3 takeaways: Davis Webb, Alex Bachman lead Giants to comeback preseason win

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New York Giants’ Alex Bachman (81) celebrates after catching a pass for a touchdown during the second half of a preseason NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday, Aug. 21, 2022, in East Rutherford, N.J.
AP Photo/Julia Nikhinson

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Davis Webb and Alex Bachman connected twice for touchdowns, including the game-winning drive, as the New York Giants rallied from behind to defeat the Cincinnati Bengals 25-22 in Week 2 of the preseason. 

Webb did his best Tom Brady impression in the exhibition contest leading the Giants in a 12-play, 72-yard drive in the final three minutes of the game. The third-string QB connected with Bachman on four occasions during the drive and found him for a 15-yard pass that resulted in the go-ahead score. 

“He was down, down on the depth chart, rep chart if you will,” Giants head coach Brian Daboll said about Bachman, who finished with 11 receptions and two touchdowns. “All he does is compete and play hard. And I appreciate guys like that. I think his teammates do, too. It was good to see him have some success out there. He’ll get more chances.”

This came after New York’s previous drive, which culminated with a 22-yard pass to Bachman for a touchdown as well. The Giants are now 2-0 in the preseason with a meeting with the New York Jets scheduled for the final week of the preseason at MetLife Stadium. 

Here are three takeaways from Sunday’s game. 

Daniel Jones strong performance for Giants 

The often scrutinized Giants quarterback looked as though he may have started to find his groove on Sunday night against the Bengals. Daniel Jones completed 14 of his 16 passes for 116 yards and one interception while playing into the second quarter. 

The fourth-year QB led the Giants’ first three drives of the game, including an 11-play, 84-yard drive that culminated in a rushing touchdown for Joshua Corbin. Jones threw nine consecutive passes on the march down the field and completed eight straight after the first was incomplete, finding David Sills for three of them. 

It was by far the most comfortable Jones had looked on the field this preseason and it felt as though he was able to separate himself from backup QB Tyrod Taylor. 

“I thought we did a good job. Offense, I felt the O-Line did a great job protecting,” Jones said. “Guy made some really big plays for us in the pass game. A couple things we wanted to clean up. Stalled us out a couple times, but overall I thought it was good stuff to build off of.” 

The lone interception that Jones had on a play that a pass intended for rookie tight end Daniel Bellinger went through his hands and was picked off. Head coach Brian Daboll seemed to indicate that was more on the receiver needing to catch that pass rather than an issue with how Jones handled the play. 

A peak at Daboll’s in-game management

Daboll wasn’t shy about going for it on fourth down in Week 2 of the preseason. The Giants went 2-for-3 on fourth down conversions, which included a 4th & 1 try in the final minutes of the first half. 

The Giants also attempted one unsuccessfully on the first drive of the game and one more during the fourth quarter on the game-winning drive. Was this aggressive style something that we could see more of during the regular season or just the circumstances of Sunday being a preseason game? 

“I think each game, there’s a set area where we’d decide that we’d go for it,” Daboll explained. “A couple of guys give me a heads up, ‘Hey these are the, we’ll start to go for it if we get to this.’ I think there’s a lot of things that go into play. I don’t think you can just look at a number and do it. But I do think that that’ll be an important part of some of our decision-making process, and tonight we kind of went with the numbers, if you will.

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“Now, there’s a lot of things: weather, how the other quarterback’s playing, how the other team’s playing. There’s so many different situations that come up. But I certainly use those.”

Should the cut block be banned? 

The first question on everyone’s mind after Kayvon Thibodeaux went down injured on Sunday was about how he was. After it seemed like the Giant had dodged a bullet, the next questions became how necessary was the hit and should the NFL do something about the cut block.

“Well, I think that’s legal – it’s in the tackle box. It’s part of it. It’s tough, it’s a tough part of the game and I don’t have much experience dealing with that – I don’t play d-end. But yeah, part of it,” Daboll said when asked about it. 

The hit has sparked debate on whether it was a dirty play and why it is still allowed in the game. Several notable NFL analysts decried the play and the resulting injury, while some — including former players — viewed it as a routine hit that looked worse because of the way it ended.