Odell Beckham Jr., New York Giants outlast Cleveland Browns (Highlights)
Nov 27, 2016; Cleveland, OH, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) celebrates his touchdown with teammates against the Cleveland Browns during the second quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

Odell Beckham Jr., Eli Manning, and the rest of the New York Giants did enough to gain an important victory against the Cleveland Browns.

  • New York Giants 27 (8-3)
  • Cleveland Browns 13 (0-12)
  • NFL, Final, Box Score
  • FirstEnergy Stadium, Cleveland, Ohio
The Cleveland Browns were hanging around, as pesky as ever. Perhaps the 0-11 team would finally win one in 2016. This is what all of New York Giants fandom was dreading a little after 3 p.m. ET on Sunday.

Then the Giants defense happened.

Early in the fourth quarter while nursing an uncomfortable 14-6 lead, big Johnathan Hankins hit Josh McCown as he was unloading the football. The Duke — as Ben McAdoo dubs it — landed with harmful intent right into the hands of Jason Pierre-Paul. JPP knew exactly what to do with it:

Although McCown and the Browns continued to battle, including a touchdown drive on the ensuing possession, Eli Manning and company did just enough.

Manning finished the day with 194 yards on 15-of-27 and three scores. His first went to Dwayne Harris in the second quarter, the first points of the day by either team:

Manning’s second came late in the first half after Cleveland kicked a field goal to put the Giants sideline on notice. It went to Odell Beckham Jr. on a shallow cross that featured pure speed:

OBJ went for 96 yards on the day on six grabs and two scores. His second TD came with 5:10 to go in regulation as the Giants drove 73-yards on six plays to answer Cleveland’s last touchdown scored by Corey Coleman.

He also returned a punt for a TD in the second half that was called back thanks to a holding infraction.

Yet again, New York’s offense couldn’t explode. Rashad Jennings finished with a workmanlike 53 yards on 14 carries.

Defensively is where McAdoo’s squad really won the game. In addition to JPP’s important TD, the pass rush was in the face of McCown all afternoon. Pierre-Paul finished with two sacks and two forced fumbles while Olivier Vernon snagged 1.5. Hankins also registered a half-sack on the defensive TD. Janoris Jenkins also picked up a sack late in the game on a corner blitz.

Rookie Eli Apple nearly notched his first NFL interception, but the catch was reversed once it was realized that his heel hit the out-of-bounds line.

Now sitting at 8-3, New York maintains a legitimate shot at the NFC East title (1.5 games back of the Dallas Cowboys). They also stay two games clear of the No. 7 seed in the NFC (Wild Card).

Now, however, the schedule ramps up. New York will head to Pittsburgh to take on Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers in Week 13.

Game Notes:

OBJ injured his thumb in the first half but returned quickly thereafter.

Eli Apple left the game in the second half and did not return.

McCown finished the day with 312 yards and a TD on 24-of-42 from the field. He led a Cleveland offense that never gave an inch all game.

Isaiah Crowell was the leading rusher for the Browns with just 44 yards on 16 carries. Terrelle Pryor Sr. enjoyed a fabulous game (131 yards, six receptions).

Sterling Shepard was quiet in failing to register a single reception. He didn’t even receive a target through the first three quarters. His lone offensive action came on a nicely executed end-around that went for 22 yards.

Giants kicker Robbie Gould missed yet another extra point, his third miss in two weeks.

Robby Sabo is a co-founder, CEO and credentialed New York Jets content creator for Jets X-Factor - Jet X, which includes Sabo's Sessions (in-depth film breakdowns) and Sabo with the Jets. Host: Underdog Jets Podcast with Wayne Chrebet and Sabo Radio. Member: Pro Football Writers of America. Coach: Port Jervis (NY) High School. Washed up strong safety and 400M runner. SEO: XL Media. Founder: Elite Sports NY - ESNY (Sold in 2020). SEO: XL Media. Email: robby.sabo[at]jetsxfactor.com