Anyone expecting an instant fix for the Giants’ recent offensive woes was left disappointed by their play in the first half against the Bengals.
The Giants failed to convert their first four third downs and couldn’t get a touchdown on either of their trips inside the red zone, which leaves them behind 17-6 at halftime in Cincinnati. Eli Manning has rediscovered Hakeem Nicks — seven catches in the first half — but the Giants have just 16 rushing yards and Manning’s 15 completions have yielded only 107 yards against a Bengals defense that has been stingier than usual against the pass. Manning’s been more accurate, though, and that could lead to more success in the final 30 minutes.
Cincinnati started off hot and got a second quick touchdown after Adam Jones took a punt 64 yards to set them up on the Giants’ 10-yard line in the first quarter, but things slowed down a bit from there. Marvin Lewis opted to go for it on a pair of fourth downs, succeeding once, but the Giants defense has been able to keep the Bengals out of the end zone. They’ve also been able to limit the damage A.J. Green looked like he was going to do in the first few minutes of the game. Green had three catches for 70 yards on the first drive, but he’s got just three for 16 since that point.
The Giants will need to keep up that good work in the second half while also figuring out a way to get the offense rolling again if they want to avoid a second straight loss heading into their bye week.