COMMENTARY | New York Giants fans must have felt like the biggest losers on Sunday, September 22.
But the Giants, who were humiliated by the Carolina Panthers, 38-0, at Bank of America Stadium in Week 3, were the true losers of the day. They dropped to 0-3 on the young season in a shockingly putrid performance worthy of their fans' contempt. Here's a look back at the individual winners -- if you want to call them that -- and losers from Sunday's lopsided loss.
CB Prince Amukamara -- With Corey Webster out, Amukamara stepped up and covered Carolina's best receiver, Steve Smith, and held him to three catches for 40 yards. The third-year pro has played well since the start of training camp. Unfortunately, the team has nothing to show for it.
DT Linval Joseph -- Joseph was one of the few defenders who had a decent game. He collected eight tackles (five solo), two of which went for a negative yardage. The underrated defensive tackle is a free agent at the end of this season, so he stands to gain financially from a strong year.
QB Eli Manning -- Manning took a beating. He was sacked seven times after being dropped an NFL-low 20 times all of last season. Consequently, he completed only 12 of 23 passes for 119 yards, his lowest total since the season finale in 2008, and tossed his league-leading eighth interception. At this rate, the offensive line is going get Big Blue's iron-man quarterback injured.
LT Will Beatty -- Signed to contract extension in the offseason, Beatty was supposed to be the anchor of the offensive line. However, he committed a pair of first-half holding penalties, the second of which nullified a touchdown run by David Wilson, and gave up at least two sacks. Ironically, Beatty was considered one of the better run- and pass-blocking left tackles in the league last year.
WR Hakeem Nicks -- Nicks, who played high school and college football in North Carolina, finally had a chance to play in front of his hometown friends and family, and what did he do? Absolutely nothing! Nicks didn't catch a single ball against a banged up Carolina secondary, which entered the game having allowed 413 yards and two touchdowns to opposing wide receivers.
HC Tom Coughlin -- Don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan of Coughlin, but this lopsided defeat reflects poorly on him and the entire coaching staff. Not only is it Big Blue's worst loss under Coughlin, who took over as coach in 2004, but it's the team's first 0-3 start on his watch. Moreover, the Giants have now dropped eight of their last 11 games dating back to last season. Have the players tuned him out?
Adam Martini is a freelance sports writer with more than 15 years of experience covering amateur and professional sports for several print and online media outlets. He tracked the New York Giants for Yahoo! Contributor Network during the team's Super Bowl run in 2011-12. Adam can be found on Twitter @Pegcitysports.
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- Carolina Panthers
- Prince Amukamara
- Linval Joseph