The Giants didn’t stand a single chance against the Chargers Sunday afternoon.
This organization and its eager fanbase have reached a new low.
The Giants were back to the drawing board following a tough 20-9 loss to the Dolphins in Week 13. And while there wasn’t much hope for the struggling ballclub in its road matchup with the Chargers anyway, Big Blue continued its dreadful ways in Cali.
New York suffered its second consecutive loss by a score of 37-21 — it wasn’t pretty from the get-go.
Despite the score sitting at 7-7 during the opening quarter, this was always Justin Herbert and the Chargers’ game — the Giants are nowhere near as talented as Los Angeles on either side of the ball.
Let’s start with the offense, shall we?
The switch from Jason Garrett to Freddie Kitchens at the offensive play-caller role hasn’t changed much for this weak unit…at all.
But that’s what happens when you’re performing with an inconsistent offensive line, injuries, an ineffective running game, and a below-average quarterback in Mike Glennon. The primary backup started for the second straight week in the injury-related absence of Daniel Jones (neck strain).
It was another feeble effort on the offensive side of the ball. Since the Giants made the switch to Kitchens, the unit has scored a total of 43 points. For comparison, the Kansas City Chiefs put up 48 points just on Sunday.
Glennon was unproductive for the most part, reminding fans of the terrible decision Dave Gettleman made to replace Colt McCoy with him at the backup quarterback position. That type of move ends up being crucial when the starter deals with injuries, which Daniel Jones is currently doing and has done each year he’s been in the league.
The journeyman backup, who still hasn’t won a game as a starter since 2017, threw for 191 yards, two touchdowns, and one pick on 17-of-36 passing. He’s incapable of really making his mark on any game in the NFL and isn’t providing the Giants with any sort of spark in the absence of Jones.
Saquon Barkley was more productive than usual, but that isn’t saying much — his season-high rushing total entering the day was 57. The fourth-year running back ran for only 64 yards on 16 carries, continuing a bland campaign that may be his final in blue.
The team still can’t run the ball in an efficient and effective manner, which is a major issue especially when a backup quarterback is under center.
Oh, and the offensive line? Not a memorable performance out of that unit either.
It’s not ideal when you need to make numerous in-game alterations within the group — that usually means the unit isn’t stepping up at a constant rate and the chemistry is non-existent.
The Giants fielded Matt Skura and Ben Bredeson at left guard in the defeat as well as Nate Solder and Matthew Peart at right tackle.
A weak offensive line can prevent teams from truly locating success. The Giants line undergoing yet another below-average season is a notable reason why the team is stuck in the mud.
Defense far from competitive
Given the Giants’ struggles on the offensive end, the defensive unit needed to be perfect. That’s basically become the story week-in and week-out.
However, Patrick Graham’s group wasn’t even competitive in front of the SoFi Stadium crowd.
If the team was to somehow pull off an improbable victory, the Giants pass rush had to pressure Justin Herbert all day while the secondary needed to take his various weapons out of the game.
Proper execution wasn’t even in sight though — Herbert was fantastic for much of the afternoon, having thrown for 275 yards and three touchdowns on 23-of-31 passing.
The absence of Leonard Williams (who prematurely exited the game with an elbow injury) seemed to play a role in the Giants’ failure to additionally stop the run. Big Blue allowed the Chargers to gain 153 yards on the ground, 68 of which were from Austin Ekeler. The fifth-year back also crossed the plane once.
The pass rush was non-existent, the secondary looked lost, and the front seven seemed exhausted thanks to long drives from LA (34:20 total possession time for the Chargers).
Graham’s unit wasn’t much more productive than Kitchens’ was on Sunday, and it cost the Giants their ninth loss.
Follow Ryan Honey on Twitter: @RyanHoneyESNY