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NY Post
New York Post
21 Oct 2023

NextImg:Giants’ silent offense can show growth vs. Commanders by ending touchdown drought

Getting there is not the hardest part for the Giants.

Getting in there after getting there?

That is Mission: Impossible for an offense that often appears repelled by the goal line and incapable of setting foot in the end zone.

No matter who they play, where they play or when they play, the Giants cannot win without touchdowns.

That has held true in the four-game losing streak they will take into their matchup against the Commanders at MetLife Stadium — in Week 7, the first Sunday, 1 p.m. contest of the season for the Giants.

High-scoring and high-octane are not descriptions applicable to how the Giants operate with the ball in their possession.

No one is asking for pyrotechnics here.

Darius Slayton said the Giants’ offensive performance against the Bills last week was “something to build off of.”
Corey Sipkin for the NY Post

Competence is the low bar and this team is having extreme difficulty stepping over it.

Based on the most recent failures, the Giants are getting closer, for whatever that is worth.

“We got down on the 1-yard line twice, we got inside the 10 three times,’’ wide receiver Darius Slayton told The Post, referring to the 14-9 loss to the Bills last week in Orchard Park, N.Y. “Percentages of football and the history of football would say that if you can get inside the 10 three times in a football game the percentages are probably heavily in your favor that you’re gonna get in there more times than not.’’

In their four lopsided losses, a missed drive here and a botched series there could be dismissed.

    Not so for loss No. 5.

    The Giants went 0-for-5 in the red zone, as far as scoring touchdowns, despite advancing to the Buffalo 8-, 19-, 1-, 11- and 1-yard line.

    The net result of those five possessions was three field goals.

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    The infamy of scoring zero points after ending the first half and the game on the 1-yard line will stay with the Giants for a long, long time.

    Did all that waste provide anything of value?

    “I think it was something to build off of,’’ Slayton said. “We still didn’t get the result we wanted but it was probably one of the most complete games from start to finish, maybe the most complete game from start to finish we’ve played as a team.

    “We had chances and sometimes when the chances don’t go your way it’s like ‘How do you get in the end zone?’ If those just go the other way then we’re having a different conversation.’’

    The conversation needs changing.

    The Giants have not scored a touchdown on offense in 205 consecutive minutes on the clock.

    Matt Breida’s 8-yard run with 10 minutes remaining in the third quarter of the Week 3 game against the 49ers in Santa Clara, Calif., is the last time their moribund offense hit the end zone.

    The Giants haven’t scored a touchdown since their Week 3 loss against the 49ers.
    Getty Images

    In the next 20 minutes of that 30-12 loss and the entire 60 minutes of each of the past three games, all the points came from Graham Gano’s right foot and a 95-yard interception return for a touchdown by safety Jason Pinnock in the 31-16 loss to the Dolphins in Week 5.

    Saquon Barkley returned last week after he had missed three games with a high ankle sprain and Justin Pugh, straight off the couch, moved outside to left tackle and helped stabilize the ridiculously depleted offensive line.

    Tyrod Taylor started at quarterback in place of injured Daniel Jones and the offense at least seemed to function.

    But the Giants failed to break double-figures in points, and so functionality is in the eye of the beholder.

    “It wasn’t a winning performance, so ultimately no,’’ Taylor said, when asked if he was satisfied with his performance. “I think I did well, but there is always room to grow. As a quarterback, you get judged on a lot, but at the end of the day, wins and losses are what matter, and ultimately it wasn’t a winning performance.’’

    Tyrod Taylor (r.) could get a second consecutive start for the Giants with Daniel Jones questionable.

    Taylor is expected to get the call again in place of Jones, who continues to wait to be cleared for contact as he deals with a neck issue.

    Pugh will likely start at left tackle, and Tyre Phillips, signed this past week off the Eagles’ practice squad, could start at right tackle if Evan Neal’s sprained ankle prevents him from playing.

    Phillips started five games for the Giants last season.

    After losing four games to teams with a combined record of 21-8, the schedule provides a somewhat softer landing spot with the Commanders, who are 3-3, with their three victories coming against teams with a combined record of 5-13.

    But does any of that matter if the Giants cannot muster a single touchdown?