Giants vs. Saints analysis: Studs and Duds

USA TODAY Sports

Destiny still in their hands and with a penchant for doing it the hard way, the Giants crushed the New Orleans Saints, 52-27.

The New York Giants were recipients of a double-dose of bad news to begin a bleak, gray and dreary Sunday afternoon at MetLife Stadium. Both the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins rallied for dramatic victories in the final seconds and overtime, respectively. One more loss from the Giants and there would have been a three-way tie for the division lead.

Destiny still in their hands and with a penchant for doing it the hard way, the Giants crushed the New Orleans Saints, 52-27, by forcing four turnovers, scoring their most points since 55 against the Green Bay Packers in 1986 and enjoying a record-setting day by rookie David Wilson. Their NFC East lead standing at one game, the Giants must figure out the key to consistency down the stretch, but this storyline sounds familiar, doesn't it?

STUDS
David Wilson:
Where does one start? How about a franchise record 327 all-purpose yards? The breakdown: 227 return yards and 100 rushing along with three total touchdowns, to become is first player in NFL history with at least 200 kickoff return yards and 100 rushing yards in the same game. His 52-yard dash in the fourth sealed the victory for Big Blue. For good measure, with each score came a back flip.

Will Hill: Thrived in the Giants' three-safety package when he combined with Stevie Brown (two INT) to force Marques Colston's fumble early in the first quarter. He also came up up with a huge block to spring Jerrel Jernigan's big kickoff return late in the third.

Stevie Brown: His two picks led to 10 Giants points.

Antrel Rolle: Called out his team for the second consecutive season by imploring to play nastier. He backed it up (again) by recovering Colston's fumble forcing another to set up the Giants' second touchdown.

Eli Manning: Shook off two interceptions, the first returned for a 73-yard Pick Six, to throw for 259 yards and four touchdowns on 22 of 35 passing.

Victor Cruz: A game-high eight catches for 121 yards and a touchdown.

DUDS
Drew Brees:
Previously undefeated against the Giants with eight touchdown passes and no interceptions in his last two games. On Sunday Brees threw for 354 yards, but on 26-of-43 passing with two costly picks.

Marques Colston: His first-quarter fumble got the Giants going and was otherwise quiet with four catches for 61 yards.

Saints special teams and defense: Contributed to Wilson's day for the ages and the most points allowed in franchise history.

TURNING POINT
Two Darren Sproles touchdowns on runs of 13 and nine yards cut the Giants' lead to eight late in the third. Jerrel Jernigan then returned the ensuing kickoff 60 yards to set up Manning's touchdown pass to Cruz and the Saints were never heard from again.

Follow Jon Lane on Twitter: @JonLaneNYC

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