On Saturday night against the New York Jets, New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning was targeting his best wide receiver on the team Hakeem Nicks several times looking for big pass plays, but unfortunately, the duo couldn't hook up as often as they would have liked to.
Manning targeted Nicks eight different times and only completed one pass; a one-handed, 34-yard connection late in the second quarter that set up first and goal from the Jets four-yard line. Later on the drive, Manning attempted a fourth-and-two on a lob play to Nicks, but the pass was broken up by Dawan Landry and the Giants failed to put points up on the drive.
For Nicks sake, he did have two pass interference calls go his way which were called against Jets corner Kyle Wilson, but you could tell Manning and Nicks weren't on the same page due to Nicks not being involved in practice due to the star wide receiver battling injuries early on in the preseason. The week before, Manning was able to find Nicks for two catches and 40 yards against the Indianapolis Colts.
But the game against the Jets was a cause for concern that Manning and Nicks weren't on the same page as far as the offense goes and being able to find one another in the game, but as Nicks told Dave Hutchinson of the Newark-Star Ledger, Nicks thinks he'll be just fine for the regular season and ready to go when they get to Dallas in two weeks.
“I think when the times comes we’re going to be just where we need to be,” Nicks said. “It’s better it happens now then when the season starts because when Dallas rolls around (on Sept. 8th) it’s going to be for real. We just have to make sure we get out all the kinks, all the mishaps, miscommunications now. I don’t have any doubt that when Dallas gets here, we’ll be on the same page.”
Nicks had been bothered by a groin strain early on in the summer, an injury that kept him out of the team's first preseason game against the Pittsburgh Steelers back on August 10, but returned to practice shortly thereafter. When asked what specifically has been the issue between he and his quarterback, Nicks felt it was more the timing than not reading each other on a play.
“I kind of have a feel with the coverage what side Eli is going to be reading,” Nicks said. “There’s never a miscommunication. It’s putting the ball there and me coming down with the ball.”
Even with this misses to Nicks, Manning didn't even have a spectacular night playing in the first half, as he went 8-for-20 for 83 yards with no touchdowns. Manning and Nicks will get one more tune-up this Thursday night to work on their timing with each other when they play in the final preseason game at Gillette Stadium against the New England Patriots.
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