Rather inexplicably, the New York Giants won a football game on Sunday afternoon.
Rookie kicker Aldrick Rosas kicked a game-winning 23-yard field goal with 1:54 remaining in overtime to lift the Giants (2-8) to a 12-9 ugly victory over the Kansas City Chiefs (6-4), just the team’s second triumph of the season.
The win was created by a 4th-&-6 conversion featuring Roger Lewis’ catch-of-the-year effort off an Eli Manning floating deep pass. While being hauled to the ground on what was called defensive pass interference, Lewis miraculously made the catch while on the turf to put the ball on the Kansas City two-yard-line.
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After Manning took a knee, Rosas delivered the game-winner.
But it was the Giants’ defense that managed to put the team in a position to win.
In their best performance of the year, New York held the Chiefs’ fifth-ranked offense to just nine points while creating three turnovers, including two interceptions of Smith, who had just one pick all season entering Week 11.
They provided a big stop in overtime, getting Rosas off the hook after his missed extra point in the second quarter was a big reason why the game went into overtime in the first place.
After he put the Giants ahead 9-6 instead of 10-6 with 1:38 remaining in the game, New York’s solid defense broke in the final portion of regulation, allowing the Chiefs to drive down for a game-tying field goal to force overtime.
The Chiefs were expected to breeze to an easy victory considering the Giants were allowing 31.5 points per game at home.
It was a defensive performance worthy of at least a regulation win, but the offense was struggling for most of the afternoon.
Manning threw for just 171 yards, but the ground game was solid. Especially Orleans Darkwa, who put up 74 yards and a touchdown on 20 carries.
Still, they took an improbable lead in the second quarter after Damon Harrison wrangled in Smith’s shovel pass that went off the hands of tight end Travis Kelce on Kansas City’s 26-yard-line.
It was Smith’s second interception of the season. His first came in Week 9 against the Cowboys.
Darkwa provided the opening score of the game, a one-yard rush 1:30 into the quarter. But Rosas missed the extra point to limit New York’s lead to 6-0.
It was the highlight of the first half for a team that looked drastically different compared to their Week 10 disaster against the San Francisco 49ers.
The playcalling was far more aggressive, including a first-quarter fake punt on a 4th-and-1 and a running back option pass that ended with Shane Vereen throwing an interception at the goal line.
The Chiefs looked poised to take the lead early in the fourth after Smith hit Tyreek Hill for 38 yards, bringing the ball down to the Giants 16-yard-line. But New York held strong, holding Kansas City to a tying field goal with 13:30 left in the game.
The defense continued to come up big down the stretch. Landon Collins picked off the tight end Kelce after he attempted a bomb downfield off a lateral from Smith with 6:47 to go.
Smith was picked off for a second time with two minutes to go by Janoris Jenkins, who was criticized all week after a down performance against the 49ers, setting up Rosas’ temporary go-ahead field goal.