Undermanned NY Giants no match for Cleveland Browns as playoff hopes slip in 20-6 loss

Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /
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NY Giants
New York Giants quarterback Colt McCoy (12) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /

Early desperation doesn’t pay off

In what was one of the more puzzling decisions, and dumbfounding play calls in recent memory, rather than have Graham Gano attempt a chip-shot 28-yard field goal, the Giants decided to try one of the more unorthodox trick plays you’ll ever see.

Giants head coach Joe Judge sent the field goal unit onto the field, only to have holder — and punter — RIley Dixon attempt a pass into the end zone intended for … center Nick Gates. Unsurprisingly, the pass harmlessly fell incomplete.

It was clearly a desperate attempt to put points on the board, after all, the Giants rank 31st in the NFL in points per game. However, with the Browns’ prolific offense on the opposite sideline and entering Week 15 averaging 26.8 points per game, perhaps settling for the opening possession field goal would have been more prudent? Or, and this is just a thought, leaving the offense on the field and attempting a higher-percentage pass on 4th down and 5 from the eight-yard line, might have given the Giants a better chance to strike first?

Regardless, the Giants’ desperate aggressiveness will go down as one of the most bizarre play calls across the NFL this season.