Mon Nov 30 6:12pm ET
By TOM CANAVAN
AP Sports Writer
New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) scrambles during the first half of NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)
Trainers check New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) after an injury during the second half of NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)
New York Giants quarterback Colt McCoy (12) is tackled by Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Carl Lawson (58) during the second half of NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)
Cincinnati Bengals tight end Drew Sample (89) fumbles the ball against New York Giants free safety Logan Ryan (23) during the second half of NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Cincinnati. Ryan recovered the ball. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)
New York Giants quarterback Colt McCoy (12) hands off the ball to running back Wayne Gallman (22) during the second half of NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Bryan Woolston)
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) If the New York Giants are to get back to the playoffs for the first time since 2016, they have to start beating teams with winning records.
The Giants (4-7) got back in the hunt for the title in the weak NFC East by beating Cincinnati 19-17 for their third straight win. While that might indicate a team is starting to peak, the level of competition has not been the best. The run has been against Washington, Philadelphia and the Bengals. All have losing records, and New York beat Washington twice.
The schedule gets tougher in the final five weeks. The next four games are against the NFC West-leading Seahawks in Seattle; Kyler Murray and the Cardinals (6-5); Cleveland (8-3) and Baltimore (6-4). Dallas (3-8) is the final game, but the Cowboys have owned the Giants in recent years.
Not only do the Giants need to win, they probably have to do some of it without quarterback Daniel Jones. He injured his right hamstring Sunday, and few players come right back from that type of injury.
Rookie coach Joe Judge said an MRI on Monday raised questions instead of providing answers. Expect veteran Colt McCoy to start in Seattle and don't be surprised if the Giants sign a veteran to back him up.
Judge said Jones, who has started every game this season, has to show he can protect himself if he wants to play.
Teammates said they are confident how they are playing and with McCoy running the offense.
''I don't really care who we are playing,'' said receiver Sterling Shepard, the last player left on the roster from the '16 team. ''We are focused on our abilities and what we can do.''
Field goals. Despite being isolated for more than a week after testing positive for COVID-19, Graham Gano kicked field goals of 49, 40, 39 and 32 yards. He has made 24 consecutive attempts and 25 of 26 this season.
WHAT NEEDS HELP
Special teams kickoff and punt coverage. Brandon Wilson scored on a team-record 103-yard kickoff return for the Bengals and Alex Erickson was a step away from breaking for a go-ahead touchdown on a 29-yard punt return in the final minute. Cam Brown made a saving tackle at midfield. The defense forced a turnover on the next play to preserve the two-point win.
Punt coverage also got burned in the the third quarter when the Bengals used a direct snap on a fourth-and-6 from their 20 to get a first down.
Defensive end Nikos Lalos. Promoted from the practice squad for his NFL debut, the rookie from Dartmouth intercepted a Brandon Allen pass with 32 seconds remaining in the third quarter.
Offensive tackle Cam Fleming. The right tackle was flagged for three holding penalties and a false start. Two of the holds came late in the fourth quarter, with the first one nullifying a pass for a first down. The third hold was declined after a third-down incompletion in the first quarter.
Jones is the big one. LB Kyler Feckrell left the game with a calf injury and his status is uncertain. Safety Nate Ebner left with a knee injury and Judge hopes to have him back soon.
700 -The victory was the Giants' 700th in the regular season in their 96-year history. They join the Chicago Bears (774) and Green Bay Packers (764) as the only franchises with 700 victories. The franchise closest to the Giants is the Pittsburgh Steelers, whose 10-0 start has increased their victory total to 641.
Get McCoy ready to start as fast as possible. Former Northwestern quarterback Clayton Thorson is on the practice squad but the Giants have to decide whether he can be the backup to McCoy if Jones can't play. Alex Tanney and Cooper Rush were in training camp and know the system.
Five Fantasy Takeaways from Week 12
Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB T.J. Logan (knee) and WR Jaydon Mickens were activated from the Reserve/COVID-19 on Monday, Nov. 30. Logan will remain on the Reserve/Injured list, however.
Philadelphia Eagles LB Genard Avery (elbow) was activated from the Reserve/Injured list Monday, Nov. 30. The Eagles also elevated DT T.Y. McGill and TE Caleb Wilson from the practice squad.
New England Patriots WR Julian Edelman (knee) was placed on the Reserve/COVID-19 list Monday, Nov. 30.
Kansas City Chiefs S Tedric Thompson was claimed off waivers by the Cleveland Browns on Monday, Nov. 30. FB Andy Janovich was placed on the Reserve/COVID-19 list to make room for him on the roster.
Free-agent WR Tavon Austin (49ers) signed an undisclosed contract with the Green Bay Packers on Monday, Nov. 30.
The Denver Broncos Defense was not able to slow down fill-in quarterback Taysom Hill and the New Orleans Saints in the 31-3 blowout loss in Week 12. A week after sacking Dolphins rookie QB Tua Tagovailoa six times and springing the upset on Miami, the Broncos D put up little fight on a day in which their offense and practice-squad wide receiver Kendall Hinton could only muster one completion as the emergency starter under center. They were of little help to fantasy managers by allowing 30-plus points for the fifth time in the last six games. Denver managed only three sacks (two by DeMarcus Walker) and one interception of Hill in the contest. With another dreadful matchup upcoming -- the division-rival Chiefs -- Denver's D should be avoided once again. They allowed a season-worst 43 points to KC back in Week 7.
Updating previous reports, New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (hamstring) was diagnosed with a hamstring strain that will likely force him to miss some time, according to a source. The Giants will know more later this week when Jones attempts to practice, but there is optimism that he won't be out long. Tests on Monday ruled out a significant tear. It's highly unlikely that Jones will play in Week 13 against the Seahawks, meaning that backup Colt McCoy should see his first start since his lone start for Washington last year. Jones, the sixth overall pick in 2019, has completed 63.2 percent of his passes for 2,332 yards, eight touchdowns and nine interceptions. New York's pass-catchers will need to be downgraded for the next game if McCoy is starting under center.
Denver Broncos kicker Brandon McManus gave the team their only points of the day in the Week 12 blowout loss to the Saints by making a season-long 58-yard kick in the 31-3 defeat. McManus hasn't missed a kick since Week 7 against the Chiefs when he shanked an extra point, and he's missed just one of his 22 field-goal attempts on the year as well. He's 7-for-8 on 50-plus yard tries and has proven to be one of the most automatic kickers in the game with his 95.5 percent success rate in 2020. However, he remains a fringe fantasy starter, at best, because of the Broncos inconsistent offense. McManus had zero chance of racking up points for fantasy owners with practice-squad wide receiver Kendall Hinton playing QB on Sunday. In the rematch with KC in Week 13, McManus should be considered a low-upside option. He was afforded just one field goal try in the first matchup in Week 7.
Carolina Panthers WR D.J. Moore (ankle) suffered an ankle injury in Week 12, but an X-ray on Monday, Nov. 30, revealed no break. According to head coach Matt Rhule, Moore may be able to return after the team's Week 13 bye.
Denver Broncos rookie wide receiver Jerry Jeudy wasn't alone, but he failed to haul in a pass on his only target in the 31-3 blowout loss to the Saints in Week 12. On a day when practice-squad wide receiver Kendall Hinton filled in at quarterback due to COVID-19 knocking out the rest of Denver's eligible QBs, the Broncos offense managed to complete just one pass against a strong New Orleans defense. Jeudy should've been benched by his fantasy managers, and he should remain there unless Drew Lock makes a return in Week 13 against the Chiefs. The rookie from Alabama had seen 40 targets in his previous four games, but he caught just 18 of them and remains a WR4/flex in deeper leagues in this inconsistent offense. Jeudy had just two catches for 20 yards in the previous meeting with the Chiefs in Week 7.
Denver Broncos wide receiver Tim Patrick had just two targets in the 31-3 blowout loss to the Saints in Week 12 and failed to catch a single pass. Emergency fill-in quarterback Kendall Hinton attempted just nine passes and completed only one of them, so the entire Broncos passing game was non-existent on Sunday. Patrick should only be considered as a WR4/flex in deeper leagues in Week 13 against the division-rival Chiefs if quarterback Drew Lock returns from the COVID-19 protocols. Patrick has been the team's most consistent wideout in 2020 and has three 100-yard games, but he has only three touchdowns and remains a shaky flex play in deeper leagues because of the inconsistent nature of Denver's offense. The 27-year-old caught three of four targets for 44 yards in the first meeting with Kansas City in Week 7.
With Denver Broncos practice-squad wide receiver Kendall Hinton filling in as the team's emergency quarterback in Week 12 against the Saints, tight end Noah Fant caught Hinton's lone completion of the day for 13 yards on two targets. Fantasy managers would've been smart to bench everyone from Denver's offense on this strange day in the 31-3 blowout loss. Unless quarterback Drew Lock returns in Week 13 against the division-rival Chiefs, Fant should remain benched. The 23-year-old is still looking for his first touchdown since Week 2. He caught three of his seven targets for 38 yards in the first meeting with KC back in Week 7. Fant continues to have TE1 appeal with Lock under center, but he'll be more of a low-end TE1 if Lock is cleared from the COVID-19 protocol this week.
San Francisco 49ers CB Jamar Taylor (knee) will miss the remainder of the season after he was diagnosed with a torn anterior cruciate ligament Monday, Nov. 30.
Philadelphia Eagles veteran offensive lineman Jason Peters (toe) will play on Monday night against the Seahawks despite having a broken and dislocated toe that will require surgery in the offseason, according to a source. However, instead of playing left tackle and protecting quarterback Carson Wentz's blind side, Peters will be moving to guard to help make up for his lack of mobility. Philly's offensive line, which has been the best at run-blocking so far this season, is encountering some adversity in the form of injuries to Peters and right tackle Lane Johnson (ankle), who said over the weekend that he's done for the season. Although the offensive line still has plenty of talent, they'll be working at far less than full strength in Week 12 against Seattle and to close out the season.
New York Jets head coach Adam Gase and offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains have been splitting the play-calling duties around 50/50 for around the last four games. The Jets have been more competitive in recent weeks, even with backup quarterback Joe Flacco starting two of the last three games, but the Jets remain the only winless team in the NFL through 12 weeks of the season. The play-calling situation probably won't make much difference in New York's underwhelming offense the rest of the way. The good news for the Jets is that quarterback Sam Darnold returned from a shoulder injury in Week 12 and he has his full complement of receivers in Breshad Perriman, Jamison Crowder and rookie Denzel Mims to close out the season. However, it's still hard to get behind any of the team's offensive weapons for fantasy purposes heading into Week 13 against the Raiders.
Tests on New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (hamstring) on Monday showed that he avoided a major injury, according to sources. Jones will have an outside chance of playing in Week 13 against the Seahawks, but the team will have a better read on his status when they know if he'll be able to get on the practice field later this week. Jones was looking really good on Sunday against the Bengals before going down with his injury, and he'd offer some streaming upside next week against a bad Seahawks Defense if he's able to play. If he cannot go, the G-Men would likely go with backup Colt McCoy, who came in for Jones in Week 12. McCoy went 6-for-10 for 31 yards in his first game action in 14 months. He'd be a low-end QB2 option for desperate fantasy managers in superflex leagues.
Cincinnati Bengals rookie quarterback Joe Burrow (knee) will head West this week to have reconstructive knee surgery on his ACL, and the procedure will be performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles. Although there have been varying reports on whether Burrow will be ready to go in Week 1 of the 2021 season, he's expected to make a full recovery after tearing multiple ligaments in Week 11. Burrow is likely looking at a timetable of around eight to nine months, so we'll have to follow his rehab closely heading into training camp and the start of next season. Cincinnati is expected to play it extra safe with the face of their franchise after taking the former LSU star with the first overall pick in 2020. Brandon Allen got the start at QB in Week 12, but Ryan Finley could also see some starts before the end of the season for the Bengals.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Ronald Jones' lack of touches (10) in Week 12 was due primarily to the team needing its pass-catchers on the field, according to head coach Bruce Arians. 'I don't think there's any doubt (Jones) needs to have 20 touches,' Arians told the team's website Monday, Nov. 30.
Fantasy Spin: Jones ranks fourth in the league in rushing and is averaging a career-high 5.1 yards per carry, yet Arians continues to make excuses as to why he doesn't get the ball more often. Arians has also shown a disturbing tendency to publicly support Jones only to leave him off the field for significant portions of the game shortly after doing so. If Arians should commit to Jones down the stretch, he would be a strong RB2 with RB1 upside. As it is, he should continue to be viewed as an inconsistent RB2 with a low floor.