Daniel Jones
ESNY Graphic, Getty Images

It was a total team effort as the New York Giants erased an 18-point deficit to come back and defeat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 32-31. 

Jason Leach

The Daniel Jones era began in dramatic fashion as the New York Giants erased a 28-10 halftime deficit to come away with a 32-32 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium.

This was the type of victory that builds confidence in a team, especially considering the Saquon Barkley ankle injury put the overall feel at an all-time low Sunday afternoon.

But at halftime, Shurmur gathered his team and made the necessary adjustments and his team outscored the Bucs 22-3 in the second half.

Of course, the Giants were helped that Bucs placekicker Matt Gay missed a 34-yard field goal wide-right as time expired, but that doesn’t take away from what the Giants accomplished.


This was a total team win as all three phases of the team improved in the second half. But a few players deserve to come away with game balls.

1. Daniel Jones

Not only did Jones deserve a game ball, but he’ll also receive votes for the NFC Offensive Player of the Week. Jones had about as impressive of an NFL debut as you can have in the NFL.

He completed 23 of 36 passes for 336-yard yards and two passing touchdowns to go along with two rushing touchdowns including the game-winning seven-yard TD run. He was also the team’s leading rusher with 28 yards on four attempts.


His ability to make plays with his legs gave the offense an added dimension and showed why Shurmur made him the starter over Eli Manning, and why Dave Gettleman took him with the sixth pick in the draft.

2. Evan Engram

Engram is off to the best start of his three-year career. On Sunday, he caught six passes for 113 yards and a touchdown. His 75-yard touchdown happened on the Giants first offensive play of the second half that helped turn the game around.


This was Engram’s second 100-yard receiving game of the season, and if he keeps playing like this, he’ll be poised to make his first Pro Bowl appearance.

3. Sterling Shepard

After missing last week’s game due to a concussion, Sterling Shepard led the Giants in reception on Sunday with seven for 100 yards and a touchdown. He also had a key two-point conversion following Engram’s touchdown early in the third quarter that helped trim the deficit to 28-18.

4. Ryan Connelly

Jones wasn’t the only rookie to make his first NFL start on Sunday. Ryan Connelly made his first start at linebacker and finished the game with seven tackles.

He also made one of the biggest plays of the game when he intercepted Jameis Winston at the Giants 26-yard line with 11:24 remaining in the game and the Giants trailing 28-25.

5. Markus Golden

The Giants pass rush was able to sack Winston four times on Sunday and two of the sacks were by Markus Golden. Golden also had five tackles and two of those were for losses. Against the Bucs, he established himself as the Giants best pass rusher.

Jason's first love was football while growing up in northern New Jersey. For the past three years, he has covered the New York Giants, as well as several boxing events along the East Coast.