LANDOVER, Md. — Janoris Jenkins is a cornerback for the New York Giants who returned an interception 53 yards for a touchdown against the Washington Redskins.
And that one play made him responsible for more points than Eli Manning and the rest of the team’s offense produced Thursday night.
That one play also meant Jenkins produced more yards than Manning and Co. did in the entire second half of a 20-10 loss to the Redskins.
“Offenses do what they do,” Jenkins said. “We can’t worry about what they do.”
They’re not doing much at all at the moment.
After going into halftime tied at 3-all, the last-place Giants (2-9) never did a thing when they had the football in the second half, generating 47 yards and one measly first down. They punted four times, turned the ball over on downs once and had their other possession end in an interception thrown by Manning.
“It’s no fun losing. It’s no fun not scoring enough points offensively. It can wear you out. It can test you,” said Manning, who was 13 for 27 for 113 yards. “You have to keep going to the drawing board and find ways to play better.”
Over their past five games, the Giants are averaging 13.4 points.
That is not going to cut it in the NFL, of course.
And it’s the sort of thing that create tension between a team’s defense and its offense.
“They expect more from us,” right tackle Chad Wheeler said. “We have to give them more.”
Running back Orleans Darkwa, who gained only 30 yards on 11 carries, said: “We have to figure out how to get this offense going. We can’t expect the defense to do it for us all the time.”
This is, after all, a team that made the playoffs last season. And Manning is, after all, a two-time Super Bowl champion and MVP.
But the quarterback was quite clear about what he believes explains New York’s problems when it has the ball: injuries.
Against the Redskins (5-6), the Giants trotted out their eighth version of a starting offensive line this season.
They are without top receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Brandon Marshall, who were hurt in the same game, and Sterling Shepard was missing Thursday, too.
It all adds up.
“We lost a lot of players. Missing three of our starting receivers for a lot of the season. We have some good guys in, doing some good things. But missing some linemen. Missing some of our key players on offense,” Manning said. “It’s just tough to catch up and make up some of those plays without the playmakers that we lost.”
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