The Giants and Patriots play their final preseason game before the real season truly starts this Sunday.
The Giants will play their starters for at least the first half, which should excite Giant fans. It has been almost eight months since we have seen Big Blue’s full starting lineup. Now, although fans should be excited to see the starting lineups, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it will equate to a great game. The Giants and Patriots 2019 preseason matchup proves that you don’t need starters to play a great NFL football game.
The Giants got off to a solid start in this game. After rookie quarterback Daniel Jones played the first series, going 4-4 for 47 yards, safety Scott Chandler was able to pick off Patriots quarterback Jarrett Stidham after defensive lineman Jake Cerenesa got a piece of Stidham’s arm. Following the interception, the Giants All-Time Completion Percentage Leader, Alex Tanney, came in to the game and threw a gorgeous ball down the sideline to training camp star Alonzo Russell for a touchdown, putting the Giants up 7-3. The Giants were then able to recover a Jarrett Stidham fumble, allowing Aldrick Rosas to make the score 10-3 Giants.
Following this score, Alex Tanney and the Giants had an ugly end to the first half.
Jarrett Stidham and Demaryius Thomas put on a clinic in the second quarter, going for two touchdowns to help put the Patriots up 22-10, before a 1-yard touchdown run by Nick Brossette and two Stephen Gostkowski field goals put the Patriots up 29-10 at the half. Included in this quarter was two interceptions from Tanney, including one to newly acquired Giant cornerback, Keion Crossen.
After their ugly second quarter, the Giants were able to begin their long comeback, capped off by a memorable play, for two guys who would be playing their last game for Big Blue.
The third quarter began with 2018 fourth round pick, Kyle Lauletta, starting at quarterback, vying for a spot on the Giants 53-man roster. He was able to make a pretty solid case for himself, going 22 of 40 for two touchdowns. One of those touchdowns went to Giants tight end Scott Simonson following a Rosas field goal early in the quarter. Wayne Gallman was able to cut the Patriots lead to 29-25 early in the fourth quarter. The Giants defense was able to continue the second half shutout of the Patriots, including three fourth quarter sacks. This set the stage for Lauletta to make a play to another Giant looking to make the roster: previously mentioned receiver Alonzo Russell. On the final play of the game, Lauletta found Russell in the end zone for a 14 yard touchdown to win the game for the Giants 31-29 in a memorable end to the preseason.
This game showed that no matter how well you play in the preseason, it does not guarantee a roster spot.
The two stars of this game did not end up making the team for the Giants. Lauletta outplayed Tanney both in this game and in the preseason, yet was cut. Russell, who had 6 receptions for 131 yards and two touchdowns in the preseason, was also cut. The NFL is a brutal business, and following the Giants and Patriots matchup this Sunday, more brutal cuts will come. Hopefully not before another preseason classic.
(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)