Winless Giants left looking for answers
Sunday, September 22, 2013
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The New York Giants’ offense is a mess, and coach Tom Coughlin knows time is running out to find answers and salvage the season.
New York’s 38-0 loss to the Carolina Panthers on Sunday was the most lopsided defeat in Coughlin’s 10 seasons with the Giants. It speaks volumes about just how far they are from being a competitive team.
In three games, the Giants have turned the ball over 13 times, Eli Manning has been sacked 11 times, and New York has only 133 yards rushing.
The Giants have been outscored 115-54 en route to an 0-3 start.
“Disappointed isn’t a strong enough word,” Coughlin said after Sunday’s performance.
The Giants have plenty of concerns as they prepare for next Sunday’s game against Kansas City (3-0).
Of the 161 teams that have started 0-3 since 1978, only five made the NFL playoffs, according to STATS.
“We’ll reload,” Coughlin said. “We’re going to fight every step of the way. We’re going to give it everything we’ve got. We’re going to battle and we’re going to be competitive and try as hard as we can.”
Everything the Giants tried Sunday didn’t work.
Manning was held to 119 yards on 12-of-23 passing. He was intercepted twice and sacked seven times — six in the first half. The Giants had 60 yards rushing, but 40 came after they were trailing 31-0.
The Giants are averaging just 2.7 yards per carry this season.
“Our offense was getting manhandled, quite frankly,” Coughlin said.
It was Carolina’s most lopsided victory in franchise history, helping to eliminate questions about coach Ron Rivera’s job security entering the team’s bye week.
“I told a couple of guys we were past due for a win like this,” Newton said. “A win like this boosts our ego and gives us that swagger we need.”
Carolina’s previous best rout was a 34-0 win against Kansas City in 2008.
The Panthers set the tone early, sacking Manning five times in the first quarter. They limited the Giants to 18 yards — and just 1 yard passing — in the first half and took a 17-0 lead to the locker room.
Colts 27, 49ers 7
SAN FRANCISCO — Andrew Luck threw for 164 yards and ran for a 6-yard touchdown while facing college coach Jim Harbaugh for the first time, and Indianapolis defeated San Francisco.
Trent Richardson scored a 1-yard touchdown on his first carry in his Colts debut after being acquired on Wednesday from the Browns. He was drafted two spots behind Luck at No. 3 last year.
Ahmad Bradshaw added a 1-yard TD run in the final minutes, and Adam Vinatieri kicked a pair of field goals before missing a 51-yarder early in the fourth.
But Luck came through again to give Indianapolis (2-1) more opportunities.
It was Colin Kaepernick’s first home loss at Candlestick Park as a starter.
Frank Gore ran for 82 yards after going for 60 total in his first two games, but there were few bright spots for Kaepernick as San Francisco (1-2) struggled to establish a passing game with tight end Vernon Davis sidelined by a hamstring injury.
Patriots 23, Buccaneers 3
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Tom Brady threw two touchdown passes to Kenbrell Thompkins to lead New England to a one-sided win against Tampa Bay.
Thompkins, an undrafted free agent, scored on plays of 16 and 5 yards in the first half. Aaron Dobson, a second-round draft pick, finished with seven catches for 52 yards. In their first two games, the rookies combined for just nine receptions.
The Patriots led 17-3 at halftime as the Buccaneers (0-3) wasted several opportunities.
The Patriots (3-0) have allowed just 34 points this season.
Bengals 34, Packers 30
CINCINNATI — Terence Newman returned a fumble 58 yards for a touchdown with 3:47 left, rallying Cincinnati past Green Bay in a game of wild momentum swings set up by nonstop turnovers.
Each team gave it away four times. Each team returned a fumble for a touchdown — M.D. Jennings ran one back for Green Bay (1-2). The Bengals blew a 14-point lead, and the Packers let a 16-point lead get away in the second half.
The Bengals (2-1) finished it off when Michael Johnson batted down Aaron Rodgers’ fourth-down pass at the Cincinnati 20-yard line with 1:21 left, ending a subpar showing for the quarterback.
Saints 31, Cardinals 7
NEW ORLEANS — Drew Brees passed for three scores and scrambled for New Orleans’ first rushing touchdown of the season in a victory against Arizona.
The Saints quarterback was 29-of-46 for 342 yards, with two TD strikes to tight end Jimmy Graham and the other to Robert Meachem.
Brees was intercepted once by New Orleans native and former LSU star Tyrann Mathieu. That play ended a scoring threat, but only delayed the inevitable on a day when Arizona’s short-handed defense was little match for the prolific passing attack of the Saints (3-0).
Arizona (1-2) had no answer for the 6-foot-7 Graham, who caught nine passes for 134 yards.
Ravens 30, Texans 9
BALTIMORE — Daryl Smith had a 37-yard interception return for a TD, Tandon Doss took a punt 82 yards for another score, and Baltimore smothered Houston’s high-powered offense.
The Ravens (2-1) won despite playing without Ray Rice for the first time since 2008. The three-time Pro Bowl running back was replaced by Bernard Pierce, who ran for 65 yards and a touchdown.
Houston (2-1) led 6-3 before Smith picked off Matt Schaub’s pass and took it into the end zone with 2:39 left in the first half. Less than two minutes later, Doss had his first punt return for a touchdown.
The Ravens haven’t allowed a touchdown in eight quarters since their season-opening 49-27 defeat in Denver.
Lions 27, Redskins 20
LANDOVER, Md. — Matthew Stafford completed 25-of-42 passes for 385 yards with two touchdowns and one interception, and Calvin Johnson and Nate Burleson both had 100 yards receiving for Detroit, which beat Washington on the road for the first time since 1939.
The Lions (2-1) ended a 21-game streak against the Redskins, the second-longest in NFL history. Detroit’s last win away from home in the series came in 1935 against the Boston Redskins, two years before the move to Washington.
Robert Griffin III and the defending NFC East champion Redskins fell to 0-3.
Titans 20, Chargers 17
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Jake Locker helped Tennessee end a skid against the San Diego that spanned two states and two decades.
Locker threw a 34-yard touchdown pass to rookie Justin Hunter with 15 seconds left and the Titans rallied to beat the Chargers.
It was their first win against the Chargers for the franchise since 1992 when the team was in Houston and Titans coach Mike Munchak still was playing for the then-Oilers.
The Titans (2-1) had lost nine straight to the Chargers (1-2).
Browns 31, Vikings 27
MINNEAPOLIS — Jordan Cameron caught three touchdown passes, including the go-ahead grab in the back of the end zone with 51 seconds left, and Cleveland kept Minnesota winless.
Third-stringer Brian Hoyer threw three scores for the Browns (1-2), the latest team to torch Minnesota’s depleted secondary. He overcame three interceptions to throw for 321 yards, going 30-for-54. Josh Gordon had 10 catches for 146 yards and a touchdown in his season debut, and Cameron had six receptions for 66 yards.
Christian Ponder ran for two touchdowns for the Vikings (0-3), but he threw an interception, lost a fumble and took his sixth sack on the final play of the game.
Seahawks 45, Jaguars 17
SEATTLE — Russell Wilson matched his career high with four touchdown passes — two each to Sidney Rice and Zach Miller — and Seattle overwhelmed Jacksonville.
The Seahawks improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2006, beginning a stretch of four straight games against the AFC South. Seattle came in as a 19-point favorite and never gave Jacksonville (0-3) a chance.
Seattle jumped ahead 17-0 early in the second quarter. Wilson connected with Miller twice in the first 16 minutes on TDs of 1 and 4 yards. He hit Rice for an 11-yard TD late in the first half and found him again on a 23-yarder early in the third quarter.
Dolphins 27, Falcons 23
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Ryan Tannehill lobbed a 1-yard touchdown pass to rookie Dion Sims with 38 seconds left, and unbeaten Miami rallied past Atlanta.
Miami (3-0) fell behind 10-0 and 20-10 and trailed much of the game, but nonetheless improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2002. The injury-plagued Falcons, who were one play from the Super Bowl last season, fell to 1-2.
Jets 27, Bills 20
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Geno Smith threw two touchdown passes, including a go-ahead 69-yarder to Santonio Holmes in the fourth quarter, and the New York Jets overcame a team-record 20 penalties to hang on and beat Buffalo in an ugly game.
Smith slightly outplayed EJ Manuel in a matchup of the first two quarterbacks selected in the NFL draft in April. But this one was tough to watch at times with the barrage of penalties. The Jets (2-1) rolled up 168 yards in penalty yardage, and nearly gave it away against the Bills (1-2).
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