Running back Orleans Darkwa
Darkwa continues to show that he deserves to remain the Giants starting running back, even though Paul Perkins has recovered from his injury. Darkwa led the Giants’ ground game with 70 yards on 14 carries, including a 20-yard scamper. All he’s done is quierly gone about his business and produced. It would be interesting to see what he could do with more carries.
Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin
The opposing team’s receivers are usually not listed here, but Goodwin’s performance deserves some recognition as the fifth-year player played against the Giants with a heavy heart. On Saturday, Goodwin and his wife Morgan lost their infant son due to complications during pregnancy.
All Goodwin did Sunday was come with arguably the highlight of the game: an 83-yard touchdown reception on third-and-8. Goodwin evaded All-Pro defenders Landon Collins and Janoris Jenkins for the score, the longest play from scrimmage by the 49ers this season. Goodwin blew a kiss towards the sky before crossing the goal line and knelt in prayer in the end zone.
Wide receiver Sterling Shepard
Shepard’s return after missing two games was one of the few bright spots on the Giants offense. He caught 11 passes for 142 yards. One of the most spectacular receptions of the day featured Shepard channeling his inner Odell Beckham Jr. with an amazing one handed reception with 49ers cornerback K’Waun Williams draped all over him for an 18-yard gain. The 49ers challenged the play but the call stood. Shepard pumped some life into the Giants’ offense but. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough.
Quarterback Eli Manning
Manning didn’t have a bad game statistically, going 28-of-37 for 273 yards and two yards. However, it was what he didn’t do that would come back to haunt the Giants. He lost a sack fumble on the Giants’ first offensive possession that the 49ers capitalized on.
It doesn’t matter that Manning tied his brother with his 208th consecutive regular season start or he completed 76 percent of his passes. The Giants scored a touchdown through the air in the closing minutes of the first half but didn’t find the end zone again until the game was out of reach. While it’s not all Manning’s fault, as the quarterback he has to shoulder the blame.
Cornerback Janoris Jenkins
Jenkins missed last week’s debacle against the Los Angeles Rams. He still looked like he was on bye against the 49ers.
The man known as Jackrabbit repeatedly missed tackles and was anything but an All-Pro cornerback. No play better symbolized the Giants’ (and Jenkins’) defensive ineptitude better than Marquise Goodwin’s 83-yard touchdown run. Jenkins, who is one of the most physical corners in the NFL, couldn’t get a hand on Goodwin and wound up on the ground watching him score on third-and-8.
This is a rare moment for Jenkins’ play to be recognized in the Ugly section. At the same time, a player of his caliber shouldn’t have been embarrassed the way he was.
Kicker Aldrick Rosas
Rosas was half of the one of the most intriguing position battles of training camp. Rosas, an undrafted free agent out of Southern Oregon, beat out the veteran Mike Nugent. His youth (he’s 22) and uncanny kicking ability made him attractive to the Giants. He didn’t miss in the preseason and he continued that streak into the regular season.
Now, Rosas has hit the proverbial wall.
Rosas’ day got off to an inauspicious start when he muffed the opening kickoff, setting up the 49ers’ first field goal. He later missed a 34-yard field goal on the Giants’ first possession of the second half that would have brought the Giants within one.
Rosas has missed a field goal in four consecutive games. His once dead-on accuracy seems to have left him. He is becoming a serious liability when the Giants offense cannot score. Rosas’ struggles yesterday were further compounded by the presence of 49ers kicker Robbie Gould, who kicked for the Giants last season after the suspension and release of Josh Brown.