The New York Giants upset the Minnesota Vikings, 31-24, in the Wild Card round of the NFC Playoffs on Sunday. It was their first postseason appearance since 2016 and their first win since Super Bowl XLVI.
It’s been a long time since retired offensive lineman and current NFL analyst, Brian Baldinger, had the opportunity to break down a Giants playoff game. But what he saw over the weekend left him impressed.
Up front, Baldinger says, the Giants were “dominant.” That began with nose tackle Dexter Lawrence and defensive end Leonard Williams.
Lawrence, in particular, played “as well as one can.”
But it wasn’t just Lawrence and Williams. Although his box score numbers were lacking, rookie linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux also played a solid game.
Because of the strong play up front, it took some of the pressure off of the secondary. And with safety Xavier McKinney and cornerback Adoree’ Jackson both back and healthy, it allowed the Giants to essentially eliminate Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson from the game.
“Adoree’ Jackson makes a difference. So does Xavier McKinney,” Baldinger said. “Shut down the league’s leading receiver. Just an unbelievable job.”
Baldinger also took a moment to appreciate some old-school football and the emotion of left tackle Andrew Thomas.
“Look at the reaction right there. Look at Andrew Thomas,” Baldinger said. “Yeah, baby! Give it to me.”
There are plenty of things the Giants have to clean up but there’s also a lot to like. They are excelling in certain areas and completely dominating in others.
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