The Giants have very little time before their next game, but they still took a moment to relish the team’s biggest offensive outburst since Week 1 of 2013.
“We were really efficient and we had a really good combination and just a good mix,” said quarterback Eli Manning. “We got off to a good start because I thought the line set the tempo for the day. ... The second and third possessions were about as good as we could’ve been. Maybe we didn’t finish the way we wanted early [and] have a few things to clean up, but overall, I think we’re working harder and getting better and we’ve made some big steps in getting to where we want to be.”
Manning should be allowed to bask in the glow of that win at least a little, as he spent all of the preseason and the first two weeks of the regular season dodging questions about his supposed declining skills and ill fit in the team’s new West Coast offense.
He threw for 234 yards, two touchdowns and even surpassed the infamous 70 percent completion percentage threshold (21-of-28) his quarterback coach alluded to in training camp.
“If we can play like that and continue to score like that, it’ll put a little more pressure on opposing teams and hopefully get them to make more mistakes by pressing,” said Manning. “I remember thinking after the first couple series when we didn’t finish the way we wanted to. I just said to the guys, ‘Keep doing it. They haven’t stopped us yet and they’re getting tired.’”
The Giants did have a few mistakes still, including a costly fumble by Larry Donnell on the 3-yard line and a botched snap on a field.
But such hiccups allow head coach Tom Coughlin to nitpick so the team doesn’t get complacent and rest on its laurels.
“That sure is how the offense should look,” Coughlin said. “But obviously we’ve still got more to go. We’ve got to clean up still, that’s for sure.”
Coughlin said he saw Manning start to turn the corner against the Cardinals.
“I think he’s been efficient for the last couple of weeks now,” said Coughlin. “He’s played a very good game the last few weeks and has been very solid — outstanding, even — with the mental aspect of the offense.”
Big Blue notes ...
»Coughlin addressed the benching of safety Stevie Brown when rookie Nat Berhe replaced him in the lineup late in fourth quarter and played 19 snaps. Coughlin wanted to reiterate that Brown’s substitution was not due to injury: “We made a position change there. That’s all I’m going to say about that. … He was not hurt.”
»Linebacker Jon Beason (foot/ankle) has “a chance” to do a little practicing this week and perhaps play in Washington, although Coughlin still deemed it a longshot due to the short week.
»Rookie wideout Odell Beckham Jr., on the other hand, will essentially sit on the sidelines again during the abbreviated practice week.
“There’s improvement, but I don’t believe he’s there yet,” said Coughlin.
»The Giants didn’t practice on Monday, but due to the short week, they had to submit an injury report early, as if they would’ve practiced. And rookie linebacker Devon Dennard (hamstring) and veteran cornerback Zack Bowman (quadriceps) were on that list.
»Coughlin said the team won’t get much practice time this week – the disadvantage of playing a short week on the road – even admitting that Tuesday will be a “light” day: “The field work will be very minimal in a short week.”
»Jennings’s rushing tally is the highest by a running back in the NFL so far this season.
Follow Giants beat writer Tony Williams on Twitter @TBone8.