Many undrafted players have found success over recent years in the NFL, but it seems that the Giants hit the jackpot more often than not with these players. And it is not just limited to undrafted players; it also goes for those players who have just as good a chance of making the team as the undrafted do.
In three preseason games, we have been witness to a sluggish performance from the Giants’ first team, especially offensively. But when the fourth quarter rolls around and Big Blue is in a troublesome situation, a slight lead and a “W” randomly flashes next to the Giants’ win column.
Against Pittsburgh, third string quarterback Curtis Painter came in for his only real series of the night and led the team down to a game-winning drive, capped off with a touchdown reception in one-on-one coverage by undrafted rookie Corey Washington, who has had a touchdown reception in each of the first three preseason games.
The same can be said about Saturday night. A resounding 26-point deficit with a little over 10 minutes left was what these Giants had to work with. Curtis Painter played ahead of Ryan Nassib for this game and got the team on the board with a touchdown, a passing strike to free agent tight end Kellen Davis. On the Indianapolis Colts’ first play of their ensuing drive, Giants undrafted linebacker Justin Anderson forced a fumble that was recovered in the endzone for a touchdown.
The next offensive drive for the Giants has Ryan Nassib leading the charge and the offense subsequently goes on a 92-yard drive for a touchdown, concluding with a rushing touchdown by Michael Cox. A Colts three-and-out follows and Ryan Nassib and the Giants get the ball back with 3:49 to go. Facing a 4th-and-16 with 1:53 to go, Nassib calmly delivers a strike over the middle to last year’s draft pick tight end Adrien Robinson. Robinson follows that one up with another big reception to get the Giants in the red zone. The comeback is completed when Nassib delivers a jump ball to who else but Corey Washington for the game-winning touchdown.
A lot can be said about team unity and responding to adversity, but we have to remember this is preseason and when the third string is picking up the slack for what the first string put on the field, it’s an uncomfortable situation all around, and as a result fingers will continue to be pointed and the roster will be adjusted accordingly.
But since taking over in 2007, General Manager Jerry Reese has placed an emphasis on the draft and acquiring talent from unfamiliar places. This free agency odyssey Jerry and the Giants took this offseason was the most ambitious for the team in recent memory, but so far this preseason, the “Third String Renaissance” continues to shine brightly on Big Blue’s formula for success.
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Tags: Adrien Robinson, Corey Washington, Curtis Painter, Football, Indianapolis Colts, Jerry Reese, Justin Anderson, Kellen Davis, Michael Cox, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Ryan Nassib