BGA is back…and this time it’s preseasonal (again)!
Coming up, part two of your breakdown of last night’s loss to the Giants with detailed analysis of the defensive performance and a few notes on special teams.
Join me after the jump as I attempt to cover every angle.
This week, we're splitting the BGA into two. We covered the offense earlier today but now turn our attention to the defense and special teams.
It was a disappointing first half statistically for the run defense, which gave up 67 yards to Rashad Jennings at over five yards per clip. However, 23 of those yards came on a play where Dawan Landry came up and missed a tackle on the edge, so it wasn't really on the defensive line. Still, they gave up almost four yards per carry other than that play, which is still not up to their usual standards.
One major positive was that Sheldon Richardson, who had been off to a slow start this preseason, was solid early on, twice getting into the backfield to create pressure on consecutive plays and then penetrating to blow up a run. There was a momentary scare when he left the game with an injury, but he soon returned and apparently just got poked in the eye. He had one other pressure late in the first half and stuffed two more runs in the second half, one for a loss, as the first unit came out for two series (a touchdown scored by the Giants' second-unit with a short field after Michael Vick's fumble and a three-and-out).
Muhammad Wilkerson had also been off to a slow start by his standards, but he broke through with a sack, also getting credit for a forced fumble on the play. He also broke into the backfield for a hit, forcing Eli Manning to throw the ball away on a designed screen pass. He was in on one third down tackle to force a punt.
Damon Harrison had a quiet first half, but drew a lot of double teams. He did break into the backfield on one pass play, forcing Manning out of the pocket. He was dragged down on the play and could have drawn a hold. He did blow up a run in the second half.
Off the bench, Kenrick Ellis didn't play much but continues to get consistent penetration against backups. It's a bit difficult to assess his performance this preseason because he has rarely played with the first team other than on the goal line. Leger Douzable had one big run stuff.
TJ Barnes wasn't as impressive this week, as he got blocked off the line a couple of times while single-blocked. He did get some good traction on one bull-rush though.
When Richardson left the game, Quinton Coples actually moved back to the inside. It's moments like that which make me wonder if this whole weight loss/position change stuff is just a ruse. However, Coples did display more versatility in the first half, dropping into coverage on one play and lining up off the line alongside David Harris on another play where he made the stop. Coples made a series of great plays against the run in the first half, including an explosive tackle in the backfield. However, he did get sealed to the inside and blocked off the edge a couple of times. He added a quarterback hit in the second half as the quarterback rolled out.
Jason Babin flashed in the first half, with a strip sack and penetration on a running play to draw an obvious hold. However, in the second half, he was once again blocked to the inside setting up a big run off the edge. He has not been good at setting the edge at all this offseason, so it's probably in everybody's best interests to keep him in situational pass rushing role. He did add one more pressure in the second half, but he also jumped offside once.
Calvin Pace was quiet in the first half. He did get called for a defensive hold on one coverage play, although it was declined. He did get one pressure around the outside late in the first half.
On the inside, Harris and Demario Davis didn't have much of an impact in the first half as they were caught inside or blocked out at the second level a few times each. Each of them was in on one run stuff and Davis also made a tackle in the flat on third down.
Garrett McIntyre lined up in the slot on one play, but blitzed from there and got a clean hit on Manning. He added one more pressure in the second half. Trevor Reilly was in on a couple of run stuffs, but also jumped offside once and was blown off the line on the goal line.
IK Enemkpali was ruled out, while Troy Davis got into the game early only to injure his leg.
AJ Edds has played well this preseason but didn't have the same impact last night. He had just three tackles and was blocked out of a couple of plays. Nick Bellore did have a good hit in the backfield though.
This week's Antonio Allen experiment ended prematurely, as he was injured in a collision with Demario Davis. Early on in the game, he stayed with his man well to break up a downfield pass, which he almost intercepted. When the Jets went into the nickel package, Allen initially reverted to the slot with Ellis Lankster joining Darrin Walls on the outside. However, Kyle Wilson was mixed in later too.
Walls broke up a couple of passes early, although he wasn't perfect. He gave up a first down on a back shoulder throw, which may have involved a slight push-off by the receiver. He also gave up an easy first down playing off his man in prevent defense and got blocked out of a play downfield. Early in the second half, he broke up another pass on the outside.
When Allen was hurt, the Jets surprisingly turned to LeQuan Lewis on the outside. Lewis had a couple of interceptions in practice the other day. He gave up a touchdown at the end of the two minute drill, which ruined an otherwise solid first half performance by the defense. He did make a couple of open field tackles and was in good position on one incompletion in the second half.
Wilson had his trademark premature celebration on an early interference call where he arrived a hair too early to make the hit. He also gave up three first downs to Victor Cruz during the two-minute drill - two on deep outs and one as he got picked. He made a nice snag on a would-be interception but unfortunately the replay booth took that one away from him.
Brandon Dixon got some work with the second unit but seemed out of his depth. He got burned for two touchdowns and one other first down and also had two missed tackles. He did break up a pass on another throw to the end zone, but he got lucky there because he didn't look back for the ball and seemed to make contact before it arrived.
Johnny Patrick saw some playing time late and was flagged for defensive pass interference.
At safety, other than the missed tackle on the edge, Landry didn't make any major mistakes, although he was perhaps lucky not to get flagged for a late hit over by the sideline.
Calvin Pryor didn't make any impact plays in the first half, but was flying around the defensive secondary and didn't make any mistakes. He drew a flag on one play. He still quietly led the team with five tackles and was also credited with a pass defensed.
Jaiquawn Jarrett was beaten for a touchdown on a pass out to the flat. He also had a missed tackle and was blocked out of one running play on the edge. He was in on a tackle to force a punt and had an unblocked pressure on a blitz.
Josh Bush still seems to be behind, but did impress on a nice hit against the run. He also had a bad missed tackle at the second level though. Rontez Miles did not make an impact this week.
Let's wrap up with some bullet point notes on the special teams:
- Ryan Quigley had a good early punt, pinning the Giants inside their 10, but then shanked two 29-yarders out of bounds
- Bellore had a good special teams tackle, but also missed a tackle
- Saalim Hakim continues to get downfield well and had a good special teams tackle. He almost broke into the clear on a kick return too
- Wilson was badly burned by the gunner on one punt then compounded the mistake with an obvious block in the back
- Jacoby Ford didn't help his case when he muffed a punt
- Zach Sudfeld hustled well to recover the loose ball after Ford's muff
- Nick Folk was solid with a short field goal, two extra points, three touchbacks and a kick deep in the end zone which was returned only to the 15
- Andrew Furney made an extra point and kicked off once
- Jacob Schum didn't get a chance to punt. He did hold on Furney's kick though
Remember, for this week only, we're doing a Preseason BGA Extra. If you want me to investigate anything from this game (or the previous two) in more detail, please let me know in the comments, via e-mail (email@example.com) or via twitter (@bent_double). I'll then respond to your questions during the week.