The New York Giants (5–0) remained perfect after destroying the Oakland Raiders (1–4) at Giants Stadium on Sunday afternoon, 44–7.
The Giants scored first, driving the length of the field on the opening drive before punching it in from the goal line on a critical 4th and inches. The Giants could have elected to kick the field goal and play it safe, but Tom Coughlin wanted his team to make a statement and called in Ahmad Bradshaw who powered his way into the end zone.
The play set the tone for the rest of the game.
On their second possession, the Giants scored again marching 79 yards in less than a minute and a half. On the first play of the drive, Eli Manning connected with the league’s leading receiver Steve Smith for a huge 47-yard reception. Then Ahmad Bradshaw went back to work, running it in for a 19-yard touchdown that put New York up 14–0.
Just before the end of the first quarter, the Giants were forced into a 3rd and 24 deep in their own end but they would strike another lethal blow to the Raiders psyche. Avoiding a rush, Manning dumped the ball off to Ahmad Bradshaw on his left side and the Giants runner galloped 55 yards downfield into Oakland territory.
Starting the second quarter, the Giants offense went back to the air as Manning threw a crisp 30 yard touchdown pass down the right side to Mario Manningham who hauled it in for the score, whipping the home crowd into an absolute frenzy.
But the Giants scoring machine wasn’t finished. Minutes later as Oakland’s offense took the field, Terrell Thomas rushed in and stripped beleaguered quarterback JaMarcus Russell of the ball and Justin Tuck recovered it near the Raiders’ 10-yard line.
With the Giants offense back in action, Manning threw a 9-yard strike to rookie Hakeem Nicks and the score increased to 28–0.
Oakland got on the scoreboard in the second quarter courtesy of a dubious call by officials. On the play, running back Justin Fargas was stood up and stripped of the ball near the New York 20 yard-line. Giants’ safety C.C. Brown recovered it and ran the length of the field for the apparent score. But the officials would have none of it and ruled that a whistle was blown before the ball came loose. On the next play, Oakland’s Michael Bush ran it for 5-yard touchdown run and the crowd showered referees with a chorus of boos.
With the score at 28–7, on their next possession Coughlin decided that Manning had seen enough action and replaced him with backup David Carr. Carr carried the offense and got them downfield with enough time for a 25-yard Lawrence Tynes field goal, adding to their lead at 31–7.
In the third quarter, Carr gave the Giants their fourth touchdown of the game but this time he did it all by himself. After evading a near sack by the Raiders’ Gerard Warren, Carr tucked the ball and ran it in along the left side for a 12-yard touchdown.
Subbing in for Eli, Carr gave praise to his teammates’ performance, “The guys did a great job today; they don't let their game down no matter who is in there. That means a lot to me.”
Minutes later, Giants fans would have more reason to cheer as defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka sacked Russell, forcing a fumble at the Raiders’ 19-yard line that resulted in a 33-yard Tynes field goal, putting the G-Men up 41–7.
In the fourth quarter, Tynes connected on a 37-yard field goal and the Giants went on to win the game 44–7.
Eli Manning, who only played the first half, completed 8-of-10 passes for 173 yards and two touchdowns. The Giants offense netted an impressive 483 yards behind both Manning and Carr.
Ahmad Bradshaw had a huge game, rushing for 110 yards on 11 carries and two touchdowns.
Giants’ receivers Steve Smith and Hakeem Nicks turned in solid performances with three catches for 70 yards and 4 catches for 40 yards and a touchdown, respectively.
As for the Giants defense, they dominated this game from start to finish, sacking Russell six times and forcing three turnovers. Oakland was also limited to only 124 total yards.
New York has netted 11 sacks in the last two games.
After the game, Coughlin commented on his defensive unit, “This defense is really coming together. Every week we seem to get a little better. We try to work on things that maybe last week we didn't do as well and we come out the next week and try to correct it. That's the mark of a special unit.”
If we keep doing that week in and week out, we will put ourselves in a really good position.”
Cornerback Corey Webster agreed, “We have been really starting to come together and this is only our fifth game. We are expecting to get even better.”