The Los Angeles came off a bye week and embarrassed the New York Giants on their way to a 51-17 victory. You can’t win that emphatically without a number of players putting in great games. It was an encouraging sight to see for Rams fans looking for answers on if this team could avoid falling flat in a trap game. Not fun to be a Giants fan right now. Let’s revisit the 5 players I tabbed to watch on each side (five Rams to watch and five Giants) and how they fared.
TE Gerald Everett
I said to pick one of Everett, Tyler Higbee or both before the game and the correct answer was C. Everett got back on the map with another big play catch (all he does is catch bombs) that went for 44 yards as he streaked down the sideline. Before that, Higbee caught an 8 yard pass for the 1st TD of the game and then proceeded to celebrate by shotgunning the football. It wasn’t a busy day for the TEs on the stat sheet but they made their presence felt. Those two plays were the only catches from the young duo.
DT Damon Harrison
Harrison was tied for first on the Giants with 7 total tackles yesterday as he tried his best to bottle up the Rams running game. After a 1st drive that saw a big chunk of Todd Gurley’s rushing yards, the Rams were slowed down until the score became lopsided and the Rams turned to Malcolm Brown. Harrison had to leave the game at one point in the 2nd half after he was shaken up. It’s too bad Harrison is one of the only players on defense that’s worth a damn.
LB Mark Barron
Barron was indeed busy yesterday as he was in the middle of a soft Rams run defense and covering Shane Vereen and Evan Engram throughout the game. While the game was still in reach, Barron oftentimes followed Engram into the slot and held his own there. Barron once again finished the day as the Rams leading tackler finishing with 8 tackles and 1 pass defensed. He looked neither great or like a liability but that’s perfect when you can go rest up for the entire 4th quarter while the backups get in.
WR Sterling Shepard
Shepard and Engram were clearly the Giants biggest weapons throughout the game. Shepard was second for New York in targets with 9 and turned them into 5 catches for 70 yards. Most of his damage came on one 37 yard reception early in the 4th quarter against Rams backups Blake Countess and Marquis Christian. The Giants young tandem of Shepard and Engram look to have a lot of potential but were no match for the Rams’ first string defense.
WR Sammy Watkins
Much like Everett and Higbee, Watkins made the most out of his one catch on the day when he and Goff finally connected on a 67 yard bomb. Goff and Watkins had tried another deep ball earlier in the game to no avail. Those were the only two targets for Watkins but I don’t think anyone will be complaining. The TD pass was pure bliss.
S Landon Collins
Collins was without his top CB Janoris Jenkins yesterday and he really struggled. Whether it was Jenkins absence or not, Collins had a rough day in coverage. He and Eli Apple seemed to have some communication issues on Gerald Everett’s 44 yard reception and Collins generally just looked slow to react. Following the game, Collins called the Giants loss “embarrassing.” For the day, Collins led the Giants with 7 tackles.
QB Jared Goff
It was Goff’s first experience as a starting QB coming off a bye week and did it show. It was Goff’s best game of his young career as he only had one pass that resembled his 2016 version. Goff’s deep ball accuracy could use some work but the TD pass to Sammy Watkins is what dreams are made of. My favorite pass was the TD pass to Higbee as Goff navigated the pocket with plenty of time to eventually find his TE and fire a dart into tight coverage. Goff finished the day 14 of 22 with 311 yards and 4 TDs while never even being hit by the Giants. Huge momentum game to take us into the heart of the schedule.
RB Shane Vereen
Not a whole lot to say here. Vereen looked pretty pedestrian catching 3 of 4 targets for 14 yards with one drop. Orleans Darkwa was able to find running room early in the game before the Giants were forced to abandon the run. Wayne Gallman didn’t provide much of anything while the game was still close. Darkwa and Gallman combined for 112 rushing yards to end the game.
EDGE Robert Quinn
I could sum up Quinn’s game in similar fashion to Barron’s. Quinn continues to look on the verge without quite getting to the QB. Quinn did force some obvious holds that went uncalled but thats the way it goes. This far into the season, I would say this is what we should expect from Quinn moving forward. A few pressures here and there. Quinn finished the day with 2 tackles.
QB Eli Manning
Poor Eli. With no Odell Beckham Jr, Brandon Marshall and a banged up offensive line, Manning can’t be having a lot of fun. Early on Manning took what the defense gave him and looked like he just might be able to put the Giants on his back after an early TD to Tavarres King. But things quickly got out of hand. Manning had two turnovers, was sacked twice and was hit a number of other times. Eli finished the game completing 20 of 36 passes for 220 yards, 1 TD and 1 INT.