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Monday, September 23, 2013
Upon Further Review: Giants Week 3

By Dan Graziano
ESPN.com

An examination of four hot issues from the New York Giants' 38-0 loss to the Carolina Panthers:

Eli Manning
Eli Manning has been sacked 11 times this season and has been knocked down 22 times.
Beatty beaten: The entire offensive line was miserable in a game in which quarterback Eli Manning was sacked seven times, but the worst game of all belonged to left tackle Will Beatty, who admitted he let the first sack he allowed stick with him too long and affect his play later in the game. The Giants signed Beatty to a five-year, $37.5 million contract ($19 million guaranteed) this offseason on the premise that he'd be their franchise left tackle. But so far this year I've seen sloppy technique, particularly inconsistent hand placement that opposing defenders are exploiting. Beatty isn't a big, mauling left tackle. When he's great, it's due to his superior athleticism and sound technique. When the technique suffers, he becomes extremely vulnerable, especially to pass-rushers as good as the ones in Carolina.

Rookie struggling, too: On the right side, first-round pick Justin Pugh wasn't necessarily supposed to be starting at this point. But a preseason injury to David Diehl elevated the rookie to the starting role, and he got eaten up Sunday, as well. I continue to believe Pugh is talented and will be a valuable part of the Giants' offensive line as the front office reworks it in the coming years. I think the reason they drafted him is because they do not know what their line needs will be in 2014 and beyond, and they believe he can play multiple positions on the line. Some folks said before the draft that Pugh profiled as an NFL guard, not a tackle, and that may be the case. Right now, his classroom is in the fire, which could help him long-term but is not helping the Giants in the present.

Sloppy with the ball: The Giants added three turnovers Sunday, bringing their season total to a league-leading 13 through three games. Factor in their four takeaways so far, and their minus-9 turnover differential is tied for the worst in the league with the 0-3 Steelers, who have committed nine turnovers and forced none. According to ESPN Stats & Information, the last time an NFL team had 13 turnovers in its first three games was 2001, when both the Lions and the Cowboys did it. (They were both 0-3, as well, surprisingly.) Last year's Giants didn't commit their 13th turnover until Week 10.

One positive. (Positive?) Yes, positive: Running back David Wilson looked the best he's looked since the preseason. Perhaps more importantly, Wilson was singled out for unsolicited praise by coach Tom Coughlin in the postgame news conference. The called-back touchdown cannot be counted, since I don't think he scores without Beatty's hold. But he continues to look great running the ball. He is carrying it more securely and it is clear he is one of the Giants' highest-ceiling offensive weapons. Things could be turning around for Wilson.