A lot of numbers stand out when you try to figure out what is nagging the New York Giants defense.
Among them: 18, the number of missed tackles recorded by Giants defenders a week ago in Atlanta.
Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell watched all 18 blunders on film this week and admitted it was an area of focus this week in practice.
“It’s something that in the month of December you must focus and concentrate on and hopefully we got our message across,” Fewell said. “It kind of tells you as a coach to get back to the fundamentals and really go back to the basics and emphasize it even more because this is the time where you really need those fundamentals.”
Another number: 6.5, as in the number of sacks registered by Jason Pierre-Paul in 2012.
Last season, JPP enjoyed a breakout season, sacking opposing quarters 16.5 times. This year he, along with many other Giants pass-rushers, have struggled in that regard.
“Everybody likes to look at his numbers, but when you look at the tape JPP is really playing well. We’re used to him having wild plays and this and that, but he’s still playing very good football,” Fewell said.
“People have taken a different approach to us this year. There’s not as much five-step… That ball is coming out. We’ve been beating some people pretty clean at times, but we just haven’t had the… I think we’ve publicized our sacks so much that people have taken a different approach in how they pass protect and how they get the ball out against us.”
The Giants allowed 114 rushing yards per game through the first 10 games. After the bye, that number increased to 149 yards per game, including the Falcons’ posting a 129-spot last week.
With so much attention being paid to stopping the run, Giants pass-rushers have struggled reaching the quarterback.
“We’ve got to do a good job in stopping the run game and that will help our numbers and we’ve been emphasizing the run game more,” Fewell said. “We have to get people in situations we want them into; not let them dictate the circumstance.”
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