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The Giants Loss to the Super Bowl-bound Browns Is Why I Hate The Preseason


New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley rips off a 39-yard run on his first carry against the Cleveland Browns in a NFL preseason game.

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley rips off a 39-yard run on his first carry against the Cleveland Browns in a NFL preseason game.

The Browns-Giants game on Thursday night was further proof of why I hate the NFL preseason. My reaction, recap, review, and ruminations are below.

The positives for the Giants were few and far between in their preseason game against the Browns on Thursday night. Tyrold Taylor carved up the Giants pass defense. Baker Mayfield looked like a Hall of Famer. The Giants offense did next to nothing.

What I liked:

Kerry Wynn forcing the fumble on a punt return, my best bachelor party NFL friend Zak DeOssie recovering the fumble then shimmying and shaking and showing off his status as top fumble recoverer, and the Giants converting with a score.

Saquon Barkley’s first carry as a Giant was and is pretty much the only thing I’m holding on to hope-wise.

Landon Collins wreaking havoc. He’s a madman who’s gonna be All-Pro and with the Giants dumping all their dollars into Beckham, this upcoming season might as well be a farewell tour.

The Giants run defense served a healthy side of stuffing.

Hunter Sharp’s big kick return – finally a return game?!

What I didn’t like:

Everything else Hunter Sharp did. Taking the opening kickoff 7 yards deep out to the 12. Not great. Dropping passes, losing yardage on one punt, fair-catching at least two other punts where he could’ve given the Giants offense breathing room. Hunter Sharp? More like Hunter Dull. That’s not fair. Hunter got drilled in the jaw by Devin Ward. No need to salt it.

The new-look, “chaotic” Giants defense that was supposed to confuse and confound opponents looked VERY beatable via the forward pass. If the Browns didn’t get penalized a bazillion times, the Giants would’ve been blown out. The way Carl Banks was talking in the pre-game, I thought the Giants would’ve rip spines Mortal Kombat-style and swallowed skulls whole.

It’s great the Giants shut down the run. But when you’re getting thrashed by the pass and giving up TDs through the air and end up on the losing side of the column, the staunch run D can feel good polishing their participation trophy.

That goddam stop route — where the QB hits the back shoulder of the receiver — was murdering the Giants secondary all night long. How do you stop the stop? Pray that the timing’s off?

Alec Ogletree got burned by David Njoku, who had himself a day. On that touchdown, Darian Thompson was somewhat late getting over to help. Ogletree’s in a new system. We should give him a pass, especially since I lauded the lord out of that trade.

Davis Webb couldn’t complete a pass to save his life. Started off 0-for-6 then went something like 3-for-14. I know Webb’s catching a lot of heat from a bunch of fans and it’s only the preseason and he hasn’t seen playing time against an opponent in a year but yikes. Hopefully, he’s rid his body of jitters and can get to Dragon status.

The first team offense. Other than the long run by Barkley, I wasn’t too impressed with the new look offense. I didn’t really see the nasty play out of Will Hernandez. Solder got beat a couple times. The Browns blitzes were blistering. But the big boys up front moved the line. Now we just need Barkley to stay the course.

I love Eli but I’m getting so tired of seeing him IMMEDIATELY give up and hit the deck when pressure comes. Especially when you watch Tyrold Taylor and Baker Mayfield and even Davis Webb make plays with their legs.

All of these things might be indicators of what to expect this season when the games count and all of these things might just be an elaborate ruse.

Are the Browns legit? Yes, that’s a real question. They went 4-0 last preseason then didn’t win a regular season game. From what I’ve heard, they typically do well in the preseason then suck in the regular season. They still looked good. I HATE WHAT THE PRESEASON DOES TO MY BRAIN.

The Giants first-team offense didn’t really look all that good. The offense didn’t look so hot in 2016 or 2017 in the preseason and they stunk out loud during each regular season.

I’m happy football is back. But the preseason is almost impossible to watch. All it does for me is set off alarms or raise false hope. I have nightmarish visions and premonitions of:

  1. The Giants secondary getting torched on stop routes
  2. Giants linebackers getting smoked by TEs on seam patterns
  3. Saquon Barkley having no holes to run through and bouncing every run outside for little to no yardage
  4. The Giants overusing Saquon and leaning on him too much.
  5. Shurmur not utilizing all his receiving weapons. I saw way too many throws to running backs. Screens, dump-offs, check-downs, etc. Can we please take some shots down the frickin’ field?

I know it’s just one game. And it’s just one preseason game. But I want to skip over this shit and get to the regular season. The reports coming out of training camp are all over the place. They look good! They look like crap! Some no-name player is REALLY making a name for himself! It’s just a load of bloated overreactions. No one had the Eagles winning the Super Bowl last season, especially with Nick Foles taking live snaps.

I really don’t want to watch any more preseason but I will because I have no willpower. It’d just be super nice to see our first team offense and first team defense look like golden gods. Just once. To slightly relieve the nauseating pit in my tum-tum over repeating one of the worst seasons in Giants history.

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