward.

TE Will Tye, 60 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 23 - 0 (8 targets)
Will Tye turns in another mediocre stat line that will confirm this player should not be anywhere near a fantasy line up. The Giants offense knows it needs to feed its young superstar receivers and Tye will never be the focal point of this offense. He got mostly checkdown patterns in this game and never got open downfield. He has solid hands but lacks dominant size/speed to go downfield.


Philadelphia Eagles

QB Carson Wentz, 50 offensive snaps, Pass: 13 - 24 - 152 - 1 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 4 - 27 - 0
Carson Wentz did just enough to help the Eagles win today. Wentz was not accurate whatsoever, completing just 54% of his passes on the day. The lone big play came on a 40-yard play action pass to Nelson Agholor who simply ran away from the coverage on a deep crossing route. Wentz made half of an amazing play on his one interception for the day. With the pocket collapsing, Wentz was flushed to his right, reversed his field to evade another tackler, and unloaded a deep pass for Bryce Treggs. Unfortunately, Dominic Rodgers-Cromartie followed the play the entire way and stepped inform of Treggs for an easy interception. Wentz had the pocket presence and mobility to extend the play but just did not make the smart throw down the field. Wentz also left the field for a series at the end of the third quarter after a late hit roughing the passer. He was able to return for the next drive in the fourth quarter.

RB Ryan Mathews, 28 offensive snaps, Rush: 18 - 46 - 0, Rec: 1 - 16 - 0 (1 targets)
Coming off one of his best games of the season, Ryan Mathews had a chance to cement his status in Philadelphia for next season. He got off to a hot start with a rush of 17 yards. Unfortunately, Mathews herniated a disk in his neck and is done for the season. Mathews played the majority of the game but did not see a carry in the fourth quarter after he was stuffed on a 4th and 1 at the end of the third. It has been a largely disappointing season for Mathews and it looks as if it will be the Darren Sproles show for the rest of the season.

RB Darren Sproles, 27 offensive snaps, Rush: 7 - 40 - 1, Rec: 2 - 23 - 0 (2 targets)
The Eagles went primarily with Ryan Mathews in this one until the 4th quarter. Sproles has never really been given a full workload but has made the most of every touch he has gotten. The big play today came on a 25-yard rush where Sproles took a pitch and followed his blockers off the right side into the end zone. Ryan Mathews had done a lot of the work to get the Eagles down the field, but it was Sproles who capped it off with the touchdown. Sproles also added his customary catches on third down out of the backfield. IT is going to be the Daren Sproles show next week with Mathews done for the season.

WR Nelson Agholor, 54 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 5 - 0, Rec: 2 - 47 - 1 (5 targets)
In a game where Carson Wentz was wildly inaccurate, Nelson Agholor managed to come up big with a 40-yard touchdown catch to put the Eagles up 21-6 in the first half. Wentz dropped back on a play-action attempt and unloaded a deep ball for a streaking Agholor who had a step on his defender. This was an easy pitch and catch and Agholor simply outran the coverage. There was not much in the way of production outside of this touchdown catch, but it proved big in the end as the Giants mounted a furious comeback attempt in the second half.

WR Jordan Matthews, 39 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 12 - 0 (6 targets)
Jordan Matthews suffered the inaccuracy of Carson Wentz more than anyone else today. The Eagles leading receiver was targeted a team-high 6 times but only managed 2 receptions on the day. Since the ankle injury, Matthews has not found the same room against opposing corners as he did earlier in the season. Almost all of his targets today came with the ball traveling less than 10 yards in the air. The only reception of note came on a short 7-yard pass from Carson Wentz.

TE Zach Ertz, 48 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 33 - 0 (2 targets)
There was not the same connection between Carson Wentz and Zach Ertz today. The big tight end pulled in both of his targets but did not do very much with them. He was not utilized in the red zone again today and was briefly injured on the opening kickoff of the second half. Ertz has seen a much higher volume in previous weeks and today is more of an outlier than the rule. The Eagles were playing with a lead in this one and he did not need to do nearly as much as the past few weeks.