The Giants and Jets Both Won, but Which Team Was More Enjoyable?


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Time is a flat circle, but we wish to allow you to break it. To that finish, we’ve enlisted two specialists — one acquainted with the ins and outs of New York’s skilled soccer groups, the opposite a nationally targeted soccer analyst — to reply a necessary query as a weekly service to readers: Are the Jets and Giants good but?

Devin Gordon, the writer of “So Many Ways to Lose: The Amazin’ True Story of the New York Mets, the Best Worst Team in Sports,” noticed the groups from a regionally targeted perspective.

Diante Lee, an N.F.L. analyst at Pro Football Focus, supplied a nationwide view.

The Giants’ (4-7) protection goaded the Philadelphia Eagles (5-7) into committing 4 turnovers, together with three interceptions thrown by Jalen Hurts, in a 13-7 win Sunday at house.

At the beginning of this season, the Giants have been promisingly “funnible” — that uncommon breed of younger but frisky, enjoyable and athletic, but nonetheless horrible. The finest sort of unhealthy staff to observe. Quarterback Daniel Jones was an journey on each play, Saquon Barkley was again to hitting doubles and triples if not fairly the house runs of his rookie season, and the free agent acquisition Kenny Golladay was coming down with 50/50 balls just like the Giants had paid him handsomely this low season to do. Things weren’t precisely clicking, per se, because the staff misplaced 5 of its first six video games, but the promise was actual.

And then Barkley obtained damage, once more, and then all of the Giants’ receivers obtained damage, once more, and the trick performs from their embattled offensive coordinator, Jason Garrett, revealed that there was no trick.

Barkley returned final week, Coach Joe Judge fired Garrett final week and turned the play-calling over to Freddie Kitchens, who spent one epically funnible season as the top coach of the Cleveland Browns in 2019.

In different phrases, Sunday’s recreation towards the Eagles had all types of funnible potential: a brand new offensive coordinator with a wacky previous, a hated N.F.C. East rival, and a Giants offense bucking to be unleashed.

It was so uninteresting. So many punts. The Giants received, 13-7, but that makes it sound kind of dramatic, like some gritty, low-scoring grudge match. It was not that. It was two groups going nowhere, and the funnible has formally run out.

VERDICT: Even the wins lack inspiration.

In my tradition, we now have a scientific time period for the lethargy the physique endures after an enormous vacation feast: the ‘itis.

Every movement, every thought, and the world around you move a step and a half slower than normal. All your body’s usually dismissible creaking and cracking feels a bit extra noticeable, and the one profitable therapy is an extended nap.

The Giants and Eagles moved round on Sunday like they’d the ‘itis.

The score was a woefully sluggish 3-0 until midway through the third quarter. Mercifully, the Giants extended their lead to 10 and held Philadelphia off, sparing viewers from the threat of any extra football, or passing from the two quarterbacks.

Jalen Hurts and Daniel Jones combined for over 60 attempts, but less than 350 yards. The most entertaining parts of the game had almost nothing to do with their throws, unless Hurts was tossing one of his three interceptions.

Hurts and both Eagles running backs — Boston Scott and Miles Sanders — each outpaced Saquon Barkley, who must look at Philadelphia’s offensive line longingly and surprise what it should really feel wish to get previous the road of scrimmage.

Freddie Kitchens’ debut because the Giants’ offensive play-caller was profitable, by probably the most reductionist logic out there — his offense scored extra factors than the opponent’s. The unhealthy information from this win? The Giants are technically within the hunt for a wild-card playoff spot, an concept that isn’t wholesome for anybody concerned.

Verdict: More watchable than final week, for no matter that’s value.

In quarterback Zach Wilson’s return after lacking 4 video games with a knee harm, the Jets (3-8) received, 21-14, scoring the sport’s remaining 18 factors, to beat the Houston Texans (2-9).

Half the seats at NRG Stadium in Houston have been stuffed Sunday with Texans followers, the opposite half empty with despair.

Both the Jets and Texans got here into the sport with 2-8 information, which meant the loser can be the true winner in draft positioning to pick after the winless Detroit Lions in April 2022. In a tragic, self-owning sort of method, there was lots driving on this recreation.

The unhealthy information out of Sunday’s recreation is that the Jets are actually one step farther from the second decide in 2022. The excellent news is that they received, 21-14, and that their rookie quarterback Zach Wilson, the second total decide from the 2021 draft, performed his most disciplined recreation of the season in his return from a knee harm.

The Jets received, although, primarily by taking the ball out of his arms. They ran 34 occasions for 157 yards; Wilson tried simply 24 passes, finishing 14 for 145 yards, and his solely rating got here on a 4-yard quarterback keeper within the third quarter. His white-knuckle efficiency towards an bizarre Texans protection solely clouded the existential query dealing with the Jets’ entrance workplace: Is Zach Wilson this staff’s franchise quarterback, or will they be drafting one more one subsequent 12 months?

Verdict: The Magic 8-Ball says “Ask Again Later.”

What’s stopping the N.F.L. from having the Jets and Texans play one another each week from right here out?

As Bill Hader’s “Saturday Night Live” character, Stefon, would say, this recreation had every thing.

Two unhealthy groups whose fan bases are not sure of whether or not to root for draft positioning or a win? Check.

The rookie quarterback Zach Wilson, beginning the sport trying as if he couldn’t hit the Hudson River from the West Side Highway? Check.

A remaining rating that means regular play from each groups, regardless of what truly occurred? It had that, too.

In the tip, the Jets scratched out a win over a Texans staff that should duke it out with Jacksonville for the worst file within the convention.

Wilson’s efficiency was nonetheless removed from that of a franchise quarterback, but the rhythm he performed with within the third quarter confirmed some promise. Ending the go-ahead drive along with his 4-yard speeding landing may stand as his finest sequence of the season.

For the primary time this season, defensive sort out Quinnen Williams didn’t appear like he had to supply all of the run protection and move rush himself, and the Jets are stringing collectively glimpses of creating performs and forcing turnovers.

Three months is a mighty very long time to start out trying like an N.F.L. staff, but the Jets are there.

Verdict: Can’t imagine I’m saying this, but … sure?