EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — For a change, the New York Giants weren’t besieged by questions about quitting, lack of effort and the job future of second-year coach Ben McAdoo.
Winning has a way of changing things and the Giants (2-8) got the chance to briefly enjoy success in the wake of a 12-9 overtime win over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.
They were back at work Monday, having only 72 hours to prepare for a Thanksgiving game in Washington against the Redskins (4-6), who are coming off a 34-31 overtime loss to the New Orleans Saints.
Running back Orleans Darkwa felt a positive vibe among the players after winning a game that few expected they would.
“At the end of the day, it’s just one win,” Darkwa said. “We want to make sure we can stack these wins together and make the best situation possible for this team.”
Defensive tackle Damon Harrison, who had one of the Giants’ three interceptions on Sunday, didn’t get a chance to talk much with teammates early in the day because he was receiving treatment for an ankle injury.
His take on the game was the Giants finally started doing things right on the field, particularly their technique. There were not as many missed tackles as there had been in the two previous blowout losses to the Rams and 49ers.
“It’s just horrible technique or just really, really bad execution and not doing something right, which could be interpreted as not having great effort,” said Harrison, whose pick set up a short touchdown run by Darkwa.
“But it was never a question of that. I know those guys, especially the ones who have been getting the brunt of all of that, so they just really focused in and honed in on the game plan and executed it, which is why you guys saw what you saw yesterday.”
The Giants could get some fresh players on Thursday.
Cornerback Eli Apple did not play on Sunday because he missed the latter part of the week after his mother had brain surgery. He was with the team on Monday.
Wide receiver Sterling Shepard missed the game with an illness that was believed to be a concussion. He was with the team Monday and his status would have been limited had the team practiced. McAdoo said Shepard is not in the concussion protocol.
The biggest concern after the game was right guard D.J. Fluker. He injured a toe and McAdoo said he would not have been able to practice Monday. If he can’t go on Thursday, it might give veteran John Greco a chance to play. He was signed last week. The other option would be Jon Halapio, who played a little Sunday after Fluker was hurt.
“We have a lot of guys who are banged up and we are going to have to fight through some things,” McAdoo said.
Eli Manning, who is usually not a rah-rah guy, gave an emotional pre-game speech to the team before it ended a three-game losing streak and won for the first time at home this season.
Darkwa said Manning talks a lot to the team, but there was a difference in his voice.
“Eli is the heartbeat of our team,” Darkwa said. “I think pregame, he gave a fiery speech that got everybody riled up and to have a guy like that, that has been through so much, that’s got those two Super Bowl rings, we follow him.”
NOTES: McAdoo on rookie right tackle Chad Wheeler after his first start. “The best thing I can say is you didn’t notice him a lot.”